Listening to Leadership and to Customers
Fast Track knew it needed to transform how it interacted with potential buyers - fast. "The way that people buy has changed dramatically," observed Greg. "Prospects don't want to be sold to. They expect to be better informed before making a selection; and as a company, we need to provide helpful information that facilitates the buying process."
A five-member account team at B2B interviewed Fast Track leadership and customers, listening for their descriptions of the company's differentiators. After listening closely to leadership and customers, B2B was able to help Fast Track tighten its messaging, create visual aids that explain buying options, develop pull sheets, publicize glowing customer reviews, start drafting case studies, and produce items visitors would download .
Fast Track needed a website that inspired confidence in visitors and offered tangible takeaways. The site needed to instantly convey to experienced executives that Fast Track has an impressive track record and is worth comparing to brand name solutions (Figure 1).
In fact, some customers had initially bought from big brands like IBM or Oracle, then sought out Fast Track for its software features, service, and value. To help prospects compare their options before buying from a big brand, Fast Track published the "10 Essentials" guide (Figure 2), which offers checklists, examples, and facts demonstrating that, when it comes to enterprise software providers, big doesn't mean best.
Leadership also started sharing their expertise and opinions through webinars (Figure 3) and a company blog. Blog posts are frank and informative, not product focused. After the company's inbound marketing had ramped up and it published the blog post, "Safety In Size? Not for IBM Software Implementations", for example, site visits doubled and visit-to-response conversions soared.
Today, Greg says, blogging and social media are keys ways that Fast Track gets in front of the right people. "We're reaching a lot more prospects through our blog and LinkedIn. When they're ready to buy, our name registers."
B2B helped Fast Track repurpose and expand on webinar content and blog content to produce “Mastering 21st century Enterprise Risk Management”, a book that solidifies Greg's position as an authority on risk (Figure 4).
"It's certainly changed the level of management with whom I am now engaging," he says. "Without your initial ghost writing and subsequent review and advice, this would never have occurred."
Customer case studies also began reaching the target audience via media coverage. A case study B2B wrote and placed on Fast Track's behalf, for example, was published in the mining industry's magazine, Ferrett (Figure 5). Fast Track's sales team could now offer the article to prospects at appropriate times, and/or offer the new product guide, product demo, 10 Essentials guide, other case studies, and more.
As of spring of 2014:
- Fast Track ranked above competitors in search engine results for often-searched phrases like "compliance software" (Figure 6).
- Site visits had risen 1,152% since the launch of inbound marketing efforts
- Inbound links from reputable sites -- the currency of the internet -- rose from 4 to 118
- Inbound requests for information averaged 12 per week, up from 5 per month
- Among those requesting information: decision makers at major institutions in Fast Track's target audience
"Both our COO and I are 'Top Contributors' on LinkedIn now, and are having active conversations with the likes of the chairman of ISO31000 and leading counsel for the Australian Institute of Company Directors," observes Greg. "B2B Communications, through their inbound marketing expertise, has given Fast Track a great digital presence, which is helping Fast Track as it competes against much larger competitors. B2B has not only elevated our standing as an expert in the marketplace, but has also improved our standing with existing customers. It's certainly changed the level of management with whom we are engaging."
Recap of services provided under retainer:
Search Engine Optimization
Ebooks & Guides
Social Media & PR
Landing Page Design
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