SKC Insights

 

 

SKC's 10 Favorite Lead Generation Tips & Tricks

Generating leads - both high in quantity and quality - is a marketer’s most important objective. A successful lead generation engine is what keeps the funnel full of sales prospects while you sleep. Surprisingly, only 1 in ten marketers feel their lead generation campaigns are effective. What gives?

There can be a lot of moving parts in any lead generation campaign and often times it’s difficult to know which parts need fine-tuning. To break it down, the best lead generation campaigns contain most, if not all, of these four crucial elements: an offer, a call-to-action (CTA), a landing page, and a form.

Here are SKC's 10 favorite tips and tricks for lead generation:

1. Leverage Newsjacking

When something is buzz-worthy, it creates high demand. In situations like this, you can align offers with "what's trending." Companies will often leverage newsjacking for this type of technique and it works very well for offers, too. For example, when the personal information of millions of people were exposed by the Equifax and Capital One breaches, SKC client Stellar Cyber took the opportunity to display how their security AI could have prevented it. 

2. Create Offers for Different Buying Stages

The most common offer is "Contact Us." Sure, you want all your prospects to talk to sales, but not every one is ready. Someone at the top of the buying cycle may be more interested in an informational piece like a guide or ebook, whereas someone more committed at the bottom of the cycle might be more interested in a free trial or demo. 

3. Use High-Value Offer Formats

Not all offers are created equal. Some "formats" of offers perform better than others at converting leads. For example, what's more valuable, a whitepaper or an ebook? It's important to test different types of offers with your audience to determine what works for them. While ebooks tend to generate the most leads, you may find that reports, videos or other formats do better for you.

4. Blogging Brings in the Leads 

According to HubSpot's recent State of Inbound report, marketers who prioritize blogging efforts are 13x more likely to see positive ROI. This proves that blogging is a highly effective channel for

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Overwhelmed No More – PR & Marketing in 2 Steps

It’s 3 in the morning. You’re wide awake and your mind is besieged. Your competitor just sent out a new funding press release. How do you match that? Why is it so hard to reach the right investors? The right customers? Your team throws ideas at you. Dazzle with 3D presentations. We better be everywhere – on TV, on TechCrunch, on Facebook, LinkedIn, at tradeshows, everywhere! And don’t forget blogs, white papers, case studies, and email campaigns! And on and on and on.

It’s now 4am and sleep eludes you. You’re overwhelmed. Why are PR and marketing such enigmas? You know you need it to truly grow and attract investors and customers. But how? Where do you start? To think you once thought asking Rita to the prom was the toughest thing you ever did.

Sure, PR and marketing may feel daunting. But we’re here to say it doesn’t have to be. Take a deep breath, let go of everything you think you have to do. Instead, focus on just two steps that will make all the difference: First, build your foundation, and second, build your house.

This is what we mean:

1. Build Your Foundation, aka Build Your Story

A solid foundation ensures your company stands strong while forces around you wreak havoc. The secret to PR/marketing success boils down to this: know thyself. Who are you? Who should care? What can you offer?

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6 Hard Truths About PR

We hear you. The marketplace is brutal. Customers are fickle. Competitors are breathing down your neck. And worse, some prospects have never even heard of you! You need positive press coverage and brand awareness yesterday — there’s simply no time to wait.

We wish we could come in and magically wave a wand to get you some visibility right now. But, unfortunately, public relations doesn’t work this way. PR, like so many other business processes, rewards the companies who approach it with preparation, commitment and time.

Getting rid of misconceptions and myths — and facing these 6 hard truths about PR — will help you gain traction and take advantage of all it has to offer.

 

Truth #1: PR Takes Time

Effective PR takes time. Like the sales process and growing a pipeline, PR is something we can’t do one day and walk away from the next. Companies in the know start by building a solid messaging and story foundation, creating quality content and relevant news angles, and cultivating the right audiences. This takes ongoing commitment and a regular sharing of your story in a variety of interesting ways to achieve PR success. The best results come to the companies who stick with it.

 

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14 Reasons Why Companies Embrace PR

When Steve Jobs received his first big investment for the Apple – $250,000 from angel investor Mark Markkula — it was meant for the development of the new Apple II product, the first major Apple product to hit the masses. However, before he started investing in new hardware, Jobs hired the best PR professional in Silicon Valley, Regis McKenna. Jobs knew before he could focus on building the products that would launch his company that he needed to have a PR plan in place.

Jobs embraced PR, and so do Richard Branson and Bill Gates. How about you? In fact, Gates once said, “If I was down to my last dollar, I’d spend it on public relations.” And these business titans aren’t alone in their fervent faith in PR. Many executives from companies feel the same.

Here are 14 reasons why:

 

1. Master Your Message

If you don't tell your story, others will tell it for you. Avoid negative or misleading press by presenting the best version of yourself with public relations.

2. Differentiate Yourself

With so many products and services out there now, it is far too easy for customers to get overwhelmed. Good PR programs can make you stand out from the pack. As Seth Godin says, “People do not buy goods and services. They buy relations, stories and magic.”

3. Create Buzz (and Adoration)

Do you have a product coming out? Start building that fan and customer base by influencing the influencers. Stoke that excitement with social media, bloggers, journalists, grant interviews, offer reviews and you’ll see awareness evolve to adoration.

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10 Ways Inbound Marketing Can Benefit Your Company

The customer of today is no longer the customer of yesterday. With competitors offering more and customers’ expectations growing, companies are struggling to deliver their messages and gain market share. Think about it. Traditional outbound marketing—advertising, cold emails, cold calls, snail mail and trade shows—are not yielding results like they used to. So, what’s a company to do to stand out from their rivals and attract more prospects and customers?

Here’s where Inbound Marketing comes into play. Inbound marketing – a customer-centric approach to providing helpful content and experiences to meeting prospects’ needs and challenges – is a strategic and wholistic marketing practice that brings together a plethora of techniques ranging from blogs to podcasts to videos to SEO to social media, and more, to spur companies onto unprecedented growth.

Here are 10 ways Inbound Marketing, sometimes referred to as “digital marketing” or “content marketing,” can benefit your company:

1. Increases Web Traffic

Most company websites are static brochures. Inbound turns yours into a helpful resource that will have customers returning to again and again. Content offers (like e-books, white papers, reports), blog posts, and social media are all inbound marketing avenues that channel traffic to your website. By continuously producing content, your audience will keep returning to your site, thus keeping up your traffic while new traffic funnels through your channels.

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5 Ways to Turn Publicity Into Profits

It is remarkable how publicity -- high-profile media coverage, speaking opportunities, and awards --- leads to bigger share of mind, and a bigger piece of the market. Public relations builds buzz and triggers people to talk about you in ways that you can never buy through advertising. But once you get the publicity, how do you really make money from it?

Here are 5 ways to turn publicity into profits:

1. Shout it on Your Turf

Your company and insightful quotes from your CTO have just been included in a cover story in your most coveted industry media outlet -- one all your prospective customers read. Wait. They have given you an award too! Besides popping the champagne and doing the victory dance with your colleagues, what else should you do? Well, let's make sure you shout it! Broadcast it to everyone at the office, frame the media coverage, decorate your lobby with plaques and awards, bind the stories into books, and display them prominently -- lobbies, conference rooms, and office walls. Open your treasure chest and let your credentials shine loud and clear.

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6 Ways PR Can Help Your Company

 

A common dilemma: You have a growing company, great products and services, happy customers and a knowledgeable CEO. But no one knows who you are. Thankfully, a strategic, focused public relations program can change that. Many companies have relied on proven PR strategies to raise awareness, build industry presence and even bolster sales. You can too.

Here Are 6 Ways PR Can Help Your Company:

1. PR Positions Company

Ever get the question, "What does your company actually do?" Are you inundating prospects with confusing messages? A PR program can craft direct and memorable messages that can effectively position and differentiate you from rivals. It also positions the company and CEO as the "go-to" source for industry trends and news.

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4 Essentials of an Effective Marketing Email

Email, a major pillar of any savvy company's marketing strategy, is the only channel where we have full control of our messages, design, and distribution. Plus, the ROI and conversion rates are consistently higher than other marketing tools.

So what makes a marketing email effective? Is there a secret formula that can help produce consistently great emails? There is!

AIDA is one of the longest serving models in marketing, commonly attributed to American advertising advocate Elias St. Elmo Lewis. Time tested, AIDA is a foolproof method of creating effective marketing emails with four essential elements. In fact, once you understand AIDA, you’ll start seeing it in every piece of marketing content that makes you say, “I need to buy that!”

 

1. Attention - Catch the Eye with A Killer Subject Line

Attention spans are shortening and you may only have seconds to attract a customer as they scroll through their inbox. So that attention-grabbing subject line is your essential foot in the door. Those few words will have to get your customer to read the first sentence of your email, which will lead to the next and the next. Peak their curiosity and self-interest with the promise of a benefit to them.

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5 Ways to Build Reputation

What separates the haves from the have-nots in the business world? The simple answer is "reputation," an intangible that fortunately isn't unattainable. Chances are you already have most of the components to build your company's identity and reputation. One thing is for sure, no matter how good your product or service, you don't stand a chance in the business world without a solid reputation.

Here Are Five Ways To Build Reputation:

1. Know Thyself

Laser-focus on the niche that gives your company its competitive advantage. Knowing where you stand in the competitive landscape is the first step to developing your company's key messages and a larger strategy for building your company's identity and reputation.

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Growing Up: 5 Stages of Maturing Your Online Presence

Growing up is never easy. There are always unexpected twists and turns, but as children there was that shining light of adulthood at the end of the tunnel. Building an online presence for your company can feel the same. We dream of skipping those awkward adolescent years of slow news coverage and empty email lists and moving straight to being the go-to website for your market. But we need to learn to walk before we can run.

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