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How To Increase Sales And ROI With Content Marketing

SD Inbound, one of San Diego's HubSpot User Groups has been rebranded to Certified Mastery and they recently held their first event and webinar with marketing guru...Marcus Sheridan

During this webinar, Marcus briefly discusses his story and downfall with River Pools and Spas and how content marketing brought his company back to life. 

Read our brief review and check out the slides here and lean more.

What is Content Marketing?

According to the Content Marketing Institute, content marketing is:

"A strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action."

Basically, it's good for your customers AND your bottom line because it:

  • Increases brand awareness and credibility
  • Helps you establish yourself as an expert as you provide value
  • Helps you generate website traffic
  • Helps you rank on page 1 of Google
  • Speeds up sales cycles and increases revenue
  • Saves you money on ad spend
  • Creates loyal customers               

 

Content Marketing As A Business Philosophy

Marcus Sheridan_River Pools and Spas_Content Marketing

 

Marcus starts the webinar by sharing his story...

  • He started River Pools and Spas in 2001
  • The US economic crash happened on October 10, 2008
  • He lost 1.4 million dollars in business within 48 hrs
  • Considered filing bankruptcy
  • Experienced immense pain and frustration and started learning about content marketing
  • Take away:"Content marketing is obsessing over customer questions"
  • He goes on to write a best selling book on inbound sales, content marketing and today's digital consumer called, 'They Ask, You Answer.'
  • His book gets bought by thousands of companies around the US and gets adopted as a 'business philosophy or mentality' over a marketing strategy. 

How To Increase Sales And ROI

The Big Five_Content Marketing

 

He proceeded to tell listeners about the importance of becoming a 'thought leader' and 'voice of trust' within your industry...and that many businesses will never become this because they won't write about the 'Big Five.' 

The Big Five are the five most valuable content topics he thinks every business should include in their content marketing strategy:

  • Cost - talk about a range, not a specific price! 
  • Problems
  • Vs. / Comparisons
  • Reviews 
  • Best

He explained that AT LEAST 75% of your content should be around these five topics. This will also help your sales team SELL BETTER and bring in the most amount of ROI.

 

The Best Content Marketing Case Studies

Content Marketing Case Studies

 

Below are 5 companies that Marcus has personally worked with and mentored. 

1) Sheffield Metals

  • B2B
  • Manufacturer of metal roofing products
  • Homepage - popular articles from learning center
  • Learning centers are key, have this in addition to a blog that has all your content, videos, case studies, webinars, podcast, etc.
  • Really likes VISUAL IMAGE CTAs to represent things like:
    • blog
    • brochures
    • videos
    • certifications
    • YouTube Channel

*HOT TIP: Don't name your YouTube channel your company name, name it whatever you are talking about!

2) Furniture Academy

  • B2C
  • Operates eight La-Z-Boy Home Furnishings & Decor locations
  • Homepage - Learning center
  • Podcast
  • Comparison based and 'best' articles
  • RANKING on PAGE 1 of GOOGLE with content:
    • Featured snippets
    • Videos under snippets
    • First result

3) Block Imaging

  • B2B
  • Selling refurbished medical imagining equipment
  • Stopped talking like a marketer, and started talking like a sales person and business leader
  • Embraced the big five
    • Prices - MOST VIEWED CONTENT ON SITE
    • Problems
    • Comparisons
    • Reviews
    • Best
    • Got employees to write content - this is the ONLY way to go. These people know your company best, they need to be your writers. 

*HOT TIP - when you get good at content marketing, your homepage will not be the highest viewed page on your site.

4) Sportsman

  • B2B
  • Fastest growing manufacturer of center console boats in the US
  • Lots of price related messaging on homepage
  • They have a pricing calculator that allows you to save the quote - GREAT for LEAD GEN

  •  

5) Yale Applicance

  • Made it required for sales reps to participate in content marketing efforts
  • This helped sales team to become better subject matter experts
  • Gutsy blog post on 'Least Serviced, Most Reliable' appliances gets read 50,000 TIMES PER MONTH!
  • Created a self selection 'schedule a visit' tool that allows leads to choose what sales person they can meet with and when before they come in - this helped to INCREASED bookings for visits by 62% and $4000k per SALE, which is double the average sale.
    • Getting 1 million visits to website in 1 month now
    • Spending less on Ads
    • 3700 leads per month
    • Revenue increased 
      • 37 million 2011
      • 120 million in 2018

HOT TIP: How can you get started with self-selection for your company now? Answer this question from your target buyer's perspective:

  • What is the best ______ for me?
    • The blank is the PROBLEM you SOLVE
    • Basically you are replicating your in-store sales visit or call
    • Have a list of questions that helps leads determine if they need what you are offering or not
    • This 100% improves the digital sales experience

 

Best Practices With Content Marketing

Content Marketing Best Practices

 

It all comes down to TRUST and to learn to think like a BUYER, not like a BUSINESS. 

What are the most asked questions customers or leads ask your sales team?

Below are the 5 keys to success with content marketing. You'll need:

  1. Buy in from top to bottom - you need everyone from the CEO to the intern to be on board for this to work.
  2. Initial workshops and long term training / awareness - this will keep your content machine going long term.
  3. A content manager and videographer - are ESSENTIAL to manage the machine and make sure things get written and videos produced. You need both! 
  4. To make it required that everyone participates - this is the only way to keep things fresh, relevant and consistent and avoid burn out.
  5. To use the right tools and measure your progress - again, it is a must to know if what you are doing is working or if you need to make changes. 

 

Conclusion

That concludes our recap of the recent Certified Mastery webinar on content marketing with Marcus Sheridan. 

If you liked this post, you might enjoy the additional posts below from other HubSpot focused events we've attended or other posts we have about content marketing.

For more information, you can always book a complimentary 30min chat with us about any of your HubSpot needs.

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