Author’s Note: I’m reading this book about effective ways that companies are marketing themselves. I want to share what I’ve learned so far. This is the second part in a three part series. Part one is here.
“Inbound Marketing: Get Found Using Google, Social Media, and Blogs” by Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah hit bookshelves in 2009. It’s chock full of valuable information for any company that wants to grow by using inbound marketing. At the end of each chapter is a section called Inbound in Action. An organization is highlighted for their use of inbound marketing practices. Below I’ll summarize what I learned about each.
In the first part of this series I covered chapters 1 through 5. Here’s what I learned from chapters 6 through 10:
DIY Shutters (Chapter 6, Getting Found in Google)
- Understands SEO basics: optimized page titles, proper on-page SEO, clean and simple design so Google and users can easily find content
- Blog offers useful information to their target market
Freshbooks (Chapter 7, Get Found in Social Media)
- Practices the 4Es: Execute on Extraordinary Experiences Everyday (customers are more likely to talk about phenomenal experience with Freshbooks than about specific capabilities of the software)
- First 3 tips for companies new to social media (from Mike McDerment, Freshbooks CEO):
- Tell your story (it’s what people respond to)
- Participate (follow up quickly to comments; remember that you’re setting the tone for your community
- Be open and treat people the way you would like to be treated (this builds trust which is the foundation of any great relationship and social media is all about building relationships)
Google (Chapter 8, Convert Visitors into Leads)
- Master at testing changes to increase conversion rates (once tested 40 shades of blue to see which converted the best)
- Continually tests core assumptions (things to test for optimal conversion rates: calls to action, landing page design, form length)
Zappos (Chapter 9, Convert Prospects into Leads)
- Landing page metrics – Page Views: 507, Submissions: 15, Conversion Rate: 2.96%
- Landing page forms should be – short, not ask for sensitive info, simple, build trust, auto-respond, above the fold
Kiva (Chapter 10, Convert Leads to Customers)
- Expert at getting customers to share message by making it easy to email your friends (provides sample text to copy and paste into the body of the email & simple instructions on how to add a Kiva message to your email signature)
- Follow up email that is addressed to the person that registers includes: specific call to action, offers more information for those not ready to commit right away, ability to respond to the email with questions (very important)
One more take away: MEASURE, MEASURE, MEASURE. Some things you can measure are email addresses collected, blog subscribers, LinkedIn group members, Facebook subscribers and Twitter followers. How else will you know if what you’re trying is working or not without measuring?
The series concludes in part 3.
P.S. — You can buzz about this book on Libboo here: www.libboo.com/read/inbound-marketing