2016

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5 Simple Steps To Turn Readers Into Buyers – Content Marketing That Sells

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Guest post by Tom Hunt. So you have set up a blog and social media profiles…. You are pumping out multiple articles per week and sharing them furiously…. And yes you see some small traffic spikes (though they quickly drop off when you stop posting right?). Trust me, I know, I have been there… multiple times. Understand Your Customer’s Desired Outcome. What does your customer truly want?

Three Things Smart B2B Marketers Will be Doing in 2016

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What will successful B2B marketers to be doing more of, or differently, in 2016? That question was recently posed to the expert contributors at the B2B Marketing Zone , and two dozen responded with a range of insights about content marketing, measuring results, employee advocacy, customer experience and other topics. Here are three key takeaways plus some additional musings.

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20 Tremendous Digital Marketing Stats and Facts

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Digital marketing budgets continue to rise, often at the expense of offline advertising spend. But digital marketers must continue to evolve practices as they strive to make their content an asset, rather than an annoyance, to prospective buyers. Image credit: MarketingProfs. combined. Spending on digital marketing is projected to increase by 12% to 15% on average. Measurement remains problematic.

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33 Thought-Provoking B2B Social Media and Marketing Stats

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As noted in the 2016 B2B Marketing Trends report , B2B marketing strategies and practices are in the midst of significant change, driven by new technologies and evolving buyer expectations for more “consumer-like” experiences. These changes are affecting tactics, budgets, messaging, and metrics as illustrated in the compilation of B2B marketing facts and statistics below. MediaPost ).

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The Rise of the Customer Marketer

Explore the changes taking place in customer marketing from the perspective of customer marketers themselves.

47 Superb Social Media Marketing Stats and Facts

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Social media use isn’t quite universal—but it’s getting close. 70% of the U.S. population now has at least one social networking profile; more than half use two or more social networks. The number of worldwide social media users is projected to grow from 2.1 billion last year to 2.5 billion by 2018. Image credit: The CMO Survey. Still,  interesting contradictions remain. 70% of the U.S.

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The 24 Best Visual Content Creation Tools

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More than 90% of B2B marketers already use content marketing in some form, and spending on content marketing is projected to double by 2019. But content won’t simply be produced in greater volumes, it will also become increasingly visual. As noted here previously , the current preference for consuming B2B content in text rather than video or other visual forms won’t last. 10) MakeaGif.

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Your Employees May Be Your Best Untapped Brand Advocates

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Guest post by Liz Greene. If you were asked to rattle off your top marketing strategies, would employee advocacy make the list? Your employees are one of the most valuable marketing assets available, and if you’re not putting them to use as part of an overall marketing strategy, you’re missing out on an incredible opportunity to increase revenue. It’s simple. Identify. Willingness to help. Educate.

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How Small Businesses Can Use Real-Time Case Studies to Acquire New Clients

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Guest post by Bill Achola. Ned J. Blogmore is a gifted writer, but his blogs never make it past the spam email folder of his clients. One day, he decides to try something new. He sends a small, yet powerful, email message along with his blogs to the clients. As a result, his business flourishes. His blog’s search engine ranking improves by 15%. His work is recognized. His ROI increased by 34%….

B2B Marketing Trends for 2016

25 B2B marketing thought leaders answer the question "What do you expect to B2B marketers to be doing more of or differently in 2016?" The results are amazing insights around content marketing, achieving business results, alignment, employee advocacy, new technologies, customer experience and more.

49 Noteworthy Social Networking Stats and Facts

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Though new social networks continue to be launched (e.g. SnapChat , Blab ) and some disappear (anyone remember Pownce or Friendster ?), the “big three” among both consumers and marketers continue to thrive and dominate. But there are no guarantees that leadership will last, and the social networking landscape is constantly evolving. Image credit: Social Media Examiner. Twelveskip ). 8.

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Three Influencer Marketing Secrets to Drive Traffic

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Guest post by Tim Brown. recently had the opportunity to speak to a couple classes of high school students, and used my time to dig into what and how they interact on the web and social media. I was trying to figure out what kinds of ads they responded well to on social media—but lo and behold, they’ve already grown a deep resistance to advertising. Blank stares. Blog comments.

5 Essential Elements to Include in Every Sales Pitch

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Guest post by Ken Sterling. Effectively closing sales is the bread and butter of your business. Here’s how to hit a home run every time. According to researchers at the University of Florida, 20% of all salespeople make 80% of all sales (also known as the 20/80 rule or the Pareto principle ), which makes securing a spot in that top 20% crucial to running a competitive and profitable business.

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16 Enigmatic Business Blogging and Other Marketing Stats

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As winter comes to an end, so too does the  Winter Wonderland of Marketing Stats series that’s been running here over the past few months. This final installment covers some fascinating though sometimes contradictory and confusing stats about business blogging and the value of marketing. For example, what percentage of businesses maintain company blogs? But apparently not. Meghan M. ClickZ ).

Fluency of Culture, Not Language, Is Key to Winning Big in Global Online Markets

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Guest post by Charles Whiteman. The smartest companies are always looking to reach untapped markets. These days, most are finding success by engaging new global consumers through digital channels. By communicating with online customers in their languages of choice—on their devices of choice—businesses can sell to more markets than ever before. They also need cultural fluency. On Social Media.

Six Key Steps to Successful Marketing Automation Adoption

Selecting a Marketing Automation platform can be a daunting task. With so many options out there, your success with Marketing Automation depends on selecting the platform that best fits your needs.

The 23 Best Content Ideation Tools

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Great content—the kind that resonates with your audience—starts with great topic ideas. Often, the best ideas come from talking with your customers, or with customer-facing employees in your organization, like people in sales or customer service. Sometimes they magically come to you while you’re out for a morning run or enjoying an evening glass of wine on the deck. Pricing: free. 18) BigDig.

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The 17 Best Keyword Research Tools for SEO and SEM

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Despite some misleading chatter to the contrary, SEO is not dead , and keywords still matter. What is true is that search engines have improved their semantic capabilities, meaning they look for the meaning in each block of text rather than just specific phrases. And of course, keyword stuffing, as an SEO tactic, is long dead. That’s where keyword research comes in. ” — Smart Bug Media.

6 Tips for Encouraging Your Team to Blog

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Guest post by Jill Phillips. When it comes to search engine optimization and conversion rates, content marketing is an absolute necessity. Unfortunately, if you don’t have a dedicated team of writers, you might struggle with producing high-quality content consistently. One of the best solutions to this problem is including your employees in the content marketing strategy. Let Them Be Creative.

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15 Questions to Ask When Hiring an SEO Professional (Seriously)

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Organic (non-paid) search is the largest single source of visits for most B2B websites. The majority of sites generate between 40% and two-thirds of their total traffic from search. Making sure your site is as highly visible as possible in search and maximizing visits requires professional SEO help—whether that comes from inside your company, or from an expert SEO consultant or agency.

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8 Ways to Create More Effective Lead Generation Programs

Explore key areas you should focus on with your content syndication strategy in order to help you get the attention of your target audience and build trust.

The 12 Best Competitive Intelligence and Benchmarking Tools

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When evaluating the results of marketing and PR efforts, it’s vital to consider two perspectives: what is the trend of results (e.g., increasing social engagement, website traffic over time, etc.) and how do your results compare to your closest competitors? There are a wide range of monitoring, listening, and analytics tools available to answer the first type of question. 10) SpyOnWeb.

14 Fortuitous SEO and SEM Stats and Facts

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Search remains the cornerstone of digital and content marketing efforts. The average B2B website gets 40% or more of all visits from organic search, and 81% of B2B purchase cycles start with a web search. On the paid side, more than one million businesses use Google AdWords , and Google’s content network reaches 80% of all U.S. Internet users. Image credit: MarketingProfs. Speed thrills.

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45 Phenomenal Email and Mobile Marketing Stats

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Email remains the most effective digital marketing tool for both B2B and B2C marketers. But the majority of email activity now takes place on mobile devices, and not all marketers have effectively adapted to this rapid shift. Those are just a couple of the findings in the nearly four dozen email and mobile marketing facts and statistics from 15 different sources compiled below. And 72% of U.S.

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How to Calculate the ROI of Social Media Marketing [Infographic]

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Quick: Can you list the goals of each and every one of your social media efforts? Do you know how each campaign performed when measured against those metrics, and how they contributed to the bottom line? If you’re like many marketers, those questions probably bring a quizzical look to your face. But it doesn’t have to be that way. They need to have an estimated value assigned to them.

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A Blueprint for Content Marketing Success

84% of marketers plan to increase their content marketing spend over the next 5 years but less than half have any real confidence such content investments are paying off, based on a recent CEB survey.

What is Inbound Marketing? The Idiot’s Guide [Infographic]

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Guest post by Andy Beohar. Over the past decade, inbound marketing has climbed to the top of the marketing latter and claimed its place as (arguably) the most beneficial approach for business campaigns—both online and off. But you may be wondering, why exactly have inbound practices become so dominant in marketing? And how can you apply them to your own business? Talk about fish in a barrel!

Five Top-Rated Social Media Management Tools for 2016 [Infographic]

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Guest post by Lilach Bullock. What is the “best” social media management tool out right now? Every social media manager has a preferred one that they always use, and it’s usually one of a handful of the top social media management tools on the market. They are also useful for monitoring certain keywords or conversations, and for analyzing your social media performance.

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How To Improve Your Email Subject Lines And Get Better Results

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Guest post by Christelle Macri. In email marketing, the subject line is of paramount importance. It is, after all, the primary element the recipient will refer to when deciding on whether or not to open the mail in the first place. Yet, despite this, many companies sending email marketing messages fail to give subject lines the attention they deserve. Make Your Subject Lines Less Generic.

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The Six Best Google+ Marketing Tools

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Despite its detractors , Google+ remains one of the “big four” social networks and has its share of prominent fans in the business world. For most websites, Google+ doesn’t drive the volume of social traffic that Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter do. But it can still be interesting place to hang out, and it may help with SEO. Google Review Count: 70,400. Google Review Count: 33,800.

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Why B2B Content Strategies Are Paramount for Generating Quality Leads

Generating demand and ensuring the consistent flow of high-quality, actionable leads is what makes B2B marketers successful.

12 Lessons I’ve Learned from Writing 1,000 Blog Posts

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In Taekwondo, students are taught they must perform each kick at least 1,000 times before they can safely say they have learned the kick perfectly. I’m not sure I craft “perfect” blog posts even after writing 1,000 of them—but I’ve certainly learned a few things. Hence, 1,000. Of  course, a steady stream of crappy content won’t attract a large or loyal readership.

Five Content Marketing Tips for B2B Success

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Guest post by Mark Pinnes. Business content is a turn off for 70% of consumers—that’s according to research by Flagship Consulting in association with The Economist Intelligence Unit. Image credit: Wikimedia. Of course, these stats don’t diminish the potential of content marketing, which offers a wealth of new opportunities for marketers. It’s about quality, not frequency.

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The Single Most Important Element for Increasing B2B Lead Gen and Sales

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This post originally appeared on MarketingProfs. spate of articles recently have expounded on the “consumerization” of all things business: the consumerization of sales, of IT, and of business-to-business (B2B) marketing most prominently. McKinsey’s David Edelman has referred to the consumerization of B2B marketing and sales as a “massive disruption” on the horizon.

The Basics of B2B Social Media Marketing Strategy

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Although more than three-quarters of B2B technology marketers use social media to market their products, less than half say they can tie social channels to revenue generation for their businesses. Image credit: BundlePost. But it may also be a problem with basic B2B social media marketing strategy. Cross-Platform Social Media Strategy. It’s a low-commitment, low-risk way to check you out.

The B2B Marketer's Field Guide To Customer Engagement

Leverage customer engagement and advocacy to drive brand, demand and profitable growth.

Four Key Ways To Build Your B2B Brand Online

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Guest post by Irma Hunkeler. Brand-building in the business-to-business (B2B) sphere is a little different from the consumer world. Isn’t it all about rational decision making, not emotions? Not necessarily. Let’s take a look at how B2B firms can build their brands in this competitive space. Dive into LinkedIn. LinkedIn is a fertile ground for B2B brand-building and lead generation. Tell stories.

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Content Marketing Strategy? Think Like A Reporter

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Although 93% of B2B companies are doing content marketing, less than half view themselves as successful with it. However, companies with a documented content marketing strategy are three times as likely to say their efforts are “very” or “extremely” effective as those without one. So—creating a content marketing strategy is vital. The Reporter’s Questions.

Getting Started With Email Marketing Segmentation

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Guest post by Alphonso Sanchez. Email segmenting is one of the most powerful techniques for boosting open rates, CTRs, and total revenue per email. It’s also surprisingly neglected. With the high cost for sophisticated email platforms and the technology segmentation requires, it makes sense. The Categorization Approach to Email Segmentation. Email showcasing your latest blog posts. eventinvite.

Five Ways to Draw Traffic to a Blog Post

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Guest post by Kylie Ora Lobel. As buyers spend more time with online articles, blog posts and reviews, and rely less on advertising for product information , companies have quickly caught onto the fact that they need great content to attract new customers and retain their current ones. However, simply creating content and posting it is not enough to get seen. Repost where your audience lives.

B2B Marketing Trends for 2016

25 B2B marketing thought leaders answer the question "What do you expect to B2B marketers to be doing more of or differently in 2016?" The results are amazing insights around content marketing, achieving business results, alignment, employee advocacy, new technologies, customer experience and more.