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It’s surprising how many companies don’t have a good handle on their leads. Their Marketing & Sales teams know they need or want more, but they don’t always know the number of leads they need in order to meet customer or revenue goals. They also might not have precise definitions of lead lifecycle stages in place, or be sticking to a consistent plan to work incoming qualified leads.

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10,000 Instagram followers. It's a common social media milestone that a lot of people are trying to work towards when building a brand—be it their company's or their own personal account. It's really reaching this first tier that demonstrates you have the potential to be a serious online influencer in your industry.

However, with influencer marketing on the rise, Instagram users sometimes purchase lists of potential followers in the hopes that they'll get at least a portion of these people to pay attention to their account. But in many cases, particularly in a business setting, buying a list can lead to poor quality traffic being directed to your website—along with unintended consequences... like a higher bounce rate, less time spent on pages, and bad-fit leads.

It's a much safer (and more rewarding) route to grow your social following organically. Engagement with your brand will be much higher, members of your target audience will be sharing your content, and you'll have more opportunities to convert or nurture qualified leads that are actually interested in what you're selling.

Below are 10 simple tips for getting to 10k Instagram followers without buying your way there!

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Have you been tasked with improving your company's email engagement rate? Simply getting your emails delivered into your contacts’ inboxes is becoming harder every year, let alone inspiring contacts to actively engage with them. But don’t give up!

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All prospects are NOT equal, so targeting the right ones is imperative.

But, for the sake of illustration, let me tell you a story about someone who didn’t quite get this concept.

I was in Las Vegas for a convention and I was walking down the street on the way to the event when I witnessed a guy frantically handing out cards (promoting a service) to EVERY person walking by. He was literally forcing people to take a card while simultaneously saying “check it out… check it out… check it out”.

The area where he was doing this was littered with thousands of cards dropped by the people who didn’t want the card and were not interested… which was pretty much everyone.

Talk about ongoing rejection.

Here’s my problem with this approach: the guy might as well have been promoting a meat lover’s pizza deal to attendees of a vegetarian convention as they walked by.

News Flash! Not everyone wants what you offer (no matter how great it is).

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You've worked hard to build up your customer base. And you know the deal: a satisfied customer costs less to maintain (and upsell) than investing in a new one, so focusing on customer satisfaction should remain a mainstay of your marketing strategy. After all, who doesn’t want loyal customers who will embrace your new products, provide a glowing testimonial or case study, and even better, refer a colleague to your business?

But the road to creating raving customer fans doesn’t just pave itself. It takes work. To help you along, here are a few simple client communication ideas for nurturing those important relationships—and to help you maintain trust, cultivate loyalty and ultimately, turn customers into advocates of your brand.

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Our team has a long history with our client Wolfers Lighting. We started working with the Wolfers team back in January of 2015—and over the last 4+ years, we’ve collaborated on countless blog posts, expanded their collection of downloadable resources, helped them launch two new brands under the Wolfers umbrella, and transitioned the management of their recently created Instagram account into the hands of their internal marketing team.

Now, when you first read that last bit about their team taking on the Instagram project we started, you might be thinking... “Wait, isn’t this supposed to be a story about PMG delivering results for a client?” How could Wolfers taking Instagram off of their marketing agency’s plate be a good thing? Well, before we get to the answer, let’s start at the beginning...

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Does your business sell to other businesses? That means you’re in B2B marketing. Selling directly to consumers? Well, that’s B2C. Relying on peer-to-peer endorsements? Then P2P is your jam. Oh, and if your business markets to government agencies, there’s a name for that, too: B2G.

For marketers, these classifications are appointed with good intent; they’re designed to help us qualify our marketing audiences so we can “get to know” them better and adhere to marketing best practices accordingly. But there’s a common and arguably better thread that unifies those audiences: and it’s called H2H.

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The days of uninformed cold calls, mass spam emails, and the all-powerful salesperson are long gone. Back then, the B2B seller was the gatekeeper: they held the keys to pricing, customer reviews, competitor information—the works. But the sales process looks different today. Now, the B2B buyer has the power. They can do the research, they can compare products or services, and they can get an idea of who you are as a company in just a few seconds when they visit your home page.

The constant changes happening in the B2B space can put a lot of pressure on the salesperson to get it exactly right. No one can blame you if you’re hitting a wall. But if you're finding that your sales process is consistently failing you, there’s still hope. It might just mean that you’ll have to make a few adjustments.

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Messaging apps are quickly becoming the most popular way for people to communicate. Unlike a phone call, consumers are often more responsive to receiving text messages and are actually more likely to perceive a company contacting them via text in a positive light. In fact, across 8 markets surveyed globally, 51 percent of people agreed that messaging has replaced other forms of communication.

With such a shift occurring, businesses are now looking for the best way to engage with customers and prospects—using their preferred channels of communication. There are many apps out there that can help you do the job, but here we cover a few of the strongest. The following four messaging apps are worth looking into if your team is pursuing a more modern approach to marketing.

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Twenty years ago, plenty of companies were publishing thought leadership pieces—long before it was called content marketing. The most prolific publishers were global management consulting firms and financial service firms. These corporate giants regularly pushed out expertly written reports, interviews and articles. And they published a lot of original research. An excellent example of this is PwC’s Global CEO study. Now in its 22nd year, the research is a fantastic example of a weighty, influential piece of content for the C-suite.

Yet over the last decade, as content marketing roared onto the scene, most companies embraced pretty much all other types of content except research. With so many digital tactics and channels to choose from, research seemed a pretty buttoned-up (read: boring) option. In 2019, the tide seems to be shifting again. And that’s because research performs so well. At a time when content marketers are struggling to get attention in a vastly overcrowded field, original research is a tactic that delivers results. (Plus marketers are learning that research does not have to be boring—I promise to provide examples that prove my point.)

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