Last month we attended The Business Show & Business Start Up Show in London. These huge events in Olympia were packed with workshops, seminars, speakers and exhibitors claiming to provide everything that new and existing businesses might need. From SEO agencies to Staff leave planners, it was a bustling atmosphere to be part of.
Here at 4 C Marketing we were particularly interested to attend workshops on key topics such as SEO and social media. We always like to take every opportunity to ensure we are at the cutting edge of thinking and deliver that insight through our services to our clients. It was interesting to note that a consistent message that came across was that strategically, little has changed and we should expect more of the same in 2015 – more of the importance of content marketing and what we like to see as traditional marketing values – delivering top quality services for relevant audiences and communicating effectively with them. Gone are the days of the tech agency who can manipulate Google and as Google becomes more sophisticated so should our approach of delivering interesting web content on a regular basis that is useful to our audience and in line with our business objectives.
Here are some of our top soundbites from the show:
- The 80.20 rule – ‘80% of your social media should be useful content for others. 20% should be your sales messages’ – whilst we generally talk about a ratio of 1/3s with our clients (1/3 interesting content for others, 1/3 about your business and 1/3 interaction with others) the overall message is the same – that you need to put your audience first in social media and give before you expect to receive.
- ‘95% of businesses just get by. How can you be part of the top 5%?’ – an aspirational thought that most businesses are doing ok but there is always something we can do to improve – be it in our marketing, our services or any other area of business.
- ‘Great PR compresses the sales process’ – we completely agree that PR is not about nice pictures for the sake of it – PR is all about driving awareness of your business to enable people to make the decision to work with you.
- ‘Reach is not the most important metric for social media – engagement is’. This is so true but often misunderstood – yes Twitter followers and Facebook likes are a measure we can use but anyone can get likes – spending time and money creating a useful sales tool through social media that engages with prospective and existing customers and drives your bottom line is the key.
- ‘Your #1 SEO priority should be mobile optimisation’ – though mobile browsing does vary by industry, it is still true that as mobile takes an increasing (and majority) of overall web browsing and ensuring your website is optimised for mobile is key both for users and your Google ranking.
- ‘Being on the first page of Google will not make you money – you need to be actually converting those visitors into users’. A bit like social media the same is true that to a certain extent anyone can get visitors to their site, but if all those visitors promptly leave and never contact you then you have achieved nothing for your bottom line. Ensuring that your website provides an interesting and useful experience for visitors and provides them with clear inspiration and direction for how to contact you for more is key.
- ‘SEO now means Search Experience Optimisation, not Search Engine Optimisation’ – this is the recurring theme that when you design your website and implement your web marketing strategy you no longer need to think about search results first – you need to think about creating a great experience for your visitors which will in turn deliver both your search rankings and to your bottom line.
- ‘PR is not about Public Relations but about Profile Raising’. Theoretically yes the definition of PR is Public Relations but what does that actually mean? Historically PR was more about media relations and crisis management but more and more companies now recognise the value of PR in raising your profile in your industry and with your prospective customers so that they are aware and able to choose you as their next provider.
- ‘71% of business purchase decisions start with an online search’ – again this will vary by industry, but we all need to recognise how the internet has changed the way we do business forever. Whilst face to face and local networking is still key, the internet is generally part of every business decision now – from the very initial research stages to the final decision making, having the right online presence to influence that decision making is very important for any business.
- ‘Content Marketing is the new SEO’ – whilst we’re not sure if we agree with this one, or if anyone really even understands what Content Marketing really means, we certainly do agree with the principle that SEO is no longer about having the right back links and ticking the right techy boxes – it is about creating an excellent user experience through well designed websites that actually work, delivering interesting and relevant content to users across a variety of platforms and in a way they can easily share and engage with. It is about giving something of yourself – investing time in others to encourage them to invest in you.
If you would like to discuss any of these highlights of the show or how our results driven approach could benefit your PR, website, SEO or any other aspect of your business please get in touch on 01252 843461 or firstname.lastname@example.org. We would love to hear from you.