Why Lead Response Time is a Critical Factor in Converting B2B Leads
The B2B world can be incredibly competitive, especially when traditional advertising methods used in the B2C world aren’t effective. But one thing you can do to get a leg up on your competition is to improve your lead response time. Here’s why lead response time is a critical factor in the realm of B2B lead conversion.
What is lead response time?
Lead response time is the amount it takes to respond to a lead after they reach out to your company. In the context of digital marketing, this refers to the time it takes to respond to a lead after they complete an online form. The average lead response time for B2B companies, per Hubspot, was 42 hours, and many companies never responded at all.
Why does lead response time matter?
Lead quality degrades over time. If you don’t respond to your leads, they grow cold and lose interest, either because they’ve moved on to other companies, or they simply move on to their other responsibilities. In fact, the sooner you can respond to your leads, the better.
Why is this? Well, the internet has changed buyer behavior. Customers are doing significant online research about the products and services they’re interested in, all without ever talking to another person. So when potential buyers do reach out, it’s usually when they’re very close to the purchase stage of their buyer’s journey. And that’s the best time to reach them—when they’re interested in and ready to talk to a salesperson.
In addition to when you respond to your leads, how matters too, and how often. Are your reaching out via email or phone? You should probably be doing both. And you shouldn’t give up after one attempt. Doing this helps you to establish a relationship with your lead, nurturing them into a prospect and then a customer.
How do you improve your company’s lead response time?
The first thing you should do is test that response time, and determine how far away your company is from a quick response. Once you’ve done that, you can set in place email automation to send email to leads immediately after they convert by completing a form on your website or landing page. Email automation can also help you follow up with leads at regular intervals to keep your company top of mind.
If you’re ready to improve your lead response time and convert more leads, it’s time to get in touch with Evenbound. We have expertise on the content strategies that will increase visitors, conversions, and leads from your digital content, as well as email marketing and lead segmentation strategies to reduce lead response time and give you the greatest ROI for your digital marketing efforts.
5 Mistakes You’re Making with Your B2B Blog Content
Digital content writing can be tough. Not only do you have to write well and be engaging and compelling, you have to know what your intended audience (a.k.a. potential customers and leads) is searching for, what they want to know, and how to get them motivated to act on what they’ve learned and get in touch with your people. We see B2Bs missing the mark with their content all the time. Here are the five mistakes you’re probably making with your B2B blog content right now:
1. Too much jargon
You are probably an expert on the products or services that your company provides; you probably know all the industry terminology and abbreviations, too, and use them in your daily conversation. But your customers, especially the kind you’re trying to reach—new customers—probably don’t know the industry jargon. Using too much jargon without properly defining it will confuse your readers and potentially cause them to navigate away from your blog to more understandable and accessible content available elsewhere.
2. Missing content for stages of the buyer’s journey
Customers go through a buyer’s journey when making purchase decisions: the awareness stage, where they become aware of their need for a product or service; the consideration stage, where they consider various suppliers/service providers, price points, product/service offerings, etc.; and the decision stage, where they make a purchase. If you don’t have content geared toward leads in each stage of the buyer’s journey, you’ll miss opportunities to reach leads in certain stages, resulting in lost customers.
3. Missing content for some buyer personas
You might have content that is geared toward buyers of your product, but do you have content geared toward all the potential leads who may have interest in your product? Even if the majority of your business comes from one specific market segment, chances are that you have secondary and tertiary audiences for whom your product or service has value as well. If you’re not reaching out to those audiences as well, you’re missing out on conversion opportunities, as well as the opportunity to diversify your customer base to mitigate dependence on volatile industries.
4. No calls to action
You’re writing blog content because you want your reader to do something. In general, that something is to purchase from your company, but each blog post has its own specific and content-related goal. If you have a blog post on “How to find the right supplier of X component,” it should at some point direct readers to learn more about how your company is the right supplier of that component. For content geared toward prospects in the decision stage of the buyer’s journey, calls to action should direct them to request a quote or to set up an appointment with a sales contact. This is how you turn your blog readers into actual paying customers.
5. Not making content locally-relevant
For a lot of businesses, even B2Bs, location matters. If your operations are housed in a certain location, and that location is beneficial to your customer base or desired customer base, you should incorporate that into your content. For example, if you’re a Tier I or Tier II automotive supplier and you’re located in Michigan, that’s something you should absolutely be using to your advantage, as the Big Three are headquartered in Michigan and many of their warehousing and manufacturing facilities are in Michigan and surrounding Midwestern, Rust Belt states.
If you’re ready to enhance your digital presence and step up your contact game, it’s time to get in touch. Evenbound has expertise on the content strategies that will increase visitors, conversions, and leads from your digital content and boost your digital marketing ROI. Don’t believe us? Check out the case study below:
We write a lot about LinkedIn as part of an inbound digital marketing strategy for B2Bs. That’s because it’s an extremely useful and underutilized social media tool, with applications that are particularly suited to industrial manufacturers and other B2Bs. To help you truly take full advantage of this platform, we’ve compiled all our content on LinkedIn in one place for you. Click the header of the section most relevant to you for more in-depth information on using LinkedIn to promote your B2B.
LinkedIn Ads are one of the best forms of PPC for B2Bs for numerous reasons, the most important of these being that your audience, business professionals in your industry, is using LinkedIn, and you can target them with a great deal of accuracy, almost down to the exact person you want to sell to. Plus, LinkedIn offers comprehensive metrics to help you improve your campaigns and discover who you’re reaching.
Creating LinkedIn Content
A major benefit of LinkedIn is its publishing platform, which allows you to produce and promote content to your professional network and to others in your industry, boosting your credibility and name recognition. But just because it’s easy to hit the publish button doesn’t mean you should be posting anything. With LinkedIn and other online content platforms, it pays to be intentional with your topics, titles, length, and all other aspects of your writing.
LinkedIn also has a great way for you to showcase specific products or services with their Showcase Pages. These pages create curated feeds that users can follow, and where you can post and share relevant content. They’re a useful way to organize content as well as segment and target specific customer types with specific interests and needs.
LinkedIn has a ton of features that you can be using to market your business, from the social networking features like sharing content and making connections to advance search and premium accounts. And when we say easy ways, we really mean easy. These features are all just waiting for you to take advantage of, and require little expertise or time to get started.
Company pages are an excellent tool for marketing with LinkedIn, but you’ve got to be intentional about how you build your page to attract your ideal clients. Our visual guide will help you create the perfect page for your company and enhance your online presence and social impact.
If you’re ready to expand your digital reach and start using LinkedIn to its full potential, Evenbound can help. We have a lot of experience with LinkedIn, content creation, inbound marketing, and PPC advertising, and we can create a digital strategy that gets results. Get in touch and let’s get started.
Manufacturing buyers are not going to the Yellow Pages to find suppliers anymore: they’re searching online. If you want those buyers to find your company, you’re going to have to show up in the search engine results, and to do that, your site needs to use SEO best practices.
Quick Refresher: What’s SEO?
SEO stands for search engine optimization. SEO practices are things that best allow search engines to crawl and understand your site, making sure it shows up as a result in relevant searches. SEO strategy involves how you structure the pages on your website, the keywords you use, how often you add and update content, and how content is tagged, among other things.
Why is SEO So Important for B2Bs?
Like we said earlier, the people who are looking for your products and services are looking online. And, unlike B2C products, traditional advertising doesn’t do much for B2Bs. Have you ever seen ads for washing machine screws or rearview mirror assemblies? Neither have we. While a brand of soda might appeal to a lot of people and draw a lot of attention, your products or services are targeted toward specific applications in specific industries, and you need to target those potential customers with your digital marketing efforts.
SEO for B2B manufacturers is what will help people find you, and more specifically, people who want what you’re selling. That’s because SEO entails strategically using the same words your ideal customers are using when they search—keywords. When you use the right keywords, people who are looking for the services or products you offer, even searchers who have never heard of your company or don’t remember your company’s name, will find you.
SEO draws more people to your website, and that is the best way to get your site higher in search engine rankings and to convert interested site visitors to sales leads. The higher your site ranks in the search engine results, the more likely it is that potential customers will see your site and navigate to it. Plus, internet users are savvy, and they are more likely to click on a top organic search result than a paid search ad.
Additionally, the content you create when you implement SEO practices like blogging will help you establish authority in your industry and build trust and credibility with future customers. If buyers appreciate and trust the information you provide them, they’re more likely to purchase from you.
Think it’s about time to start implementing SEO practices on your site? Evenbound can help! We’ve worked with a number of B2B manufacturers, and have delivered serious results. Check out this case study to see how our inbound marketing strategy can help you get on page one:
Inbound marketing is one of the buzzwords in the marketing community, but to B2B manufacturers, who historically haven’t invested much in marketing, it’s unfamiliar. Inbound marketing is the new way to reach customers, and unlike traditional methods of advertising like print ads and TV commercials, it’s not just for B2Cs. Inbound techniques attract buyers who want, need, or are interested in your offerings to you when they want information about your products or services or are ready to make a purchase. Like the way that sounds? Then you need to hire an inbound marketing company.
What Do Inbound Marketers Do?
The goal of inbound marketing is to bring clients to you, bring them inbound, rather than having to reach out to them with outbound, interruptive marketing like traditional ads. So a large component of what inbound marketers do is create content that will attract clients to you, and most of this is online. First, they determine who your ideal client types are and what needs, questions, and concerns those ideal clients have. Next, they create a variety of types of content that address those needs, from your website page content to downloadable ebooks to blog articles to emails. Then, inbound marketers set to work promoting that content so that those potential customers can find it.
Why Do You Need an Inbound Marketing Company?
Short answer: because you’re experts in what you do, and they’re experts in what they do. Inbound and digital marketing is a complex field that is constantly changing, and if you’re not an expert marketer, there are a lot of ways you can go wrong and a lot of opportunities that you can miss out on. Inbound marketing is all these companies do, and they’re very good at it. They hire skilled content writers, web designers, search experts, and social media strategists who know exactly how to target the buyers and companies you want as customers. Have you seen how engineers write? Do you think prospects will want to read that? Yeah, we don’t either.
How Do You Choose the Right Company?
A good inbound marketing agency is going to practice what they preach and have a good online presence with strong content (*cough* humblebrag *cough*). They’ll have a history of working with B2Bs and industrial manufacturers, so they’ll speak your language, and they’ll also have case studies with hard numbers that prove how effective their marketing strategies are.
If you’re ready to take advantage of inbound marketing and the digital space, you need to contact a digital marketing agency, and we think it should be Evenbound. We’ve successfully helped B2Bs improve their websites, use paid search and PPC ads, increase website traffic, and, most importantly, bring in new leads and prospects. Get in touch to find out how we can do that for your company. Still want to know more about inbound marketing? Check out the case study below to see how inbound marketing and HubSpot helped this manufacturer get ahead of the competition:
B2B Manufacturers: How to Get More Social Media Followers, and Why You Need ‘Em
If you’re not on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or LinkedIn these days, it’s almost like you don’t exist. Nowadays, social media is just as crucial for B2B companies, including industrial manufacturers, as it is for B2C companies. Sure, social media marketing seems more intuitive for B2Cs, but the truth is that nearly everyone is using social media, which means that your customers, and the decision-makers at those companies, are using social media.
And just having a profile for your business isn’t going to cut it. If a page exists on the internet and no one reads it, does your company get more leads? No, it doesn’t. That’s why you need to invest in your social media presence and attract followers on the platforms you use. Your social media presence will create the network where you can share and promote your company and your digital content, attracting and converting leads.
LinkedIn: A Great Place to Start
If you read our blog regularly, you know how we feel about LinkedIn. For B2B manufacturers, it’s the social media platform you should be using to reach your potential clients, for a variety of reasons; most importantly, it’s where your target audience is networking and researching suppliers. Getting more followers on your company LinkedIn page requires that you regularly post relevant, insightful content specific to your industry and your potential customers’ pain points. You can even target each of your different types of client with specially tailored showcase pages (read more about how showcase pages work for B2B marketing here).
On your personal LinkedIn account, you can search for specific people in specific positions at the companies you’re looking to make clients out of, and then connect with those people. Joining discussion groups relevant to your industry and sharing your knowledge and expertise is also a great way to establish your credibility and gain new followers. For more on LinkedIn, read our 6 Easy Ways to Make LinkedIn Work For Your B2B Marketing Strategy.
Social Media Campaigns
Another critical aspect of gaining, retaining, and making leads out of your social media followers is by executing targeted social media campaigns. Just like other advertising campaigns, strategy is necessary to make your efforts successful. Well-planned social media campaigns will help you accomplish goals such as increasing brand awareness and promoting your digital content. To do this, you’ll need to determine the exact type of client you want to attract, and target them specifically with content matching their place in the buyer’s journey and their needs and pain points, through indirect (social sharing) and direct (PPC ad promotion) means.
Don’t fall behind the competition by neglecting your social media presence, either by failing to have one at all or by not investing time into engaging with your followers and working to attract new ones. If you’d like to learn more about social media marketing for B2Bs, or digital marketing in general, you should talk with the team at Evenbound.
Be sure to check out our other posts on how to make social media work for your B2B, such as this one on LinkedIn Ads and B2B Marketing, as well as the free case study below, that shows how paid search and social worked wonders for one B2B: