The Critical Importance Of Lead Validation In Internet Marketing

I’m thrilled to include a guest post from Aaron Wittersheim who is the Chief Operating Officer at Straight North, an Internet marketing agency specializing in SEO, PPC and web design. Within my post “Four Trends Marketers Shouldn’t Ignore” I included information that content marketing and native growth will eventually outpace display and search.  I connected with Aaron and learned more about lead validation which is the process from separating sales leads from non-sales inquires and his team brought to light a very interesting lead validation study.  The presentation and forward from Aaron is below.

“You’ve spent a lot of time fine-tuning your lead generation website into a high-performance machine. However, if you’re not incorporating lead validation into your efforts, you’re driving without a roadmap. You might get where you want to go, but it will be almost completely by accident.

Lead validation is essential because measuring your site’s performance by the number of conversions alone is not enough. Here at Straight North, a Chicago SEO expert firm, we’ve spent a lot of time reviewing hundreds of thousands of conversions, and found that conversions aren’t sales leads nearly half of the time.

That means half of conversions are things such as job applications or incomplete form submissions, which shouldn’t be counted (but Google analytics numbers can trick you into counting). Lead validation also takes phone calls into consideration, something Google doesn’t track (but can have a big impact on the success of your campaign).

If you’re still on the fence about incorporating lead validation into your lead generation campaign, consider the information in the following presentation. We’ve complied some of the most compelling arguments for lead validation, illustrating how critical it can be for the success of any Internet marketing effort. You’ve put a lot of work into your lead generation website, so make sure it doesn’t go to waste.”

Aaron Wittersheim is the Chief Operating Officer at Straight North,

#SocialMedia, It’s not easy, but it is simple.

In under a decade, Social Media has become a mainstream channel for consumers. My colleague Anna Lee and I have complied some stats to sway you, and we’ve also shared the below article with Online Marketing Institute as well.  We would love to hear your feedback and experiences, please leave a comment below or tweet us @marissapick or @annaleenyc.

socialmediaeasy1

72% of adult internet users in the U.S. are now active on at least one social network, up from 67% in 2012 and just 8% in 2005. (Source: MediaPost)  [Tweet This]

As marketers, we must embrace the change and explore this new & exciting channel for communication with our customers. Simply put, if you’re not embracing social media, you’re missing out.

“Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything”- George Bernard Shaw [Tweet This]

For some, this change can be overwhelming, time consuming, fast paced and scary. Whilst it’s true that you must invest in this change, with the same time and care you invest in traditional marketing channels, the bottom line we often overlook is simplicity.

Social media is simply a new channel for communication with your audience that ultimately can compliment your existing marketing mix. It’s a place to listen, to learn, to inform, to help and to engage.

The exact same principles you apply to more traditional channels apply to Social Media too.

Send the right message, to the right people, in the right place, at the right time.

Marketing 101, right?

The Right Message
Earn the attention of your audience. Provide valuable content. Be Helpful. Solve Problems. Engage.

54% of B2B marketers plan to increase spending on content marketing in 2014. (Source: MyCustomer.com)  [Tweet This]

The Right People
Social Media is not a mass marketing channel. In fact, I can’t think of one that is. Use hashtags, targeted ads and social media tools to laser in on your audience. Think your audience isn’t on social media? Think again.

In fact, the 55-64 age group is the fastest growing demographic on Twitter — at 79% since 2012. (Source: Jeff Bullas) [Tweet This]

The Right Place
You don’t have to be on all Social Media channels, but you do have to be where your audience is.

Approximately 46% of online users count on social media when making a purchase decision. (Source: Nielsen) [Tweet This]

The Right Time
Is your brand prepared to be spontaneous? Be timely. Respond quickly. Leverage trends and current affairs.

More than 70% of users expect to hear back from the brand they’re interacting with on Twitter, and 53% want a response within the hour.  (Source: Search Engine Watch[Tweet This]

Make sure your brand is ready to send the right message, to the right people, in the right place, at the right time. Our audience is embracing social media. Are you?