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,

My guest appearance on FIR #B2B Show #6 with @pgillin & @allanschoenberg

This week I had the honor of joining Paul Gillin and Allan Schoenberg for their FIR B2B Show #6 titled Marketers Struggle With Reinvention.

Paul and Allan discussed the latest in B2B and Social Media News covering:

1) Recent research from Demand Metric reinforcing the importance of lead generation as just 9% of B2B marketers say they are highly effective at generating leads..

2) A study from IBM which discusses that although CMOs believe that advanced analytics play a significant role in helping them reach their goals, most feel their organizations are not in a position to leverage data to its full extent to gain a deeper understanding of the customer.

3) A new research study of 350 business buyers by the CMO Council and Netline finds that third-party sources heavily influence B2B buying decisions. That’s not surprising, but what’s depressing is that only 9% said vendors are trusted sources of content. “Marketing executives unanimously agreed that a solid content strategy is imperative for building awareness it requires them to position themselves as trusted experts in their field,” the report concludes.

During this podcast we discussed the numerous channels we use at my company Euromoney Institutional Investor to leverage social media across our publishing and events businesses, as well as the power we’ve found through paid advertising on Facebook, and the importance of word of mouth marketing. Click the link below to listen to FIR B2B Show #6 “Marketers Struggle With Reinvention.”

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Leave me a comment below or tweet me @MarissaPick to share your feedback with this FIR Podcast.

Stop Fighting Social Media Marketing and Try to Visualize the Impacts with a Nifty Infographic

I’m a huge believer in social media (shocking I know!) but as the industry continues to expand and the social media “bubble” continues to bloom people want proof to backup the statement that it indeed social media does work.  How you measure the sucess and ROI of social media may vary, but needless to say often ROI can be seen in things such as website referral traffic, lead generation, sales, and so much more.

A website I visit daily, Social Media Examiner released its fifth annual 2013 Social Media Marketing Industry Report back in May of 2013 which aimed to understand how marketers are using social media.   Over 3,000 marketers provided feedback, and some of the major findings are beyond powerful.  My top two findings from the report are below:

1) 86% of marketers indicate that social media is important for their business, up from 83% in 2012.

2) Increased exposure is the top benefit of social media marketing: A significant 89% of marketers stated that increased exposure was the number one benefit of social media marketing.

Wishpond, a maker of online marketing tools, created an infographic which nicely illustrates the study’s results.  As social media marketing continues to grow, this 43-page report makes the benefits of social media and future planning easily digestible. The Infographic below really speaks for itself with the top benefits achieved in social media in 2013.

I found this report very valuable and insightful, check out the infographic and report and let me know what you think in the comments section below…

Happy Reading!

-MP

The Top Benefits of Social Media Marketing [Infographic] image top benefits social media marketing infographic