Technology and B2B marketing have perhaps one of the most bittersweet relationships in the business world. On one hand, technological innovation has given digital marketers a constant stream of new ways to be discovered, reach specific audiences, and automate more processes than ever before. On the other side, technology also threatens these same professionals with cost efficiency pressure, dwindling team sizes, and countless tools to help people foil marketing and advertising attempts. Within this constant balancing act, SEO strategy has become a topic of increasing curiosity with a double-edged opportunity.
Recognizing this, the SEO gurus over at BrightTALK turned to LinkedIn to survey B2B marketers about the challenges, tactics, and data that’s defined their work for the past year. Through the exhaustive study, they uncovered a number of excellent takeaways for B2B marketers looking for a new edge in their industries.
Finding the Data on Being Found
As an overview of the difficulties facing B2B marketers, the survey found that 68 percent of respondents report lead quality as their primary concern, ahead of the second highest concern: improving lead volume (55 percent). The primary obstacle in the way of achieving these goals was a lack of resources (61 percent), whether that meant money, personnel, or just time to complete projects. Overall, these concerns and focuses aren’t unusual at all for an SEO- or B2B-oriented study.
But what else does the study suggest in terms of reaching your SEO strategy goals? Within the study’s more unexpected findings, marketers reported that interpersonal tactics were highly effective in generating business.
Up from third place a year ago, conferences and trade shows were listed as the number one method of driving leads, with 32 percent of respondents reporting them as “very effective,” alongside another 46 percent who found the practice “effective.” For engaging digital audiences, engaging in online conversations rose to just 44 percent, just one percent behind contributing to a blog for efficacy.
The more personal marketing tactics were, the more favorable they tended to appear to marketers, matching a shift that’s also started to become apparent in social media.
Building Personal SEO
It’s a new kind of balance to try and meld personality and SEO, but in practice, this blend actually leaves a lot of room for both creativity and search targeting within your marketing. Here are just a few ways you can improve lead generation and quality with a personal twist:
- Content Strength as Lead Strength: Offering “options” on a landing page can help determine the strength of your lead while also contributing to a good user experience. For instance, offering a study for download or a separate “summary” of key points and findings allows you to pick out different levels of interest for the same content.
- Test Content on Open Channels: Content can be a great way to improve your visibility and ease of search with new audiences, but breaking into a new crowd can be hard. Testing content for a new audience on sites like LinkedIn—where anyone with an account can publish—can give you a way to gauge interest before publishing to your blog or more official medium.
- Collateral = Channels: Finding creative ways to turn your digital content into physical content can be a great way to expand your presence into new channels, while also getting the most out of an individual piece of content. Who knows? Your next infographic might also look great printed on a poster at a trade show.
These are just starter ideas. The possibilities are endless. What matters most—no matter how you do it—is a renewed focus on personalized interactions in your B2B dealings. Make real connections. Display genuine interactions. Be memorable.