Is Your Marketing a Temporary Fix?
At some point in your life you have most likely rented an apartment or an office. If this is the case, than like most you probably have thought – “Why I am paying rent when I could own and be building equity for my future”? This same thought should go into your decisions on where and how you are going to invest into your marketing and advertising for your company.
When you rent an apartment you are paying a monthly fee for a predetermined amount of time, usually six months to a year, and when your lease is up you either move out or you renew your lease and the landlord is the only one turning a profit in this relationship.
The same goes for Outbound Marketing and Advertising in most cases. At this point, this may not make sense, so let’s dive a little deeper.
Pay Pay Click (PPC) - You have a new product, service, or company that you are ready to launch, and you need to acquire customers. So, you turn to Google AdWords to get the word out. Now, there is nothing wrong with PPC if you know your unit economics, know how to optimize your campaign(s), and most importantly, understand that when you exhaust your budget and turn it off that the leads will STOP coming in.
This is renting. Why? Because when you stop running your PPC campaign(s) your ads will stop showing on Google and your prospects will not be able to find you and make a purchase.
If you are able to track click through rates from your PPC campaign to your landing pages all the way through to a purchase and determine if the campaign is profitable then keep using PPC if it is profitable, but most companies do not have the ability to track metrics this deep and “just want the phone to ring”. I do not recommend just trying to get the phone to ring unless your can track profitability.
Radio Advertising – Radio is a different animal all together as you are buying a dedicated number of commercials to run on one or multiple stations. First you need to know the demographics of the stations, the overall reach, and then most importantly, your cost per point.
Same thing happens as with PPC when your radio run is complete. The radio spots stop airing and your prospects don’t hear your commercials any longer.
Online advertising/Print/Billboards – The same methodology applies to their three forms of advertising and with Radio and PPC. It is very simple – when your ad run stops, your campaign is done. This is renting!
Owning your marketing is a little more time consuming and difficult than renting just as owning a home is more difficult than renting an apartment. When you purchase a home you have to get qualified, jump through hoops with banks, and then one the purchase is done there is always maintenance and upkeep, but the financial investment will benefit you long –term with the equity you are building for your future (forget about 2008-2010).
Your marketing works the same way as owning a home. You should be looking to invest into methods that will provide long – term equity for your business so each time you make a payment you know it will knock a few dollars off of your loan balance. In this case, it will put a few dollars towards your companies bottom line.
This is where inbound marketing comes into play. Unlike the forms of renting we discussed above, inbound marketing allows you to build a sustainable long-term marketing strategy that will continue to provide returns for years to come to your business, but there is a catch. You have to be committed to the long haul just like purchasing a home because inbound marketing takes time to get off the ground along with hard work and commitment to regular maintenance.
Let’s use this blog article as our first example. So far it has taken me 35 minutes to get to this point in writing this article and will most likely take me another 30-35 minutes to complete. This is an hour of my day on (Labor Day) to get this done, but I will be able to reap benefits (website traffic, leads, social sharing) for months to come because we will distribute this article multiple times via social media channels, syndicated sites, and hopefully it’s valuable enough for your to share so you will do some of the work for me.
The same concept applies to your social media strategy. If you create remarkable content then your community will share it helping you with the workload and if your content is evergreen then you can use it for months or even years to come.
Below is a screen shot of two blog articles that were written for our blog. The first was posted in March of 2013 and the second was posted in January.
Look at the traffic for each article
Social Sharing Metrics:
Social Sharing Metrics
We invested about 4 hours to write and post the two articles above. The long-term maintenance we discussed earlier is where the distribution of the content comes in. We typically repurpose previously posted blog articles once a week via our social channels, if they are relevant. Being relevant is the key, and this is why you need to think about creating as much evergreen content as possible because it will last longer and provide more long-term value.
SEO – search engine optimization
Just as the blog articles above provide long-term value, so does SEO or search engine optimization. SEO takes a lot of time and expertise to implement correctly, but once you have it in place it becomes much easier to maintain. If you’re not up to date on current SEO strategies than I would recommend consulting a professional to help you, because this is a big part of owning your marketing as 62% of clicks go to the top 2 organic placements on Google, and 95% of consumers in North America research online before purchasing a product or service.
We made a concerted effort to ramp up our SEO efforts for IMA starting in December of last year. The screen shot below illustrates that we have been able to triple (3X) our organic search volume to our website in about seven months.
This organic optimization has lead to more leads and customers than we have ever had before, and we see very similar results for our clients. However, the most important part of this is that once it is in place, the workload diminishes because you have built authority with Google and the other search engines. This is not to say that you can stop, but the all you will need to worry about is the routine maintenance to sustain just like mowing your yard or fixing a leaky faucet at your home.
Inbound marketing may take longer to get there, but the long-term rewards are much more fruitful than renting an apartment. Not sure about you, but for close to 15 years I rented my marketing. For the last six I have owned it, and have seen a much better return on my investment.
If you need help figuring out how to own your marketing, let us know. We would love to help you start building equity in your marketing and will even give you a head start below with our free eBook - Inbound Marketing for Beginners.
image credit: jscreationz/freedigitalphotos.net