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  • Be the King – Stay the King (unofficial reason).
  • We’re going to cover those last two items quite a bit.
  • Content Creation – more than a buzzword; it’s a key pillar of a business modelBusinesses must be successful online – attracting and educating customerslast 10 years littered with companies that failed to evolve in time or at all (Blockbuster to Netflix).Our industry, for various reasons, has been relatively unaffected in the past. This began to change a few years ago.What is forcing our evolution? Companies that survived the First Internet Age in the 1990s are now hardened giants with experience and an appetite.
  • This is not a good sign; This is one of several boogiemen. The monstrous size, brand, and ability is staggering. And it comes with FREE 2 day shipping.This is far from finished. The goal is to be comprehensive.
  • Grainger has 151 items available under “Hydraulic Bulk Hose”Ships within 3 days.
  • Another giant: Nike and Nike StoresNikeID skips retailers and sells customized gear directShortly after launch, Nike’s market share jumped from 48% to 61% (2010) and is at approx. 20% of their revenue.
  • While physically constrained by servers, the Internet is about as boundless as anything we’ve got. This means that there are more items to catalog than any one company has resources to do it.Larger websites are more noticeable to Search Engine algorithm programs in the same way that objects in space are attracted to the gravity of larger masses. The logic is that a larger website is more popular and therefore probably has more valuable information than a smaller website.This is why content creation is emphasized.
  • That’s Billions with a “B”. You can see that Google indexed over 45 Billion web pages at several points in the last 3 months, but that – overall – the number has decreased. This does not mean there are less pages to be indexed. Google is the largest, but pickiest, search engine, and its criteria for a deserving website is fluid.What this decrease actually illustrates is Google destroying websites hopes and dreams, at a rate of 10 billion webpage per month.
  • This is a 2 year look at the same chart you just saw. You can see the downward trend here as well. Because we’re all thinking people, here’s a peak behind the curtain to see WHY our websites are in danger.
  • Atapproximately these intervals, Google launched algorithm updates designed to rid the web of crappy websites. Since Google cannot delete websites, and since access is the real power, Google simply knocked them out of the search results.
  • Online space is only getting more crowded and competitive. Sure the internet could be an unlimited place, but it’s ACCESS that is important. The gatekeepers are search engines.
  • Here is the Key to the Internet. Content – the publication of useful pages, blogs, papers, videos, etc – leads to higher search visibility. Higher search visibility will lead to more people entering the website. More people on the website leads to more people who see that you know what you’re talking about and they should probably call you.
  • Innovative Controls has taken to content production like fish to water. Despite being extraordinarily busy, they have managed to publish 3 whitepapers with 6 more in draft.
  • Since the middle of September, these papers have been downloaded at least once each for a total of 6 downloads. This is not bad at all for a resource library in a temporary location.
  • Ryan Christian is one of our most enthusiastic content marketers. He instantly recognized the value of content creation and, despite all of the challenges of being new to his job, he began blogging right away and has kept a consistent weekly blogging schedule. I recently asked Ryan to summarize the results stemming from his content creation, and how he felt about it. The following information came from that conversation.EmailsRyan has received several email inquiries deriving from various blog posts. They typically arrive like this:
  • What makes this significant is that Jay is asking Ryan for help on a specific problem after Ryan published a blog post called “Pneumatic Actuator Speed Control”. Jay read the blog and considered Ryan enough of an expert to help him out. This is the sort of Freemium effort that could eventually turn Jay into a paying customer, and all Ryan did was write down what was already in his head and let Google do the heavy lifting. This next email is more recent:
  • This email was forwarded on to Wade Wright and Kevin, here, was considering an $8k sensor. Like Jay’s email, Kevin’s arrived out of the blue after reading one of Ryan’s blogs – this one “Solve Laser Displacement Sensor Problems.”If this seems fairly straightforward, that’s because it is! Ryan had some knowledge, he wrote it down, he gave it an accurate title, and he received some emails asking for his opinion, which lead to sales opportunities.
  • Andy Larson is the largest content marketing success story at Cross Company – so far. But he will be the first to tell you that he was not expecting these results. I had to really talk Andy into doing some writing and the usual excuses came to bear – not having the time or the inspiration to do it. But once Andy began publishing a few blog posts, he really began to enjoy organizing topics, thinking like his customers, and exploring new technologies in his field.Andy’s enthusiasm and knowledge bled into his writing and it was easy to see that he genuinely cared about his topics. Solution Seekers are always drawn to such transparency and helpfulness, so Andy received some emails of his own. Here is one such exchange from September 10th.
  • Here you see Eyembe recognizing Andy as an expert in his field, who is attempting to help people by offering his opinions and guidance on a new robotic technology. Eyembe describes his situation, and – like in Ryan’s emails – asks for Andy’s opinion regarding his specific situation.
  • Andy responds promptly and politely. Just like his blogs, his emails are friendly and personable. He takes an immediate interest in Eyembe and his project and requests detailed information, which Eyembe would not hesitate to give. This quickly establishes rapport and a higher level of trust with a new contact.
  • Eyembe immediately acknowledges Andy’s timely interest in his project and expresses his appreciation. The final step to cultivating a brand new lead is reached when – without being asked – Eyembe gives Andy his contact information for a more in-depth conversation. Thanks to the blog and his good customer service, Andy has not only been found by a prospective customer, but this customer has reached out and asked Andy to contact him further!Imagine if Andy had to search the Atlanta area, call around, and beg to talk to Eyembe…that would be hard!
  • When asked how he handles emails such as Eyembe’s, Andy said…
  • I hope this has highlighted the lead creation potential of content marketing, but in case it hasn’t, let’s look closely at some of Andy’s Universal Robots successes.
  • Added note, between just Technimark and Phoenix Stamping – two blog associated leads – there is $700k in business potential over the next two years.
  • When I asked Andy to describe his blogging experience, he said that it was good to see an added credibility associated with Cross Company, from current customers to competing venders and industry counterparts.
  • Andy also made a key observation regarding the efficiency of blogging. He said that he has been a part of dozens of costly and time intensive outbound marketing efforts, but none have been as productive in such a small amount of invested time as blogging.
  • With about 12 of these hours coming in “Dead Time” in the airport, or waiting on Account Managers.
  • Content marketing will become an increasingly significant method to generate awareness, leads, and sales for Cross Company. But this presentation only covered a bit about what we have done and little about what we will do.
  • Content marketing will become an increasingly significant method to generate awareness, leads, and sales for Cross Company. But this presentation only covered a bit about what we have done and little about what we will do.
  • I cannot wait to talk to each of you on an individual level and to answer any questions you might have about content marketing or your role within it. I’ll leave you this excerpt from a letter that Ryan Christian wrote to me when I asked him how he felt about blogging.
  • Transcript

    • 1. Content Creation
    • 2. What Comes to Mind When I say “Marketing/Advertising?”
    • 3. Enjoy Coca-Cola
    • 4. Describe Santa Claus
    • 5. “The Pause That Refreshes” by Haddon Sundblom
    • 6. Inbound Content Marketing
    • 7. Steps in the Inbound Process 1. Attract traffic 2. Convert visitors to leads 3. Convert leads to sales 4. Turn customers into repeat higher margin customers 5. Analyze for continuous improvement
    • 8. Steps in the Inbound Process 1. Attract traffic 2. Convert visitors to leads 3. Convert leads to sales 4. Turn customers into repeat higher margin customers 5. Analyze for continuous improvement
    • 9. Steps in the Inbound Process 1. Potential Customer has a need 2. Potential Customer searches online for a solution 3. Potential Customer finds you (or your competitor) 4. If satisfied with discovered information, Potential Customer trusts you 5. Calls to Action on website take advantage of new trust 6. Potential Customer enters sales cycle already a warm lead
    • 10. Why Cross cares • It’s far cheaper than traditional mediums o a. Old Media is dying o b. Business finds path of least cost • Reach a wider audience o a. Reach them 24/7 o b. Reach them on their terms • No territory limits
    • 11. Content Creation Why Do YOU Care?
    • 12. BECAUSE • It’s a critical part of the 5 Year Plan • Sink or Swim – no floating • We’ve already done well (your peers!)
    • 13. The Internet is a Business Tool The Web is not a “new” medium. It is the evolution of all mediums.
    • 14. Hydraulics, Pneumatics & Plumbing • • • • • 1,632 pages of items 37,570 items under “Fittings” 8,502 items under “Hoses” 8,392 items under “Tubing” Search by material, brand, shipping speed, keyword • Power behind the Amazon name
    • 15. Regardless of what you use it for, the Internet works the same way
    • 16. Key Understanding 1.Business is changing 2.The Internet is changing 3.We can be – and are – good at this
    • 17. Swim, Don’t Sink: A Deep Dive into the Internet
    • 18. How Search Engines Work
    • 19. Billions with a “B”
    • 20. 2 Year Google Index
    • 21. 2 Year Google Index
    • 22. Sum Up • We MUST Be Successful Online • Online Space is More Crowded and Competitive Than Ever • Consumer Access to Websites Is Key to Success • We Are At a Disadvantage
    • 23. So We’re Late to the Game. Now What?
    • 24. Counter with Content Creation
    • 25. Content > Visibility > Customers
    • 26. The Good Stuff Instrumentation Group
    • 27. Ethanol Blog Series $55k in Titan check valves
    • 28. The Good Stuff Innovative Controls
    • 29. The Good Stuff Automation Group Hear from Lynn, Steve, Paul, Andy
    • 30. Ryan’s Story Automation Group
    • 31. Jul 23 – “Pneumatic Actuator Speed Control” Hi Ryan I have a ball valve with a spring return rack and pinion actuator (ATO) that I would like to control the opening speed to somewhere between 20 and 30 seconds. This is to prevent shocking the downstream equipment. The air connection to the actuator is .25”, pressure is 80 psig natural gas, and volume per cycle is 218 cubic inches. What would you recommend? Sincerely, Jay O'Coin
    • 32. Sept 12 – “Solve Laser Displacement Sensor Problems” Hi, I am interested in possible solutions for a distance measurement project I am working on. I am currently evaluating a laser displacement sensor for measuring the focal plane on an optical system. Issues I've been running into include reflection issues on mirrored surfaces, and inconsistent results on transparent surfaces. I've attached the current setup for reference. It shows my current optical setup, as well as, current laser placement and region of interest. One constraint is that the distance measure system can only emit wavelengths greater than 565nm since it is being used on materials sensitive to light with wavelengths 520nm and lower. I was interested in a confocal displacement sensor, but am unsure if there is a way to filter the unwanted wavelengths from the white light without degrading performance. Please let me know if you have any product recommendations. (emphasis is mine) Thank you for your assistance Kevin
    • 33. Ryan’s results • Published 11 blogs in three months • His blog was featured in the Advantech Newsletter • Ryan’s blog posts have received more than 3250 unique pageviews • In August, the AG’s blog page was the most viewed page (other than the homepage) • Sales Leads!
    • 34. Andy’s Story Automation Group
    • 35. Email chain from September 10 Hello Andy, After reading your blog i concluded you might be the brain to pick for identifying my options for a "desktop/desktop" industrial robot for use in a manufacturing process (products weight 20g, and no more than 4cm wide) Pricing would be a deal breaker. Ive seen some interesting ones on the market: Rakurobo, UR, Denso..etc which others should i consider? Thanks in advance for your time and response Eyembe
    • 36. Good Morning Eyembe – thank you for your email. It sounds like you have an interesting project, but we will need to identify a few more details about it before we can narrow down your options. • Safe to assume this is standard pick and place type application? • Weight of your end of arm tooling • Work area required? this will be necessary to know in order to determine the reach of the robot • Your worst case move distance and cycle time required? • Will your product need to be oriented before placing it? • Any harsh environmental contaminants? i.e. water, airborne abrasives, etc • Voltage limitations? • Can you use safety equipment or a cage to guard the robot or does it have to run collaboratively? Curious, where are you located? I may be able to point you towards a local resource should you be out of our territory.
    • 37. Thank you kindly Andy for the prompt reply -This is a standard pick/place operation -Product will be handled individually(20g each max) -Still in design/layout phase of work area, accommodations will be made for the robot -Worst case distance is 4f, with cycle time 11.22secs (max) -Yes, orientation will be necessary -No contaminants in the environment (high-volume food industry application) -No power voltage limitations -Robots primary interaction will be with other equipment, limited human interaction. In fact the main reason for exploring the robot option is to provide consistent performance in handling/placing/orienting the products in the high volume environment Hope this give you the context you're seeking in the questions you asked I'm based in Atlanta. I can be reached at (770)337-0419 Feel free to send me an invite on Linkedin as well
    • 38. • If I can give any immediate (and easy) feedback on their request , I do • I try to determine where they are located, if in our APR and there appears to be a real opportunity, I push for a phone conversation; if out of APR I push them towards a local resource with as much guidance as possible • Eyembe is a great example, located in our APR, future projects, developing the relationship as a trusted resource, will continue to stay in touch as the project focus get narrower, could result in some nice business or at the very least a contact in a market that could be a champion for Cross
    • 39. Let’s Talk $$$$
    • 40. Leads, Opportunities, and Credibility “The blogs have gotten us leads that have given us entry into significant accounts where we have had little to no presence. Companies like Consolidated Metco, Cummins Diesel, Braseler, and Federal Mogul” - Andy Larson
    • 41. Andy’s Story Added Credibility!
    • 42. Andy’s Story “It has shown me that being willing to do just a little more can produce significant results.”
    • 43. Andy’s estimated total amount of hours associated with blogging: 24 hours
    • 44. Statistics
    • 45. ExactTarget Stats from 2013 • B2B companies that blog generate 67% more leads per month than those who don’t. (Social Media B2B) • 61% of consumers say they feel better about, and are more likely to buy from, a company that delivers custom content. (Custom Content Council) • 60% of consumers feel more positive about a company after reading custom content on its site. (Content+) • 78% of consumers believe that organizations providing custom content are interested in building good relationships. (TMG Custom Media) • 90% of consumers find custom content useful. (TMG Custom Media)
    • 46. ExactTarget Stats from 2013 • Companies with ACTIVE blogs receive 97% more leads (Content+ 2013)** • Organic search leads have a 14.6% close rate, while outbound marketing leads have a 1.7% close rate. (Hubspot)** • 27,000,000 pieces of content are shared everyday. (AOL and Nielsen) • Blogs give websites 434% more indexed pages. (Content+) • Content creation is ranked as the single most effective SEO technique (Marketing Sherpa 2013) • 9 in 10 organizations market with online content. (Content Marketing Institute)
    • 47. Actual Summary • Content Creation is how businesses survive and flourish online • Cross Company has already had success implementing Content Creation as a Sales and Marketing method • Cross Company is heavily invested in continuing to use Content Creation
    • 48. Why YOU want this: • 100% of people looking for help who do NOT find YOU will find a competitor. • Unless you’ve already spoken to every single person in your territory (wow, congrats!) – you’re missing someone who’d like to talk to you. • Content creation works FOR YOU. It builds a rapport while you sleep/eat/work on other projects.
    • 49. Blogging in 3 Easy Steps • Decide that you want to do this. Set goals and objectives with your manager. • ID your target audience. Brainstorm with Andrew and write for your audience. • Draft your outline. The rest takes care of itself! It really is painless.
    • 50. Andrew Abernathy