Internet marketing can’t be ignored anymore; the holdouts who thought it would somehow go away are paying a steep price for failing to embrace it and attract a new generation of customers. But the goalposts are constantly moving in this area; everything you thought you knew about Internet marketing five years ago has now been reshaped and in some cases, blown to smithereens. In 2018 and beyond, what key metrics should B2B marketers be watching?
PLAN YOUR WORK AND WORK YOUR PLAN
When forming your marketing strategy, stick to your guns until it no longer makes sense, then reform the strategy. Your online strategy should be in a constant state of renewal and refreshment, as per your data. Track total website visits, broken down by visits per page as well as provenance. Pay-per-click is especially getting costly, so it’s crucial that conversions be worth the money. Get customer feedback both vocally and electronically to find out how they found you and why they gave you their business. If any areas aren’t trending toward initial forecasts, it’s time to revise the original plan.
The lifeblood of any business is gaining customers, but don’t ignore the current ones! If you’re gaining and losing customers at the same rate, you’re essentially standing still. Form strategies to keep them engaged and happy and make sure those numbers don’t slip. If current customers feel like their needs are being sacrificed in favor of acquisition, they’ll slip away.
COST PER LEAD & ACQUISITION
So many business take a simple black-and-red view of annual, quarterly and monthly revenues – they’re fine if they finish “up money.” Don’t be one of them; know your ratio of marketing costs per new lead/acquisition, break them down by category, and work to shrink that ratio as much as possible. Clients are busy and being pulled in many different directions at once, but a blank stare when you ask them for cost-per-lead is unacceptable. It’s up to you as their marketing agency to make them pay attention and show them it’s worthwhile to know how every dollar is being spent and if it’s worth it.
SOCIAL AND EMAIL INTERACTIONS
Phone calls are important, yes, but more and more customers and prospects are making requests and asking about your services via contact pages and on social media platforms. While you don’t want to be too obsessive about checking email and social sites, there are leads there to be had, so check them at least twice a day as time permits. Remember, if you don’t respond within a short time period, customers will find someone who does.