“Good advertising makes bad products fail faster.” Even in the age of digital advertising, this old adage still rings true. Good advertising drives product sales, so the better the advertising, the more folks are likley to purchase a product. The faster folks buy the product and realize that it doesn’t live up to their expectations, however, then the faster the product “fails.” Even the best marketing campaign can't change public opinion once a product is deemed a disaster.
The same thing holds true for inbound marketing. Consider the most common “problems” for inbound marketing. One of inbound marketer’s most common worries is a lack of site traffic. The thinking goes that a lack of site traffic is the primary reason a website’s conversion rate is low. That’s why there’s a whole SEO industry built around analyzing site traffic and Google Analytics.
However, a lack of site traffic is usually not the biggest problem affecting a poorly converting website. In fact, lack of site traffic is one of the easiest to fix. The biggest problem with your inbound marketing is failing to provide value or solutions – in effect, failing to give your site visitors a reason to convert to leads.
Failing to give visitors a reason to convert is the biggest inbound marketing problem
If you fail to give your site visitors a reason to convert, your conversion rate is going to be low. Period. Sure, you could spend more money on pay-per-click (PPC) ads to increase site traffic, but driving more traffic to your site is not going to solve the bigger problem. Just like a poorly made product, driving more people to purchase your product (or, in this case, visit your site), won’t fix the bigger performance issues. In short, you’re still setting yourself up for failure.
Yes, if you keep sending more traffic to your website thanks to a great PPC campaign, some of these leads are bound to convert. That's why conversion rates can sometimes be misleading. A decent conversion rate makes it appear as if your PPC campaign – as well as your broader inbound marketing strategy – is working. Don’t be fooled: it’s not. In fact, you’re wasting serious cash on your PPC campaign. Imagine if you were providing your visitors with a REAL reason to convert: you’d have more customers than you’d know what to do with and could slash your PPC budget!
Without Effective Lead Nurturing, Businesses Throw Away 70% of All Leads
Companies that excel at lead nurturing generate 50% more sales-ready leads at 33% lower cost per lead, according to Forrester Research. Furthermore, on average, 70% of leads generated are not yet sales-ready, but are longer-term opportunities worth nurturing, according to Marketing Sherpa.
This is why an effective lead nurturing program is so important. Failing to provide value or solutions will only hurt your business in the long run by harming your long-term lead nurturing. For every 10 leads your business generates, you’ll be throwing away seven. That’s just not good business sense.
So how can you give those remaining seven leads a reason to convert? Give leads a reason to stay engaged by giving away valuable content. As the B2B sales cycle continues to lengthen, decision makers need to be – and expect to be – engaged with quality content. For example, 85 percent of tech buyers report needing to encounter at least three pieces of content before engaging with a solution provider, according to Act-On. Providing “solutions” in the form of white papers, blogs, free eBook downloads or a weekly email digest establishes your business’s reputation as an industry thought leader and keeps your leads engaged. When it’s time to make a purchase, they’ll turn to your business first.
Great inbound marketing generates an important marketing asset that appreciates in value over time: high quality leads. Don’t throw away your best asset by focusing too much attention on driving site traffic and not enough on nurturing and converting your leads.