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How We Increased a Law Firm’s Leads by 174% With Content Optimization [Case Study]

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How We Increased a Law Firm’s Leads by 174% With Content Optimization [Case Study]


The author’s views are entirely his or her own (excluding the unlikely event of hypnosis) and may not always reflect the views of Moz.

Content marketing and optimization are crucial parts of any respectable online marketing strategy. Without content, how does your target audience know who you are and what you’re offering them? Without content optimization, how do you expect that audience to notice you at all?

For my team at Tao Digital Marketing, our work with AFG Law goes to show that results can be achieved by focusing on creating the right content for the right audience. In this case, we saw: 

  • Leads increase from 306 to 840 (174%)

  • Increased impressions from 1.44m to 3.57m (148%)

  • Increased clicks from 17.5k to 55.5k (217%)

  • Clicks on top page increase from 8,549 to 30,419 (255%)

By making strategic changes at the right time and focusing our efforts on optimization, we generated these positive results — and so can you!

Objectives

The objective of any SEO work is ultimately all the same: to increase leads and generate sales.

We wanted to improve the customer journey through the sales funnel, all the way from “reach” (through pieces of content that would help potential clients), down to engaging with AFG Law by contacting them for legal assistance.

When we first spoke to the client, we discovered that the only way they were tracking leads was by verbally asking customers how they found out about them, which they would then enter into a CRM system. To address this gap, we wanted to provide tangible evidence that would help them see exactly where the customers were coming from, and the journey they took along the site.

We took AFG on as a client in April 2020, but naturally, results started to pick up from July 2020 as Google started to crawl the site more regularly. In this case study, we’ll be focusing on comparing July-December 2020 and March-September 2021 to give a fair six month representation of both years.

Our targets/KPIs for 2021 were as follows:

  • More than double leads from 306 to 650

  • More than double clicks from 17.5k to 40k

  • Technically optimize the site

  • Be able to clearly demonstrate the customer journey

The target audience was people who required the services of solicitors, so we wanted to provide answers to questions they may be searching for in blogs, as well as service pages appearing for those who needed legal assistance as soon as possible.

Law can be a complicated subject to understand, so it was important to really break down the chosen topics in a lot of detail. Our strategy focused heavily on content creation alongside technical changes that would support the performance of the content.

Our strategy

Step 1: Cross-analyze content data

The first steps we took included creating three audits:

1. Content audit

We create this using the Google Search Console KPI on Screaming Frog. This allows us to see current topics on the site and identify any thin or irrelevant content that could be deleted or noindexed. We can then review full URLs, word counts, clicks, and overall CTR.

Our tech team then orders the topics depending on how useful they would be to the client, such as focus keywords, search volumes, relevancy to client, seasonal data, time sensitive information, long tail or short tail keywords, etc. This can help to speed up the ideation process and focus on quick wins.

Example of a content audit detailed by Tao Digital Marketing on behalf of AFG Law

2. Content gap analysis

This can be done by using tools like Moz Pro’s True Competitor and also by manually searching through competitor’s sites to find topic areas you don’t cover. You can then find new areas in which to create content.

3. Competitor audit

This can also be done using tools and manual checks, as even after the above two audits, you can still miss little gems of data that can help with ideation.

In our case, after taking time to thoroughly review these audits for AFG, content ideas were then reviewed and researched by our content writer, moving onto our next step. Any content that may have been holding the site back from a technical perspective was handed over to our tech SEO experts, which is explained further in strategy point four.

Step 2: Create the content

After reviewing data from the audits, our content writer created and researched ideas. They looked to see if there were topics that AFG were lacking strong content for in the content audit and gap analysis, then checked if competitors were talking about them as well (or if they weren’t — that can be good news too, depending on the client and topic).

From there, they pulled together ideas for new blog posts, pages, and other content, and for optimizing existing content (for example, if AFG poorly mentioned a keyword that we highlighted as a good area of focus in the spreadsheet). They then carried out the usual checks:

  • Researching within Google Search Console (GSC) to see if existing pages were ranking for certain terms. For pages we planned on updating, we checked what the page was initially ranking for, and what elements needed keeping in and what needed adding. We also looked at what queries were ranking.

After this, “skeleton documents” are created, which detail the URL, meta description, keyword(s), as well as frequently asked questions, which can be found through Moz, the SERP, GSC and Answer the Public.

Example of a ‘skeleton document’, featuring technical information at the top of the document

In November 2020, we uploaded a “Guide to Common Assault, ABH and GBH”, answering the huge variety of questions we found through our research. The popularity of this piece absolutely soared and gained 28,000 clicks, with an average of 2.2K clicks per month.

Results of AFG’s common assault guide

The piece also ranked for 691 keywords, and ranked at position one for “common assault charge uk”. As we added FAQ schema to the page, it also appeared in the featured snippet for the key phrase, too. It received over half of the clicks (56%) for “common assault”.

Example of the common assault guide appearing in the featured snippet

The success of this piece is largely down to answering a large number of questions — 24 to be exact. As we mentioned, law is a complicated subject, so it’s vital that any potential clients can get their answers on AFG’s site, then follow the call to actions placed throughout to access further assistance. Clear, natural CTAs were really important, not only to conclude the articles, but also to encourage readers to use AFG’s services. Check out the example below to see how we tied one into a commonly asked question:

Example of a natural call to action at the end of a piece of content

We also included contact forms on popular and newer pieces to make the contacting process as smooth as possible. As you can see from the Thrive graph below, this has been very successful since we implemented the process eight months ago:

Example of contact forms filled in at the end of a piece of content

One thing to note: In October 2021, AFG decided to remove and redirect all pages regarding criminal law, including the common assault guide, as the criminal department is closing for new instructions. 

Another topic that has been hugely successful is probate. We noticed that there were a large number of searches around “probate meaning uk”, and “what does probate mean uk”, which to us, suggested there was a lack of UK resources around this topic.

We then created an in-depth guide to UK probate law. As it is such a complex area of law, this gave us the opportunity to really elaborate and give users the answers they were looking for.

This has become AFG’s second most-viewed page (after the common assault guide), ranking position one for “probate meaning uk” and other related terms. The piece ranks for 278 keywords and gets around 800 clicks per month, gaining 51% of clicks for the term “probate meaning uk”.

Results of AFG Law’s probate guide

Step 3: Analyze and review content

Creating great content is one thing, but tracking and tweaking content along the way is a whole other untapped source of information that many agencies just don’t have the time or resources for. We do this on a monthly basis as part of both research and client reporting. Each client receives 24/7 access to a live spreadsheet of work undertaken, as well as a monthly video report going into detail about the success of certain pieces of content, amongst other work.

Google Search Console is one of the most useful tools for us when it comes to tracking the performance of live content. We usually give content time to be indexed and to gain traction before going back to it — this can be anything from six weeks to six months. Once a piece of content starts to perform, we’ll analyze the data in GSC.

Take the aforementioned probate guide, for example. We covered a significant range of topics and queries to ensure that the guide was thorough. Even so, there will naturally be some questions we failed to answer. This is mainly because in our initial research, we take the most popular, topically relevant and applicable questions to discuss and answer within our guides to ensure that we meet the target intent. 

GSC will tell us what queries and keywords the guide is ranking for. For this, we looked into the data and saw an interesting query: “What is a Personal Representative?”. We’d mentioned this keyword in the content but, at the time, it didn’t feel necessary to explain it in its own section within the content. It was still ranking, however, due to it being contextually relevant and briefly mentioned.

After reviewing the term, understanding the search volume and relevancy to the content, we decided to add this to the guide as a standalone query. This meant that, although we were actually ranking for this term beforehand, we can now meet the search intent in more depth, providing much more useful information for those searching for that specific keyword and capitalizing on that search volume.

From a technical and psychological perspective, we look at heat mapping through Lucky Orange, which provides real-time data across a range of months. 

Step 4: Implement technical SEO

Tweaks that support technical SEO are perhaps some of the most important changes we made alongside content optimization to see real results. A technical SEO audit was undertaken alongside the content audits to provide direction. The site was unsecured when we first gained access, so there were a lot of fundamental updates to make. 

1. Noindexing and deleting content

There was a huge amount of content already existing on the site, but not all of it was bringing in traffic, and was actually harming the site by exhausting crawl budget.

AFG participates actively within the community and were writing many, many blogs, which was great for their brand and nice for their existing connections to read, but wasn’t going to bring in leads. We decided to noindex or delete a lot of these pages due to very low traffic and low rankings. This was done for close to 1,000 pages.

Usually, we would redirect these URLs, but since they had no traffic we did not on this occasion. These decisions were made using the data from the content audit.

2. Addressing redirects

The problem with many of AFG’s URLS was that they were far too long and didn’t include the keyword the page was aiming to rank for, so we changed several URLs and created 301 redirects from the old URLs. There were also a number of 404 errors that needed to be addressed and changed to 301 redirects.

3. Technically optimizing content

There were several pages that featured multiple H1s, an issue that needed rectifying as soon as possible. We manually went through these and changed them to appropriate H1s, H2s and H3s.

Page titles were also optimized to include keywords and company name, as well as meta descriptions, which were edited to under 155 characters.

FAQ schema was added to service pages that answered frequently asked questions as well as top performing pages, such as the common assault and probate guides.

In order to convert as many site visitors as possible, we also installed a Thrive Leads exit intent popup that appeared when a user was navigating off the page. This is used as a last resort to keep people on the site and to encourage them to get in touch, especially if they’re on a page without a contact form.

Example of exit popup installed using Thrive Leads

4. Making use of internal and external links

Building both internal and external links has been vital in improving AFG’s domain authority from 18 to 24. Internal linking was especially important as some vital pages were several clicks deep and not easily navigated to, so we used a combination of “Site:afg.co.uk [relevant term]” to find pages with similar topics that could be linked to, in addition to the Link Whisper software.

We also built links through answering PR requests (HARO, Response Source and #journorequest on Twitter) and guest blogging. It was important for us to build links to key pages, and to pay attention to natural anchor text that flowed within the content, rather than standing out as an obvious link.

Results compared to objectives

Leads

We exceeded this goal by increasing leads gained from 306 in 2020 to 840 in 2021, a 174% increase. This comes as a result of creating useful content, adding various contact forms on the page, as well as the exit intent form. 

Clicks

We exceeded this goal by increasing clicks to 55.5K, 217% of the original number. This comes as a result of various changes we made, such as creating highly relevant content that matches the user’s search intent, optimizing page titles and metas, and implementing FAQ schema. 

In 2020, the top page was the homepage, which gained 8,549 clicks between July-December. This year, the common assault guide was the top page, which gained 30,419 clicks between March-September 2021, meaning we have increased clicks to the top page by 255%.

Technically optimize the site

Although this is not as tangible as the other goals, the results can certainly be seen in the increase in clicks, impressions, and traffic. Changes such as shortening and optimizing URLs, addressing redirects, and link building worked in harmony with content creation.

Clearly demonstrate the customer journey

In September 2020, we connected AFG’s site to What Converts, a lead tracking software. This creates a unique custom phone number for visitors on the site so that the software can record exactly what page resulted in a call. It also tracks general form fills from the site.

As you can see in the image below, calls are the much-preferred contact method of AFG’s clients, taking up 1,025 of the 1,229 leads (83%) since we connected the site to the software. The rest came through contact forms from various different pages on the site.

What Converts’ example of overall leads generated since September 2020

The software also breaks down the exact page the customer came from, as well as where in the world they are based, pictured below. Naturally, most leads came through the contact page.

Thanks to more than exceeding our set KPI goals, AFG have been very pleased with our work and Director Anita Boardman the following to say:

“For years, we’ve been looking for a company to carry out the work Tao Digital have done for us, and be able to clearly demonstrate the customer journey as well as some fantastic results. We’re extremely pleased with the hard work carried out and have been able to grow our business further as a result of this work.”

Have you tried similar strategies? Have any suggestions for this process? Let me know in the Moz Q&A or on Twitter @LydiaGerman1! 



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SEO in Real Life: Harnessing Visual Search for Optimization Opportunities

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SEO in Real Life: Harnessing Visual Search for Optimization Opportunities


The author’s views are entirely his or her own (excluding the unlikely event of hypnosis) and may not always reflect the views of Moz.

The most exciting thing about visual search is that it’s becoming a highly accessible way for users to interpret the real world, in real time, as they see it. Rather than being a passive observer, camera phones are now a primary resource for knowledge and understanding in daily life.

Users are searching with their own, unique photos to discover content. This includes interactions with products, brand experiences, stores, and employees, and means that SEO can and should be taken into consideration for a number of real world situations, including:

Though SEOs have little control over which photos people take, we can optimize our brand presentation to ensure we are easily discoverable by visual search tools. By prioritizing the presence of high impact visual search elements and coordinating online SEO with offline branding, businesses of all sizes can see results.

What is visual search?

Sometimes referred to as search-what-you-see, in the context of SEO, visual search is the act of querying a search engine with a photo rather than with text. To surface results , search engines and digital platforms use AI and visual recognition technology to identify elements in the image and supply the user with relevant information.

Though Google’s visual search tools are getting a lot of attention at the moment, they aren’t the only tech team that’s working on visual search. Pinterest has been at the forefront of this space for many years, and today you can see visual search in action on:

In the last year, Google has spoken extensively about their visual search capabilities, hinging a number of their search improvements on Google Lens and adding more and more functionality all the time. As a result, year on year usage of Google Lens has increased by three fold, with an estimated8 billion Google Lens searches taking place each month.

Though there are many lessons to be learned from the wide range of visual search tools, which each have their own data sets, for the purpose of this article we will be looking at visual search on Google Lens and Search.

Are visual search and image search SEO the same?

No, visual search optimization is not exactly the same as image search optimization. Image search optimization forms part of the visual search optimization process, but they’re not interchangeable.

Image search SEO

With Image Search you should prioritize helping images to surface when users enter text based queries. To do this, your images should be using image SEO best practices like:

  • Modern file formats

  • Alt text

  • Alt tags

  • Relevant file names

  • Schema markup

All of this helps Google to return an image search result for a text based query, but one of the main challenges with this approach is that it requires the user to know which term to enter.

For instance, with the query dinosaur with horns, an image search will return a few different dinosaur topic filters and lots of different images. To find the best result, I would need to filter and refine the query significantly.

Visual search SEO

With visual search, the image is the query, meaning that I can take a photo of a toy dinosaur with horns, search with Google Lens, then Google refines the query based on what it can see from the image.

When you compare the two search results, the SERP for the visual search is a better match for the initial image query because there are visual cues within the image. So I am only seeing results for a dinosaur with horns, that is quadrupedal, and only has horns on the face, not the frill.

From a user perspective, this is great because I didn’t have to type anything and I got a helpful result. And from Google’s perspective, this is also more efficient because they can assess the photo and decide which element to filter for first in order to get to the best SERP.

The standard image optimizations form part of what Google considers in order to surface relevant results, but if you stop there, you don’t get the full picture.

Which content elements are best interpreted in visual search

Visual search tools identify objects, text, and images, but certain elements are easier to identify than others. When users carry out a visual search, Google taps into multiple data sources to satisfy the query.

The knowledge graph,Vision AI, Google Maps, and other sources combine to surface search results, but in particular, Google’s tools have a few priority elements. When these elements are present in a photo Google can sort, identify, and/or visually match similar content to return results:

  • Landmarks are identified visually but are also connected to their physical location on Google Maps, meaning that local businesses or business owners should use imagery to demonstrate their location.

  • Logos are interpreted in their entirety, rather than as single letters. So even without any text, Google can understand that that swoop means Nike. This data comes from the logos in knowledge panels, website structured data, Google Business Profile, Google Merchant, and other sources, so they should all align.

  • Knowledge Graph Entities are used to tag and categorize images and have a significant impact on what SERP is displayed for a visual search. Google recognizes around 5 billion KGE, so it is worth considering which ones are most relevant to your brand and ensuring that they are visually represented on your site.

  • Text is extracted from images via Optical Character Recognition, which has some limitations — not all languages are recognized, nor are backwards letters. So if your users regularly search photos of printed menus or other printed text, you should consider readability of the fonts (or handwriting on specials boards) you use.

  • Faces are interpreted for sentiment, but the quantity of faces also comes into account, meaning that businesses that serve large groups of people — like event venues or cultural institutions — would do well to include images that demonstrate this.

Visual Search Element

Corresponding Online Activity

Priority Verticals

Landmarks

Website Images

Google Maps

Google Business Profile

Tourism

Restaurants

Cultural Institutions

Local Businesses

Logo

Website Images

Website Structured Data

Google Merchant

Google Business Profile

Wikipedia

Knowledge Panel

All

Knowledge Graph Entities

Website Images

Image Structured Data

Google Business Profile

Ecommerce

Events

Cultural Institutions

Text

Website copy

Google Business Profile

All

Faces

Website images

Google Business Profile

Events

Tourism

Cultural Institutions

How to optimize real world spaces for visual search

Just as standard SEO should be focused on meeting and anticipating customer needs, visual search SEO requires awareness of how customers interact with products and services in real world spaces. This means SEOs should apply the same attention to UCG that one would use for keyword research. To that end, I would argue we should also think about consciously applying optimizations to the potential content of these images.

Optimize sponsorship with unobstructed placements

This might seem like a no brainer, but in busy sponsorship spaces it can sometimes be a challenge. As an example, let’s take this photo from a visit to the Staples Center a few years ago.

Like any sports arena, this is filled to the brim with sponsorship endorsements on the court, the basket, and around the venue.

But when I run a visual search assessment for logos, the only one that can clearly be identified is the Kia logo in the jumbotron.

This isn’t because their logo is so distinct or unique, since there is another Kia logo under the basketball hoop, rather this is because the jumbotron placement is clean in terms of composition, with lots of negative space around the logo and fewer identifiable entities in the immediate vicinity.

Within the wider arena, many of the other sponsorship placements are being read as text, including Kia’s logo below the hoop. This has some value for these brands, but since text recognition doesn’t always complete the word, the results can be inconsistent.

So what does any of this have to do with SEO?

Well, Google Image Search now includes results that are using visual recognition, independent of text cues. Meaning that for a Google Image Search for the query kia staples center, two of the top five results do not have the word kia in the copy, alt text, or alt tags of the web pages they are sourced from. So, visual search is impacting rankings here, and with Google Imagesaccounting for roughly 20% of online searches, this can have a significant impact on search visibility.

What steps should you take to SEO your sponsorships?

Whether it’s major league or the local bowling league, in order to get the most benefit from visual search, if you are sponsoring something which is likely to be photographed extensively, you should:

  • Ensure that your real life sponsorship placement is in an unobscured location

  • Use the same logo in real life that is in your schema, GBP, and knowledge panel

  • Get a placement with good lighting and high contrast brand colors

  • Don’t rely on “light up” logos or flags that have inconsistent visibility on camera phones

You should also ensure that you’re aligning your real life presence with your digital activity. Include images of the sponsorship display on your website so that you can surface for relevant queries. If you dedicate a blog to the sponsorship activity that includes relevant images, image search optimizations, and copy, you increase your chances of outranking other content and bringing those clicks to your site.

Optimizing merch & uniforms for search

When creating merchandising and uniforms, visual discoverability for search should be a priority because users can search photos of promotional merch and images with team members in a number of ways and for an indefinite period of time.

Add text and/or logos

For instance, from my own camera roll, I have a few photos that can be categorized via theGoogle Photo machine-learning-powered image search with the query nasa. Two of these photos include the word “NASA” and the others include the logo.

Oddly enough, though, the photo of my Women of NASA LEGO set does not surface for this query. It shows for lego but not for nasa. Looking closely at the item itself, I can see that neither the NASA logo nor the text have been included in the design of the set.

Adding relevant text and/or logos to this set would have optimized this merchandise for both brands.

Stick to relevant brand colors

And since Google’s visual search AI is also able to discern brand colors, you should also prioritize merchandise that is in keeping with your brand colors. T-shirts and merch that deviate from your core color scheme will be less likely to make Visual Matches when users search via Google Lens.

In the example above, event merchandise that was created outside of the core brand colors of red, black, and white were much less recognizable than stationary typical colors.

Focus on in-person brand experiences

Creating experiences with customers in store and at events can be a great way to build brand relationships. It’s possible to leverage these activities for search if you take an SEO-centric approach.

Reduce competition

Let’s consider this image from a promotional experience in Las Vegas for Lyft. As a user, I enjoyed this immensely, so much so that I took a photo.

Though the Viva Lyft Vegas event was created by the rideshare company, in terms of visual search, Pabst are genuinely taking the blue ribbon, as they are the main entity identified in this query. But why?

First, Pabst has claimed their knowledge panel while Lyft has not, meaning that Lyft is less recognizable as a visual entity because it is less defined as an entity.

Second, though it does not have a Google Maps entry, the Las Vegas PBR sign has had landmark-esque treatment since it was installed, with features in The Neon Museum and a UNLV Neon Survey. All of this to say that, in this context, Lyft is being upstaged.

So to create a more SEO-friendly promotional space, they could have laid the groundwork by claiming their knowledge panel and reduced visual search competitors from the viewable space to make sure all eyes were on them.

Encourage optimized use-generated content

Sticking to Las Vegas, here is a typical touristy photo of me with friends outside the Excalibur Hotel:

And when I say that it’s typical, that’s not conjecture. A quick visual search reveals many other social media posts and websites with similar images.

This is what I refer to as that picture. You know the kinds of high occurrence UGC photos: under the castle at the entrance to Disneyland or even thepink wall at Paul Smith’s on Melrose Ave. These are the photos that everyone takes.

Can you SEO these photos for visual search? Yes, I believe you can in two ways:

  1. Encourage people to take photos in certain places that you know, or have designed to include relevant entities, text, logos, and/or landmarks in the viewline. You can do this by declaring an area a scenic viewpoint or creating a photo friendly, dare I say “Instagrammable”, area in your store or venue.

  2. Ensure frequently photographed mobile brand representations (e.g. mascots and/or vehicles) are easily recognizable via visual search. Where applicable, you should also claim their knowledge panels.

Once you’ve taken these steps, create dedicated content on your website with images that can serve as a “visual match” to this high frequency UGC. Include relevant copy and image search optimizations to demonstrate authority and make the most of this visibility.

How does this change SEO?

The notion of bringing visual search considerations to real world spaces may seem initially daunting, but this is also an opportunity for businesses of all sizes to consolidate brand identities in an effective way. Those working in SEO should coordinate efforts with PR, branding, and sponsorship teams to capture visual search traffic for brand wins.



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B2B customer journeys that begin at review sites are significantly shorter

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B2B customer journeys that begin at review sites are significantly shorter


The B2B customer journey can be a long one, especially when the purchase of expensive software subscriptions is under consideration.

“The average B2B customer journey takes 192 days from anonymous first touch to won,” according to Dreamdata in their 2022 B2B Go-to-Market Benchmarks — a statistic described by co-founder and CMO Steffen Hedebrandt as “alarming.”

But the report also indicates that this journey can be significantly sped up — by as much as 63% — if accounts begin their research at software review sites, gathering information and opinions from their peers. Journeys that originate at a review site often lead to deals of higher value too.

Fragmented data on the customer journey. Dreamdata is a B2B go-to-market platform. In any B2B company, explained Hedebrandt, there are typically 10 or even 20 data silos that contain fragments of the customer journey. Website visits, white paper downloads, social media interactions, webinar or meeting attendance, demos, and of course intent data from review site visits — this data doesn’t typically sit in one place within an organization.

“We built an account-based data model because we believe that there’s such a thing as an account journey and not an individual journey,” said Hedebrandt. “So if there are two, three or five people representing an account, which is typically what you see in B2B, all of these touches get mapped into the same timeline.”

Among those many touches is the intent data sourced from software review site G2. Dreamdata has an integration with G2 and a G2 dashboard allowing visualization of G2-generated intent data. This includes filtering prospects who are early in their journey, who have not yet discovered the customer’s product, or who have discovered it but are still searching. This creates a basis for attributing pipelines, conversions and revenue to the activity.

“Strategically, our ideal customer profile is a B2B software-as-a-service company,” said Hedenbrandt. “B2B SaaS companies are particularly ripe for understanding this digital customer journey; their main investment is in digital marketing, they have a salesforce that use software tools to do this inside sales model; and they also deliver their product digitally as well.” What’s more, it takes twice as long to close SaaS deal as it does to close deals with B2B commercial and professional services companies.

Read next: A look at the tech review space

The Benchmarks findings. The conclusions of the 2022 Benchmarks report is based on aggregated, anonymized data from more than 400 Dreamdata user accounts. Focusing on first-touch attribution (from their multi-touch model), Dreamdata found that customer journeys where a review site is the first touch are 63% shorter than the average. In contrast, where the first touch channel is social, the journey is much longer than average (217%); it’s the same when paid media is the first touch (155%).

As the Benchmarks report suggests, this may well mean that social is targeting prospects that are just not in-market. It makes sense that activity on a review site is a better predictor of intent.

Hedenbrandt underlines the importance of treating the specific figures with caution. “It’s not complete science what we’ve done,” he admits, “but it’s real data from 400 accounts, so it’s not going to be completely off. You can only spend your time once, and at least from what we can see here it’s better to spend your time collecting reviews than writing another Facebook update.”

While Dreamdata highlights use of G2, Hedenbrandt readily concedes that competitor software review sites might reasonably be expected to show similar effects. “Definitely I would expect it to be similar.”

Why we care. It’s not news that B2B buyers researching software purchases use review sites and that those sites gather and trade in the intent data generated. Software vendors encourage users to post reviews. There has been a general assumption that a large number of hopefully positive reviews is a good thing to have.


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What Dreamdata’s findings indicate is that the effect of review sites on the buyer journey — especially as the first-touch channel — can be quantified and a value placed on it. “None of us questioned the value of reviews, but during this process you can actually map it into a customer journey where you can see the journey started from G2, then flowed into sales meetings, website visits, ads, etc. Then we can also join the deal value to the intent that started from G2.”

Likely, this is also another example of B2B learning from B2C. People looking at high consideration B2C purchases are now accustomed to seeking advice both from friends and from online reviews. The same goes for SaaS purchases, Hedenbrandt suggests: “More people are turning to sites like G2 to understand whether this is a trustworthy vendor or not. The more expensive it is, the more validation you want to see.”


About The Author

Kim Davis is the Editorial Director of MarTech. Born in London, but a New Yorker for over two decades, Kim started covering enterprise software ten years ago. His experience encompasses SaaS for the enterprise, digital- ad data-driven urban planning, and applications of SaaS, digital technology, and data in the marketing space.

He first wrote about marketing technology as editor of Haymarket’s The Hub, a dedicated marketing tech website, which subsequently became a channel on the established direct marketing brand DMN. Kim joined DMN proper in 2016, as a senior editor, becoming Executive Editor, then Editor-in-Chief a position he held until January 2020.

Prior to working in tech journalism, Kim was Associate Editor at a New York Times hyper-local news site, The Local: East Village, and has previously worked as an editor of an academic publication, and as a music journalist. He has written hundreds of New York restaurant reviews for a personal blog, and has been an occasional guest contributor to Eater.



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Work smarter, not harder, to give customers what they want

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Work smarter, not harder, to give customers what they want


Personalizing your marketing campaigns for one customer is easy, but how about one hundred or thousands of customers across multiple marketing channels?

Work smarter, not harder, by using artificial intelligence (AI) as part of your martech stack and giving your customers the unique experiences they crave.

Register today for “Use Data to Create Next-Level Customer Experiences at Scale,” presented by MoEngage.


About The Author

Cynthia Ramsaran is director of custom content at Third Door Media, publishers of Search Engine Land and MarTech. A multi-channel storyteller with over two decades of editorial/content marketing experience, Cynthia’s expertise spans the marketing, technology, finance, manufacturing and gaming industries.



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