Transcript of "What digital-stratgy-is-working-in-small-business"
What’s Working in Small Business Marketing – 2012By Bob HansonPresident, Quantum Leap Marketing, Inc.
Summary What are small businesses doing this year to get more leads and sales from their marketing budget? How do Webinars ﬁt into this marketing mix in 2012? What are some winning strategies you can use to get a higher return-on-investment from your online media and general marketing dollars? Avoid the common Quantum Leap Marketing, Inc. conducted a survey in the ﬁrst months of 2012 to ﬁnd answers to these questions and more. Small business executives and marketers were asked about their mistakes, get more marketing plans, including how they plan to take advantage of social media, and how they intend to change the marketing mix for better results. They were also asked for their views on lead-from your marketing generation (marketing) Webinars.budget, and execute This white paper presents a summary of the survey results regarding their marketing plan and tactics, identiﬁes top trends from this survey, and also discusses the increasingly important role of a more effective both social media and online marketing like Webinars in small business marketing in 2012. marketing plan right away. About the Survey The data shared in this report comes from a recently completed online survey of individuals who identiﬁed themselves as being responsible for, or contributing to, their organization’s marketing. To qualify, their company needed to be actively marketing and have under 1,000 employees. The survey population generally consisted of smaller businesses; that is, 95% came from organizations with 500 or fewer employees. The survey pool represents a wide diversity of industries, although about 70% identiﬁed their companies as offering services such as marketing services, ﬁnancial services, or professional or legal services. Just under 60% identiﬁed themselves as a business owner or ﬁrm partner, with the rest having a role in marketing. Trends in Small Business Marketing Here are the key ﬁndings from this recent survey of small business owners and marketers. Primary Marketing Tactics in 2012 When asked about their planned marketing tactics for 2012, 70% of small businesses indicated they will be using referrals to get more leads and new clients. QLM | Bob Hanson | 617-901-6886 | What’s Working in Small Business Marketing and Webinars in 2012 2
Referrals and email Primary Ways of Marketing marketing are the 80% 70% most popular ways 60% 50% 40% of attracting new 30% 20% customers, followed 10% 0% by social media rke er ilia r ina r rke te g rke ia em or sen b als il rke ail Aff rs o Sem ars o etin Pre We tes rs ting Ma ting ce Ma Pap ting rs Ma ebsi Ma l Med ting e S ws Ma Em err ina tne ark ple ect Liv Sho line bin Ref W ite Par ia em Sim Dir Wh We Soc de marketing. Tel Tra On Interestingly, 51% indicated that they will be using email marketing, 42% will be using social media marketing, while roughly one-third will be using events of some type like Webinars, live seminars or trade shows. These statistics are signiﬁcant when one considers that the average small business will actively use multiple ways of generating business. Companies are looking to aggressively recruit for new customers in 2012, and many are increasing social media marketing to do it. Success Criteria for Marketing Campaigns When asked about the ways they judged the effectiveness of their overall marketing activities, 54% cited the Number of Sales or Sales Opportunities Generated. Where marketers Measuring Market Effectiveness 60% may have been more 50% 40% concerned with leads 30% 20% in the past, they’re 10%looking at the number 0% Number of Total Number of Number of Campaign Cost Don’t Ask, Sales Revenue Leads Won Sales ROI Per Lead Don’t Measure of sales and sales Opportunities Generated Generated Generated Opportunities opportunities now. Forty-two percent cited Total Revenue Generated and 39% Number of Leads Generated. Only 5% reported that they do not measure or track the effectiveness of marketing tactics. QLM | Bob Hanson | 617-901-6886 | What’s Working in Small Business Marketing and Webinars in 2012 3
Small business marketers appear to be much more focused on the bottom line in 2012. Wheremarketers may have been more concerned with leads in the past, they’re looking more at salesopportunities and revenue now.Marketing Tactics Looking Forward in 2012 and BeyondWhen asked which marketing tactics were going to be used MORE in 2012, the following tacticswere highlighted: • Referral Marketing • Email Marketing • Partner or Afﬁliate Marketing • Social Media Marketing • Website/Brochureware • WebinarsThe following tactics will be emphasized less this year by small business marketers: • Website Marketing • Direct Mail • TelemarketingThe general trend appears to be away from more expensive, less effective tactics, and towards lessexpensive, more effective ones.Notable is that smaller organizations are de-emphasizing website marketing tactics like SearchEngine Optimization and Pay-Per-Click Marketing. This is more indicative of spending increases inprevious years, than an abandoning of these strategies for 2012.Email and Social Media Marketing Dominate the Technology Spectrumfor SMBs in 2012When asked which marketing technologies will be used in 2012, 2 in 3 small businesses will useEmail Marketing while just under 60% will use Social Media Marketing.QLM | Bob Hanson | 617-901-6886 | What’s Working in Small Business Marketing and Webinars in 2012 4
Online Marketing Technologies 80% 70% 60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0% e) A k mm ads, em nt der - rke ia em er ren rs or rke ail pon uto ogl Clic ent s ds ting (CR ent e g Ma l Med nag nte nag tom ting erc Ma Em cin M) eCo eb Le Res ail A (Go -Per- Co ebina Ma te Co Ma Cus ia Em Pay W nfe Soc W bsi We b WeWeb Conferencing and Webinars, Website Content Management, and Customer RelationshipManagement (CRM) will also be used by just under 50% of small businesses. Social Media Marketing Technologies 80% 70% 60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0% te e+ er k gs be n boo i it Oth Blo ked Tu ogl Tw You e Go Lin FacWith Social Media Technologies, LinkedIn is the clear winner for 2012, with over 72% usage. Alsopopular is Facebook with 54%, and YouTube, Twitter, and Blogs are used by about 4 in 10 smallorganizations.Both online and social media marketing are clearly strong as smaller companies try to reach buyerswith the media they are consuming, and search for both cheaper and more effective channels ofpromotion.QLM | Bob Hanson | 617-901-6886 | What’s Working in Small Business Marketing and Webinars in 2012 5
Online and social Online Marketing Spend Continues to Increasemedia marketing are Increasing Online 5% 7% Marketing Budget clearly growing as 51% smaller companies 40% search for both More than 51% Decrease cheaper and more 0 to 50% Decrease 39% Same as last yeareffective channels of 0 to 50% Increase More than 50% Increase promotion. Forty percent of small businesses are increasing their online marketing budget, while 39% plan no change in online budget over 2011. Summary of General Marketing Trends for Small Businesses Almost all small business marketers measure the overall effectiveness of their marketing; they have taken this feedback and, fueled by external pressure to add revenue in 2012, are increasing their activity and spend in the online and social arenas. Events continue to be successful for smaller businesses; as these businesses grow their email marketing lists, social media followers and reach, they are able to better take advantage of Webinars to help turn email opt-ins and social media reach into leads and sales. The next section will outline how small business marketers view Webinars in 2012. Small Business Webinar Trends in 2012 Here are trends in how marketers view Webinars for lead-generation objectives. Number of Marketing Webinars per Year – 2011 When asked how many marketing Webinars their organization held in the past year, 52% of marketers said they held no events, while 21% reported that they held 3 or fewer Webinars. QLM | Bob Hanson | 617-901-6886 | What’s Working in Small Business Marketing and Webinars in 2012 6
Events continue to Number of Marketing Webinars in 2011 be successful for 21% smaller businesses; as these businesses 52% 1 to 3 13% 4 to 6 develop their email 7 to 12 13 to 26 22% marketing lists they 27 or More 5% None 2% are able to better take advantage of Signiﬁcantly, 7% said that they held online marketing generation events at least every month. Webinars. Projected Number of Marketing Webinars per Year – 2012 When asked how many marketing Webinars their organization plans to host in 2012, 41% of marketers said they are planning between 1 and 6 events, and 9% plan at least a Webinar every month. Planned Marketing Webinars for 2012 28% 26% 1 to 3 4 to 6 4%About three-quarters 7 to 12 5% 13 to 26 13% of small businesses 27 or More None 23% plan to holdmarketing Webinars Signiﬁcantly, close to one in four said that they had no plans as of the survey period to hold a Webinar in 2012. Still, compared to numbers from 2011, close to 25% of SMBs are adding in 2012 Webinars to the marketing mix this year. QLM | Bob Hanson | 617-901-6886 | What’s Working in Small Business Marketing and Webinars in 2012 7
Average Registrants at a Typical Marketing WebinarEighty-four percent of business marketers reported an average registrant count of 50 or fewer attheir marketing Webinars. Average Number of 11% Registrants Per Webinar 5% 36% 16% 1 to 10 11 to 25 26 to 50 51 to 100 More than 101 32%In the survey, only 11% reported more than 100 registrants at their average marketing Webinar.In addition, small business marketers estimate that roughly 50% of registrants attend their livewebinar. When calculating the number of leads from each small business marketing Webinar, itis best to use the registrant number because at registration rich data like email address, phonenumber, title and purchasing role are often captured.The next section will cover many of the reasons why business marketers view Webinars as a keystrategy to leverage social media and email marketing for more leads and sales.Webinars That Work for Small BusinessThe Webinar is becoming a more popular communication medium for small business marketers.This medium can be intimate, educational, convenient for both presenters and attendees, highlyinteractive, and provide rich data that helps qualify registrants and attendees as hot leads.The importance of Webinars is only increased with the continued use of email and online marketingand the recent adoption of social media marketing for small business. Small business marketers canboth promote their Webinars through these channels to get new followers and opt-ins, and alsouse Webinars to nurture their existing contacts into leads and sales.The Webinar medium can be viewed in either a live format, where viewers can participate in theexcitement of a live event and ask the presenter(s) questions, or through an on-demand recording,which they can access and view at their convenience.QLM | Bob Hanson | 617-901-6886 | What’s Working in Small Business Marketing and Webinars in 2012 8
Here is a summary of some of the important components of small business Webinar success. Accomplish Your Most Important Small Business Marketing Objectives Webinars are ﬂexible in that they help small businesses accomplish a variety of marketing objectives. Listed below are the diverse marketing objectives for small business Webinars and the reported reasons these marketers hold their events.Webinars are ﬂexible Marketing Objectives with Webinars in that they help 90% 80% 70% small businesses 60% 50%accomplish a variety 40% 30% of marketing 20% 10% 0% objectives. Educate Your Nurture Existing Generate Position Your Create a Webinar Prospects or Leads into Sales New Leads Company in the Recording Customers Marketplace Note the most popular reason for holding Webinars is to Educate Prospects or Customers. This is followed by Generating New Leads, Positioning in the Marketplace and Nurturing Existing Leads into Sales. Increase the Number of Registrants at Each Event Webinars enable small businesses to hold marketing events for small groups or for audiences of thousands, and the cost of a Webinar per attendee ends up being a fraction of the price per person of an in-person event. This ﬂexibility and scalability allows a higher percentage of the event budget to go into higher value activities such as marketing to get more registrants (sales leads). As small businesses build their social media channels and email marketing lists through 2012 and beyond, they will be able to create more Webinar leads and attendees for virtually zero incremental costs. In addition, Webinars offer the opportunity to feature your best speaker in the presentation, or bring in an outside speaker with a big social media following or email list, which will likely increase the quantity of registrants at the Webinar and the results from it. QLM | Bob Hanson | 617-901-6886 | What’s Working in Small Business Marketing and Webinars in 2012 9
Having Buyers in the “Room” – High Quality Sales Leads and Return on Investment (ROI)Webinars can be a very effective way to get a quantiﬁable return on investment (ROI) from yourmarketing dollars and overall resource investment.This comes partly from having buyers in your virtual seminar room. As reported in the survey, justover 30% of small business marketers reported that Webinars produce the highest quality of leadsof any online marketing tactic. In addition, about the same 30% report that Webinars producemore value for the company than most other online marketing tactics. Unfortunately, 43% of smallbusinesses still don’t track or compare the relative effectiveness of individual marketing tactics;these small companies should track their marketing campaigns in order to see which tactics arethe best performing before deciding how to spend their marketing dollars. Researched marketingtactics will help small businesses generate higher ROIs even from unchanged marketing budgets.Additionally, with Webinars small businesses are better able to capture rich-data about theirpotential buyers throughout the Webinar lifecycle. At registration, small businesses choose whatinformation they want to capture from their Webinar registrants. Generally,this includes informationlike the person’s business title, email address, physical address, phone number, role in the buyingprocess and company. So before the event even takes place, you have captured lead information.Capture Selling Data during the WebinarThen during the event, through the Q&A panel, in-session polls, and post-event surveys,small businesses can capture attendees’ answers to questions, the questions they asked, theirattentiveness rating during the Webinar, and their responses to the in-session polls and post-eventsurvey in order to qualify attendees as hot leads. Because all in-session polls and post-event surveysare entirely customizable, small businesses decide which information is most valuable to requestof their Webinar attendees. So, for example, you may ask your attendees what solution they arealready using to ﬁnd out how many of your competitors’ customers are in your session. Or, at theexit poll, you may directly ask whether attendees want to be contacted after the session to help youidentify hot leads. You determine which information is most valuable to you.For simplicity’s sake, some Webinar technologies even allow you to automatically integrate Webinardata directly with marketing automation technologies through APIs (Application Program Interfaces)for increased accuracy of data, easy lead follow-up, and time savings. APIs save marketers the timeand hassle of having to manually enter the rich data they collected from their webinar series intotheir marketing automation software like Eloqua, Marketo, or Hub Spot, for example.The data collection, interactions and features associated with Webinars are what make Webinarssuch a great tool for collecting rich and organized data that can help small businesses determineQLM | Bob Hanson | 617-901-6886 | What’s Working in Small Business Marketing and Webinars in 2012 10
Smaller businesses in their hottest leads. Every interaction that happens during a webinar – from registration to the post- event survery – is captured to help marketers close more deals.the survey estimated Dramatic Cost Savings over In-Person Events and Trade Showsthey save an average By their nature, Webinars save signiﬁcant time, travel, and costs that in-person events and tradeof $47,692 marketing shows require. dollars a year by Smaller businesses in the survey estimated they save an average of $47,692 marketing dollars a year by doing fewer in-person events and more Webinars. doing fewer in- person events and Getting More Small Business Marketing Leads more Webinars. and Sales Conversion from Social Media and Online Marketing in 2012 With the projected increase in social media and online marketing tactics such as marketing via Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, as well as more established media such as email marketing and Webinars, there will be more requests for the attention of your prospects in 2012, so it is Social media important to understand best practices that leading organizations large and small have found proﬁtable. marketing in While each organization has a unique set of circumstances to consider for their marketing efforts combination with in 2012, small business executives and marketers have a tremendous opportunity to capitalize on these newer forms of media to tune up their marketing engine and master the ability to gain more Webinars helps customers and sales in any environment. smaller businesses, Key Recommendations for Small Business Marketing Success in 2012 regardless of their Some key recommendations for small business marketing success in 2012 are: size or market 1. Build Social Media and Online Contacts and Get Permission to Market to Prospects – share, expand their Permission Marketing is not just for building an opt-in email list or Twitter following, although that is a big part of it. Getting prospects onto your list at different stages of the information market reach and gathering or buying process will open the door to many more potential buyers and help you build a large marketing list. For example, invite LinkedIn connections to your next webinar to turn those compete on a level connections into customers.playing ﬁeld with all 2. Take Advantage of Effective Online and Social Tactics and Technologies – Those small businesses that are able to take early advantage of marketing opportunities online and in social competitors. QLM | Bob Hanson | 617-901-6886 | What’s Working in Small Business Marketing and Webinars in 2012 11
channels will gain a competitive edge. Likewise, it is easier for smaller companies to adopt andbeneﬁt faster from new technologies such as LinkedIn, Twitter, Automated Follow-up Campaignswith CRM, and Email Marketing because they are more ﬂexible and nimble than larger companies.3. Even in Our New “Social World,” Build Your Email Marketing List, Now – Email marketingoffers a fast, cheap, and effective way to reach prospects, clients, or inﬂuencers. Those smallbusinesses that build and cultivate a relatively large email list will lower their cost of conversionand be able to create sales quickly through relatively aggressive email marketing campaigns. Forexample, the majority of Webinar registrants still come from a simple email invitation.4. Consider Webinars in the Social Media Marketing Mix – As discussed above, Webinars helpsmaller businesses, regardless of their size or market share, expand their market reach and competeon a level playing ﬁeld with all competitors. Your own, a partner’s, or a speaker’s social mediamarketing channels are all great avenues for Webinar promotion.5. Track and Improve – One of the many beneﬁts of online and email marketing is it is easyfor small businesses to track the results from each marketing campaign, repeat what works, andimprove over time. Make sure your organization is still focused on ROI when using newer mediaand technologies.SummarySmall business executives and marketers are increasingly using social media and online marketing togenerate leads for their organizations. More are taking advantage of these marketing technologiessuch as Webinars in 2012 than ever before, and organizations are also increasing the averagenumber of online events they will hold. Webinars are allowing marketers to reach more prospects,leverage the rich data that the Webinar process provides, and deliver more qualiﬁed leads to sales.This white paper has presented some insights into these trends and also shared ideas about how toget more leads and sales from your own online and social media marketing and Webinars. Try someof the best practices put forth here and reap the rewards in your own organization.QLM | Bob Hanson | 617-901-6886 | What’s Working in Small Business Marketing and Webinars in 2012 12