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Frequently asked questions – Content Marketing Campaigns

Please find our answers below to common questions that arise around the delivery of our services and campaign expectations.

Return on Investment and Success Measurement

Overview

Overview

The primary goal for the start of most campaigns (that are starting from cold – with no data, no insights or intelligence and little to no brand awareness) is to build a pipeline. Only then can qualified opportunities be sought. As your sales engagements are rarely transactional purchases, but a contractual or project-lead commitment (requiring reasonable consideration and timing) it can be more time consuming to work prospects from cold to qualified opportunity.

 

Quick-win opportunities may likely be acquired along the way, while the data is being engaged – if the message (and mostly the timing) works with the prospect at that moment in time.

 

To steer greater engagement and positive campaign outcomes, a multi-touch approach is best applied. Reaching contacts via email or social media alone is rarely enough. People still buy from people and a lot can be said for engaging prospects by phone – only with a human conversation can you qualify answers to profiling questions, build a rapport and further a relationship to the point of conversion.

How do I measure campaign success?

Ultimately, you will be looking at your conversion rate and what those clients are worth in terms of monthly recurring revenue (MRR). However, there are some industry recommendations to consider when mapping out return on investment from any marketing activity:

 

  • Consider the number of months spent on marketing to-date to acquire those leads and divide that total cost by the number of leads to give you your cost per lead (CpL)
  • Consider the potential MRR of acquired leads x 60 months (as the average lifespan of an MSP client) = likely total overall value of business opportunities generated
  • Consider the same metric above for pipeline opportunities (not yet converted to tangible sales opportunities) to measure the potential ‘sat in the pot’
  • As you convert business, simply divide the total marketing spend to-date against the number of wins to-date to present you with your cost of acquisition (CoA)
  • The average CoA per net new customer within the MSP industry is £4,000.
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    It goes without saying that the CpL and CoA are going to be high in the early days and will begin to water down more evenly as a campaign matures – more opportunities can be generated and ultimately converted.

     

    Remember too that as you are conducting outbound marketing, engaging prospects that are not necessarily completely considering a new provider (and may not ‘know you from Adam’) your conversion rate will likely be less than your average conversion rate found for winning new business from inbound enquiries or referrals where the brand confidence is likely stronger.

    What expectations should I have for success?

    If we are completing a content marketing service on your behalf, the following statement will be relevant for you.

     

    In this sector it is incredibly difficult to measure the success and ROI (in the short-term at least) from a content marketing campaign – even more so if that campaign does not include any email marketing. It is recommended to bolt-on follow up sales engagement from within your own team to ensure the data list is cleaned, profiled and nurtured to cultivate more relationships than the content marketing can do alone.

     

    Much of the goal of the content marketing is to build brand awareness (making it easier for new prospects to a. find you when they are in the market, b. increase your chances of passing the scrutiny of a prospect if your business appears current, active and on the ball and c. stand-apart from competitors by continually maintaining the up-keep of your brand and marketing messages when others will likely fall away.

    Operational Matters

    How does the onboarding process work?

    Our onboarding process is structured to a number of points listed below:

     

  • Agreement paperwork: our agreement will be sent to you for digital signature via HelloSign. Once signed, the following steps occur automatically after.
  • Onboarding form: a web form link will be emailed out to you, which we use as our way of collecting all of the fact based information we need (such as credentials to social media accounts and the website), along with other company information (such as USPs and target audience demographics). This form will store the access details within our password management tool discretely and populate the rest of our system fields to best help us deliver on your campaign.
  • Sendgrid setup: we use Sendgrid as a third-party SMTP service to securely and successfully mask an email address on your domain. We will share with you a number of CNAME entries to make on your domain to permit the successful masking.
  • Content calendar: we will then set about aligning messages from our content calendar to your campaigns and share that with you. Note that this may be subject to change – we are keen to be dynamic in altering campaign themes to suit current trends or timely messages (such as changes in work because of the COVID-19 pandemic).
  • Go-live: we will share with you our content calendar and begin the cycle of weekly news & social posts (if relevant to your service with us). Dependent on our current workload, your first block of campaign content (and any other assets we’re preparing for that as a part of your service with us) will follow in the days after.
  • Check-in: for full-service clients, we will have a check-in call after the first 4-6 weeks of campaign activity to discuss and review the progress of sales pitches from the calling activity to-date.
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    Ongoing support will then be made available from your account manager, limited to the range of retained services / hours from us.

    When is our campaign go-live date?

    Campaigns are usually ready for go-live within 2-3 weeks of onboarding. A go-live date will be confirmed with you at the point of sharing your content calendar once the messages have been arranged and the workload slotted into our schedule.

    How are activities scheduled?

    Dependent on the services you have from us within your content campaign – each week you will see the publication of 3-4 unique news posts to the blog and social channels. Each month (around the same date) the personalised campaign content will go-live to the blog and social channels, followed shortly by any email campaign (if included), which is set to drip to the dataset weekly.

    How is the content personalised for us?

    Despite having to use the same themes and key messages between our client base (all operating within the same sector and providing the same services), all of our pieces of content are re-written uniquely for each client campaign. We use insights gained from our client at the onboarding stage to personalise content in the right tone of voice and using brand USPs.

     

    It is of course incredibly competitive to rank well on Google for some of the content topics used within campaigns, as there are literally thousands of organisations globally writing around the same points – between the vendors, distributors and other service providers. But with uniquely written content, there is no SEO conflict and despite the challenges, there are SEO benefits to your website. Not only that, it keeps your website current and gives you something educational, useful and engaging (in business language, not technical language) to use via email and social with prospects too.

    How are content topics / campaign messages selected?

    We build a content calendar that cycles between the key service / product areas served by the MSP community. There will also be opportunities to spur off of this as other topical and timely message circumstances arise.

     

    As we do not support conflicting MSPs in the same operating territory, there is little chance of clashing with similar content messages being posted by us to other sector businesses. That said, (where feasible), we work on a cycle of differing themes between our clients.

     

    Our price point and structure of the service does not allow room to vary far from our core topics. Where we can personalise the content to your brand messages and USPs we will, however within these price point of these packages we are unable to facilitate custom themes not on our content calendar.

    Can I scrutinise a proof of the content before it goes live?

    To operate within a keen price point, we deliver this service to a number of a strict step by step processes. To enable us to operate a seamless ‘all done for you’ service, we are unable to include a step for proof & edits before sending content live – as we need to publish the blogs and social posts at the same time (ensuring that we have all the content and links are live for us to publish everything publicly). An iterative process would remove our ability to complete this action in one step.

    We can however draft the content and posts and share those with you for your edits and your own publication instead.

    Are you able to post to my personal LinkedIn profile?

    No, unfortunately LinkedIn does not permit API-based tools to make posts to personal profiles. So we are unfortunately not able to post to these using our tools. We are able to post to the company profiles within LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. We do recommend that you share company posts from your own LinkedIn profile to generate more awareness and in-turn potentially expand your company page following.

    How does reporting work?

    We are in the process of rolling out access to our CRM, RADAR. Within RADAR you will find a dashboard that publishes ‘live’ statistics based on the services we provide for you. Please see the RADAR dashboard documentation to understand the specifics.