Business Blog Promotion Strategies For Faster Results

Your business blog promotion strategies are not working exactly the way you wanted. And you hate waiting to see results. Is there a better way?

Yes there are better ways you can try. That’s what we’ll explore in this post.

Here I cannot guarantee the type and size of result you could get. Let’s say you have acknowledge that your current promotional efforts are not be the best.

Probably, it is just about the way you do the things you do from which great results were expected in the past.

So you’ve been sold on the benefits of blogging for business. Now you do recognize this part of content marketing as a proven way of generating leads, sales and revenue.

Like many others, you’ve been creating and publishing great contents. But your business blogging ROI seems to be flat zero or simply below average. Assuming you have great contents, here is one fact you should take away from this post.

Without consistent business blog promotion strategies, you’ll continue to waste your time.

This will even get worse if you expect results from ineffective search engine optimization practices on your blog. This is where I see a lot of small business bloggers fail.

Why SEO Takes Time

One of the reasons why business blogging takes so long to get results is that a great majority of bloggers depends largely on free, organic SEO traffic.

Unknown to these people, especially the people outside the digital marketing space, search engine optimization on its own takes time.

And here are some of the reasons why.

Your website is relatively new. Whether you are aware of this fact or not, Google and other search engines actually rank older web pages higher in most cases. This means that a website or page you create today can hardly come to organic first page ranking within one day or week.

Observe when you do a search sometimes you begin to see web pages that are 6 months to 3 years old ranking in the first page.

Here is a sample of an old web page ranking for the keyword ‘business blog conversion strategy’. (Add shot).

What you have is a static website. A static website with low number of pages cannot be compared to frequently updated, high quality content sites.

For example, you cannot compare a website that has 100 quality blog posts with one that has just 15 static company or business information pages. Practically, this has nothing to do with your business blog promotion strategies.

Interestingly, the one with higher number of pages will have multiple keywords with which people can find it from search engine ranking.

Competing with a static website means it will take long time to get good results.

Note that this doesn’t mean you cannot build backlinks to static websites and get good ranking and traffic volume.

Business Blog Promotion Strategies

Having established that search engine optimization is not the only way to get profitable results from your company blog, let’s explore some other ways.

But before doing that, let’s look at some measurable results you can get from your invested efforts and resources.

Targeted Website Traffic: While it is good to invest in growing traffic volume, all website traffic types are not equal. Most times, it is your promotional efforts, strategies and channels that will determine the type of persons that will visit your blog.

If you have been blogging for your business without measuring your targeted traffic volume, stop and rethink your strategies.

Quality Leads: This is one of the most important results that can be experienced in business blogging. While sales is also important, if you focus on sales only you’ll miss the boat.

On the internet, selling products or services to strangers is very hard. For most ecommerce businesses, the average conversion rate among first time website visitors is usually less than 4%.

This is why those that generate leads first before sales promotion often make more money from their websites than everyone else.

Interestingly, quality lead generation rate is another performance metric that can be measured over time.

Completed Sales: The question a lot of people ask is this, how can I convert blog readers into customers? Well I can tell you with confidence that it is possible. From this blog Weblife, I do get clients periodically.

That is without first converting them into leads.

The interesting thing is that I do invest time and money in active promotion of my blog posts to carefully defined audience segments.

Now, let’s look at the business blog promotion strategies one by one.

Best Business Blog Promotion Strategies

To get maximum results, you should focus on 20% content creation. And 80% promotion. – Derek Halpern, Social Triggers

#1: Paid Facebook Advertising 

If you have been into company blogging for while, I bet you have heard of Facebook advertising.

Mind you, am not talking about organic free posting of blog posts on your business page or selected groups.

I said this because from my interaction with some business owners, there use to be a blurring line in their head. They say they are advertising their business on Facebook and other social media platforms.

But when I ask them how they are doing it, they point to free postings on their business page and selected groups. And then they ask, isn’t that advertising for other people to see..?

Well, am sure you need valuable results, not vanity metrics.

When was the last time social media comments, likes and shares on your post brought you a lead or sale?

The funny thing about this blog post promotion strategy is that most of the people that depend on it don’t measure their results beyond these vanity metrics. It’s pretty much like the so called ‘spray and pray’ advertising strategy.

In effect, it’s about paying money directly to Facebook to place your advert in selected sections of their billion user platform.

In the context of blog post promotion, the best Facebook advertising objective you can use is website click.

This is a simple advertisement that does nothing but get people to click the ads and visit your specified web page. In this case, you don’t pay anything unless people click your advert.  And then the click leads them to visit the specified web page or blog post.

This is better than merely paying for visibility alone, either online or offline.

Another great benefit of paying to promote blog post with Facebook ads is the deep targeting options.

Contrary to free posting on business pages, you can choose the people to see your advert instead of reaching out to everyone.

Some of the commonly used Facebook ad targeting options include location, age, gender, interest, job title, marital status, purchase behavior, likes, hobbies and many more. And there is also the opportunity to build custom audience.

Assuming your blog posts are optimized to generate leads, sales or both, you can start getting results within 24 hours.

For many people, this is better than waiting for three or more months in terms of search engine optimization.

See how these 44 experts promote their blog with Facebook advertising.

#2: Paid Search Advertising

Warning; if you don’t have the expertise to integrate every piece of the puzzle properly, you’ll end up losing money without any ROI at all.

Especially for Google adwords, using paid advertising to promote a business blog is not for everyone.

Fortunately, paid search advertising is a perfect way of promoting your lead generation blog posts. And just like Facebook ads, you can start generating traffic, leads or sales within few hours after your advert approval.

If you have tried adwords and failed, you are likely to generalize like many others that it doesn’t work.

Probably you were driving traffic to a general home page or misaligned landing page.

However, the fact that you tried and lost money doesn’t mean it won’t work for others. On the other hand, it is not even proof that adwords won’t work for you if your strategy is improved next time.

One thing I want you to note is that there is a great difference between buyer keywords and the rest.

This often determines who is going to buy your services within 24 hours, 30 or 90 days. In essence, the keywords you use makes a lot of difference.

While your blog posts may not be written to sell products or services directly, you can use them to address your target customers’ pain points, needs and desired outcomes.

The same blog posts could as well be used for building brand trust, generating quality leads and consistent revenue.

This is important because selling to strangers is hard, especially in a faceless online environment.

In the context of business blog promotion strategies, here are the key benefits of using Google adwords. Mind you, only those who act on this can experience the benefits.

  • Prompt Timing

Reach and attract people exactly the time they are searching for your products, services or related information. In this case, a great percentage of your marketing budget could be wasting if the timing is wrong, regardless of the channel.

  • Multiple Keyword Targeting

Speak your customer’s language is something we hear about every time. But I learnt more of what it means from Joanna Wiebe of Copy Hackers.

With Google, a whole lot of different people often use different keywords to search for the same thing. Your blog posts and Google adwords advertising will give you opportunity to use many of them at the same time.

  • Automated Traffic Generation

This is a perfect example of putting money at work. In many instances, the cost of one day advertisement on radio, television or news paper can buy you 30 days of consistent and automated blog traffic.

You don’t have to waste your time on generating low quality leads.

#3: Website Traffic Retargeting

Retargeting is another perfect strategy for business owners and bloggers that hate waiting to see results. In essence, it is a different form of paid traffic.

Here I want you to note that retargeting and remarketing are often used interchangeably.

If you are not creating generalized industry contents that doesn’t bring measurable outcome, then you should pay attention here.

One interesting fact is that you probably have the traffic and money required for this.

Just as the name sounds, it is a simple process of reaching out to people who have visited your website or specified web pages.

Knowing that all of your blog readers won’t convert into leads or customers in their first visit, retargeting remains a competitive advantage for the smart people that leverage on that.

This online marketing tactic can be implemented on almost all of the paid advertising platforms you can think. From Facebook, to LinkedIn, Twitter, Youtube and Google, all of them have retargeting option in place.

And it doesn’t cost as much to get started.

In fact, based on many split tests I have done, it often cheaper than cold traffic.

Now let me tell you how retargeting works. When people visit your website from any online destination, you create retargeting advertisements on your preferred platforms.

These ads will then be served visibly to only the people who have visited your website or specified web pages within a specific period of time.

It could be 30 – 540 days depending on the platform you are using.

So this is how you bring back prospects who visited your blog posts, lead generation landing page, sales or contact page without converting into customers.

With regard to business blog promotion strategies, you can as well retarget people who have been to post category urls.

For example, if you have a blog category about search engine optimization, and then 1200 people visited within 30 – 540 days. You can promote offers related to SEO.

At the end you’ll bring back a percentage of these people and convert some of them instead of losing them 100%.

From Melbourne, Australia, a local furniture dealer approached me to help improve their digital marketing strategy. This happened on Facebook.

After installing Google analytics and search console, I did some analysis and found out that he generates an average of 4000 visitors per month. This traffic volume comes from 643 keywords ranking in different pages of Google search results.

But the lead generation and conversion rate was very poor.

Before that time, they don’t use any targeted keyword optimization in their business blogging strategy.

So I provided well research 100 high value keywords, writing and optimization guideline for their next 30 blog posts. We also optimized existing blog posts.

Then we moved to retargeting.

I used Google search console to identify the most valuable pages bringing highest volume of organic traffic to their website.

With that data, we created different ads within Google adwords and Facebook retargeting.

After the first 21 days, we brought in $6,400 revenue without additional traffic. That’s all from people who have shown interest in what they are selling.

Within that period we integrated call tracking system to identify the source bring the most valuable inbound phone calls.

The results amazed me so much that I learnt more about the importance of retargeting people specifically from organic search.

Now think about what a single sale could mean in your business if you have opportunity for repetitive marketing that builds interest, trust and conviction among qualified prospects.

My question now is this, what are the keywords your website or company blog currently ranking for? And how long have you been waiting for results? Probably you just abandoned your blog like many others.

Obviously, you don’t have a good reason to continue putting money and time in something that doesn’t work.

Call To Action

Before you close this page, I want you to understand that these are not the only blog post promotion strategies that can actually work for many business owners.

Moreover, I make no opinion to say that they are the best.

But these things originate directly from experience working for both clients and on my personal projects.

As for you, there is no limit on how you can put these blog promotion strategies to work. The most important thing is getting started. Like I use to say, having good knowledge is half the battle.

Whether you are the one putting out content for your company blog or not, you now understands better why SEO takes time. From this you now understand the contextual benefits of paid advertisements in your business blog promotion strategies.

So if you have to depend on free organic search engine traffic, you really need to wait as long as required depending on the effectiveness of your SEO strategy.

On the other hand, you can decide to set aside a part of your budget to explore the advantges of using paid ads.

With Google for instance, you’ll begin to experience the benefits of prompt timing, multiple keyword targeting, automated traffic as well as retargeting.

Finally, whether you are aware of it or not, your competitors are already thinking and operating in this angle. And you can only get an edge if you put what you’ve to work. Execution, not possession of great knowledge is where the competitive advantage lies.

Blog Posts vs Landing Pages: The Staffing Agency Lead Generation Guide

When it comes to staffing agency lead generation strategies, many people still depend 100% on old parochial approach.  Consequently, they operate blindly unaware of other marketing opportunities that exist beyond their current practices.

By parochial approach I am referring to an attitude of using the sample old strategies every other day, week, month or year without improvement.

While it is easy for everyone to have desire for improved marketing and business processes, not everyone knows how to go about it.

In the context of recruitment lead generation, not everyone knows the difference between business blog posts vs landing pages. Obviously, understanding all the iota details in online marketing for instance; shouldn’t be headache for everyone.

If you are the CEO of an agency for instance, marketing shouldn’t be ‘your thing’.

Granted you have your own over filled schedule. But if your lead generation pipeline isn’t working as much as you desire, then that should be your head ache.

Probably, you already have a consulting agency website. But unfortunately, there is no active business blog integrated inside from day one.

book

Resource Download: Click Here to get PDF version of this post for sharing with your team or colleagues, practical future implementation and improved marketing ROI. 

Hidden Content

I know you have been operating well and getting clients without a business blog.

However, this also implies that you may not as well be able to tell the difference between blog posts vs landing pages. Irrespective of this, you have this strong desire to improve your staffing agency lead generation strategies.

On the other hand, you may have the approach of delivering or hiring someone to deliver Google adwords traffic to your home page only.

While the low conversion outcome that comes from such Google adwords advertising strategy doesn’t hurt, there is a sizable room for improvement.

Perhaps, understanding the difference between the two types of web pages will enable you to leverage either or both of them at the same time.

Blog Posts vs Landing Pages: The Difference

According to Hubspot, the inbound marketing platform solutions provider,

‘All landing pages are web pages (blog posts inclusive). But not all web pages are landing pages.’

What then is the difference you may ask? The differences are in the contents, design, context and function. Even though there could be some overlapping factors, these things are not practically the same.

Business Blog Posts

These are contents written on a web page usually the long form types that are meant to accomplish many different things.

Most times, blog posts exist on dynamic content management and publishing systems. CMS in this case can be used to publish web pages and contents without touching the underlying codes.

Let’s look at the core functions that make blog posts different.

  • Content 

As noted in the definition above, it is usually more of written texts. That is to say, majority of blog post contents are texts. However, quality blog posts often contain images, videos and GIFs at the same time.

But a bigger emphasis is always on the written text – headline, sub heading and body content.

  • Function

This is the core of the difference. In most business contexts, the functions of blog posts are practically different.

Among other things, they are used for promoting expertise, products, building trust, growing brand awareness, generating search engine traffic, quality leads and sales.

If you don’t know how to accomplish all of these in a single blog post, then you really may need to learn more or hire a business blogging expert to help.

See this guide on conversion focused business blogging.  (see sample post below/add shot).

So for those who are interested in how to generate leads without cold calling, starting an active business blog is one good option.

This is one of the proven ways to improve staffing agency lead generation strategies. In other words merely having a website won’t get the opportunities to increase your monthly billing.

  • Position

The position of blog posts vs landing pages within a website are not the same. Based on prevailing web design principles, most blog posts exist within a website beside other contents.

That is, in a typical website, both other contents on the site, navigation links and blog posts exist visibly side by side. See what I mean below. (add shot).

So it is left for website visitors to decide what to read depending on the intent with which they came to your site.

Dedicated Landing Pages

Now we know that not all web pages are landing pages, what are they?

These are special pages created for a unique segment of your website traffic or target audience. Unlike blog posts, most landing pages are dynamic in nature with one or few form fields.

Let’s look at the core things that define landing pages in the context of staffing agency lead generation.

  • Landing Page Contents

Though there is nothing that stops one from using long form landing pages like blog posts.

However, too many studies have proven that short, laser focused landing page often converts better. In addition to being short, it makes use of images and videos as well to induce conversions.

A form field that requires the user input is one key part of every high conversion landing page.

So in practical terms, fewer form fields convert better. Again, nothing stops you from packing too many form fields into your landing page.

This Trulia landing page is just a perfect example.

While it is possible to add opt-in forms within blob posts as part of your staffing agency lead generation strategy, most people don’t even do this at all. Note that it goes beyond adding generic newsletter lead magnet below your blog or on the side bar.

See this post on how content upgrades work.

  • Landing Page Function

Unlike blog posts, most high conversion landing pages often have a single goal, not multiple.

The premise is that multiple offers or call to action on a page puts people in a state of indecision. But when the entire, few contents are aligned with single intent of the visitor, conversion rate goes higher.

In the context of Google adwords advertising for instance, dedicated landing pages are used to generate service quotes, recruitment leads, build email lists, increase inbound sales call, deliver an ebook, white paper, video or case studies.

In comparison, dedicated landing pages often convert more than home page. However, you have to test both in order to find out what works in your niche and business.

In terms of landing page use cases, premium product developers like Thrive Themes, Unbounce and LeadPages have lots of landing page templates for any purpose you can think of.

How To Combine Blog Post And Landing Page

In some sense, parochial approach could also mean that you are using one of these lead generation strategies and ignoring the other.

A practical example will be running Google adwords campaign and ignoring the benefits of starting a business blog 100%.

I say this because my research across different countries shows that many recruitment agencies that use Google adwords advertising do not have a blog at all.

In such cases it is either they are driving all traffic to home page, dedicated landing pages or both.

Even though the current conversions could be very impressive, your website’s potential for generating organic search engine traffic, leads and revenue from blog posts will remain untapped.

Below are some specific actions you can take to experience the benefits of using the two at a time.

#1: More Leads From Blog Post

Depending on your content strategy, quality posts within your business blog should be supporting landing pages too.

The key thing is to use contextually relevant internal links to deliver traffic to your dedicated lead generation landing pages. (find and add example)

Note that am referring to simple text links only.

So make moderate use of selected keywords when linking. If you have a landing page about ‘how to hire passive candidates’, your blog posts about the same topic should be linking to it. Do this once or few times depending on the length of posts.

However, this can only work if you have a blog and some landing pages. Without these things, you’ll continue to miss out on the marketing benefits.

#2: Lead Generation Content Upgrades

These are special lead magnets integrated within a long form blog post for the purpose of generating leads or building an email list.

They are usually embedded within the context of your blog post topic. Instead of leading directly to a landing page, what most people use is light box pop ups.

When you click the link on embedded content upgrade with a blog post, it opens an opt-in form or link to a landing page.

Check this content upgrade case study of 540% by Brian Dean of Backlinko. Below is also an example of content upgrade. (add shot).

#3: Combining Both

For those who are yet to start generating leads from their basic website, it’s easy to sit where they are now and conclude that these things doesn’t work. Bear in mind that a lack of awareness of how landing pages and business blogs work doesn’t mean that the possibilities are not there.

Without a deep research, it’s not that hard to find recruitment agencies that are not using both an active business blog and dedicated landing pages.

Interestingly, some among these staffing consultants still use Google adwords to drive traffic to their home and other pages.

The benefits of combining the two apply to both potential candidates and clients visiting your website. This is one of the best ways to improve your staffing agency lead generation strategy.

Thus, in order to maximize marketing ROI, you should also consider making use of the two at the same time.

From my own experience with other consulting businesses as a digital marketer, the cost can never be equal to the benefits.

While dedicated landing pages offers the benefits of A/B testing, a considerable blog posting frequency will help in consistent growth of organic, free search engine traffic.

Now you know the different between business blog posts vs landing pages. Only you can tell whether you are actually making use of these effective online marketing tools in your recruitment business.

Even if you are currently using the two, it’s only the results you get from them that can prove how well they are working for you.

book

Resource Download: Click Here to get PDF version of this post for sharing with your team or colleagues, practical future implementation and improved marketing ROI. 

Hidden Content

With a considerable Google adwords advertising budget, you can as well use same to start driving quality traffic to your lead generation landing pages and blog posts.

A simple research in your niche market within Google will reveal the extent to which your competitors are using these staffing agency lead generation strategies.

Share your experience and challenges in the comment section. Which one among the two is working for you now and why are you not using the other?

You can as well join our Facebook group – The Search Tribe to discuss, discover and leverage working strategies to attract only the people in need of your products/services – Now.

40 Hotel Rooms And 2 Bookings Only: The Manager’s Pain Point

Today’s digital media landscape offers different ways on how to promote hotel website. Unfortunately, a lot of business people still assume that online marketing is for online businesses only.

But is that really true?

Based on this exact assumption, many hotel business owners, managers and marketers keep on operating with the same old script. And that means getting the same old results they’ve always had from doing the same thing over and over again.

Hence, the low booking revenue situation got some people trapped in a frustrating puzzle wondering; what exactly is wrong?

So one day on a cool Monday evening, I was seating with some friends at a city hotel.

Just very close to the reception desk, a guy who seemed to be the manager asked; how many bookings did we record yesterday?

As a digital marketing consultant that had worked with other local businesses, I picked some listening interests.

The young lady responded, ‘two Sir’.

Both of them stared at themselves for some brief minutes and the manager went away.

While this may not describe your own exact experience or current worries, am sure you have the desire to increase your hotel room booking and revenue.

One interesting fact is that having the highest number of rooms and best facilities won’t bring in customers.

Thus, if your hotel marketing strategy is effective enough, it will begin to affect daily revenue generation. I bet you don’t enjoy paying salaries and other operating expenditures without impressive ROI.

Interestingly, for those who are barely breaking even from month to month as a manager, two things might be your problem right now.

  • Hotel Marketing Strategy Without A Budget

Think it is location and signage that matters most, think again. Waiting for customers to come to you won’t affect your financial performance numbers positively.

And it is not a good competitive hotel marketing strategy.

You may say you have a number of affiliated taxi drivers that bring customers, but that couldn’t be enough. One fact is that they will always depend on stray prospects only.

On the other hand, one hundred percent (100%) dependence on referrals won’t make as much change as you desire either.

Sure the revenue potential is there, judging by the number of rooms and facilities in your hotel.

  • Dependence On Traditional Marketing Medium

One day, it just occurred to me that:

‘Life’s real possibilities are not as limited as our awareness of their existence.’ Something I never thought possible just happened in my presence within a single hour.

One man stated something that reads like ‘how can we know what we don’t know when we are constantly using our knowledge all the time’. I guess you know who Albert Einstein is.

How can we?

The thing is that dependence on our limited knowledge and experience of what is possible excludes us from real possibilities that are currently unknown to us.

I see this type of exclusion happening in business and marketing contexts very often.

For example, you may have some theoretical knowledge of how to promote hotel website, but if you don’t put those ideas to work you’ll be excluded from the potential benefits.

In that case, what is practically possible if you should start promoting your hotel business website will remain unknown to you.

So as for 100% dependence on traditional marketing medium, it excludes people from the benefits of online marketing strategies for hotels.

If you have 40 – 100 hotel rooms plus high grade event spaces, but your revenue generation rate is convincingly low, then you have to do something different. One fact you should understand is that doing what everyone else does won’t make much difference.

By traditional medium, I mean radio, television, newspapers, billboards, posters, flyers, signage etc. While they still work in some cases, it is not enough in a competitive environment.

Practically, there is nothing wrong with these mediums. I’m aware they still work. But smart people don’t stop there in this day and age.

Now you may say something like, we have a website with online booking system. Congratulations.

But the fact is that merely having a website won’t bring you hotel booking customers. Having Facebook and twitter pages won’t cut it either.

Question, what measurable results have you gotten from your website and social media pages since creating them? Do you have an idea of how many qualified prospects coming to your website daily, weekly or monthly?

And just like the prospects that come to your front office to make booking inquiries, your website traffic (visitors) also flows that way.

The remaining part of the post details some ways on how to promote hotel website if you already have one.

But if you don’t have a hotel business website, you may consider starting a friendly conversation with an expert that has marketing experience.

Hotel Marketing Strategy For Proactive Managers/Marketers

#1: Google Search Engine Marketing

It may interest you to know that most of the centralized hotel booking sites you know depend largely on search engine traffic.

The strategy is to attract people who are actively searching for hotels in different locations.

And almost all of the booking sites have daily, weekly and monthly budget for this quality traffic source.

However, nothing stops a marketing manager in a hotel with sizable number of rooms to invest in constant inflow of search engine traffic. By adding this to your hotel marketing strategy, you’ll experience the benefits beyond paying for visibility alone.

I bet that you, my reader had used Google to search for one product or service in the recent past.

Just as a testament to whether search engine traffic is profitable, Jumia, the leading ecommerce retailing company in Nigeria stated that 76% of their sales in 2016 came from mobile search engine traffic.

With Google search engine marketing, there are two main options.

  • Organic Search Engine Marketing

This is a process of improving the quality and eligibility of your website for inclusion in Google search engine result pages.

To get the best ranking and results, it requires an ongoing month to month optimization process.

With this option, you don’t have to pay money directly to Google to include the links to your website in the search engine result pages.

The screenshot below shows the unpaid listing results of my search for ‘affordable hotel rooms in Ikeja Lagos’. (add shot).

To start getting the benefits of SEO for hotels, it is either you learn and do the work by yourself or you hire a digital marketing expert. Engagement plan could either be as full time job or consulting basis.

This one shows the clicks and traffic volume delivered to a client website via organic SEO. We use Google search console to track this.

On a deeper level you could go further to learn about the optimization process.

This process includes things like like keyword research, long form content writing, on page SEO, link building and analytics.

  • Google Paid Search Advertising

In many ramifications, this is a direct opposite of search engine optimization.

First you have to pay money for Google to include the links to your preferred pages in their search engine results page. Here is how Google adwords work.

You use some selected keywords to set your advert including location targeting preference.

And then when prospects search for keywords like ‘100 person event hall in Lagos’, a link to your page that shows event spaces will appear.

Consequently, someone clicks that link to visit your event space information page, Google will charge your adwords budget account for each of the clicks generated.

That is why it is called pay per click sometimes. Note here that you are paying for real visitors, not visibility only. And you are attracting them only the time they are actively searching for hotels in your target location.

You can as well set some of your adverts to be shown on mobile devices only.

Note that it is not everybody who arrived on your website will end up becoming a customer.

However, buyer intent keyword targeting, A/B testing and data driven conversion rate optimization will help to maximize ROI on your hotel marketing budget.

See sample Google adwords advertisement below for a local hotel in Colorado, USA. (add shot).

For further detailed learning, you can search for things like Google adwords call extension, call only ads, adwords retargeting, PPC bidding etc.

Remember that the main objective is to bring a growing number of people actively searching for hotel rooms and event spaces to your website. And then convert a percentage of them into booking customers.

And then convert a percentage of these qualified prospects into booking customers.

In practical terms, most of these people do their searches with two main intents – to identify hotel location (copy address) and compare price before the actual online or offline booking.

#2: Facebook Advertising

Regardless of your age, I can guarantee by 98% that you have an active account on Facebook.

If that is correct, then it means again that you could be one of the 900+ million people in the world who use Facebook on their mobile phones daily.

It also means you belong to several other demographic segments.

The fact is that hundreds of thousands and  even millions of people like you and I spend good amount of time on social media every day.

Because of mobile smart phone penetration and other trends, the number of people spending 40+ minutes on Facebook daily is also on the rise according to business insider.

Interestingly, there’s no demographic you can think of that aren’t represented well on the big Blue social network.

In 2106, Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer stated that the number of advertisers on their network now hovers above 4 million.

And if you look at the Facebook ad case studies on their own page, you’ll get an idea of industries to which these advertisers come from.

So because it delivers measurable business value, many business owners and marketers across the world use it.

Both for growing website traffic, lead generation, increasing sales volume and building brand awareness, Facebook ads work for big and small business alike. Done very well, it will also work for your hotel.

With Facebook advertising you can target prospective hotel booking customers based on their age, gender, location, industry, interest and a whole lot of other demographic metrics.

Check this complete guide on Facebook audience targeting.

Below is a screenshot of some hyper local targeting options available for effective advert setup.  (add shot).

#3: LinkedIn Advertising 

LinkedIn is the #1 professional network on the internet today.

With over 400 million active users, this network offers immense opportunities to reach mature, career conscious and actively employed individuals.

And within their network, you can find an interesting number of people from different locations across diverse industries, job roles and niche markets.

Probably, you may have an active profile in there too. One interesting fact is that a great number of these people go to different career networking and business events from time to time.

While some top level CEOs and executives attend one or few events per year, there are people who often attend out of state or city events almost on monthly basis.

The nature of certain jobs also moves people from one location to the other.

Obviously in many cases, these career networking travels warrant hotel booking in many cases.

Meet them timely, and you could start getting a bigger share of the booking revenue that comes to your target market in each passing day.

Remember that doing what everyone else is doing won’t get you the exact results you desire.

Assuming you are a manager in a hotel with 40 – 100 rooms, advertising in an online or offline version of a national newspaper won’t get you much ROI.

The reason is because, the display won’t be location targeted. And the contents are often read by everyone and anyone.

On the other hand, once a day goes by your advert becomes obsolete too.

For A/B testing, optimization and better ROI, there are different LinkedIn ad formats you can get started with. You can use sponsored contents, text ad or InMail that reaches people directly in their inbox. See this guide on how to advertise on LinkedIn.

The most interesting part of this network is the deep audience targeting options.

From company name to age, gender, industry, job title, field of study, skills, location, company size, you get them all inside LinkedIn.

#4: Youtube Advertising

Both on Facebook and Youtube, video advertising is an alternative ad format that delivers better audience engagement. Just think about the video vs text ad comparison for a while.

However, if you have been to Youtube lately, you’ll certainly see some advertisements promoting different products, services, brands and businesses. And because it works, a growing number of businesses now spend money on it.

Confirmed as the second largest search engine in the world, Youtube now boosts of over 1 billion active users.

The content on this site encompasses every topic you can think of. Moreover, the creators and audience cuts across every country, state, cities and locales around the world.

Youtube offers both free and paid options for promoting products or services on their platform.

With free video posting option, you don’t have to pay money to upload videos and add links to your website. Building an audience here depends on search keyword optimization and channel subscribers.

Paid advert options helps provides access to a large audience who might have not subscribed to your business page or channel on Youtube.

Generally, video ads can be shown to your target audience based on what they have watched, what they are currently watching or the keywords they searched for.

In the context of hotel business promotion, you can use Youtube video ads to showcase your real hotel rooms, event facilities, gym and other things that make your brand different.

In addition to that you’ll now add your hotel website address or even phone number for targeted prospects to see them.

With this, you don’t have to depend on stray prospects or people that live within commutable locations (distance) only.

See the shot below for location targeting options. (get shot here – https://blog.crazyegg.com/guides/youtube-advertising/

Like the other hotel marketing strategies discussed above, you can do some A/B tests to find out what works better than others.

The key variations to focus on include ad format, video content and audience vertical.

The measurable outcome of your Youtube video advertisements will depend to some extent on the ad format you choose. However, in other to get better results you may consider retargeting for bringing back people who visited your website or watched your video.

Here is an image showing the available Youtube ad formats you can use. (http://oodle.io/p/ultimate-youtube-advertising-guide/)

Conclusion

Whether you have 40 hotel rooms, more or less than that, I’m sure that continued low revenue generation makes a business less profitable. You could have the highest earning potential, but if less than 10% of that is at work, then everything will always remain the same.

Maybe you’ve looked for ways on how to promote hotel business website because you already have one.

In that case, growing the volume of qualified traffic (booking prospects) coming to your site with booking intent will certainly help to grow your business.

To get started on that, you really need to focus on the most trafficked platforms on the internet – Google, Facebook, LinkedItn, Youtube etc. And as noted earlier, your target audience spends good amount of time on these networks in each passing day.

You only need to define, find and reach them.

At the end, what you’ll take away is the foundation of what is possible. This will now form a base for more research or to get expert inputs.

Fortunately, putting these specific strategies to work will help to maximize the ROI on your hotel marketing strategy.

Now you can as well join our Facebook group – The Search Tribe to discuss, discover and leverage working strategies to attract only the people in need of your products/services – Now.

Web Forms vs Inbound Phone Calls: A Practical Comparison

An effective online lead generation strategy can only be tested in two ways. First is the quality of leads being generated; think about conversion rate. Is your current rate high enough or painfully low?

Second measurement of effectiveness is the consistency of generating sufficient new leads daily, weekly or monthly.

Unfortunately, if the current performance numbers in these two dimensions are not impressive at all, then something different need to be done.

In this case, the need for improvement depends on how urgent it is.

When it comes to online lead generation, you could be dependent on web form submits like many other business owners or marketers.

Besides, it is also possible that you have phone numbers on few pages in your site. However, you still have no idea of how many phone calls are coming from your website visitors.

This post is around 2,792 words long. Consider the option below.

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Resource Download: Click Here to get PDF version of this post for practical future implementation, improved marketing ROI and sharing with your team/colleagues. 

Hidden Content

While there is nothing wrong with web form lead generation, this post will explore the comparative difference between web forms vs inbound sales calls.

At the end you will have greater insights on specific things that can be done to improve your online lead generation strategy.

Online Lead Generation Form Types

  • Contact Forms

Depending on how your forms are configured and purpose of contact, anyone that spares some minutes to fill out your contact form is considered a lead. This is the most common type of lead generation form used across many websites.

Most useful forms often have multiple text fields that help to filter your prospects’ purpose of contact.

  • Service Quote Request Forms 

Most people who get good results from their sites have this one. These are forms that are created to direct prospects on how to request the exact services they need or quote for specific services.

This one is common among offline service firms in the solar, insurance, painting and other niche markets.  See sample below.

painting services lead generation

  • Lead Magnet Opt-in Forms

These types of online lead generation forms are mostly used to give something of value to website visitors in exchange for their contact information.

Think about ebooks, white papers, case studies, webinars etc.

Regardless of the type you use, it is either you are tracking form submissions or not. And that depends to some extent on your website traffic volume.

Like all other analytics use cases, form tracking helps to make informed decisions and improvements where possible.

And if you have some relatively good traffic volume, doing some form A/B testing will make it easy for you to identify what works better than the others.

For example, you may want to test form submission page copies or text fields.

But why compare web form vs inbound phone calls in the first place?

Well, it’s a mobile first world we live in. And this has lots of meanings and implications in different contexts.

For instance, it means that a great percentage of the purchases that end up on desktop or laptop originate from mobile devices.

According to Google, 70% of people who search for specific products or services on mobile devices often make phone calls at the same time.

‘The phone call has been the backbone of sales for decades and it is still a driving force today. But it is not easy. Not everyone is a cold calling Pro who knows how to immediately capture a prospects attention on the phone.’ – Ramin Assemi, Close.io

In the search spectrum, Search Engine Land reported that 60% all searches now happen on mobile devices. Without doubt, this includes searches for keywords within your niche.

Social Spectrum: On Facebook alone, 90% (934 million) of their daily active users comes from mobile. Regardless of your location, some of these people belong to your target demographic.

Email Spectrum: Kayla Lewkowicz of  Privy once reported that 56% of email engagement now occur on mobile devices. So if you don’t have an automated email marketing strategy in place, think about this.

Web Form vs Inbound Phone Calls: The Key Comparative Difference

#1: Conversion Barrier 

In our fast paced world of impatience and instant gratification, any online lead generation strategy that puts demanding responsibility on prospects proves less effective.

When you read case studies of single vs multiple page check outs, you’ll understand more of what I mean here.

Thus, the main fact is that less is often better.

In many different contexts, many people are not just comfortable giving out their personal information – name, phone and email. So whether you are using free strategy sessions, white papers, quote request or others, it is really important to lower your conversion barrier.

Web Form: In other to qualify leads, most people often use intimidating multiple form fields and long CRM hooks. Practically, this increases the typing work to be done, required time as well as conversion barrier.

So asking for personal information from cold website visitors won’t get you the conversion rate you desire.

Phone Call: In most contexts you can think of, it takes just a single click-to-call button to get connected to a sales rep. Just as a testament to this, Invoca’s data revealed that phone calls convert 10X more than online generated leads.

#2: Lead Quality 

When it comes to effective lead generation strategy, quantity is never a solution to all of the problems at hand.

In simple offline settings, pouring water into a leaky bucket understandably leads to waste. However, in order to avoid the undesirable consequences of empty lead generation pipeline, many people still believe that generating more leads is all they need.

inbound lead lead generation funnel

Hence they continue to invest resources in generation of low quality leads.

Unfortunately at the end of the day, all they get is low or flat zero ROI. Sure you want desirable outcomes better than that.

Web form: Regardless of the lead magnet you use, it is easy for anyone to visit your website, fill a form, download stuff and walk away. In that case, both qualified and unqualified leads are filling your pipeline.

Phone Call: In high ticket service niche markets, many decision makers still prefer phone conversation before fixing appointment (online/offline), requesting a quote, making reservation or payment.

Thus, picking up the phone to call remains a real proof of interest in specific product or service, not your free lead magnet. The other important thing worth noting is that the lead quality is often higher when these inbound leads calls in from paid search or organic SEO.

#3: Lead Drop Offs

Irrespective of your optimization intelligence and experience, majority of your prospective leads will still drop off the web form. In other words, the web form page view and completed form submissions can never be equal.

If you are an inbound lead generation consultant or marketer like me, you may also leverage some retargeting strategies to increase conversion rate and ROI.

But even when all of these things are done 100% correctly, drop offs will still be happening in your lead generation pipeline.

online lead generation strategy

How long does it take on average for you to follow up on web form generated leads?

Web form: Based on the concept of customer journey, it is very obvious that all of your qualified prospects won’t be ready to convert into leads or paying customer at the same time.

Hence, lead nurturing takes time. And then along that journey, many things happen against your conversion goal.

Even at the point of generating leads with a web form, whole lot of things can just cause the drop off to happen. Some of the causes include the form field conversion barrier identified earlier.

Inbound Phone Call: With phone calls, the conversion cycle is often shorter. And there are fewer incidents of drop off.

Depending on how fast you are following up after form submission, you are likely to have even higher drop offs if you wait long than 5 minutes to contact web form generated leads. Thus, in this context, InsideSales found that only 29% of web leads are properly contacted.

Think about the difference between customers choosing when to discuss their need vs you calling them at an odd time of the day.

According to DialogTech, a mobile marketing services provider that helps to trigger phone calls from web forms, calling web generated leads before your competitors often result in 238% difference in conversion rate.

With these facts about lead drop offs, you now have even more reasons to integrate inbound phone call generation in your overall marketing strategy. Let’s explore how to get started doing that.

inbound phone call generation

What is the #1 driver of inbound phone calls in your own business?

Google Adwords Call Extension

When you do a search in Google for product or service related keywords, the PPC ads you see very often is enough to tell you that not all businesses are using call extension now. And if you have been using Google adwords advertising without it, this is the time to pay serious attention.

Remember that right now, mobile traffic is growing strongly in all dimensions – search, email, social, video etc.

Call extension is a simple feature of Google adwords that gives advertisers space to add specific phone number or click-to-call button to their ads.

Obviously, the intent is to attract inbound sales phone calls from qualified prospects as at the time of searching for the product or services they need.

This feature works in two ways.

If the people viewing your paid search ads are from mobile devices, they see a click to call button within your ad. Thus, every call is counted as a click, just like clicking to visit landing pages.

At this level, conversions are counted based on set call duration. And to get maximum inbound calls from this option, you should set your ad to be mobile preferred.

In the instance that your ad was created to run on both mobile and desktop devices, your phone number will display in the search results.

Hence, prospective customers can choose to call right away or visit your landing page.

Google Call Only Campaigns

This is the type of ad that has no destination landing page attached. The singular objective is to generate inbound calls or leads from paid search marketing. After seeing your PPC advertisement, the only option the targeted prospects will have is to call your phone.

Regardless of the sources from which you deliver traffic to your web forms, the lead quality can never be equal. Moreover, the conversion cycle or duration can hardly be equal as well.

Interestingly, if you have call filtering technology in place, the quality is bound to be higher than what is obtainable from web forms.

Based on my experience, the best way to get maximum ROI from call only campaigns is to do some deep keyword research, use local keywords and conduct A/B testing.

With professional keyword research, you will be able to choose the type of prospects to attract based on purchase intent.

Mobile Specific Adwords Campaign

In addition to location and keywords, you also have option to choose mobile preferred for your adwords campaign.  This is a simple feature for telling Google to run your search marketing advertisements on mobile devices only.

So in a case that you are not using call extension, the best you can do is to add click to call buttons in your mobile optimized landing pages. With that a certain percentage of your mobile search traffic will then start calling.

Think of what you could get from generating 1000 – 10,000 mobile search visitors over a 30 days period. Question, how much is a single conversion worth in your business?

Here is a sample landing page with click to call button.

Remarketing List For Search Ads

google adwords remarketing list for search ads

Whether you are aware or not, there are just too many reasons why the majority of your website visitors will leave without converting into leads or customers.

This fact also applies all through whether you are generating a great volume of mobile search traffic or not.

Think you are alone on this? Think again.

In the eCommerce world for instance, one study found that close to 89% of online shopping carts are abandoned by shoppers.

Remarketing list for search ads helps to reach and bring back qualified visitors within minutes, days or weeks or even months after leaving your website.

To a lay marketing man, the next question is how?

When people visit your website and leave to continue their search for specific product or services, this adwords feature enables business owners to reach out to them within 540 days period.

That is the maximum number of days that a remarketing list can be valid.

This is how remarketing list for search ads work. You generate a piece of code and paste in your home of other pages. As people visit the page that carries that code, they will be added to your list.

For example, if I visited the HR training page in your website, you can use remarketing list for search to show me more reasons (additional value propositions) why I should invest in your training – within 540 days after leaving that page.

By leveraging mobile search traffic in this context, you’ll be positioning your business for maximum phone calls from high quality leads.

A simple test research with high value keywords will let you find out if there are advertisers in your niche using these mobile marketing strategies right now. If not, learn to do it yourself or hire an adwords consultant to get you started right away.

To implement an effective online lead generation strategy through remarketing, you should consider splitting your budget between Google adwords and Facebook.

So that when people leave your site and land on both sides, you can as well reach them when the time is right. Obviously, being visible in multiple channels maximizes your opportunity to win the sale from ready buyers.

Integrated Call Tracking

how call tracking works

As I observed in one of my blog posts, competing without data is just the same as walking in a crowded marketplace with closed eyes.

Someone once said that: ‘half of your marketing efforts are not working. But the problem is which half’.

Obviously, the half that doesn’t work often wastes scarce resources – time and money. And to a whole lot of people; identifying that half is a very big challenge. That is why constant testing has been identified as a winning strategy.

Beside the problem of waste, increased insights from marketing analytics help to allocate budget to strategies that drive bigger ROI.

That is what data driven optimization is all about.

And that is where integrated call tracking comes in the context of inbound sales call generation.

While Google adwords tracking serves some people, there is a whole lot of other third party call tracking software providers that serves in the mobile spectrum.

With integrated call tracking, the data layers that help to extend marketing insights include the following:

  • Online campaign tracking: track phone calls from different online marketing channels
  • Keyword tracking: Identify the keywords delivering the most valuable calls to your business
  • Offline call tracking: measure the outcomes from your TV, radios, posters, bill board ads etc
  • Location tracking: Pin point the locations delivering the most conversions
  • Facebook pages: if you are active on Facebook, you can measure week to week outcomes
  • Call routing: route inbound sales calls to the appropriate location or sales rep
  • Call recording : gain competitive insights from prospective customer conversations

These and more are the key features you can expect from a complete call tracking software. Don’t just rely on adwords call reporting only.

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Resource Download: Click Here to get PDF version of this post for practical future implementation, improved marketing ROI and sharing with your team/colleagues.  

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Mind you, a simple hint can lead to revenue boosting optimization without spending a dollar at all.

Conclusion

Finally, the fact is that human to human interaction often works better in many different marketing contexts. This is why a lot of businesses still value phone calls more than website visits or email addresses meant for downloading free offers only.

Think about the issues of customer objections.

book

Resource Download: Click Here to get PDF version of this post for practical future implementation, improved marketing ROI and sharing with your team/colleagues. 

Hidden Content

The effectiveness of addressing them in an interactive conversation cannot be equally same with written texts on a web form.

So when you look at web forms vs inbound calls, think about the conversion barriers, conversion cycle, lead quality and drop offs.

And in the context of search engine marketing, setting strategies to attract people when they have proven need for your services will certainly improve your lead generation strategy.

Even right now, you can take some time to do some test research within Google and your niche. Use some high value keywords, do a search, visit some landing pages and see the people using some of the strategies discussed here in your niche.

Share your lead generation experiences or challenges in the section below. How is your web form working for you right now?

You can as well join our Facebook group – The Search Tribe to discuss, discover and leverage working strategies to attract only the people in need of your products/services – Now.

9 Points To Consider Before Hiring Google Adwords Consultant

Why consider these points before hiring Google adwords consultant? Here are the reasons.

First is to avoid wasteful mistakes. Whether you have tried paid search advertising on your own before or not, some mistakes could be wasting your money or revenue opportunities if not avoided.

The second reason is to maximize ROI on your Google adwords budget. There are lots of opportunities to attract people exactly the time they are searching for your services.

If you are not aware of the best strategies, you are likely to miss out on them. Hence, you don’t know what to ask for.

This means you could end up hiring less experienced adwords expert.

Prior to becoming aware of any specific brand, a growing number of B2B and B2C buyers conduct active research online. And majority of these researches happen in Google.

Here is the reason why Google owns 77% of global search engine market. Based on this large market share, they earned $19 billion from advertising alone in Q2 2016 according to AdWeek.

For many business owners, their problem is not generation of traffic and leads.

The real challenge is the quality of leads that fills their pipeline. And that’s why they turn to Google adwords to increase the volume of buyer traffic to their online and offline store.

Maybe you have tried it on your own or you just need expert help because it’s not part of your core responsibilities.

Now you need to hire a Google adwords consultant, here are the key points to consider before making commitment.

Google Adwords Consultant Hiring Process

#1: Expert Certification 

google adwords consultant in nigeriaThis is pretty much a basic requirement. While some people could acquire real verifiable experience without certification, every expert worth hiring for consulting work should be certified. This is a documentary proof that the person has certified knowledge of how Google adwords work.

So if someone is trying to convince you that certification doesn’t matter and it’s not a proof of expertise, that person could be right.

But know that he or she doesn’t have it. If they do, the proof will just appear.

The major certifications here include search, mobile advertising, shopping ads and analytics. Someone that has two or all of these could as well have multiple skill sets to serve your need.

#2: Relevant Experience

This is the real thing. On the surface Google adwords advertising seems easy. Almost everyone can select keywords and create running ads. But if you need proven strategies that produce impressive profit, you need an expert with relevant experience.

Better if you can find someone who have worked for businesses like your own and in the same niche where your business belong.

So it is not just the number of years of experience that matters.

Ask the person to share some screenshots, conversation transcripts, proof of payment or reference. The other option is to do Skype screen sharing if possible.

While many will object to some or all of these, the adwords expert you want to hire should at least provide one of these. After review, you’ll then make your decision.

#3: Google Adwords Budget

Here I am referring to the real amount that will be paid directly to Google at the end or during the campaign.

This is your decision to make. You decide how much you want to spend per day, month or campaign. But first, the following are the key factors to consider.

First is your potential earning per sale. How much will your business earn from each sale or completed transaction?

You know this number better than me. From there you think through your monthly revenue goals. Obviously, big goals require relatively big budget as well.

For example, if you are a recruitment consultant earning $5000 per completed transaction. How much would you pay to get that from every 100 qualified leads?

The second point is the prevailing cost per click for the high value search terms in your niche.

The cost per click will determine how much you will pay to get 100 – 1000+ clicks from prospects actively searching for your services.

Here is a sample screenshot below.

google adwords budget estimation#4: Google Adwords Consulting Fee

If you are looking for a full service digital marketing consultant or agency, the fees will be somehow bigger.

This is because the workload will be bigger. Hence, the expert will be working on all your online marketing strategies across channels like search, social and email.

If the person has skills for analytics, it will then serve well for performance tracking and conversion rate optimization.

Besides this, Google adwords consulting fees are determined by factors like location, niche market and billing model. For example, the fees charged in high value niche markets like legal and finance cannot be the same for local clothing businesses.

However, the most influential factor here is the billing model.

Based on percentage of monthly adwords budget the prevailing rate ranges between 5 – 20%. If you have a higher revenue target and with $10,000 budget, expect to pay $1000 per month to the expert you hire.

Other people charge a fixed amount of money for one time or ongoing campaign.

The last option is paying a percentage of earned revenue. This seems to work well for both business owner and adwords consultants, but sales fluctuation causes an imbalance.

#5: Customer Lifetime Value

how to get customers with google adwordsThe difference in customer life time value depends largely on business models. Here is the reason why Google adwords work well for businesses that has long customer life time value.

Interestingly, most of the clients I have served in recent years belong to this category.

In the recruitment niche for instance, a single customer could pay for multiple placements per year.

If you have opportunity to make 3 placements per year for a single client at $5000 each, how much would you pay to get 100 prospects that can afford your services?

Looking at subscription based services for instance, how much would you pay to get a customer that pays $100 per month over a 12 months period?

Customer life time value is about repetitive revenue per customer over a specific period of time.

If you don’t understand this point, you may make the mistake of trying fruitlessly hard to spend lower than your competitors. Unfortunately, this could trap you in a cycle of low performance in terms of traffic volume, lead generation rate and ROI. Pause and think about this for a while.

#6: Google Adwords Remarketing

Here is another interesting fact you should consider before hiring a Google adwords consultant. Your entire paid search campaign should have an integrated remarketing strategy. But first, this question could be popping out in your mind now.

What is google adwords remarketing?

This is an online marketing strategy for showing ads to only the people who have visited your website or used your mobile app.

In the context of adwords, such ads appear on Google’s advertising properties or their partner websites (ie: adsense participating websites).

As stated by Lindsay Kolowich of Hubspot in one of their blog posts, 96% of website visitors don’t convert on their first visit.

While it is possible to make good profit from the other 4% in their very first visit, remarketing helps to maximize profit from the money you spent on prospects that would have been lost otherwise.

In effect, you will be creating additional opportunities to convert a certain percentage of these lost prospects into leads and customers.

Another reason why remarketing is very important is that it takes 2 – 8 touch points before closing an average B2B sale.

If the adwords consultant you hire knows nothing about remarketing, don’t make the commitment.

Let’s say your Google adwords budget could bring in 2000 visitors per month. What we normally do at Weblife is to set aside 20% of the total amount for constant remarketing.

With this strategy, people don’t have to join your email newsletter or become a lead before you do repetitive reach out campaigns to convert them.

Within 30 – 540 days, we can use different ad formats and value propositions to grow your brand awareness and conversion rate after the first visit.

#7: Website Readiness

If you are not informed enough, an amateur adwords freelancer will tell you that your website is perfect to get started once it passes adwords review and approval.

Note that their very first intent is to convert you into a client and take whatever money agreed. Every other thing is secondary.

The interesting fact here is that all websites are not created equal in terms of converting prospects into leads or paying customers. This fact holds true whether you are aware of the reason why or not.

In addition to using dedicated landing pages to generate leads and sales, your main website has to be ready.

While there is no standard of a perfect website that is assumed to be ready for profitable conversions, cluttered design and tiny texts could be wasting your money.

Some of the key factors to check include error free navigation, attractive headline, contact information, clear value propositions, illustrative image, testimonial, strong call to action, mobile usability, legal pages and other relevant pieces.

To get the best results, you should consider a split testing strategy with the consultant or agency you want to engage.

This will help both of you to discover the best combination of website design variables that delivers most valuable results instead of 100% dependence on assumptions.

If website redesign is required, ask for the exact details of what needs to be done, the cost and duration.

In most cases, it is better to have the same person or agency handling the redesign, adwords campaign and split testing.

But in case of an individual adwords expert, the person may have skills and experience to handle this or trusted web design specialists he works with.

#8: Performance Tracking

One of the key benefits of using Google adwords is the instant nature of the traffic that flows from it.

Unlike search engine optimization, you can start seeing results, feedback and data within one hour after your ads approval.

In other words, you can start seeing performance results almost immediately.

But first, you need a performance tracking system in place. With that in place, you will start seeing metrics like cost per lead, return on ad spend and cost per sale in terms of businesses with online payment systems.

Combined with keyword, ad copy and other data points, the insights gained from integrated performance tracking helps to reallocate resources for higher ROI.

Even though proper integration of Google adwords and analytics is good enough for most standard campaigns, there is one other interesting area ignored by many.

And that is inbound phone calls generated from paid search advertisements.

Whether you are using call only ads or not, your pay per click search adverts is likely to generate phone calls. And it’s even better because these are prospects actively searching for your services.

This is why call tracking is very important.

With advanced call tracking software tools like Call Rail, you’ll be able to see the exact keywords, campaigns, web pages and locations delivering the best leads to your business.

You’ll also get a record of customer initiated phone conversations.

Imagine this scenario.

You are running an adwords campaign that generates leads from your website. But the conversion rate is very low; meaning you are barely breaking even.

At the same time, the same campaign delivers phone calls from qualified and interested prospects that end up buying your services.

Suddenly, you felt like the ROI on your Google adwords budget is not impressive. So the assumption that your ads are not working led you to stop the campaign. Consequently, your sales volume and monthly revenue starts dropping.

Who would you blame?

The fact is that, an adwords consultant who cannot generate and track phone calls could only deliver half of the results you want.

Mind you, mobile search traffic is now greater than what is happening on desktop. See this guide on how to generate inbound sales calls from mobile users.

#9: Monitoring And Reporting

Fully outsourced Google adwords campaign includes constant monitoring. You never know when an unexpected change will happen and cause serious losses. This is why you need to discuss monitoring with whoever you are hiring.

The question should be, how often would your ads be monitored?

Keeping an eye over your ad status, click through rate (CTR) and cost per click (CPC) makes it possible to spot opportunities for increased ROI as soon as they arise.

The other important thing is to agree on a reporting schedule.

Most people chose the weekly reporting schedule. But if you have reasons to use monthly reporting, there is nothing wrong with that.

Also at the point of discussion, decide on the format in which the report will be delivered.

Conclusion

At this point, it is worth reiterating why you should consider these points in the first place. Without proper considerations, a seemingly trivial mistake could lead to continuous loss of revenue opportunities. Now you know better, this could help you avoid some of them.

Hiring a Google adwords consultant is easy.

The hard part is about knowing the most important factors to discuss prior to making a commitment. Directly and indirectly, this will also impact your bottom line ROI.

Note that this was not meant to be an exhaustive list. Hence, there could be many other interesting factors that will influence your outcomes.

Worthy of note again is the fact that adwords cannot work for everyone in every situation.

If you are selling low value items (under $20) and you can’t afford $200 – $1000+ budget, you may end up wasting your money and time. And then join the list of people complaining that Goolge adwords doesn’t work.

Share your experience and challenges in the comment section. What have you tried?

You can as well join our Facebook group – The Search Tribe to discuss, discover and leverage working strategies to attract only the people in need of your products/services – Now.

Understanding ROI Metrics In Outsourced Search Engine Marketing

Outsourced search engine marketing services provide amazingly great benefits. But if you don’t understand the ROI metrics prior to outsourcing, you could end up gambling away some real scarce resources – your time and money.

For ecommerce online stores, tracking ROI from search engine marketing is a whole lot easier. The online order, checkout and payment systems present digestible data points.

However, when you come into B2B lead generation contexts, the story is different.

The complexity of multiple touch points involved poses a great challenge to low experienced digital marketers, traditional marketers and business owners. And from my experience, this is happening across different industry verticals.

NOTE – this post is about 3,036 words long. Consider the usability option below.

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Resource Download: Click Here to get PDF version of this post for practical future implementation, improved marketing ROI and sharing with your team/colleagues. 

Hidden Content

After auditing over 2000 adwords accounts, the CEO of Disruptive Advertising found that close to 75% of advertisers do not have conversion tracking set up in place.

Without further analysis, I bet that majority of these people are business owners and traditional medium marketers.

And they are all doing the ads themselves to avoid hiring paid search engine marketing consultant, agency or full time staff.

He also stated:

‘’While most companies struggle to make adwords profitable, majority of these people can succeed by fixing few common mistakes. Whether it’s setting up a small tracking programs, eliminating useless keywords, creating effective landing page strategy or giving the ads the attention It deserves, these problems can be overcome with little extra effort.’’ – Jacob Baadsgaard

It was only in the fifth month that Darren Holmes, an event services expert became aware of how conversion tracking works.

Prior to our first 30 minutes Skype call he assumed everything was perfect because he gets more than he pays for his monthly pay per click search advertising campaigns.

So in that frame of mind, he was driving all traffic to his home page. Now imagine if he was to start outsourcing with those assumptions he had then.

In this context, conversion tracking seems pretty much basic to a whole lot of people.

But defining what a conversion is and understanding the ROI metrics makes the whole picture a little more complex for many different people.

Asked what kind of performance report she gets for her outsourced search engine marketing, Anne responded ‘targeted traffic volume’.

Probably, that was what she wanted and asked for from the SEM agency she hired.

Like many other small and medium sized recruitment agency owners, Anne Forrst thought that higher website traffic volume would solve all of her problems.

But at the end the seventh month, she was barely breaking even. The same reality applied to all outsourced digital marketing services.

In most cases, it’s either you are driving useless traffic to your website, have a poor performing conversion funnel or both.

But how would you identify the problem if it is you? Yes, I mean you, reading my post right now.

Before proceeding to ROI metrics, let’s take a little time to look at some of the key fundamentals. Sure you could pick one or two useful hints from there.

Why Search Engine Marketing

outsourced search engine marketing

Assuming you are one of the people still at the consideration stage currently, a question in this line may be popping in and out of your mind – why search engine marketing? Well, among many others, you’ll experience the benefits of purchase intent matching, immediacy and measurability.

Unlike many traditional marketing channels, you’ll have the opportunity to measure and report the outcome of every $1 spent.

And most importantly, it is performance based. You don’t pay until you get real prospects coming to your website, visiting offline operating location or even calling your phone. Check this post to see how pay per call advertising works. 

Forms of Search Engine Marketing: Google Adwords

With this option, you’ll be paying money directly to Google for each click or prospect delivered to your website. That’s why it is often referred to as being performance based or PPC. Call it paid search if you like.

While there are many other search engines that runs PPC advertising, Google adworsd is the market leader across the world.

Currently, Google owns 77.8% of global paid search ad market.

Forms of Search Engine Marketing: SEO

In the context of digital marketing, SEO stand for search engine optimization. It is a process of making the contents of your website eligible for higher ranking within search engine result pages.

That is when someone searches for specific keywords or phrases, a page from your website will show up with clickable link.

Unlike adwords, you don’t have to pay money directly to search engines for higher ranking.

One of the key benefits of SEO is that it almost seems like free traffic when the contents of your pages are optimized to rank higher for high value keywords.

For example, i did a search for the keywords ‘wedding planning lead generation’, and found this 2016 content ranking in the first page of Google.

wedding planning lead generation ideas

The implication is that a piece of content ranking in the first page could be providing quality traffic and leads for a multiple number of months and years. And in some cases, your website don’t even need to be on the first page to get good amount of organic search engine traffic.

Outsourced Search Engine Marketing: The Core ROI Metrics

In their State of Inbound report 2017, the team at Hubspot found that one of the major challenges many still face is that the leads delivered by marketing people to sales often don’t convert as much as expected.

And this means real disappointment for almost everyone in the value chain – the business owners, executives, marketing managers and agencies.

But that is mainly for people that have the resources to employ full time marketing and sales team.

Thus, if the conversion rate is perpetually low, the ROI will also be affected in the downward side.

The question is; where are you currently generating majority of your leads from? Remember, doing the same thing over and over again will give you the same results you’ve always had.

Website Traffic Volume

Practically, marketing means just two things to almost everyone in the business world.

Especially if you are business owner or have a role in marketing, the way you see It is the way you’ll do it.

First is like gambling. Yes, people who make 99% of their marketing decisions based on assumptions see marketing as gambling. Guess you know what the concept of luck is all about.

So whether you intend to outsource search engine optimization or PPC advertising, without data based ROI plan, you are pretty much gambling.

The second perspective is investment. On a relatively advanced level, marketing expenditure is supposed to be an investment.

This holds practically true when it comes to content based search engine marketing.

When you spend money to create and rank quality contents for high value buyer search terms, the ROI compounds over time.

Below are some of the important website traffic related variables you should consider before outsourcing.

Traffic Volume: Without targeted website visitors, you won’t have anyone to convert into leads or paying customers. On the other hand, without conversions the website traffic generated from your outsourced search marketing remains useless.

Thus, this is the core variable that you can be measuring from time to time.

And then find ways of improvement with whoever you hire.

If you are a business owner and you have no idea of your website traffic volume, that website you spent real money to build could as well be practically useless.

Website Traffic Sources: How does website traffic source relate to ROI metrics you may ask?

lead generation

Well, all traffic sources are not created equal.

And if the person responsible for marketing in your business doesn’t care about sources he won’t know which sources that delivers better conversion than the other.

With SEO traffic for instance, Google search console integration will give you insight on the keywords that brings the most valuable visitors from search engines to your website.

The insights derived from the top ranking pages and search queries will then provide opportunity for consistent improvement in all of the performance metrics that matters most t you.

Interestingly, without measurement, you can’t improve it.

Website Visitor Location: Obviously, people whose products and services can be bought and sold online shouldn’t be concerned about location.

However, for most offline service based businesses location of the people that visits your website makes a whole lot of difference.

Whether you are aware of it or not, people that visit offline business websites often consider location proximity. And it happens mostly while considering some product and services for purchase.

See this data from Google on how localized mobile searches leads to offline visits within 24 hours.

Among many other things, visitors from non branded search terms are never within your control.

Practically; with an active local search engine optimization strategies you can begin to increase the number of qualified and interested prospect visiting your site from preferred target locations.

For example, imagine how local SEO will work for a wedding planning or event space rental business serving one state in a country. Hint: a lot of your competitors still don’t know how local SEO works.

Conversion Metrics

website conversion rate

I know that growing website traffic volume is good. You also know. We all do. But at the long run, real conversion is better. It doesn’t matter what valuable conversion means in your own business or company.

Before outsourcing search engine marketing, you have to understand the peculiar conversion metrics that are most valuable in your business.

In this day and age, buying SEO services without conversion tracking is really dumb.

Here is one reason why you may consider a full service digital marketing agency as opposed to niche experts. Among other things, you get the benefits of centralized performance tracking.

You’ll be able to see the outcome of your marketing budget spend on each channel – paid search, SEO, social, email etc.

Unfortunately, without conversion you have no basis to calculate ROI. Also without conversion, proving marketing ROI won’t be possible.

This is the biggest challenge I see among people learning how to outsource search engine optimization for the first time.

Now let’s look at the major conversion metrics.

Total Sales: Starting with the end in mind within this context implies that both your website and search engine marketing strategy should be aimed at generating revenue. But without targeted website traffic and real sales, you could be gambling some resources away.

For most ecommerce and online businesses, tracking sales conversion is relatively easy.

And because of this, calculating the contribution of search marketing (Adwords and SEO) to bottom line ROI doesn’t require high level expertise.

Simple ecommerce conversion tracking in Google analytics could just be enough.

But when it comes to offline businesses with multiple touch points and longer sales cycle, the story is different.

The complexity is more than what an average in house digital marketing expert can handle. Maybe you are still struggling with an overworked in house generalist.

On the other hand, you could be the person in charge of marketing with intimidating workload, limited budget and timeline.

Finally, without sales you won’t be able to tell if you are breaking even or losing money.

In the worst case scenario, you may be the one wasting good amount of time on vanity social media metrics that brings zero results.

Quality Leads: Even with common sense, you should be able to tell how the quality of leads affects both conversion rate and ROI on marketing budget.

Especially in the context of organic search engine optimization, many people still don’t track leads, including inbound marketing agencies. The question I hear most often goes like, if all our sales happen offline how do we attribute that to a particular lead source?

While full scale analytics is beyond the scope of this post. Below are some options you should consider.

Use Google analytics conversion funnel tracking. Attach a dollar value to every single lead generated from your search engine traffic.

Leverage on inbound call tracking software to get data on leads and sales closed over the phone.

With call analytics platforms like CallRail or Invoca, you could be getting reports deep down to the keywords delivering leads and sales from your outsourced search engine marketing campaigns.

But don’t stop at traffic and leads. Because at the end, high volume leads doesn’t equal high volume sales.

Cost Per Acquisition: Regardless of whether you are operating from ecommerce or lead generation context, cost per acquisition impacts almost everything else. And for the purpose of this post, CPA can be viewed in two different perspectives.

The one you choose will depend on your role and goals.

First is the cost per lead.

If your role and responsibilities is centered on lead generation, you should think through CPL very well in order to plan for profitable campaign.

The question is; how many website visitors do we need to generate a single lead?

If you don’t have historical data to work with, here is an option for you. Assume 1% conversion rate on your website traffic. Specify the potential revenue per sale.

And then set 2 – 10% of potential revenue per sale for lead generation. With $1000 as potential revenue, $100 (10%) becomes the amount you need to spend to generate a single lead out of every 100 prospects.

In this scenario, how many $100s will you spend to generate the volume of quality leads you need? Will you focus on SEO, Google adwords or both?

The second option is looking at cost per acquisition as customer acquisition cost.

How many leads will it take to get a single paying customer, not a lead?

So if you stop at lead generation metrics, you’ll be seeing only half of the marketing performance picture.

Let’s say you are working for a recruitment consulting agency. Attach $20 to 100 leads.

Based on your average billing per transaction, how much would 1% conversion worth in your business or company? This will enable you determine how much it will cost to get a single paying client.

Improved understanding of customer acquisition cost (CAC) will also enable you allocate your marketing budget to the best sources of quality leads.

‘Earning revenue is good. But if 99% of that goes to customer acquisition, then you are trapped in a vicious cycle.’ – David Skok

Conversion Rate: This is simply the percentage of your website traffic converting into leads or paying customers. On the other hand, it could also mean the percentage of your leads converting into customers, not just website traffic.

In practical terms, if your conversion rate is very low, possibly under 1%, this will be impacting the ROI on your search engine marketing budget or other channels in use.

In general settings, quality of website traffic, quality of leads, value or lead magnet and conversion funnel; all impacts conversion rate.

Among many variables, source of traffic and leads makes the highest impact. Get enough wrong leads in your pipeline and you’ll become helplessly busy at wasting time.

Core ROI Metrics

Except in rare social enterprise settings, the ultimate motive behind every business is profit making. And we all know that without active marketing, profit making goals can hardly be accomplished.

I guess this is why people seek outsourced search engine marketing services in the first place. For most people, hiring a full time in house digital marketing expert isn’t affordable.

The above stated fact simply implies that without profit you either don’t have a business or you are just busy with a hobby.

The same fact applies to outsourced search engine advertising as well. Google adwords for instance is supposed to bring back more than what you put out.

With a well thought out SEO strategy, you should take this into account from day one. Below are the core metrics that defines marketing ROI in many different industries and niche markets.

Understanding them will help you start with the most valuable end in mind as opposed to taking whatever that is offered.

Return On Ad Spend: Especially in paid search advertising, this is the real measure of how effective and profitable your campaign is.

Unlike organic search engine optimization that takes an unpredictable duration before deciding whether it’s profitable or not, you can see your ROAS in a very short time.

For example, if you spend $1000 and got $5000 back, your return on ad spend will be revenue divided by cost. In this case it will result in 500% return or 5:1, meaning that you get $5 for every $1 spend.

Profit Margin: The entire world of capitalism is centered on this one.

In practical terms, if you are not breaking even, then what you are doing as a business may not be much different from pure gambling.

Consequently, any search engine marketing agency you want to hire but doesn’t take profitability is often interested in their earnings and nothing else. The fact is that if you are acquiring each customer at a cost of $200 but earns only $203 from each, you’ll need higher volume to stay in business.

But the underlying fact could be that your current customer acquisition channels and strategies need either full replacement or improvement.

Among other things, profit margin determines how long you’ll stay in business and the financial growth potential.

Constant inflow of external funding won’t even save the situation if you are not breaking even.

Customer Life Time Value: In comparison to customer acquisition cost, the question is how much would you earn from a single customer over the period of your relationship with a person or company?

This metric isn’t relevant to all businesses, but it affects bottom line ROI.

Thinking through this one helps to decide how much is acceptably ideal for acquiring a single customer.

So a high customer life time value warrants higher cost. Putting this into consideration will determine how aggressive you should or shouldn’t be in relation to the competition in your niche.

Conclusion

For those still paying for visibility alone within traditional mediums like newspaper, flyers, posters, and billboard, now you have a better understanding of how search engine marketing works.

With the insight provided here, you’ll be able to go beyond surface level guesswork with regard to ROI on your current marketing practices.

And if you have made up your mind about outsourced search engine marketing services, don’t stop at website traffic only.

Without conversions, your website traffic is useless. Perhaps, things could get really worse than as it is now if you continue spending money to attract wrong visitors.

The big question is; how many of your leads are actually converting into paying customers?

On the first instance, this has a lot to do with the quality of your website traffic. Low quality traffic makes for lower conversion rate and vice versa.

While driving traffic with paid search advertising and SEO is relatively possible for many inbound marketing agencies, not all of them tracks conversions.

The few people that do it stop at conversions only.

book

Resource Download: Click Here to get PDF version of this post for practical future implementation, improved marketing ROI and sharing with your team/colleagues. 

Hidden Content

However with Call tracking integration, you’ll be able to get a proof of which channel delivers more inbound phone calls and sales than others.

Check this SEO case study on how we helped a Colorado, USA company grow their organic search traffic by 1,697% in 10 months.

You can as well join our Facebook group – The Search Tribe to discuss, discover and leverage working strategies to attract only the people in need of your products/services – Now.