6 Tips To Create An Effective Inbound Marketing Campaign

How to Start Making Effective, Lovable Campaigns

by Barbra Bannon, originally posted at SparkEvolution.com

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Now that we’ve covered the key characteristics of marketing that people love, let’s discuss how you can adopt these features in your marketing practices. In this ebook, we will walk you through the process of running a holistic marketing campaign and show you ways in which you can make each part of this campaign educational, helpful, timely, customized, consistent–in other words, lovable!

From industry best practices and our own experience, there are some key components of a successful marketing campaign:

  • Produce a compelling marketing offer
  • Place the offer on your website
  • Attach the offer to automated workflows
  • Promote it via email, blog & social media channels
  • Measure results

TIP #1 How to Develop a Stellar Marketing Offer

Constantly coming up with new content ideas can be overwhelming. To handle the demands of content creation, marketers have been told again and again to “think like a publisher.” it’s great advice, but what exactly does that mean? Just how do you think like a publisher?

Like publishers, inbound marketers must have a detailed picture of their target audience in order to create optimal content for them. Who are your ideal customers and prospects? What are their biggest concerns, needs, and interests? Where can you reach them – on search engines, social media, or blogs – and what kinds of content do they prefer? These questions will help you develop buyer personas.

Focus on the right stage

Content plays a critical role in every stage of the inbound marketing process, from generating awareness about your company to helping convert leads into customers. But the types of content you should use to achieve each of these goals are often very different from each other.

Awareness
The prospect gets acquainted with your brand or realizes they have a need for your product/service.

Research/Education
The prospect identifies the problem and researches potential solutions, including your product/service.

Comparison/Validation
The prospect examines the options and begins narrowing the list of vendors

Purchase
The prospect decides from whom to buy.

What Content Attracts Traffic & Leads?
For the purposes of launching a powerful marketing campaign, you will focus on the first stage–creating awareness through your marketing content. This means your marketing offer needs to attract a ton of traffic and generate new leads for your business. There are different types of content formats and topics that you can pursue to achieve this goal.

TIP #2 Place the Offer on Your Website

In order to start generating new leads from your offer, you need to place it on your website. You will do that by creating a landing page, a web page that features a description and an image of the offer and a form for visitors to fill out in order to receive the resource.

This transaction is type of an information exchange, in which the visitor gets the offer they are interested in and you receive the contact information of your visitors. They transition into their next lifecycle stage, that of leads. This is the process of lead generation.

Lead Generation Visualized

TIP #3 Build Workflows

So you have designed a stellar marketing offer and placed it on your website. But before you start driving traffic to it, you need to consider how you are going to nurture the new leads that you create. How are you going to further educate them about your company and product or service? You will need to use workflows.

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What is a workflow?
Workflows are an automated series of emails or other communications that pre-qualify early-stage leads before handing them over to sales. Workflows are also known as advanced lead nurturing, marketing automation, drip marketing, and auto-responders. their goal is to make your new leads more sales-ready.

By using workflows and nurturing your leads, you save your sales organizations time because you educate and qualify the lead overtime. this is only one of the reasons you should start doing lead nurturing. Let’s look at some of the other benefits.

Getting the timing right
Study after study shows that email response rates decline over the age of the lead. In his science of timing research Dan Zarrella, Hubspot’s social media scientist, discovered that there is a positive correlation between subscriber recency and clickthrough rate, one of the key metrics of engagement.

Once you set up workflows, emails are sent out automatically according to your schedule as new leads come in. you might launch the campaigns and forget about them, but the emails will be doing the work for you, helping you qualify leads and push them down the sales funnel faster.

Marketing to Your Existing Contacts

Now that you have ensured that all new prospects who will grab your marketing offer will receive the appropriate follow-up communication, you can start thinking about sending traffic to your landing page.

First, think about ways to notify your existing contacts about the new marketing offer you have released. Your email list should be one of the most powerful contact databases that you have access to. (Your social following represents another growing database of evangelists.) So how would you go about making this announcement to your email list?

TIP #4 Dedicated email send

For instance, you can be notifying your target audience about a new whitepaper you have released or invite them to attend an event that you are hosting. Dedicated emails help you set up the context to introduce the main call-to-action. Dedicated sends can be used to reach out to your entire email database or just a segment that you think this marketing offer applies to.

While there are instances when all of your subscribers should be notified about a specific marketing campaign, such as a timely new offer or an upcoming event, in most cases you would want to segment heavily based on your subscribers’ persona.

Tips for your email sends

Dedicated email sends are generally easy to set up and measure. They are certainly not as complex as newsletters, for instance. Still, there are some best practices that you should keep in mind when you craft your email:

Feature one call-to-action
Dedicated sends focus on driving results for one call-to-action. As a MarketingSherpa case study of Kodak’s successful list growth tactic explains, “these calls-to-action were not stuffed at the end of a newsletter or tacked onto another message. They were the focus of a dedicated email, which gave them much more impact.”

Personalize Emails
Show your prospects that you know them. Personalized emails not only increase your open and clickthrough rates, but also demonstrate a deeper relationship with your audience. Make sure to use a consistent voice across your marketing communication.

TIP #5 Promote Your Offer Through Blogging & Social

Now that you have announced the release of your new marketing offer to existing contacts in your email database, you can start looking for other opportunities to drive traffic to your landing page. This is where you can leverage your blog and social media channels. Blog and social media can increase the reach of your content and support your lead generation efforts. Just remember to always a call-to-action: a link to your landing pages with the marketing offer.

Take excerpts from the content in your offer and feature it as blog articles or advertise it through social media and ask your followers for comments and shares.

How to use your blog in the campaign

When putting your blog post together, optimize your writing to grab people’s attention and to rank well in search engines. Don’t forget to introduce a call-to-action to the marketing offer you want to promote! Here are a few more tips for your blog post:

Feature a compelling image: include an image that conveys what the blog post is about. This is appealing to readers and helps them go through the text-based content. A blog post that has some type of visual that’s a photograph, a graphic or some type of infographic typically plays a little better than merely text.

Write an eye-catching title
Headlines are the most important element of your blog posts. While there are quite a few elements that make up a successful blog post, one of the best things you can do to capture readers’ attention and entice them to view your post is to write an awesome blog title.

Format
In blogging, it is important to break text up in chunks. Online reading is not like reading a physical book. The online reader needs to be able to immediately scroll through content to get to the subheaders and the bolded content and even bullet points. In that way you can make content more visually drawing and engaging.

How to Use Social in Your Campaigns

While Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ and Pinterest are all different social media platforms, they have something fundamental in common: the element of information exchange. So with the creation of a good marketing offer to promote, you make your job on social media much easier because now you have content to share!

Here are some other best practices when it comes to promoting your marketing offer through social media channels:

Decide On Your Networks
There are a lot of available social networks out there. Which one are you going to use to promote your offer? You probably don’t have bandwidth to spend equal time on all of them. Look at your marketing analytics and your historical performance with different social channels. Identify the three networks that bring you the best results and focus on using them for supporting your campaign. 

Map different content based on the network
Different social networks are effective at promoting different types of content.

While visual content performs well on Pinterest and Facebook, simple copy works well for twitter and LinkedIn. Youtube, on the other hand, is a strictly video sharing platform. Find out which social network makes the most sense for the type of marketing offer you have created.

TIP #6 Measure Every Element of Your Campaign

Now that you have created a marketing campaign from start to finish, you need to revisit each element of the campaign and how it performed individually and as a part of a whole.

There are a wide range of metrics that you need to look at in order to evaluate if your campaign was successful or not. If you are trying to have a quick peek at your overall performance, you should start with a look at the analytics tied to the landing page that hosts your marketing offer.

landing page

What if performance was poor?

Different metrics tell different stories. So if your performance was poor, you need to spend time and find out exactly which metric needs to be improved. for instance…

  • If the number of views the landing page got is low, you need to work harder at promoting the offer and sending more traffic to it.
  • If the conversion rate of the landing page is low, you need to focus on creating a more compelling offer or optimizing your landing page.
  • If the number of new leads this offer brought you is low, it could mean that your existing contacts are not sharing your offer with new people. You need to either incentivize them or find venues of promotion to a new audience.
  • If the number of customers the offer brought you isn’t very high, that could mean your workflows aren’t successful at qualifying leads to convert them into customers. You might need to revise the workflows and make them more powerful.


Final Note

Starting with producing a stellar marketing offer, through promoting it on your channels, to measuring its impact, you have learned how to piece together the main components of a holistic marketing campaign. Most importantly, you know how to make each of these components valuable, consistent and timely–all prerequisites for creating marketing that your prospects will love.

Now that you know how to create a holistic marketing campaign that will bring you lots of new leads and customers, go ahead and make one!

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barbrabannon_sm (1)Barbra Bannon is a neuromarketing enthusiast, social marketer, and online ecology adventurer. She is the author of “How to be an Online Marketing Rock Star”, published February 2012. She was granted the 2008 American Express’s Make Mine a Million Dollar Business award; she is a national columnist, an online marketing maven, a social entrepreneur, philosopher, writer, and idea addict. She has presented topics on branding ranging from “the modern media ecology and what it means for your brand” to “using social media to explode event engagement”. Her work has appeared in many places such as Sports Illustrated, MTV, Boston Globe, Wide-Format-Imaging, Elevator World Magazine, and Media Life Magazine.

Barbra Bannon (1 Posts)

Barbra Bannon is a neuromarketing enthusiast, social marketer, and online ecology adventurer. She is the author of “How to be an Online Marketing Rock Star”, published February 2012. She was granted the 2008 American Express’s Make Mine a Million Dollar Business award; she is a national columnist, an online marketing maven, a social entrepreneur, philosopher, writer, and idea addict. She has presented topics on branding ranging from “the modern media ecology and what it means for your brand” to “using social media to explode event engagement”. Her work has appeared in many places such as Sports Illustrated, MTV, Boston Globe, Wide-Format-Imaging, Elevator World Magazine, and Media Life Magazine.


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