The truth?! You can't handle the truth!

OK folks, step right up. If you've ever wondered if we "snake-oil salesmen" could really back up our fantastic claims of 400% increases in leads or 62% decrease in cost-per-lead, well, here's the proof you've been hankering for! Enjoy!

100 Awesome Marketing Stats, Charts and Graphs
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Social Media for B2B

"What does social media have to do with a B2B business?"

Being, almost exclusively, a B2B agency in NY, I hear this question almost daily. The answer, at first, was relatively simple; "It will improve your search rankings organically and position your brand as a thought leader through custom content creation like blogging."

And, that was our patent answer just a few short months ago. Today, that original answer is still valid, but woefully superficial.

As it turns out, most B2B brands and enterprises have something in common—a sales force. Whether it's a sole-proprietor or an international organization, 99.99% of the time they're constantly focused on driving qualified leads into the sales funnel. And THAT'S where social media truly excels for B2B companies.

Now, if you happen to be a B2B marketer interested in testing the proverbial waters of social media, before you stop reading here and start writing a blog, allow me continue.

A social media initiative needs to be approached like any other marketing initiative, carefully, thoughtfully and well-planned out. You need a roadmap. Otherwise you'll wind up with a Twitter account and nothing more than random acts of social media with nothing to show for it. With a plan, a roadmap, a well-crafted social media initiative is almost infinitely trackable and will easily demonstrate impressive ROI as well as ROO (Return on Opportunity). That is, as long as you have the tools in place to capture and measure the data.

Start with a website SEO assessment. Use a free tool like Hubspot's Website Grader (http://websitegrader.com/) Almost instantly you can compare not only your own site, but your competitors sites as well to see how you stack up.

Next, address the SEO comments in the Website Grader report. Add alt tags to images. Create meaningful header descriptions, meta tags and review the site's reading level.

Then check the number of inbound links your site has. Inbound links are invaluable for getting found on Google, Bing and Yahoo! The more sites linking back to you, the more of an expert you look like in the search engine's eyes and the higher they will rank your site in relevant search results.

Now comes the fun stuff. Content creation! Create a blog and blog frequently. At least twice a week if you can find the time. If not, find a resource that can ghost write for you. Then Tweet. A Lot. Tweeting is micro-blogging and you need to tweet interesting, relevant articles to your followers. Join and participate in LinkedIn Groups that pertain to your industry. Be brave and even start a group of your own! Explore Facebook, YouTube, Digg, Delicious...all the social media outlets and use as many as you can to publish your remarkable, custom, content to your followers.

OK, now you have a network, an audience, a community where you can engage in true, one-on-one dialogue with your customers and potential customers. You've stretched the mouth of your sales funnel. Now start inviting them in.

Create landing pages on your website. Unique landing pages for unique offers you will put out to your new found friends. Don't put out a welcome mat and simple have guests come in the front door and have to go look for their rooms themselves! 

Welcome them and take them directly to the front desk where they can "check in" via a custom landing page.

But what if too many "check in" at once? How can I manage? Good question. You need an automated solution in place that will generate an email for everyone who comes and "checks in". Then, that email should also contain a strong CTA with yet another automatically generated response. And so on, and so on.

At Honey, we've become Certified Hubspot Partners and recommend using Hubspot as a robust, comprehensive solution for both managing your website and contentent creation as well as for tracking and nurturing your leads. In fact, Hubspot can link directly to most legacy CRM systems like Salesforce.com creating one, seamless lead-gen tool.

So, yes, social media will improve your search rankings organically and position your brand as a thought leader, but hopefully you can now see it's true value and potential as your most powerful sales and lead generation tool.

If your organization has a sales department, you need Honey's attraction-based, inbound marketing solution. Get found. Get leads. Get sales.
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For B2B, Pay-Per-Click (PPC) can't compare to generating buzz.



A potential client called the other day frustrated that she was spending a fortune on very expensive keywords but she wasn't seeing sales increase. "Let's take a look at a few things" I suggested. Were the keywords relevant? Yes, indeed they were. Some cost as much as $20 per click. Where do the clicks bring the potential customer? "To my website, of course" was her answer. Not to a landing page with an offer or a call-to-action? No. So the visitor must now navigate to find what exactly they were actually looking for in the first place? Yes.

OK, you get the picture. There are at least a few problems in that scenario that need to be addressed. First and foremost is the whole idea of buying keywords. A recent study by Marketing Serpa and Enquiro Reseach show almost 91% of users will ignore and actually avoid paid results.
Think about your own search habits and you'll probably agree. So buying keywords will attract just 9% of the people looking for you. 91% of them are searching the organic results. If your site is well optimized, you have a strong presence in the blogosphere and you're rabidly active on Facebook and Twitter chances are your site will be right there at the top of the organic results, right below those expensive links that less-savvy marketers are paying for. If you're not doing all those things, your competition probably is so they'll be the ones getting found.

So, you've been found, great. Do you invite someone into your place of business then expect them to search some more for what they're trying to buy or do you take them directly to the product, service or offering? That's wher custom landing pages come in handy. They're searching for a very specialized widget...CLICK! Look? Specialized widgets as far as the eye can see! Get it? Good.

Start blogging, optimize your site, choose keywords that you have a chance of being found with, and create custom landing pages that link to those keywords. If you're relying on PPC-only, then at the very least have a uber-relevant landing page for that very expensive click to land on. That or very deep pockets!

If your organization has a sales department, you need Honey's attraction-based, inbound marketing solution. Get found. Get leads. Get sales.
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