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23 Tips For Creating Business-To-Business Mailings That Work by Robert W. Bly

 

  1. Short letters — one or two pages — usually work best. Executives don’t have time to wade through a lengthy sales pitch.  Exceptions: subscriptions, seminars, and some other mail-order offers.
  2. If you can personalize, great! But form letters addressed to “Dear Executive” or “Dear Engineer” can also pull well.
  3. Should business mailings take a “consumer approach?”

*     Some mailers argue that executives are human beings before they are businesspeople — hence, all consumer DM techniques can apply to business mail.

*     But remember, in addition to being people, executives have professional responsibilities.  And they take their work seriously.  So business mailings must address their needs as professionals.  Not every consumer gimmick is appropriate For business mail.

  1. In particular, avoid “busy” graphics (e.g., Publishers Clearing House). Use graphics that make your mailing immediately clear, easy-to-follow, and easy to read.
  2. If an envelope is filled with too many inserts, the busy executive is more inclined to throw the whole thing away. A standard package with a letter, brochure, and reply card seems to work best.
  3. The biggest mistake you can make in writing business-to-business DM is to assume that the reader is as interested in your product or industry as you are. When writing copy, assume that your product is the last thing on the reader’s mind.  He or she may never have given a second thought to problems, issues, technology, and competitive products that you worry about every day.
  4. Another major error is writing copy that speaks on a layman’s level when your mailing is targeted to industry professionals. For example: DP professionals know what CICS, MVS, and ISDN are.  You don’t — so the natural tendency is to want to explain them in your copy.  But being too elementary turns readers off and signals that you’re not really in touch with their business.  How would you respond to a mailing that began, “Direct mail is an exciting way of selling products?”  Yawn.
  5. Make your mailing look professional — a business communication from one executive to another.  A letter crammed with fake handwriting, arrows, pop-ups, and other gimmicks strikes many business readers as undignified and unprofessional.
  6. One rule that applies equally to business and consumer mail: sell your offer. If you offer a 30-day trial, sell the reader on asking for the trial.  Explain the benefits and that there is no risk or obligation.  If it is an invitation to a seminar, sell the knowledge to be gained at the seminar and not the product being promoted.
  7. A corollary to #9 is that there must be an appealing offer.

A lead generating package should never sell just the product.  It should also push the offer.

And there is always an offer.  The best offer is some type of free trail, free analysis, free consultation, or free sample.  Premiums can also work well.  At minimum, offer a free brochure of simply “free information.”  Free information is an offer and it does work.

  1. Write copy that enhances the perceived value of your offer.

Examples: A product catalog becomes a product guide.  A software catalog becomes an international software directory.  A collection of brochures becomes a free information kit.  A checklist becomes a convention planner’s guide.  An article reprinted in pamphlet form becomes “our new, informative booklet — HOW TO PREVENT COMPUTER FAILURES.”  And so on.

  1. Many clients begin planning by sitting around a table and saying, “We want to do a mailing on product X. Should we use a mailing tube? A box?  A message in a fortune cookie?  What gimmick works best?”

In my opinion, they are asking the wrong question.  The right way to get started is to ask, “What is the key sales appeal of this product?”  Ideally, this is something the product does better than other products and solves a major problem or addresses a key concern of the customer.

  1. Clients often ask, “Shouldn’t we do some market research and focus group testing to uncover key sales points and appeals before we do the mailing?”

They probably don’t realize that direct mail is a good research tool for many products and offers.  For a few thousand dollars, you can test an offer and, within weeks, know whether prospects will respond.

  1. Postcard decks generate a large number of responses at low cost. Direct-mail packages are more costly and time-consuming to produce but generate a better quality lead. The only way to know for certain is to set up a lead-tracking system and test both types of mailings.
  2. Self-mailers generally don’t pull as well as packages with separate letters, brochures, and reply cards. They work well, however, for seminars. Also, they can ad an attention-grabbing change of pace to a series of mailings.  One ad agency I know has used self-mailers for years to generate new business, with great success.  One reason why self-mailers do poorly is that most are not given the same level of attention that businesses put into their regular DM packages.
  3. About gimmicks, such as pop-ups, fancy folds, 3D objects, and so on: They generally work only if there is a strong, logical tie-in to the product, or offer, and sales appeal. Sending a pair of sunglasses doesn’t make much sense for a valve manufacturer. It makes better sense for a travel agent offering a package cruise to the Caribbean or for a tanning parlor prospecting for new bodies.
  4. Another mistake is to make the copywriter base your package around some artificial theme or slogan. A company selling industrial pumps, for instance, insists that the theme of its mailings be quality. A manufacturer of metal buildings wants a futuristic image, with copy full of references to outer space and science fiction.  This is a deadly error.  Perhaps advertising can be tied effectively to such weak themes.  But response-getting mail can’t.  Mailings that get results push product benefits, cost savings, free prefers, and no-risk guarantees — not images or themes.  To force a mailing to fit some predetermined concept is difficult, tricky — and often fatal to results.
  5. A BRC that restates the offer and asks for the order is doing only half the job. Reply elements should also be used to gather information that helps qualify prospects. For instance, if you’re selling accounts receivable software, the BRC should ask: What type of computer do you have?  What is your operating system?  How many invoices do you write a month?  If the advertiser seeks detailed facts, use a separate questionnaire or “specification sheet.”  And include a BRE.
  6. “Is there any advantage to using business-reply cards and envelopes in industrial mailings?” asks one client. “After all, the businessperson doesn’t care about a few cents postage, and his secretary has plenty of stamps handy.” True — but use the BRC/BRE anyway.  Why?  Because such cards and envelopes look like response devices.  They signal the reader that a response is required.

The same holds true for 800 numbers.  Sure, the executive isn’t paying for the call out of his own pocket, so he’s less motivated by a free call than the consumer.  But the 800 number leaps off the page and says, “Hey, pick up the phone — we want you to respond to this offer!”  Regular numbers don’t have this effect.

  1. The trend today is to add perceived value to numbers by turning them into “hotlines.” Filterite, a manufacturer of chemical filters, advertises a toll-free filtration hotline 800-FILTERS. A good idea.  However, I suggest you print the number in numerals along with the letter version.  Some people don’t like to translate letters into a phone number they can dial.
  2. A popular technique is to add to the perceived value of the order form or BRC by calling it an “Information Request Form,” “Trial Request Form,” or “Needs analysis.” This still works but is losing impact as more and more mailers use the technique.
  3. Response goes up when you give the reader choices. For instance, include both a BRC and a toll-free number. And allow for multiple responses, such as:

 

[   ] Reserve my free 30-day trial

[   ] Have a sales representative call

[   ] Send brochure by mail

[   ] Not interested right now, but add me to your mailing list

 

  1. Tell the reader that there is no cost or obligation or that no salesman will call…if these statements are true.

This article appears courtesy of Bob Bly’s Direct Response Letter

Build Ideal Client Confidence with Free Trial Offers Today

What’s the best way for potential clients to want your product or service?

One way is to offer a test-drive.  Think about it. When you’re looking for a new car. You don’t just drop by a dealership and buy a car.  No, you take your time, looking at the various cars and options available. You narrow down your search to find models you really like. Then you go for a test-drive to see how the car feels.

Free Trials

Well, it’s the same thing for your business.  Regardless of what you sell, your customers might want a free trial of the product or service.

Who Uses Free Trials?

In fact, all the major players in the Business Intelligence industry use free trials.  On many websites, a Free Trial offer can be seen just about on every web page, whether it makes sense there or not. Free trials are all over the place.

Where to Offer a Free Trial

Now, I’m not convinced the first thing a potential client should see is the free trial. To me, I would need to know more about whether the company understands the problem I’m trying to solve and see if they had something that could overcome my problem. But maybe that’s just me.

In any case, it’s obviously good to have a free trial, because a potential customer will want to try it before they buy.

So let’s look at one company who promote Free Trail on their websites.

DataWatch.com uses Free Trial in multiple places within the same web page. The first Free Trial appears in the header section of their site.


FIGURE 1 DATAWATCH FREE TRIAL

They offer another Free Trial is just above the footer section too.


FIGURE 2 DATAWATCH FREE TRIAL OFFER AGAIN

Finally, there is one more call to action in just above the footer section.


FIGURE 3 DATAWATCH FREE TRIAL OFFER AGAIN

 

Does your product offer a free trial? Can your customers try your solution before they buy?

Consider using a free trial in multiple places on your website.

If you need help determining a good place to put a free trial or want help creating the copy for an email series after the Free Trial, contact me to start today.

Read about how to warm up your leads with Newsletters.

Which is Better? Warm or Cold Leads? Find Out How to Always Have Warm Leads Today

Newsletters are a simple way to provide useful, helpful information to prospective clients.  It’s a non-threatening way for someone to get to know you and your business.

Typically, email newsletters contain multiple elements. First, there may be an educational article. There might be a quote from an industry expert. Maybe a section for quick How-To tips.  Also, include might be an offer but not always.

Newsletters provide multiple benefits to companies who employ them.

  1. Saves Your Money

The first obvious benefit is to grow your in-house list of potential customers. Most companies offer a sign up for a free newsletter to help grow their own prospect/customer list. The more names on your email list, the more eyeballs you can market to. And it’s FREE for the business to collect.  There’s not having to buy a list from an industry directory.

I’m sure you’ve heard the saying “the money’s in the list.” Well, it’s true.

As you build your email list, you cultivate a relationship with these targeted prospects. Over time, you might find these prospects turn into paying customers when the time is right.

  1. Warm Leads Instead of Cold Ones

A newsletter is the best way to help your target prospect get to know, like, and trust you.

Included in your newsletter are helpful articles about solving problems, how to tips to improve performance, or personal stories of why you’re in business, or case studies on how you help other customers.

All these updates will build your reputation and help your target audience feel more connected to you.  This means these prospects warm up to you over time. When they have a need, they will know you can help them with that need because of all the great content you’ve already shared with them.

  1. Improve Your Reputation and Demonstrate Credibility

A newsletter is non-threatening to the audience, as long as you share useful, helpful, value-packed content on a regular basis. Over time, the audience begins to trust you.

Therefore, providing a steady stream of helpful content will boost your creditability and build trust with your potential clients.

There are several places to promote your newsletter sign up.  For example, in the footer section of Gooddata.com, you’ll notice “Get our newsletter.” This opt-in form asks for just an email address which is a very good example of the minimum barrier to overcome.


From the customer’s perspective, they need only provide an email to get regular content that may help educate, inform them regarding GoodData’s services.

FIGURE 1 GOODDATA FOOTER NEWSLETTER OPT IN

Sign up boxes can be anyway on your website.  Sometimes they appear on the right-hand side of regular content. Other times it is a pop up that displays only after someone reads an article on the website.

However, you decide to implement, the point is to do it.

Do you have a Newsletter Sign Up offer on your website? If not, what are you waiting for?

Don’t miss the opportunity to be known by your target audience and grow your business at the same time!

If you need ideas for your newsletter or want help with the content, contact me to get started today.

Read about other opt-in ideas for growing your list of emails.

Content Marketing Works Infographic

How Content Can Set You Apart From Your Competitors

Content marketing is a necessary tool in your marketing toolkit.  100% of your marketing efforts rely on content as the chief method of conveying your message.

Some interesting statistics on content marketing include:

  • 47% of buyers viewed 3-5 pieces of content before engaging with a sale rep. (Demand Gen Report, 2016)
  • Companies that published 16+ blog posts per month got about 4.5X more leads than companies who published only 4 posts monthly. (Hubspot 2015)
  • 86% of consumers would like to receive promotional emails from the companies they do business with at least monthly and 15% of those prefer to get daily emails. (Statista, 2015)
  • Nurtured leads produce, on average, a 20% increase in sales opportunities versus non-nurtured leads. (Demand Gen Report 2016)

What does this mean to me?

Content is key. Customers are searching for it before they ever contact you. The more content you share the higher the number of leads you’ll get. Customers expect to hear from you. The more times you touch base with a prospective customer the higher the probability they will do business with you in the future.

Here’s a snippet of a talk I did recently on the subject of Content Marketing:

Content Marketing really works. Have you created a content strategy yet? If you need help, let me know.

Ideas for Using Email Opt-In Forms to Grow Your Own List Now

86% of consumers would like to receive promotional emails from companies they do business with at least monthly, and 15% would like to get them daily. (Statista, 2015 Source: https://www.hubspot.com/marketing-statistics)

People are interested in you or your products and services. They want to know more. So give them what they want.

What is an Email Opt-In Used for?

Using an email opt-in form, ask your potential clients to sign up to receive something from you. That something can be the latest news about your company or some other free content that’s of value to them.

What content do I send?

Think creatively. What might a potential client want to know? What kind of problems do they have? What type of problems have you solved? What are industry resources available to share?

Is it helpful? That’s what you need to verify before sending out to your list. The content you share should answer a question, help solve a problem, or help them get closer to achieving a goal. Otherwise, you shouldn’t being sharing it.

What do I send content in the first place?

This allows your potential customers to take some time to get to know you. It’s a low-stress way to be informed about your company without a lot of sales hype.

Let’s take a look at one business intelligence company called Alteryx.com. They provide a number of reports and ebooks for the exchange of a few pieces of information from the potential customer.


FIGURE 1 ALTERYX E-BOOK LINK


FIGURE 2 ALTERYX SPECIAL REPORT OPT IN


FIGURE 3 ALTERYX EBOOK OPT IN

But special reports and ebooks are not the only thing you can give away.  Remember 86% of consumers want to hear from you.

You might consider a newsletter sign up to provide latest updates on your company and send helpful how-to tips.

Running a contest or an actual giveaway is another reason to use an email opt-in form.

Email opt-in forms can be used in a variety of ways. Don’t limit yourself to one type only. Mix it up and try several types to see what works for your audience.

What resources can you package and give away free through an email opt-in? Do you have a series of helpful How To tips? Do you have an ebook to share? Do you have White Papers or Special Reports?

Lack of resources, such as staff, funding, and time, remains the biggest obstacle to successful lead generation for 61% of B2B marketers. (BrightTALK, 2015 Source: https://www.hubspot.com/marketing-statistics)

If you find yourself including the 61% of B2B marketers who don’t have the resources for this, contact me today at to help identify and/or create resources for your target audience.

 

Why Video Makes Sense for Your Website Today

There are many ways to communicate. The written word is one way. Visual media such as videos coupled with sound is another very effective way to communicate.

Why Use Video?

From Videobrewery.com 75% of executives who told Forbes that they watch work-related videos on business websites at least once a week. The results breakdown:

  • 50% watch business-related videos on YouTube
  • 65% visit the marketer’s website after viewing a video and according to Invodo 92% of mobile video viewers share videos with others.

Does Video Convert?

MarketingProfs say 70% of marketing professionals report video converts better than any other medium.

ReelSEO says Homepage videos are shown to increase conversion rates by 20% or more.

Unbounce says using video on a landing page can increase conversion rate by up to 80%.

As you probably can tell from the statistics shared above, video is an important element to add to your site.

How Do I Use Video on My Website?

Let’s look at three business intelligence companies who use video on their websites.com uses videos everywhere on their site.

FIGURE 1 DATAWATCH.COM

Yellowfin.com utilizes video very effectively too.

FIGURE 2 YELLOWFIN.COM

Panorama does a good job with offering plenty of videos.

FIGURE 3 PANORAMA VIDEOS

What about your business?

Do you have videos on how your product works?

Do you have how-to videos to increase awareness about your product or service?

Start using these videos effectively on your website.

Need help writing a script for a video? Contact me at to get started today.

Catch Customer’s Attention By Solving Their Problem Now

There are many forms of lead generation tactics: newsletter, special reports, blog posts, articles, webinars, videos, case studies, white papers, and more.
Although, one tactic stands out – White Papers.

Why Use a White Paper?

96% of B2B buyers want content with more input from industry thought leaders. (Demand Gen Report, 2016 Source: https://www.hubspot.com/marketing-statistics)

And because White Papers have a dual purpose. On one hand, they offer helpful information on a particular topic. On the other hand, White Papers help position you as an expert in your field. This builds creditability and trust among your potential clients.

What is a White Paper?

A White Paper is a type of a report. It’s written as an educational piece. Typically describing a particular problem in a specific industry. It describes how people have tried to solve that problem and failed. It also shows how the problem is finally solved, along with a subtle mention of a specific product that solved the problem.

When is a White Paper Used?

At the top of the sales funnel you find lead generation pieces to get people into the sales funnel. Once a prospect has entered your sales funnel, you will nurture them with content. This allows you to overcome any obstacles preventing a future sale.
This middle portion of the sales cycle is where we help a potential client get to know your company has the potential for solving their problems.

What is Gated Content?

When content within a White Paper is highly valuable, it should never be shared for free. This is called gated content because one must pass through the gate of an “Opt-In” to receive the information requested.

The content shared in the White Paper should be so compelling your potential client has no qualms about entering their name and email address to get this content.

Let’s a take a look at a couple business intelligence companies to see how they use White Papers in their marketing strategies.
Qlik.com has multiple White Paper opt-ins throughout their site. Below you’ll see one specific to Qlik Sense Architectural Overview.

FIGURE 1 QLIK WHITE PAPER OPT IN
Panorama is bucking the industry norm by giving away their White Papers with no email opt-in. While this may be helpful for the customers, this is definitely not best practice. Panorama is losing valuable marketing opportunity here.

FIGURE 2 PANORAMA WHITE PAPERS
What topics in your industry would make a useful White Paper? What problems does your product or service solve? Can you write a compelling White Paper to convey how to solve that problem?

Lack of resources, such as staff, funding, and time, remains the biggest obstacle to successful lead generation for 61% of B2B marketers. (BrightTALK, 2015 Source: https://www.hubspot.com/marketing-statistics)

If you’d like help with White Papers, contact me to get started on your own White Paper.

5 ways to capture e-mail addresses of landing page visitors By Robert W. Bly

Most Internet marketers I know who use landing pages to make direct sales online focus on conversion: getting the maximum number of visitors to the landing page to place an order for the product being advertised.

Other Internet marketers, when writing landing page copy, focus not only on conversion, but also on search engine optimization: keyword selection and meta tag creation that can increase traffic by raising the site’s search engine rankings.

But in addition to conversions and unique visits, savvy Internet marketers are also concerned with a third performance metric: e-mail address capture.

If you have a two percent conversion rate, then for every 100 visitors to the landing page, only 2 buy – and of course, during these transactions, you capture the e-mail addresses of those buyers.

What happens to the other 98 visitors — those who do not buy? You will not be able to add their e-mail address to your list unless you incorporate a deliberate methodology into your landing page to capture it.

Here are four different methodologies for capturing the e-mail addresses of landing page visitors who do not purchase. Every landing page you operate should use at least one of these methods:

  • E-zine sign-up box.

This is a box where the visitor can get a free e-newsletter subscription just by entering his name and e-mail address. You can see an example of a simple e-zine sign-up box at www.bly.com and countless other Web sites.

The e-zine sign-up box placed prominently on the first screen is a widely used method of e-mail capture for Web sites. But it is less commonly used for micro-sites and landing pages.

The reason is that, if your headline and lead properly engage the reader’s attention, he won’t bother to sign up for the e-newsletter – instead, he’ll start reading.

Then, if he loses interest or reaches the end but does not order, and instead clicks away, you haven’t captured his e-mail address.

  • Squeeze pages.

Also known as preview pages, these are short landing pages that require the visitor to register – by giving his name and e-mail address – before he is allowed to go on and read the long-copy landing page. To see a squeeze page at work, visit: www.squeezepagegenerator.com.

In some cases, the long-copy landing page itself is positioned as a “report” which the visitor can read only if he submits his name and e-mail address first. For this to work, your landing page should be written in an informative, educational style.

Many squeeze pages offer a content premium, such as a free report, just for submitting your e-mail address. Those seeking to capture snail mail as well as e-mail addresses make the premium a physical object that must be shipped, such as a free CD.

Squeeze pages work well when your primary source of traffic is organic and paid search. Reason: search visitors clicking to your site are only mildly qualified, because they are making a decision to visit based on only a few words in a search engine description or paid Google ad.

Therefore, they may not be inclined to read long copy from a source they are not familiar with. A squeeze page lets them absorb the gist of your proposition in a few concise paragraphs.    The main advantage of the squeeze page is that it ensures capture of an e-mail address from every visitor who reads the full landing page. In addition, these prospects have been pre-qualified, in terms of their interest in the subject, and so are more likely to stick with long copy.

  • E-mail capture sidebars.

These are forms built into the main landing page as sidebars, again making a free offer. In a long-copy landing page, the e-mail capture sidebar usually appears early, typically in the second or third screen, and may be repeated one or more times throughout the page. Example: www.rocketfrench.com.

The drawback of the e-mail capture sidebar is that the prospect sees it before he gets too far in the sales letter, and therefore before you’ve sold him and ask for the order.

Therefore, the risk is that if your product teaches, say, how to speak French, and the e-mail capture sidebar offers free French lessons, the visitor will just take the free offer and feel no need to spend money on the paid offer.

  • Pop-under.

When you attempt to click away from the landing page without making a purchase, a window appears that says something like, “Wait! Don’t leave yet!” – and makes a free offer. To see how this works, go to one of my sites, www.becomeaninstantguru.com.

The big advantage of the pop-under is that the visitor sees it only after he has read to the point where he is leaving without ordering. Therefore, the free content offer doesn’t compete with or distract visitors from the paid product offer.

The disadvantage is that about half of Internet users run pop-up blockers on their PCs, and these blockers will prevent your pop-under from showing.

  1. Floaters. A floater looks and functions much like a pop-up window, but it’s actually part of the landing page’s HTML code, and therefore, won’t be blocked by a pop-up blocker. You can see a floater at http://bhg.com/.

The floater blocks a portion of the landing page when you click onto the site. You can enter your e-mail or click it away without doing so. Either action removes the floater and allows you to see the complete landing page.

As you can see, all of these e-mail capture methods offer some sort of free content – typically a downloadable PDF report, e-course delivered via auto-responder, or e-zine subscription – in exchange for your e-mail address.

Why bother to maximize capture of visitor e-mail addresses on your landing pages and other Web sites?

There are two primary benefits. First, by sending an online conversion series – a sequence of e-mails delivered by auto-responder – to these visitors, you have another opportunity to convince them to buy and increase your overall conversion rate.

Second, the best names for your e-mail marketing efforts, far better than rented opt-in lists, are in your house e-list. So the faster you can build a large e-list, the more profitable your Internet marketing ventures will become.

How much more profitable? Internet marketing expert Fred Gleeck estimates that, for information product marketers, each name on your e-list is worth between ten cents and a dollar or more per name per month.

Therefore, a 50,000-name e-list could generate annual online revenues of $600,000 a year or higher. In other businesses, the sales could be significantly higher. Hewlett-Packard has 4.5 million e-zine subscribers, from whom they generate $60 million in monthly sales.*

* B-to-B, 4/4/05.

This article appears courtesy of Bob Bly’s Direct Response Letter.

5 Ways to Turn Research into Marketing Gold

Research is critical to successfully implementing any of these tactics mentioned below. Without research, you’d be grasping at straws. Research provides solid facts that put meat into your marketing tactics.

I recently told you how I performed research on 50 potential clients using the internet in How To Do New Client Research article.

Armed with the results of that research, we ready to make use of it in our marketing tactics.

There are many options but we’ll start with four ways to use this research.

First, use the data to write a white paper as a lead generation report 

“B2B marketers report sales lead quality as their #1 most important metric for measuring content marketing success; even more important than sales and conversions.” (source)

Because sales lead quality is so important, utilizing a white paper or special report is like having your audience raise their hand, indicating they are interested.

A white paper describes a problem a particular audience may be facing. Within the paper, it talks about how someone can solve a problem like this. It talks about a solution without selling a particular company. At the end of the paper, it highlights who the paper is sponsored by.  White papers are typically 8 to 10 pages long depending on the topic.

This can be used as a free special report you clients receive after entering their email address on your website.

I took my research an wrote a Special Report on “15 Ways to Increase Customer Engagement” as an opt-in piece for my website.  You can do the same thing!

Second, use the idea of a white paper to solicit quotes from potential clients to include in the white paper. 

The best way to add credibility to your report is with quotes from industry leaders.  The more quotes from experts in the industry, the more you are considered an expert too!

Start by reviewing your research. Identify a specific person within your targeted companies list you can contact.  Then, simply ask for a quote for to include in the upcoming the white paper. Next, let them know you’ll send them an advanced copy of the white paper in exchange for their email address.

This provides two-fold benefit.  First, you get your name in front of your potential clients.  And second, it adds credibility to your message.

Third, craft thoughtful blog posts about the findings (one finding per post) 

Research is critical as mentioned previously. It’s the underpinnings of all content we write.

As you review your research, you will start to uncover opportunities to write about.  If you wrote a white paper about the findings in your research, you have all the data you need to write blog posts too!

Many might consider this repurposing your content.

It’s simple. Each section in the white paper itself can become its own stand-alone blog post.  Remember my “15 Ways to Increase Customer Engagement” report? That turned into 15 separate blog posts.

So how that works?

Even if you haven’t written a white paper yet, consider writing about one thing you noticed in your research. This becomes a blog post.  Then look for another idea from your research. You may end up with several posts which will be good for your blog and getting seen in the search engines.

You’ll become noticed as an expert in your field by sharing these findings with your readership.

Forth, create charts or graphs from the data you collected. 

If you are a data junky like me, then creating some quick charts and graphs of your findings may be easy for you. This is a little like creating infographics which help readers understand the points you’re trying to make.

Even if you’re not a data junky, some basic excel skills will help here.

Try creating a pivot table to see how many companies had the same result.  Or sort the results by who has the best site based on the findings.

You could get more sophisticated and create a decision matrix, add weighs to the factors, and rank each company, and sort highest to lowest score.  Below is an example of such a matrix:

Business Intelligence Decision Matrix

Decision Matrix

Any time you add pictures to your words the better your post, project, or report will be.

Use these in blog posts, white papers, or add to your site to lead credibility.

Fifth, write a Profit GAP Letter and contact prospective clients. 

A profit GAP letter is a prospecting tool. The letter explains who I am, what problems I’ve seen in the industry, and how I help potential clients.

The research you created highlights all the problems found on the websites you audited.  Therefore, you now know problems seen in the industry. Next, craft how you help to solve those problems in the letter.

This is a great way to break the ice with a potential client. It’s best if you weave these into a story, so your potential client doesn’t feel overwhelmed that their site totally sucks.

This suggestion takes some time to create. It is best to get input from others before sending this out to prospective clients.  Have some of your closest writer friends review the letter and make suggestions on how to improve it.  The message should be very clear. The problem well defined, the solution demonstrated, and the value you bring to the problem obvious.

So there you have it.  Five unique ways to turn your research into marketing gold and reach more clients.

If you’d like me to help you with your research, or any of the above ways to turn that research into marketing gold, contact me today.

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