The Inbound Growth Blog

Twice weekly articles to help SMB business owners and managers use an integrated marketing strategy to drive revenue growth

    

A Breakdown Of The Social Media Sales Funnel

Posted by Ivan Serrano

Jan 21, 2015, 11:53 AM

In the past, businesses just needed to place advertisements on TV and magazines to convert people into customers. Today traditional ads are no longer the best way to reach people as 92 percent of consumers trust peer recommendations and word-of-mouth over all other forms of advertising. The rise of social media and the Internet in general has affected the way businesses and consumers interact with each other.

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3 Easy Ways To Sell Professional Services

Posted by John Beveridge

Jan 18, 2015, 8:00 PM


In professional services selling, relationships are the key to success. You need to nurture the relationships you have and constantly develop new ones in order to have a consistent, scalable cash flow. Many professional services firms are great at nurturing existing relationships, but struggle developing new ones. 

The key to developing new relationships with qualified leads is to give them the right information at the right time. Content marketing is a natural for professional services firms. Professional services buyers turn to web search queries when they start their quest for information.

Getting found when they search for information on the problems you solve is essential to filling your sales funnel with potential new business relationships. But inbound marketing alone isn't enough to have a predictable revenue stream for professional services firms.

Here are 3 easy ways to sell professional services.

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What Should You Expect From Your Business Blog?

Posted by John Beveridge

Jan 12, 2015, 8:00 PM

As more and more companies jump on the content marketing bandwagon, expectations often are mismatched with reality. Most of the people I work with are CEOs of technology companies and professional services firms - they expect to see results fast. That shouldn't be surprising. They wouldn't be where they were if they didn't push hard for results.

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Boost Your B2B Marketing With Google+

Posted by Ivan Serrano

Jan 7, 2015, 9:00 PM

Despite a rocky beginning, Google+ has grown significantly in the past years and now is the second largest social media network with over 500 million active monthly users. While its numbers continue to climb steadily, there are still many marketers who have yet to embrace it as an effective tool for B2B marketing. In fact, only 39 percent of B2B marketers use Google+ to reach out to interact with current and potential customers. If you are daunted by the task of learning yet another new social platform consider this: 70 percent of brands now have a presence on Google+. There's no better time to get started on Google+ than now and the following steps can help you increase your follower base.

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3 B2B SEO Marketing Tips to Grow Your Revenue

Posted by John Beveridge

Jan 5, 2015, 6:00 PM

If you've been in the online marketing game for a while, you probably remember a time when the mere mention of SEO was enough to send people running for the hills. It wasn't the fault of SEO as a concept, though. The problem was the SEO tactics that worked best at the time also happened to lead to really bad websites. Who could forget classics like “content that's 50 percent keywords,” or “landing pages that lead nowhere”?

Of course, it didn't take search companies long to wise up, and tighten the process they used to rank pages. That was the beginning of “good SEO,” which doesn't make you choose between a high ranking and a legible website. For the most part, those early days and the myths that came with them are way in the rear-view. SEO is not only a respected tool these days, it's vital for B2B marketing. SEO is still constantly evolving though, and that means there are always new myths popping up to replace the old ones.

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What it Takes To Succeed At Inbound Marketing

Posted by John Beveridge

Dec 30, 2014, 8:19 AM

Remember door-to-door sales? Even if you aren't old enough to have memories of some poor schmuck lugging a vacuum cleaner up and down your cul-de-sac, you are probably familiar with the idea. These days this type of sales seems antiquated and silly. Sales has come a long way since the traveling salesman. Buyers aren't sitting around waiting for the phone to ring; they're researching purchase options on the web and social media. Inbound marketing is so effective because you don't waste your time on prospects who aren't interested in your product or services. Don't know where to start? Here are some tips to succeed at inbound marketing. 

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5 Proven Inbound Marketing Strategies for 2015

Posted by John Beveridge

Dec 16, 2014, 10:00 PM

There is an old American homily that says “New friends are silver, but old friends are gold.” This saying can also be applied to marketing techniques. Many new marketing strategies exist today, but they can detract from the tried and true effective strategies that have been proven to deliver results. 

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Content Marketing Contrarian Strategies or Best Practices?

Posted by John Beveridge

Dec 12, 2014, 8:50 AM

My friends at TrackMaven recently released their Colossal Content Marketing Report, which analyzed 4,618 blogs comprising over 1 million posts and over 1.9 billion social shares in 2,014 to see what's working and what's not in content marketing. The data identified some interesting content marketing best practices and contrarian strategies to drive social engagement. Some will confirm what you thought worked and others will suggest opportunities to amplify your content marketing by trying new approaches. Here are a few of the findings that I found interesting.

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A Love Letter to my Customers

Posted by John Beveridge

Dec 8, 2014, 11:00 AM

I'm incredibly grateful for the wonderful customers that I have. Out of all the options they have to spend (or not spend) their money, they were kind enough to trust me with a very iimportant part of their business. I'm humbled and grateful for their trust in me. I've learned that by putting their interests ahead of mine, I come out ahead. My customers invariably care about me and my business and reward my efforts both monetarily and with friendship. That's why I will drop anything I'm doing when a customer needs some help. Here are a few of the reasons I love my customers.

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The Best Inbound Marketing Advice for Technology Companies

Posted by John Beveridge

Dec 1, 2014, 10:00 AM

Is inbound marketing a key part of your B2B sales plan? If not, you're missing out. B2B sales companies, especially those in industries like tech and manufacturing, had some natural reservations in the beginning. You're selling complex products to knowledgeable, highly specialized people. Your customers are people who are more likely to search for information through an academic database like JSTOR or in an expensive trade journal than on Facebook or Google. At least, that's how the thinking goes.

Inbound, of course, depends heavily on SEO and social media for its effectiveness. The only problem with that line of thinking? It turns out B2B decision-makers use the same sources as everyone else to find information. Sure, they may need to dig up an academic article on occasion, but in most cases your B2B customers turn to social media and search engines for their research. So your content marketing and social media presence play an important role in your B2B success, as highlighted Demand Gen's 2014 B2B Buyer Behavior Survey.

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High_Res_Portrait_for_NVTCJohn Beveridge is the President and Founder of Rapidan Strategies, an Inbound Marketing Agency and Certified HubSpot Partner located in Fairfax, VA. Prior to founding Rapidan Strategies, John spent 25 years as a management consultant and specializes in helping professional services and technology firms grow rapidly with inbound marketing strategies. John is a Social Media Today contributor and currently serves as the Vice Chair for the Northern Virginia Technology Council's Business Development, Marketing and Sales Committee

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