Cape Cod SEO - A Search Engine Marketing Blog on Cape Cod
Cape Cod SEO is Derek Edmond's blog about search engine optimization, social media, and internet marketing.
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One of the key reasons B2B marketers remain skeptical with social media as a primary tactic in digital marketing is the inability to determine ROI. It’s not that B2B marketers fail to understand the adoption rates of social media platforms and their influence in online behavior, it’s the lack of clarity between time and investment in social media activity for business purposes, with measurable marketing gains, that leads to B2B marketing unease.
The ROI conversation continues to have legs because historically, B2B marketers have not had access to clear social media metrics, which are necessary to begin the framework for marketing program evaluation. While we have access to web reporting tools, metrics specifically within social media platforms have been poor at best.
When building out a distinctive B2B brand message, one of the questions branding experts might ask is, “What are the current perceptions and attitudes about your brand?”. We all have our own perceptions, but nothing compares better than how others perceive or associate your message. While the easiest and most direct way to obtain this answer is to actually ask the customer(s), there are reasons why this might not be possible.
First, customers are busy and it can be difficult to get their time for such an exercise, especially for such a potentially penetrating question. Second, because of the sensitive nature this infers, customers may be reluctant to speak candidly (this is why branding experts would often want to interview customers separately).
Fortunately there are internet marketing related reports and resources that provide immediate insight into how well your B2B brand message resonates with target audiences. Here are five examples to consider.
I recently caught a tweet from SEO Mike Arnesen highlighting an article on Medium about “The Future of About Us Pages“. The article provides perspective into why the “About Page” (or section) should become a more central piece of an organization’s story and brand. It is certainly true that in many cases, the “about section” is left stagnant, only updated when there are leadership changes or major news updates.
And that should change.
A recent study from Searchmetrics revealed that the growth rate of Google+ shares was approximately 18.5% per month, almost double that of Facebook (9.3%). Even though Facebook remains the primary social platform among users, the growing influence of Google+ cannot be understated.
At the heart of the B2B organizations’ Google+ strategy is their Google+ business page. Even though the execution of Google+ initiatives are still in their infancy for B2B marketers, there are good examples available.
A few weeks back I wrote a column for Search Engine Land on B2B buyer personas. In exploring the persona concept, it further supported my opinion that for SEO to truly be effective for the B2B organization, SEO needs to run hand-in-hand with traditional B2B marketing initiatives.
In this post, I want to discuss how B2B SEO discovery can be integrated into buyer persona development, in turn creating a more effective search engine optimization strategy in the long run.
While discussing the changes in the search industry with a B2B marketing colleague earlier this month, he mentioned that many marketing professionals may be confused about SEO, particularly when it comes to advising clients on search initiatives.
Jargon, conflicting “expert” opinion, and technological changes (like search algorithm updates) all add to the confusion. B2B marketers know how important organic search can be to their online marketing initiatives, but often get confused as to what they truly need. All they know is that they “need SEO.”
B2B marketers are spending more than 25 percent of their budgets in the development, delivery and promotion of content, according to a recent survey run by the CMO Council and NetLine. Their objectives are to drive business leads, influence customer markets and grow brand presence and authority. More importantly, 87 percent of respondents indicated that online content has a moderate to major impact (67 percent and 20 percent respectively on what vendors they chose to work with.
While B2B sales and marketing groups appear to understand the need for better alignment through content marketing needs, strategic development is still in its infancy.
A recent article in BtoB Magazine highlights how marketing to the electronics engineering vertical is changing due to technological innovation and the demands of a more specialized (and time-constrained) workforce. The focus of the article centers around content marketing designed to attract buyers at every stage of the buying cycle, particularly early-stage awareness.
B2B marketers in this vertical are beginning to understand that the investment in early-stage engagement initiatives is just as critical, if not more so, than late-stage, more traditional marketing collateral such as technical spec sheets and sales presentations.
How do you measure SEO performance now that “not provided” keyword data is so prevalent?
This question comes up frequently in client meetings and conversations with colleagues in the industry.
In some cases, “not provided” keyword traffic percentages represent more than 50 percent of a client’s search referral volume. This creates a significant hurdle when you’re trying to demonstrate results for campaign initiatives.
The challenges SEOs face in demonstrating ROI of keyword strategies mirror greater concerns B2B marketers have with website optimization initiatives overall. A recent MarketingSherpa article highlights the fact that more than half (53 percent) of B2B marketers surveyed indicated they couldn’t (or didn’t) calculate the ROI of their website strategies.
LinkedIn’s recent announcement about the redesign of LinkedIn Group pages has had me thinking much more about why B2B search marketers need to leverage this social media platform in support of SEO initiatives.
According to the announcement, “there are more than 200 conversations happening each minute across LinkedIn Groups and more than 8,000 Groups created each week.” And in Holger Schulze’s 2013 B2B Content Marketing Trends Report, LinkedIn tops the list as the most effective social media platform for delivering content.