We’ve discussed the value of developing lists with your Customer Resource Management (CRM) tools. We talked about coding these lists by customer’s buying interests, the industry they’re in (such as education or healthcare), their security risks and other relevant information. Your lists need to be accessible by each category and customers can be in multiple categories. Your lists are the foundation of your new marketing and social media campaigns.
Social marketing and social media are the core to growing your business in the 21st century. These evolving tools are being used to draw in new business and to manage your customer’s experience. Your website and your CRM database are an important foundation for this growth. Salespeople don’t go away, they are here to close sales and manage your customers’ communications with your organization. Lead development is no longer a one person show and if you leave it this way, you’re putting your company’s competitive growth plans on the back burner.
Attached to your highly informative and easy to navigate website you’ll want to have a software platform such as constant contact that allows you to push your own content out to your already developed and growing lists. The goal of developing your different marketing categories is to allow you to share useful targeted content with them. I’m not talking about sales blather that you want them to know. I’m talking targeted, useful information that they want to know. Sales blather is the single easiest way to ensure they’ll unsubscribe.
What do they want? They want you to help them succeed with their goals, manage their risks, and understand new laws, standards, technology changes and so forth. It’s been my experience that customers need help with all of this. I’m amazed how much they don’t understand. They want to know what you know. Customize your content to your people’s needs even if you get it from an article or a series of articles. If you’re linking to other people’s content, you’re driving them to their site and not yours. The goal is to bring them to you. Drive traffic to your useful, educational and informative website. They’ll wander around from there.
Develop news feeds or content directly from your site out to your listed categories. Forward this same information to your businesses Facebook Pages, your LinkedIn Contacts, your Google Circles, out through Twitter and so on. Folks reading news or content on social media sites pass this along to their contacts when it moves them. You just don’t know where your information may go or where your next prospect will come from. I pooh poohed Facebook for business for years, yet as soon as I started using it, I got as many responses there as I did elsewhere!
I’d recommend jumping on these new marketing practices now while the learning curve is still easy to grasp. The more fresh content that’s flowing from your site, the higher your site rises in the websites search engines. These web crawlers rank every site as active or not, determining who’s on the first page of a search or the 20th page. Activity and the search words or the words you use to be found are what controls your position on these pages. Posting other people’s content in whole or in part without disclosing it’s someone else’s content is wrong to do. Linking to other people’s content with an explantion as to why is okay but it doesn’t boost your rankings. Fresh content is what the crawlers look for. Videos on your site increase your site’s value and there are many more things you can do to increase your position and value in the market. Search the Web and monitor this for the constantly changing rules here.
“I don’t have time for this” you say! You need to make time or hire help because you can’t stop change. You have to roll with it. This task must be given to someone who knows your customer, your offerings and your industry, as content is key to success here.
Next month, I’ll talk more about some of the challenges of change.
Carol Enman is a business growth consultant with decades of experience growing businesses in the security industry, as well as in other industries. She can be reached at www.whengrowthmatters.com.