October 19, 2020
  • by

How easy is it to market online?

A Customer's Shipping Experience

A new report from ShipStation reveals a 33% jump over the past year in online shopping. And almost two-thirds say most of their shopping is now online because of the pandemic. As more consumers shop online, their shipping experience is becoming more important than ever.

The report, titled, “Last Touch, Lasting Impact: The 2020-2021 Edition,” outlines the shopping habits of consumers and the impact of brand perception when it comes to shipping. And in 2020, the delivery experience is more influential for consumers. So much so, 84% of the respondents say it stands out most in the e-commerce customer experience.

In the release for the report, Cindy Schulz, General Manager at ShipStation, highlighted yet another telling data point about shipping. Schulz goes on to say, “… 92 percent agree that knowing their order will arrive when expected is a key factor in their online purchase decisions.” This is more than nine in 10 customers.

ShipStation Survey on Customer Shipping Expectations

Consumers are more understanding because of the pandemic (79%) when it comes to shipping, however, six in 10 say this is just for the short term. And to compensate for the slow shipping, consumers say they want free shipping.

Shipping speed and cost are still important because 37% say speed influences their purchasing decision while 39% say it is cost. And surprisingly consumers are willing to wait up to eight days to get their package with 79% adding they expect delays because of COVID-19.

Additional findings:

  • 87% say the shipping and delivery experience directly impacts their decision to shop with the merchant again
  • 83% are less likely to re-purchase from a retailer after a negative delivery or shipping experience
  • 54% say overall return policy is a major consideration when purchasing online
  • 70% say a negative delivery or shipping experience negatively impacts their impression of the brand and not the carrier
  • 1 in 3 consumers leave bad reviews or post on social media about a poor delivery experience

Making Up for Any Inconvenience

On the other hand, consumers are willing to give retailers another chance if they try to make up for any delivery inconvenience.

Over nine in 10 or 93% are more likely to shop with a brand again if the retailer acknowledges or rectifies a poor delivery experience. Even more consumers, 96%, say fast and honest updates about a shipping issue makes them less likely to be upset. Adding they are also less likely to have a negative perception of the brand.

Image: Depositphotos.com

This article, “A Customer’s Shipping Experience More Important Than Ever” was first published on Small Business Trends

October 18, 2020
  • by

Did you lose your job or business in this pandemic?

Nationalized 5G

The Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council (SBE Council) is voicing its opposition towards what it called the nationalization of 5G by the Government.

SBE Council’s opposition joins a growing coalition of organizations urging the government to prevent the Department of Defenses’ (DoD’s) takeover of the 5G network in the U.S. The Global 5G Race

Small Business Advocate Speaks Against Nationalized 5G

The SBE is arguing that the government opting to deploy and experiment with untested models for 5G would lead to the U.S. not winning the global 5G race. It opposes the ’ DoD’s plan to what it called starting to deploy 5G networks from zero. Even though there are other initiatives that are already on the path towards rolling out 5G networks. 

Rather the SBE is arguing for the private sector to take the lead in rolling out 5G across America. 

It is arguing that:

  • DoD’s plan would cost tens of billions of taxpayer dollars and take decades to build a network from scratch 
  • Nationalizing the US’s communications system would thwart private-sector ingenuity and enterprise 
  • America’s private companies such as AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile have already invested billions of dollars towards building national 5G
  • The 4G race was won by America because the private sector was empowered to build multiple competitive 4G networks by freeing up the necessary spectrum and eliminating unnecessary regulations  
  • Allowing the federal government control over the nation’s 5G spectrum would undermine the successful collaborative approach. This approach has enabled $2 trillion of private-sector investment in network infrastructure.

The 5G Challenge for the DoD

According to a report by the Defense Innovation Board, last year the DoD faced vulnerabilities in its supply chain both at the subcomponent level to the integrated network level in the 5G environment. 

In previous decades, the DoD was able to operate on tailored systems. This fulfilled its unique security requirements as a large user relative to the rest of the commercial world. However, with 5G that privilege may no longer no exist.

North America had some 1.18 million 5G connections during the first quarter of 2020. This is set to reach 10 million 5G connections by the end of the year.

Image: Depositphotos.com

This article, “Nationalized 5G is Bad for Small Business, Advocacy Group Says” was first published on Small Business Trends

October 18, 2020
  • by

Did you lose your job or business in this pandemic?

Event post - October 16, 2020

There is no doubt 2020 has been a challenge. And that is putting it mildly for many small business owners that are struggling to stay afloat. If you have a doozy of a story to tell on how you are chugging along and persevering, it might just win you $50,000.

Just tell the world how have the events of 2020 affected your business. The winning stories will receive one of several cash prizes, with a Grand Prize of $50,000. You have to write your story with 500 words or less and provide a photo to go along with it. The photo is part of the giveaway and it is evaluated as part of the judging process. 

Make sure to not use stock photos or materials with copyright you don’t own. If you do, you will get disqualified. Make sure to go over the full rules thoroughly before you submit your story.

Click the red button and register for a chance to win the $50K by telling your story.

 

Register Now



Featured Events, Contests and Awards

Domain and Web Hosting WebinarDomain and Web Hosting Webinar
October 27, 2020, Online

Learn the basics of choosing and registering a domain name. We’ll also go over web hosting options so you can decide what’s best for your business.


Small Business Expo 2020 - PHILADELPHIASmall Business Expo 2020 – PHILADELPHIA
October 28, 2020, Philadelphia, PA

Small Business Expo is a FREE one-day event to attend for small businesses to network, attend great business-growth workshops, build new business relationships, exchange ideas, shop from new vendors and learn from leading industry experts. If you are serious about starting or growing your business, Small Business Expo is a “must attend” event. Small Business Expo is the #1 Business to Business Networking Event for business owners, entrepreneurs, start-ups, decision-makers or anyone who works for a small business or is interested in starting a Small Business.


Small Business Big Wins: Share Your Story for a Chance to Win $50,000Small Business Big Wins: Share Your Story for a Chance to Win $50,000
October 31, 2020, Online

Barclays US Consumer Bank is asking small business owners to share how the events of 2020 have affected their business. Tell us your story for a chance to win $50,000 and other cash prizes!


Establishing Your Brand Story and Voice WebinarEstablishing Your Brand Story and Voice Webinar
November 3, 2020, Online

Learn how to find, incorporate, and use your brand’s voice throughout your website to increase website traffic, improve customer engagement, and drive brand loyalty. See how to write an awesome About Us page and use keywords for SEO.


Webinar: Elements of Design and How to Talk with a DesignerWebinar: Elements of Design and How to Talk with a Designer
November 10, 2020, Online

Join to gain a basic understanding of visual hierarchy, how to use a grid, and how to effectively communicate with a designer. This webinar is a great resource whether you’re making your own website, hiring a web designer, or using a drag-and-drop website builder.


LinkUpConferenceShowLinkUpConferenceShow
November 12, 2020, Online

LinkUpConferenceShow (LUCS) is a digital networking conference that merges the incredibly dynamic worlds of tech and comedy to provide informative and personalized networking opportunities designed to help executives, entrepreneurs, business leaders and tech professionals grow and scale their businesses. LUCS is the tech conference that combines Silicon Valley insights with New York’s nonstop energy to bring the technology community a totally new virtual experience designed to inspire, engage and entertain.


Zoho Webinar: Converting Visitors to LeadsZoho Webinar: Converting Visitors to Leads
November 17, 2020, Online

Want to learn how to turn website visitors into leads? Then look no further! We’ll go over CTAs, web forms, and Zoho PageSense so you can see how to optimize your website through iterative testing.


Getting Started with Zoho OneGetting Started with Zoho One
November 24, 2020, Online

A walk through overview of Zoho One using real case studies from Zoho customers to demonstrate different ways Zoho One can support your business. Join us!


DigiMarCon New Zealand 2021 - Digital Marketing, Media and Advertising Conference & ExhibitionDigiMarCon New Zealand 2021 – Digital Marketing, Media and Advertising Conference & Exhibition
August 18, 2021, Auckland, New Zealand

Digital Marketing, Media and Advertising Conference – August 18-19, 2021 – Auckland, New Zealand


More Events

More Contests

This weekly listing of small business events, contests and awards is provided as a community service by Small Business Trends.

You can see a full list of events, contest and award listings or post your own events by visiting the Small Business Events Calendar.

Image: smallbizbigwins.com

This article, “Tell Your 2020 Small Business Survival Story and Win $50,000 Cash” was first published on Small Business Trends

October 18, 2020
  • by

Did you know you could market your business online at a very low cost?

Event post - October 16, 2020

There is no doubt 2020 has been a challenge. And that is putting it mildly for many small business owners that are struggling to stay afloat. If you have a doozy of a story to tell on how you are chugging along and persevering, it might just win you $50,000.

Just tell the world how have the events of 2020 affected your business. The winning stories will receive one of several cash prizes, with a Grand Prize of $50,000. You have to write your story with 500 words or less and provide a photo to go along with it. The photo is part of the giveaway and it is evaluated as part of the judging process. 

Make sure to not use stock photos or materials with copyright you don’t own. If you do, you will get disqualified. Make sure to go over the full rules thoroughly before you submit your story.

Click the red button and register for a chance to win the $50K by telling your story.

 

Register Now



Featured Events, Contests and Awards

Domain and Web Hosting WebinarDomain and Web Hosting Webinar
October 27, 2020, Online

Learn the basics of choosing and registering a domain name. We’ll also go over web hosting options so you can decide what’s best for your business.


Small Business Expo 2020 - PHILADELPHIASmall Business Expo 2020 – PHILADELPHIA
October 28, 2020, Philadelphia, PA

Small Business Expo is a FREE one-day event to attend for small businesses to network, attend great business-growth workshops, build new business relationships, exchange ideas, shop from new vendors and learn from leading industry experts. If you are serious about starting or growing your business, Small Business Expo is a “must attend” event. Small Business Expo is the #1 Business to Business Networking Event for business owners, entrepreneurs, start-ups, decision-makers or anyone who works for a small business or is interested in starting a Small Business.


Small Business Big Wins: Share Your Story for a Chance to Win $50,000Small Business Big Wins: Share Your Story for a Chance to Win $50,000
October 31, 2020, Online

Barclays US Consumer Bank is asking small business owners to share how the events of 2020 have affected their business. Tell us your story for a chance to win $50,000 and other cash prizes!


Establishing Your Brand Story and Voice WebinarEstablishing Your Brand Story and Voice Webinar
November 3, 2020, Online

Learn how to find, incorporate, and use your brand’s voice throughout your website to increase website traffic, improve customer engagement, and drive brand loyalty. See how to write an awesome About Us page and use keywords for SEO.


Webinar: Elements of Design and How to Talk with a DesignerWebinar: Elements of Design and How to Talk with a Designer
November 10, 2020, Online

Join to gain a basic understanding of visual hierarchy, how to use a grid, and how to effectively communicate with a designer. This webinar is a great resource whether you’re making your own website, hiring a web designer, or using a drag-and-drop website builder.


LinkUpConferenceShowLinkUpConferenceShow
November 12, 2020, Online

LinkUpConferenceShow (LUCS) is a digital networking conference that merges the incredibly dynamic worlds of tech and comedy to provide informative and personalized networking opportunities designed to help executives, entrepreneurs, business leaders and tech professionals grow and scale their businesses. LUCS is the tech conference that combines Silicon Valley insights with New York’s nonstop energy to bring the technology community a totally new virtual experience designed to inspire, engage and entertain.


Zoho Webinar: Converting Visitors to LeadsZoho Webinar: Converting Visitors to Leads
November 17, 2020, Online

Want to learn how to turn website visitors into leads? Then look no further! We’ll go over CTAs, web forms, and Zoho PageSense so you can see how to optimize your website through iterative testing.


Getting Started with Zoho OneGetting Started with Zoho One
November 24, 2020, Online

A walk through overview of Zoho One using real case studies from Zoho customers to demonstrate different ways Zoho One can support your business. Join us!


DigiMarCon New Zealand 2021 - Digital Marketing, Media and Advertising Conference & ExhibitionDigiMarCon New Zealand 2021 – Digital Marketing, Media and Advertising Conference & Exhibition
August 18, 2021, Auckland, New Zealand

Digital Marketing, Media and Advertising Conference – August 18-19, 2021 – Auckland, New Zealand


More Events

More Contests

This weekly listing of small business events, contests and awards is provided as a community service by Small Business Trends.

You can see a full list of events, contest and award listings or post your own events by visiting the Small Business Events Calendar.

Image: smallbizbigwins.com

This article, “Tell Your 2020 Small Business Survival Story and Win $50,000 Cash” was first published on Small Business Trends

October 18, 2020
  • by

Do you know anyone that likes to shop online?

Event post - October 16, 2020

There is no doubt 2020 has been a challenge. And that is putting it mildly for many small business owners that are struggling to stay afloat. If you have a doozy of a story to tell on how you are chugging along and persevering, it might just win you $50,000.

Just tell the world how have the events of 2020 affected your business. The winning stories will receive one of several cash prizes, with a Grand Prize of $50,000. You have to write your story with 500 words or less and provide a photo to go along with it. The photo is part of the giveaway and it is evaluated as part of the judging process. 

Make sure to not use stock photos or materials with copyright you don’t own. If you do, you will get disqualified. Make sure to go over the full rules thoroughly before you submit your story.

Click the red button and register for a chance to win the $50K by telling your story.

 

Register Now



Featured Events, Contests and Awards

Domain and Web Hosting WebinarDomain and Web Hosting Webinar
October 27, 2020, Online

Learn the basics of choosing and registering a domain name. We’ll also go over web hosting options so you can decide what’s best for your business.


Small Business Expo 2020 - PHILADELPHIASmall Business Expo 2020 – PHILADELPHIA
October 28, 2020, Philadelphia, PA

Small Business Expo is a FREE one-day event to attend for small businesses to network, attend great business-growth workshops, build new business relationships, exchange ideas, shop from new vendors and learn from leading industry experts. If you are serious about starting or growing your business, Small Business Expo is a “must attend” event. Small Business Expo is the #1 Business to Business Networking Event for business owners, entrepreneurs, start-ups, decision-makers or anyone who works for a small business or is interested in starting a Small Business.


Small Business Big Wins: Share Your Story for a Chance to Win $50,000Small Business Big Wins: Share Your Story for a Chance to Win $50,000
October 31, 2020, Online

Barclays US Consumer Bank is asking small business owners to share how the events of 2020 have affected their business. Tell us your story for a chance to win $50,000 and other cash prizes!


Establishing Your Brand Story and Voice WebinarEstablishing Your Brand Story and Voice Webinar
November 3, 2020, Online

Learn how to find, incorporate, and use your brand’s voice throughout your website to increase website traffic, improve customer engagement, and drive brand loyalty. See how to write an awesome About Us page and use keywords for SEO.


Webinar: Elements of Design and How to Talk with a DesignerWebinar: Elements of Design and How to Talk with a Designer
November 10, 2020, Online

Join to gain a basic understanding of visual hierarchy, how to use a grid, and how to effectively communicate with a designer. This webinar is a great resource whether you’re making your own website, hiring a web designer, or using a drag-and-drop website builder.


LinkUpConferenceShowLinkUpConferenceShow
November 12, 2020, Online

LinkUpConferenceShow (LUCS) is a digital networking conference that merges the incredibly dynamic worlds of tech and comedy to provide informative and personalized networking opportunities designed to help executives, entrepreneurs, business leaders and tech professionals grow and scale their businesses. LUCS is the tech conference that combines Silicon Valley insights with New York’s nonstop energy to bring the technology community a totally new virtual experience designed to inspire, engage and entertain.


Zoho Webinar: Converting Visitors to LeadsZoho Webinar: Converting Visitors to Leads
November 17, 2020, Online

Want to learn how to turn website visitors into leads? Then look no further! We’ll go over CTAs, web forms, and Zoho PageSense so you can see how to optimize your website through iterative testing.


Getting Started with Zoho OneGetting Started with Zoho One
November 24, 2020, Online

A walk through overview of Zoho One using real case studies from Zoho customers to demonstrate different ways Zoho One can support your business. Join us!


DigiMarCon New Zealand 2021 - Digital Marketing, Media and Advertising Conference & ExhibitionDigiMarCon New Zealand 2021 – Digital Marketing, Media and Advertising Conference & Exhibition
August 18, 2021, Auckland, New Zealand

Digital Marketing, Media and Advertising Conference – August 18-19, 2021 – Auckland, New Zealand


More Events

More Contests

This weekly listing of small business events, contests and awards is provided as a community service by Small Business Trends.

You can see a full list of events, contest and award listings or post your own events by visiting the Small Business Events Calendar.

Image: smallbizbigwins.com

This article, “Tell Your 2020 Small Business Survival Story and Win $50,000 Cash” was first published on Small Business Trends

October 18, 2020
  • by

Did you know you could market your business online at a very low cost?

2020 October 16 MarketingCharts Chart

2020 October 16 MarketingCharts Chart

B2B marketers are struggling to produce enough content amid the pandemic
35 percent of B2B marketers have trouble producing the content needed to reach and engage audiences, while 68 percent are confident with their approach to content marketing, and only some 8 percent said they were able to attribute return on investment (ROI) to their content plan, according to recently-released survey data. The Drum

Google Launches Updated Google Analytics, Including Improved Reporting and Data Tracking Options
Google has given a significant overhaul to its popular Google Analytics website traffic analysis platform, adding a smarter artificial intelligence (AI)-infused approach including new insights such as churn probability and a variety of additional new predictive metrics, the search giant recently announced. Social Media Today

WordPress can now turn blog posts into tweetstorms automatically
WordPress has rolled out a new feature that allows entire posts created in the content management system to be shared and discussed on Twitter, including accompanying images and video, with support for multiple Twitter accounts, the firm recently announced. TechCrunch

Facebook & Instagram Drop Support For WordPress Embeds
Facebook and its Instagram platform will both cease supporting the traditional and widespread form of WordPress embedding, as unauthenticated embeds won’t work after an October 24 API update — a change aimed at driving publishers to create Facebook Developer accounts and use the oEmbed embedding format, Facebook announced recently. Search Engine Journal

Marketers Got Hyper-Relevant Advertising Messages Wrong, Study Finds
Brands achieve a 26.7 percent higher chance of gaining new customers when they target using a goal-driven advertising message mindset compared to an item-driven one, according to recently-released survey data that points out possible consequences of overly-specific ad targeting. MediaPost

Google Podcasts Manager shows you search impressions and clicks from Google Search
Google has launched a podcast performance monitoring and reporting system — Google Podcasts Manager — that shows how people find podcasts and what their listening habits are, among other new podcast-related data, Google recently announced. Search Engine Land

2020 October 16 Statistics Image

Key Takeaways From Congress’ Digital Competition Report
Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google are being urged to implement changes that would promote increased interoperability when it comes to digital advertising, and Adweek takes a look at some of the findings from the nearly 450-page U.S. House Judiciary Committee’s Antitrust Subcommittee report. Adweek

YouTube Tests Product Tags in Selected Creator Videos as Part of Larger Shift Towards eCommerce
YouTube has begun testing interactive product tags within certain videos, including new integration with Shopify that could lead to more streamlined clickable products within video content, the video giant recently announced. Social Media Today

Google Assistant Opens, Searches, Completes Functions In Mobile Apps Using Voice
Google has enhanced its Google Assistant service with new voice search features for users of Android apps, including functionality to post to social media platforms, the firm recently announced. MediaPost

Performance Marketing Budgets to Increase as Marketers Chase ROI
42 percent of B2B marketers plan to increase budgeting for performance marketing initiatives by up to 20 percent over the next year, and 18 percent say they will increase those budgets by over 20 percent — two of several items of interest to digital marketers in recently-released survey data. MarketingCharts

ON THE LIGHTER SIDE:

2020 October 16 Marketoonist Comic

A lighthearted look at “product choice overload” by Marketoonist Tom Fishburne — Marketoonist

Coworker’s Sly Smile In Zoom Meeting Suggests Separate Chat Happening Right Now — The Onion

TOPRANK MARKETING & CLIENTS IN THE NEWS:

  • Lee Odden — Roundup Debate on why people follow influencers — DearMishuDad
  • Lee Odden — The Employees as Influencers – Insights from Adobe — Jason Falls
  • Nick Nelson — 10 Important Building Blocks for Small Business Success — Small Business Trends
  • Lee Odden / TopRank Marketing — The State of B2B Influencer Marketing [Research] — V3Broadsuite

Have you found your own top marketing stories from the past week of industry news? Please let us know in the comments below.

Thank you for taking the time to join us for the weekly B2B marketing news, and we hope that you will come back again next Friday for another look at the most relevant B2B and digital marketing industry news. In the meantime, you can follow us at @toprank on Twitter for even more timely daily news.

The post B2B Marketing News: B2B Marketers Face Rising Content Demands, Google’s Mobile Voice Assistant, Performance Marketing Budgets Grow, & The Hyper-Relevant Ad Balancing Act appeared first on B2B Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

October 17, 2020
  • by

Do you know anyone that likes to shop online?

2020 October 16 MarketingCharts Chart

2020 October 16 MarketingCharts Chart

B2B marketers are struggling to produce enough content amid the pandemic
35 percent of B2B marketers have trouble producing the content needed to reach and engage audiences, while 68 percent are confident with their approach to content marketing, and only some 8 percent said they were able to attribute return on investment (ROI) to their content plan, according to recently-released survey data. The Drum

Google Launches Updated Google Analytics, Including Improved Reporting and Data Tracking Options
Google has given a significant overhaul to its popular Google Analytics website traffic analysis platform, adding a smarter artificial intelligence (AI)-infused approach including new insights such as churn probability and a variety of additional new predictive metrics, the search giant recently announced. Social Media Today

WordPress can now turn blog posts into tweetstorms automatically
WordPress has rolled out a new feature that allows entire posts created in the content management system to be shared and discussed on Twitter, including accompanying images and video, with support for multiple Twitter accounts, the firm recently announced. TechCrunch

Facebook & Instagram Drop Support For WordPress Embeds
Facebook and its Instagram platform will both cease supporting the traditional and widespread form of WordPress embedding, as unauthenticated embeds won’t work after an October 24 API update — a change aimed at driving publishers to create Facebook Developer accounts and use the oEmbed embedding format, Facebook announced recently. Search Engine Journal

Marketers Got Hyper-Relevant Advertising Messages Wrong, Study Finds
Brands achieve a 26.7 percent higher chance of gaining new customers when they target using a goal-driven advertising message mindset compared to an item-driven one, according to recently-released survey data that points out possible consequences of overly-specific ad targeting. MediaPost

Google Podcasts Manager shows you search impressions and clicks from Google Search
Google has launched a podcast performance monitoring and reporting system — Google Podcasts Manager — that shows how people find podcasts and what their listening habits are, among other new podcast-related data, Google recently announced. Search Engine Land

2020 October 16 Statistics Image

Key Takeaways From Congress’ Digital Competition Report
Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google are being urged to implement changes that would promote increased interoperability when it comes to digital advertising, and Adweek takes a look at some of the findings from the nearly 450-page U.S. House Judiciary Committee’s Antitrust Subcommittee report. Adweek

YouTube Tests Product Tags in Selected Creator Videos as Part of Larger Shift Towards eCommerce
YouTube has begun testing interactive product tags within certain videos, including new integration with Shopify that could lead to more streamlined clickable products within video content, the video giant recently announced. Social Media Today

Google Assistant Opens, Searches, Completes Functions In Mobile Apps Using Voice
Google has enhanced its Google Assistant service with new voice search features for users of Android apps, including functionality to post to social media platforms, the firm recently announced. MediaPost

Performance Marketing Budgets to Increase as Marketers Chase ROI
42 percent of B2B marketers plan to increase budgeting for performance marketing initiatives by up to 20 percent over the next year, and 18 percent say they will increase those budgets by over 20 percent — two of several items of interest to digital marketers in recently-released survey data. MarketingCharts

ON THE LIGHTER SIDE:

2020 October 16 Marketoonist Comic

A lighthearted look at “product choice overload” by Marketoonist Tom Fishburne — Marketoonist

Coworker’s Sly Smile In Zoom Meeting Suggests Separate Chat Happening Right Now — The Onion

TOPRANK MARKETING & CLIENTS IN THE NEWS:

  • Lee Odden — Roundup Debate on why people follow influencers — DearMishuDad
  • Lee Odden — The Employees as Influencers – Insights from Adobe — Jason Falls
  • Nick Nelson — 10 Important Building Blocks for Small Business Success — Small Business Trends
  • Lee Odden / TopRank Marketing — The State of B2B Influencer Marketing [Research] — V3Broadsuite

Have you found your own top marketing stories from the past week of industry news? Please let us know in the comments below.

Thank you for taking the time to join us for the weekly B2B marketing news, and we hope that you will come back again next Friday for another look at the most relevant B2B and digital marketing industry news. In the meantime, you can follow us at @toprank on Twitter for even more timely daily news.

The post B2B Marketing News: B2B Marketers Face Rising Content Demands, Google’s Mobile Voice Assistant, Performance Marketing Budgets Grow, & The Hyper-Relevant Ad Balancing Act appeared first on B2B Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

October 16, 2020
  • by

Did you lose your job or business in this pandemic?

Holiday Shopping Rush

In a bid to help small businesses capitalize on the upcoming holiday shopping season, Facebook has launched its Season of Support initiative. With the new offering businesses conducting holiday promotions on Facebook or Instagram will receive free training, marketing support and insights.

The Season of Support is a three-month-long initiative for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) to help them make the most of the upcoming holiday shopping season. The support package provides businesses with resources to strengthen connections with customers as well as boost sales.

Facebook Season of Support

Facebook’s offering includes 11 weeks of education, resources, and training for small businesses. It is free of charge for businesses with a Facebook Page or Instagram business account. The Season of Support also includes:

  • A free personalized marketing plan for your business
  • Tips on boosting posts
  • Free video training
  • Promotional assistance
  • Toolkits to help drive up holiday sales

The goal is to get your online presence ready, keep your audience engaged, increase sales, and manage your online presence. And you will be able to make this possible by learning with a full collection of videos so you can gain new skills. Additionally, you can come together in virtual events with your community to share insights and connect with entrepreneurs and small business owners.

Social Media and the Holiday Shopping Season in a Pandemic

Studies indicate social media is among the most important marketing channels for businesses. In fact, it is estimated that by 2023, the number of social network users in the United States will increase to 257 million.

This makes a compelling case for businesses to invest in social media marketing. Social media is helping customers find the products they need locally. According to Deloitte 40% of customers are using more and more social media and online messaging to get recommendations to buy products.

With the holiday season on the horizon, businesses will need to craft their holiday campaign early. And they have to do this while taking into account the pandemic. This is because more people are going to be shopping online than in previous years.

The offering by Facebook will help businesses get traction on their road to recovery from COVID-19.

Image: Depositphotos.com

This article, “Facebook Launches Season of Support for Small Business Holiday Shopping Rush” was first published on Small Business Trends

October 15, 2020
  • by

Do you need help with marketing material or software?

Lee Odden Speaking at Pubcon

Lee Odden Speaking at Pubcon

The one silver lining in our current reality is the “virtual event.” Sure, we’re all stuck at home, but at least we can have several entire marketing conferences beamed directly to our laptops. 

Granted, there’s a distinct lack of cocktails and networking opportunities. You have to supply your own drinks and try to convince your own pets to follow you on LinkedIn (currently mine are still mulling it over). 

Two dogs, one white, one ginger colored

“Sorry, we only have Facebark.”

The latest conference to go virtual is industry stalwart Pubcon, celebrating its 20th year. This search-centered event never fails to round up fascinating speakers with a ton of experience in search and content marketing.

Here are my top five can’t miss sessions for Pubcon’s Virtual 2020 Conference.

Keynote: How to Optimize Marketing Experiences with Influencer Content

Speaker: Lee Odden, CEO, TopRank Marketing
Salon A
Time: Thursday, October 15th, 1:00-1:40p (All times Central.)

Our team at TopRank Marketing, under Lee’s leadership, has been perfecting the art and discipline of B2B influencer marketing for at least a decade. Now, fresh off of our 2020 State of B2B Influencer Marketing, Lee’s ready to take strategic, sophisticated influence to the next level. It’s all about CSI — no, not David Caruso in sunglasses, but Content, Search and Influence working together to drive ROI.

Human-Centered Keyword and Content Strategy

Speaker: Elmer Boutin, SEO Director, GTB
Salon B
Time: Wednesday October 14th, 11:10-11:40a

SEO isn’t about writing for robots anymore; it’s writing for the way humans search and trusting the robots to keep up. This session promises to teach how to create a content strategy for human-centered CEO, including metrics and measurement.

Google Keynote 

Speaker: John Mueller, Webmaster Trends Analyst, Google
Salon A
Time: Wednesday October 14th, 9:00-9:40a

When Google talks, marketers listen. The tech giant never gives away too much of how their algorithm works, of course. But we’ll take whatever we can get. John has over a decade of experience at Google, so his perspective on search trends is sure to be well worth your time.

Developing Eye-Catching Content: Five Timeless Lessons from a Pandemic

Speaker: Phillip Thune, CFO, Textbroker International
Salon B
Time:Wednesday October 14th, 2:30-3:00p

The pandemic didn’t create the need for high-quality content. But like so many other changes, COVID-19 highlighted and magnified that need, and it’s causing marketers to re-evaluate their content strategy. In-person sales conversations and trade shows are off the table. Marketers are cranking up their content production — which means it takes something extra to make your content stand out from the rest. Phillip brings a consultant’s eye to the problem with his session.

Conversational UX, AI and Chatbots

Speaker: John Lawson, CEO, ColderICE
Salon A
Time: Wednesday October 14th, 1:50-2:20p

What does SEO look like when there’s no longer a SERP? Voice search and chat are the next frontiers for intrepid marketers. This session promises to address the shift from visual to voice, including what the big movers and shakers are doing and how marketers can keep up.

Stunning Insights Are Virtually Assured

Tune into Pubcon 2020 for all of the above and more, and keep an eye on the TopRank Marketing blog for highlights and takeaways. 

What sessions are you looking forward to? Let me know in the comments.

The post Five Can’t-Miss Sessions from Virtual Pubcon 2020 appeared first on B2B Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

October 14, 2020
  • by

Are you ready to start your online business now?

Cold Emails

In theory, email outreach is so simple that a lot of small businesses assume there’s some sort of catch.

Like, it’ll never work. I’ll never get any responses.

And even if I do manage to convert a prospect, it’ll only be a small deal anyway.

But that’s just not true. Cold email outreach is still a super effective tactic that can help small businesses win big contracts.

B2B buyers prefer to be contacted by email. And that shouldn’t be surprising – after all, email allows them to respond at a time that suits them, share information with other internal decision-makers, and re-read specific details at a later point.

However, crafting an effective email campaign takes planning. You can’t just expect to fire off 1,000 generic emails and earn a ton of cash. It takes a little expertise to develop a cold email strategy that delivers real results for your business.

Cold Emails for Sales

Use these tips to generate great leads from your cold email outreach:

1. Define Your Ideal Persona

Many small businesses see their email outreach strategy fail because they’re not 100% clear on who they’re trying to reach.

If you don’t fully understand the type of business – and the person within the business – that you’re selling to, you’re just not going to see the best results.

Sales prospecting is all about finding potential buyers or clients, but to do it successfully, you need a clearly defined buyer persona. Without it, you’re operating on gut feel alone.

The best buyer personas are backed up by data and research, such as interviews with your existing clients, or surveys of decision-makers within the industry you’re targeting.

Use this information to build a persona that helps you answer a bunch of questions about your target prospects, such as:

  • Where are they based?
  • What is their job title?
  • What are their immediate business goals?
  • What challenges are stopping them from achieving those goals?
  • What is the implication of failing to hit those targets?
  • How much (if anything) do they know about your product?
  • Have they worked with your competitors before?

2. Generate a List of Prospects

Now that you clearly understand the people you want to reach, you can start building up a list of prospects who match your ideal persona.

During the initial research phase, you might have identified multiple personas. Let’s say you sell a marketing SaaS product; you’re predominantly trying to reach marketing leaders (like VPs of marketing, marketing directors and CMOs).

But a marketing director at a small business will likely have very different priorities and motivations than the CMO of a multinational enterprise.

To make matters more complicated, personalization is super important. Buyers are savvy, so don’t expect them to respond to a generic email that’s clearly been sent to thousands of other people.

That’s why effective segmentation is crucial to building prospect lists. Create multiple lists for the specific persona you’re targeting and the type of message you’re sending.

3. Quality Over Quantity

No doubt you’ve got a lot to say about your product and all the ways it can help your prospects save time and money.

But you don’t need to say it all at once.

Nothing puts off a prospect like opening an email to see huge chunks of copy. If you can’t communicate your message in three or four short sentences, it’s too complicated. No one’s going to read it, let alone respond. You got to add something that looks appealing and resonates with them.

For example, in restaurant marketing, owners should pull a report from your point-of-sale system (POS) and figure out what your top-selling items are. Then, take that list and start promoting them in your email outreach, adding pictures to grab their attention.

As well as keeping your copy concise, there are a few other best practices to bear in mind when it comes to cold email outreach:

  • Create an eye-catching subject line, aiming for around seven words/41 characters
  • Make it scannable by using short paragraphs, bullet points and numbered lists. According to studies, the ideal email length is about 100 words if you want to maximize CTR and response rate.
  • Add real value that highlights your knowledge of the market and compels your prospect to learn more
  • Demonstrate your credibility by providing social proof
  • Write personalized copy that clearly speaks to the needs of your prospect
  • Include a clear CTA that makes it obvious what you want the prospect to do next. Should they download your pdf? Email you back? Book a meeting via Calendly?

4. Invest in Tools

Sure, anyone can send a few emails.

If you’re only sending a dozen a day, you can probably handle most or all of the work yourself.

But if you actually want to send emails at scale – which you’ll likely need to do if you’re going to bring in enough leads and grow your business – then you need a little help.

In other words, you need a tool or software stack that allows you to send thousands of highly effective, personalized emails a month, without requiring you to spend all day, every day typing them out and sending them yourself.

Fortunately, there are a bunch of fantastic tools that automate huge chunks of the cold email process, such as:

  • Mailshake: A sales engagement platform that enables salespeople to craft super personalized outreach campaigns via email, social and phone. Upload a list of prospects incorporating personalization fields like name, phone number and links to social profiles, and even add fully personalized sentences and paragraphs.
  • Right Inbox: Add your highest-performing emails with a single click and schedule automated follow-ups if contacts don’t respond within a specified window.
  • Voila Norbert: Find new email addresses and verify the ones you have for target prospects, helping to reduce bounce rate from your email outreach.

5. Follow-Ups

You’ve crafted the perfect introductory email and sent it to a prospect, but they haven’t replied.

At this point, a lot of salespeople give up and move on. But if you do that, you’re potentially missing out on a ton of deals.

Sometimes, prospects just need a bit of prompting. They’re busy, and replying to your first message likely isn’t their biggest priority, so if you follow up multiple times, you’ll increase your chances of getting a response.

When it comes to crafting quality follow-up emails, there are a couple rules to bear in mind:

  • Keep on personalizing: Don’t get lazy and send the same generic follow-up to everyone. Keep on referencing your prospect’s pain points and reinforce how your product offers a solution to the specific problems they’re facing.
  • Have a reason for following up: It’s tempting to send a “just chasing you up” message as a follow-up, but emails like that just don’t add any value. There needs to be a genuine reason for you to send this message in the first place – like, maybe your prospect has just got a promotion. Or maybe you’ve just launched a special offer, like a free trial. Or maybe you’ve published an explainer video or carried out some unique research that would be useful to your prospect. If you don’t have a reason for following up, you’ll just get a ton of unsubscribes.

6. Record Your Success

Always track what works well and what doesn’t, and use the information you’ve learned to improve the performance of your cold outreach going forward.

With sales emails, there are so many metrics you can track and elements you can test. For instance:

  • Which subject line generated the most opens?
  • Which CTA resulted in the highest number of responses?
  • Which variant of your sales pitch led to the most product demos?
  • Which blog or case study received the most link clicks?
  • Which email format produced the most sales?

Conclusion

The best way to get started with cold email? Just do it.

Find a bunch of prospects who match your ideal persona. Make use of the tools at your disposal that makes it simple for you to send cold emails at scale. Then just get on with testing different approaches – different elevator pitches, different introductions, different closers.

And when you start to see results, do more of what works.

Image: Depositphotos.com

This article, “How to Use Cold Emails to Grow Your Small Business” was first published on Small Business Trends