Tag Archives: content development

New Data: How Engineers Search Google

In March 2014, TREW Marketing teamed up with CFE Media – publisher of Control Engineering and Plant Engineering, among other publications – to survey engineers about their preferences and behaviors online. The official survey results will be launched later this quarter, but we didn’t want to wait to share a few highlights from the findings.

Over 700 participants in North America completed the survey, and primarily qualified themselves as in R&D/Engineering departments (>60%) or General Management (>20%). One of the first highlights is respondents’ opinions about content.

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4 Ways to Get More Blog Traffic

Looking for additional insight? Check out our checklist: A 15-Point Checklist to Evaluate Your B2B Technical Website

I attended the Inbound conference by HubSpot, and one of my favorite sessions was on blogging. The session was called Getting 100K followers to your Blog. As an author to this blog, they had my full attention – who doesn’t want 100,000 people reading their blog?

We’ve already established that increased, quality traffic fuels growth in leads, and that blogs are great traffic-generators. So how do you increase traffic to your site through your blog?

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Buyer Personas: 8 Questions to Profile Your Customer

This blog post is based on an excerpt from our e-book Smart Marketing for Engineers: Lead Generation. Download the full version for free to learn about generating and nurturing leads with engaging content.

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Marketing toolbox - Segmentation of Personas

During the marketing strategy phase, it’s important to know the different personalities that make up your target audience, what they care about, and what they need so you can communicate with them in the most relevant way possible.

If you only generate a few leads a month, this is easy to do manually by looking up the company’s website, finding the person on LinkedIn, and making your best judgment about the optimal approach to follow up. But as you attract a greater audience using content marketing, you can no longer do this manually because you’ll be generating many more leads, and your time will need to be focused on creating new content and following up on your growing pipeline of sales-qualified leads. So you need an automated way to bucket leads by common care-abouts, so you can more effectively nurture them using marketing automation, or do what SilverPop calls “mass one-to-one marketing.”

To do this, you need to create buyer personas.

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Four Trends in Content Marketing

Content marketing is a term that we’ve seen used more and more often over the last 10 years, and in varying contexts. Simply put, it’s the use of content – web pages, blog posts, white papers, video, case studies, etc – to drive traffic and conversion online. And it is one of the fastest areas of growth in marketing.

The number of searches on Google for the term “content marketing”, 2007 - 2014.

The number of searches on Google for the term “content marketing”, 2007 – 2014. 

Note: In this blog post we are going to share some trends about content marketing. If you want to learn more about what content marketing is, or best practices to execute, check out our website here.

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Thursday Trends: (Blogging) Information is Power

If you have any doubts as to whether or not blogging is necessary or appropriate for your business, data from research begs the question, “Can you afford not to blog?”

Can you afford not to blog?

Studies show that B2B business blogging drives traffic and generates leads, regardless of industry. In his September 2013 Forbes article, Derek Klobucher notes that nearly 88% of corporate shoppers prefer to research purchases online. We know online shopping behavior includes searching for a solution to a problem, finding the best deal for that solution, and ultimately deciding on the most trustworthy company to do business with. You can help connect these B2B shoppers with your solution by blogging. As mentioned last week, Guy Kawasaki points out that deals ultimately are made between two people; your prospects need to be able to evaluate your capacity to deliver to their expectations. A blog is an ideal channel for you to educate consumers about your area of expertise and demonstrate your trustworthiness and reliability.

 

Powerful Data 

In the article, Top 5 B2B Benefits of Blogging, author Phil Vallender states, “Bogging is demanding – requiring commitment, persistence and ingenuity – but the rewards far outweigh the effort.”  No truer words were ever spoken in the B2B community.  Consider these statistics from the HubSpot study, Marketing Benchmarks from 7,000+ Businesses, demonstrating that companies that blog get more traffic and leads than companies that don’t blog:

The power of blogging

If you don’t already have a blog started, the thought of writing 100 blog articles is certainly overwhelming, but when you break it down into months and weeks it’s very doable. Identify multiple authors inside your company (at TREW, we have close to 10!) and start writing. By publishing one blog article weekly you’ll be halfway there next year; twice weekly and you’re there!

Need help getting started? Download our case study, TREW Marketing Unveils the Secrets of Its Own Marketing Strategy, or contact us.  TREW Marketing is ready to help you achieve your business goals.

Related blog posts:

15 Inbound Activities to Include in Your B2B Content Marketing Plan

4 Ways to Get More Blog Traffic

New Case Study: TREW Marketing Unveils the Secrets of Its Own Marketing Strategy

Google Encrypts Keyword Data: Where Do We Go From Here?

Any marketer worth their weight relies on data to measure their effectiveness, but also to better understand their target audience’s needs and behavior. Since the advent of online marketing and web analytics, marketers have used web traffic data to help us tease out what our visitors are seeking and to ensure we’re giving them what they want. But now Google is making that a little bit more difficult by increasing their SSL encryption for searchers to eventually cover 100% of all search via Google – whether users are signed into a Google account or not.

What does this mean for marketers?

Simply put, you will no longer be able to access specific data on which keywords were used by Google searchers to get to your website. In 2011, Google decided to encrypt search terms for users signed into their Google account on Chrome browsers. They have slowly begun expanding this encryption, and now it appears that keyword data will soon be a distant memory across the board from Google.

Why does this matter?

Keyword data has been a valuable piece of data in the past because the more you know about how your visitors reached your site – what they were specifically seeking – the better you could serve them by offering content that relates to the topics they’re looking for.

So, what’s a data-driven marketer to do?

First, don’t panic.  Here are a few things to keep in mind as you consider your options:

  • Bing and Yahoo still offer keyword data.  As of this summer, almost 30% of total searches come from these two engines. You can extrapolate from Bing and Yahoo data to generalize across your entire search audience.

comScore Report

  • You can reliably use historical Google keyword data for the next year or so. Why? Because keyword data doesn’t tend to shift drastically from month to month. If you look at the last 12 months of keyword data and trends for your site, this should give you a good idea of what your target audience is searching for and inform your marketing efforts accordingly, until at least mid-2014. One caveat to this: if you’ve recently rebranded or launched a wholly new product line, all bets are off, as your search terms likely will experience a more drastic shift than historical data indicates.
  • Consider using Google Adwords data to help inform your marketing activities. If you’re actively buying keywords via this service, you can get a real sense of which words your target audience is searching on each month, and respond with more targeted and better content.

Google Adwords Data

  • Use Google Webmaster “Search Queries” report to find the keywords that your site ranks for. It will tell you the site’s average position on search results pages for each keyword, how many times you appear in these search results, and your click-through-rate for each keyword. An example of this report is shown below.

Google Webmaster “Search Queries” report

  • Finally, and most critically, good marketers should simply continue to focus on creating and promoting valuable, in-depth, great quality content online. Gone are the days of sprinkling a page with a popular keyword just to garner clicks, regardless of the true relevancy of the content. View this change as the “kick in the pants” that will help ensure your marketing team doesn’t fixate on specific keywords when developing web pages, but rather focuses on the true value of the content offering.

I’ll leave you with some sage advice of local SEO expert Jeff Watts, Founder and CEO of StrongPages, whose blog includes insightful guidance on this change.  According to Watts, “marketers should always build their digital strategy from their content outward: What is the message you want to communicate to your target marketplace? Publish that content, and make it the best page of content on the web for that topic, so that – regardless of what Google’s algorithm changes are now or in the future – you are giving the search engines themselves the best of all reasons to rank you #1.”

Taking a long-term approach to SEO by focusing on superior, insightful content for your audience will always be a winning marketing strategy and something Google can never take away from you. For more information on how TREW can help you create winning content, contact us today!

 

Recommended SEO Tips and Tricks for Seasoned Marketers – and Newbies

The Beginner's Guide to SEO by Moz

The Beginner’s Guide to SEO, by Moz

Search engines are one of the most popular ways people seek technical information – so it’s imperative that you are visible in search. So how do you ensure your potential customers are able to find your website? By implementing a strategic Search Engine Optimization (SEO) strategy.

Not sure what that entails or how to get started? Well you’re in luck. I recently read The Beginner’s Guide to SEO by Moz and whether you are new to SEO or just need to brush up on the basics, I highly recommend this read. At around 100 pages it’s not a quick read, but it’s easy to get through and offers valuable tips and tricks along the way. Here are a just a few of what I believe to be the more compelling take-a-ways.

The Importance of Links

“Search engines have used links as votes – representing the democracy of the web’s opinion about what pages are important and popular.”

The guide explains the importance of links and several reasons why they are key to a successful SEO strategy. First, links are the foundation connecting all the unique pages of the web. It’s the mode search engines use to reach the billions of documents available on the web. Second, search engines cannot read – or rather, comprehend – the text on a webpage. They cannot measure the quality and relevancy of the information provided. Instead, they use links as part of a carefully crafted algorithm to determine relevance and popularity.  In other words, the more webpages that link to your website the more importance that is placed on your content.  Imagine your website as a location on a map, among billions of other locations.  How many roads link to where you are?

maps

Imagine your website as a location on a map. Do many roads lead to you? Or, is your site essentially on a lonesome highway?

Content Marketing is the Key to Link Building

The “tree falls in a forest” adage postulates that if no one is around to hear the sound, it may not exist at all – and this translates perfectly to search engines and web content. Put another way – if no one links to your content, the search engines may choose to ignore it.”

How do you get more links or gain more votes for your website? One method discussed in the guide, and one that we talk about a lot on this blog, is content development. Great content begs to be shared and demands to be talked about, creating more links to your document. However, without a strategic content marketing strategy, no one will read your great piece of work and consequently will not share it with others.

Proper Website Structure is Essential to SEO

“SEO allows webmasters to provide “clues” that the engines can use to understand content.”

We know that search engines cannot “read” or understand text on webpages, view images or watch videos either. So how is the information you include on a web page turned into ranking information? How it’s done is by search engines finding “clues” from the elements in your website structure, like title tags and meta tags. Moz shares effective methods for implementing proper website structure and recommends tools such as Google’s cache to see what elements of your content are visible to search engines.

Beware of Keyword Abuse

“Since the dawn of online search, folks have abused keywords in a misguided effort to manipulate the engines.”

Did you know keywords can hinder as much as help?

 

If you know anything about SEO, you’ve heard about the importance of keywords. But did you know keywords can hinder as much as help?  I like how Moz explains this, and the best practices around keyword usage. The author gives clear warnings not to “stuff” keywords into your text, which can have adverse effects.

In other words, keep it real.  Be authentic and use keywords naturally and strategically – for humans, not algorithms.

 

Grab the Low-Hanging Fruit

“In SEOmoz’s biannual survey of SEO industry leaders, 94% of participants said that keyword use in the title tag was the most important place to use keywords to achieve high rankings.”

The guide emphasizes the importance of keyword usage in a webpage’s title tag and presents an easily achievable list of keyword best practices. If you have a limited amount of time and resources to implement keywords, make sure you at least update your title tag, deemed “critical to both user experience and search engine optimization.”

Download the Guide to Get Started

Download The Beginner’s Guide to SEO by Moz, to take a deeper dive into these highlighted topics and many more important SEO best practices.

The Beginner's Guide to SEO, by Moz

The Beginner’s Guide to SEO, by Moz

 

Need help creating and implementing an SEO strategy? TREW offers a variety of SEO services that will help make your site visible online. Check out our Search Engine Optimization Services page or contact TREW Marketing today for more information.

 

Related Blog Posts:

TREW Talk: How to Build an SEO Keyword Strategy

4 Ways Pictures Power SEO and Social Media

Content and SEO Fuel Inbound Marketing Results

Lasting SEO Results, Part 1: How PR affects SEO

 

Content with Context is King, HubSpot Makes Context a Reality at INBOUND 2013

Content is still king. It drives the web, and it’s one of the major ways someone will find your company online. When your target audience finds your content and learns more about you, you gain new customer leads and prospects. When you gain more qualified leads, you make more sales.

“Context creates the inbound experience. We’ve got to stop thinking like marketers and start acting like humans.” – Dharmesh Shah, HubSpot

Content is KingIn this post, we will focus on online content in particular. If your online content is informative, helpful, honest, and appealing, your online image is informative, helpful, honest, and appealing to your audience. On the flip side, if your online content is nonexistent, shallow, or irrelevant, your online image is nonexistent, shallow, or irrelevant to prospective customers. So how do you create content that’s interesting and engages your audience? Here are three ways to create content that has relevant context:

1. Use Current Event Context: Pay attention to trending topics, and write about them when they relate to your company.

For example, Wineman Technology, a test solutions provider, created INERTIA, a product that serves as an add-on to the National Instruments NI VeriStand platform. Instead of announcing INERTIA on just any day, Wineman waited until the upcoming NI Veristand release, and then quickly released the INERTIA news. New NI VeriStand announcements are covered by dozens of journalists, and now journalists looking to cover the software see INERTIA too, and as a result, INERTIA gets more coverage.

Wineman’s well-timed product announcement garnered media attention since it discussed a topic editors were already looking to write about.

Wineman’s well-timed product announcement garnered media attention since it discussed a topic editors were already looking to write about.

2. Use Personal Context: Communicate to your customers’ pain points, and show that you understand what they need.

Instead of giving your customers a list of features and benefits, show them you understand their biggest pain points. Crank Software, an innovator in embedded user interface (UI) solutions, created video content that showcases a customer application for their Storyboard software platform, and lets the customer tell the story of its challenges, and how Crank Software helped them overcome those challenges and create the best product possible.

By using a personal customer testimonial, Crank shows how a QNX designer benefitted from its Storyboard software. “One of the great advantages of a framework like Storyboard, is that it puts the right tools in the right hands…” –Mark Rigley, Manager, concept design, QNX Software Systems

3. Use Appealing Context: Add features that engage your readers.

When your prospective customers search for you or terms that are relevant to your company, you want the content to appeal to them. The best way to do this is to use a variety of content including web content, blog posts, video, white papers, case studies, and presentations.

At TREW, we’ve created Smart Marketing for Engineers™, a content platform that helps engineers get started with marketing efforts. We’ve created blog posts, web content, e-books, slides, and web content around the topic. When prospective customers search, they see that variety of content and can engage with the content that appeals to them.

A mix of media channels serve members of our audience looking for more information about marketing to engineers.

A mix of media channels serve members of our audience looking for more information about marketing to engineers.

So, how do you create and manage all of this content?
HubSpot Certifies TREW Marketing for Integrated Marketing Platform
TREW Marketing can help you create your content, and as a certified HubSpot partner, we can help you manage it, too. Yesterday at INBOUND 2013, HubSpot announced the next generation of its Inbound Marketing Platform, which will help users create content with the best context possible.

Your web visitors access your content from multiple devices and channels, and have changing needs and interests. With HubSpot’s new Content Optimization System, you can cater online content directly to the visitor, dependent on the device, channel, and needs that categorize that visitor.

The Content Optimization System from HubSpot is the first integrated website, blog and landing page system to recognize the unique needs of visitors and optimize content for each person looking at it. It is mobile-optimized out-of-the-box, fully integrated with every marketing channel, and adaptive to the changing needs of leads and customers.

If you’re unsure about how your current web content is relating to your audience and guiding prospects through the marketing funnel, TREW Marketing offers a Content Marketing Evaluation – an introductory service that uncovers opportunities for web growth and identifies areas for improvement. Our recommendations will prepare you for a thorough content marketing strategy that targets and attracts web visitors using keywords and SEO best practices, converting visitors to leads with CTAs and promotional tactics across the web, and we discuss processes and systems that help to effectively execute a content marketing strategy.

For more about the Introductory Content Marketing Evaluation, contact us today.



For more about the HubSpot Content Optimization System, talk to TREW Marketing today.


Global Aerospace Test Solutions Provider Selects TREW Marketing for Rebranding Campaign

 Marvin Test Solutions Chooses TREW for its Industry Knowledge, Strategic Marketing Expertise

Marvin Test SolutionsAUSTIN, Texas – July 16, 2013 – Marvin Test Solutions, a global provider of aerospace and manufacturing test solutions, announced today its selection of Austin-based TREW Marketing to lead the development and execution of a rebranding campaign that will position the company for the next 25 years. The New Name, Same Aim campaign centers on Marvin Test Solutions’ long history in the aerospace and manufacturing test markets. The company chose TREW because of the agency’s decades of experience and knowledge in the test, automation, and broader engineering and sciences markets, as well as its strategic, integrated approach to marketing – from brand positioning and web design to print and online advertising.

“TREW’s experience working with engineers and the agency’s results-driven approach to marketing make them a strong marketing partner for us,” said Steve Sargeant, CEO of Marvin Test Solutions. “Working with TREW for just a short time, we’ve already made important steps in refining our company’s position and communicating our future focus to our customers and key markets. We are well-positioned going into the second half of 2013.”

Marvin Test Solutions is a business unit of The Marvin Group, an award-winning group with a 50-year history in the defense and commercial aerospace industries. Celebrating its 25-year anniversary, the company provides long-term solutions and support that meet the precise challenges of aerospace and manufacturing test applications. Its proven success includes systems deployed in support of major platforms in use around the world, including flightline, intermediate-level, depot-level, and production acceptance testers for F-16, F-15, TA and FA-50, AH-64, Boeing 737 and 787, and commercial space systems.

As TREW Marketing works with Marvin Test Solutions to build a marketing foundation that will serve the company for decades to come, services and projects will include:

“Working in the mission-critical arena of aerospace test requires that Marvin Test Solutions’ marketing strategy is specific and unique, speaking directly to the needs of military and commercial aerospace providers,” said Rebecca Geier, Principal and Co-Founder of TREW Marketing. “With our focus of serving engineers and our full-service marketing approach, we can help Marvin Test Solutions grow its awareness and success as it positions itself in the aerospace and manufacturing test markets for the next 25 years.”

Marvin Test Solutions expects to roll out its New Name, Same Aim campaign throughout 2013.

About Marvin Test Solutions

Marvin Test Solutions, a vertically integrated aerospace test and measurement company, has delivered innovative, feature-rich test solutions for factory, flightline, intermediate-level, and depot-level applications since 1988. As a business unit of the Marvin Group, an award-winning aerospace group with a 50-year history in the defense and commercial aerospace industries, Marvin Test Solutions has test systems deployed in support of most of the major defense aircraft and munitions in use around the world. Marvin Test Solutions quickly delivers full-spectrum, successful test solutions – making test, maintenance, and sustainment of the most mission-critical systems easier and faster.

About TREW Marketing

TREW Marketing, headquartered in Austin, Texas, is a full-service B2B marketing firm uniquely serving leading engineering and scientific companies that target technical markets. TREW uses decades of specialized experience to create custom marketing programs that help customers efficiently and effectively achieve their business and sales. TREW takes an integrated approach using a wide array of marketing services, including market research, brand identity, positioning and messaging, product launch planning, website strategy and design, search marketing and public relations.

Related blog posts

Silex Technology Selects TREW Marketing for Branding and Marketing Strategy

Crank Software Selects TREW Marketing for Embedded Industry Outreach

New Case Study: TREW Marketing Unveils the Secrets of Its Own Marketing Strategy

TREW Case Study
Today, TREW Marketing released a new case study showing a strategic approach to content marketing that ultimately drove 50% revenue and 150% lead growth. This case study takes an in-depth look at the methodology behind four marketing principles, each described with corresponding activities and results. But, the case study is not about one of our clients – it’s about ourselves. We decided to take a snapshot of one year – 2012 – and show what we achieved by practicing what we preach. A few of the topics we discuss in this case study include:

  • Building a solid foundation
  • Website redesign and SEO improvements
  • Timely PR outreach and media relations best practices
  • Customer-centric blogging and consistent social media outreach
  • Engaging e-newsletters and automated lead follow-up
  • Content marketing with focused premium content

Prepared by the TREW Crew, the new case study provides you with a strategic analysis of our own marketing strategy so that you can learn from us and consider the right marketing approach and investment for your company.

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