Thousands of targeted ad impressions, ramped up lead generation and free money. These are just a few of the lauded benefits of email signature marketing.
But what data underpins this? And is email signature marketing really worth your investment? Well, our calculator is here to help you answer these questions and find out whether it's a B2B marketing hack worth using.
Email signature marketing allows companies to use employee email signatures as ad space. Through banners, animation and text, email signature marketing drives traffic to relevant content and offers on your site. It also improves brand consistency with automatic company-wide updates to email signatures.
Email signature marketing platforms give marketers centralised access to every employee email signature. This means they can send targeted ads to segmented audiences. Here, they can measure campaign analytics like click-through rate (CTR) to determine campaign success. This allows them to optimise future messaging and increase conversions.
Email signature tools have been around for some time. Though users can manually change banners and ads, campaigns can’t dynamically change to meet the needs of segmented audiences. That’s because APIs aren’t enabled.
It’s also challenging to track the ROI of email signature tools. Even UTM codes don’t provide visibility on impressions vs CTR, meaning users can’t track the quality of their campaigns. Further limitations include:
Statista estimates that 306.4 billion emails are sent every day. That means anyone can realise the benefits of this emerging B2B marketing tactic. But larger companies are likely to see greater ROI. After all, the more emails you send, the more ad space you can leverage. That means more impressions, click-throughs and conversions.
Leveraging email signatures as a B2B marketing channel makes total sense. You own your company emails. That means free ad space. Nobody can raise prices or bid higher than you for a search term. So any investment you make won’t be lost down a Google Ad sinkhole.
With email signature marketing, senders can leverage strong personal relationships with recipients to drive open rates, CTRs and conversions. This brand of hyper-personalised advertising is much harder to achieve with targeted ads.
And in cases of cold outreach, a tailored email signature ad reinforces your key messages. An interactive CTA leaves the recipient under no illusions about what the next step in their buyer journey is.
Now it's time to move onto the numbers. But instead of thinking about cold outreach, let’s think about the emails employees send to known contacts.
Here’s an example. A company has 300 employees. On average, their employees send 15 emails to known contacts per day. There are 220 working days per year. So 300 x 15 x 220 = 990,000 emails per year.
As we’re talking about known contacts, the recipient is likely to open the email multiple times. Let’s say 2.5 times on average. 990,000 emails multiplied by an open rate of 2.5 is 2,475,000 impressions.
The CTR for these impressions is 0.5%. 0.5% of 2,475,000 is 12,375 clicks.
If there’s a 3% conversion rate on those clicks, that’s 371.25 conversions. And if the average conversion is worth £100, that’s £37,125 in untapped annual revenue.
For SMBs and large corporates, these returns are simply too good to turn down.
(N.B. calculations made according to Mailtastic data)
To give you an idea of how this looks in reality, we’ve broken down some of our customers’ results with Mailtastic.
In fact, the B2B prospecting solution was so convinced of the benefits of email banner ads that it decided to purchase Mailtastic in May 2020.
The industrial tool supplier also increased marketing campaign reach and website visits while gaining greater brand consistency.
With their workforce of 1,100 employees, the German wholesale giant could realise £158,400* in untapped ad revenue thanks to email signature marketing. (*example figure)
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2020 has been wild. And with pretty much every prediction for the year now fossilised, we thought it was time to hit reset. So we asked Turtl’s Head of Marketing, Karla Rivershaw, about the content marketing trends we should be tracking into 2021 and beyond.
Live video streaming is so successful in B2C because it helps humanise brands. This is also why it presents a really exciting opportunity for B2Bs.
We’ve long tried to shake the tag of “faceless corporates”. And live video streaming gives B2B brands a chance to connect with their audience in a personal way. That’s because it’s unscripted and endearing to prospects and customers.
The Content Marketing Institute also estimates that people are 10x more likely to engage with video content and share it.
So B2Bs that embrace live video streaming are likely to get their noses ahead of the competition.
Many content marketers focus on what they’re writing rather than how they present it. But in the words of Marshall McLuhan, “the medium is the message”.
And content experience issues are rife in many favoured B2B marketing formats. Often published as PDFs, long-form pieces like white papers and reports create scroll fatigue. That means passive user experiences.
PDFs also aren’t optimised for mobile. When the average person spends 203 minutes consuming media on their phones per day, this is a big problem.
So to keep readers’ minds in an active state, they must be presented with improved, intuitive content experiences. In 2021, more B2B content marketers will leverage platforms that enable this.
User-generated content is a marketer’s dream. It’s created for you and it's far more persuasive than anything your brand could say. The tough part is nurturing a fanbase willing to create it.
And although B2C brands have the upper hand in this area, B2Bs are quickly closing the gap. They’re doing this by moving beyond traditional formats like case studies and testimonials.
Earlier this year, we felt Turtl should get in on the act. That’s why we launched an eCourse called “30 days to unforgettable content”. Our email sequence provided one content tip a day for a month to participants. It then rewarded those who completed the course with a shareable certificate.
By including suggested hashtags and social handles in our emails, we sparked a flurry of user-generated content. Our success owed a lot to making our campaign as simple as possible to engage with. Not only did we add value with our campaign, we also provided a clear path for readers to share their feelings.
We expect content creators to repeat this process and build their own armies of brand ambassadors.
Data-driven content is already the bread and butter of successful B2B content marketers. Nevertheless, the insights and analytics we use to improve content experience are scaling up.
The metrics we use to gauge success, for example, are becoming more granular. This means we can fine tune our content strategies to truly meet the needs of our readers.
Whereas the number of downloads may have been used to the determine success of a white paper, content marketers are now looking into:
Say no one reads chapters two and three but the average read time of chapter four is 20 minutes. You’ll want to target your future content efforts on that topic. By doing this, you can guarantee that your content is resonant. It’s also sure to get ROI. And in the current climate, justifying your content marketing efforts against the bottom line is pivotal.
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When readers are in an active state, they engage better with content. To achieve this, research shows that readers:
This means moving beyond block text and constructing list posts and how-tos. These content types allow readers to jump back and forth between relevant sections.
It also means including video content, chatbot popups and polling features which encourage actions on the reader’s behalf.
For example, a dynamic video how-to will help illustrate static instructions. Chatbot popups can point the reader in the direction of relevant related content. Polling features help transform audiences from readers into contributors.
This all engages the reader more deeply in your content. And for marketers, these features provide real-time feedback on your audience’s feelings and opinions. This, of course, is data. Data that you can use in future pieces and campaigns.
At Turtl, we’re backing modular content to have a huge impact on the B2B space. That’s because it slashes the number of pieces content creators have to produce.
As we put it in ourselves, modular content pieces are chunks:
Much like constructing a building, these chunks can be assembled to make a longer piece of content or left as shorter pieces by themselves. Content creators can combine various chunks together in different ways, resulting in new pieces of content from the modules. The important part is that a huge amount of content can be created from the same modules – making one set of information stretch as far as possible.
We’re currently using modular content to create proposal documents for clients to help sales enablement. This means the sales team can input prospects’ industries, interests, challenges and desired outcomes into a form. Because we use modules to arrange our content, we can quickly pull together a customised document for the prospect.
As a result, marketers will lean more heavily on modular content in 2021. After all, its power to maximise content budgets and provide optimised user experiences is too good to ignore.
Last year, Turtl looked at the landmark case of Guillermo Robles vs Domino’s Pizza and how it’s likely to change the stance of B2Bs on accessiblilty.
In 2016, Robles tried to order a pizza on the Domino’s mobile app. To do this, he used a screen reader. This technology translates web copy into audio, allowing visually impaired users to order. But on both the mobile app and the website, Robles’ screen reader was unable to translate the copy. As a result, he decided to sue Domino’s. And he won.
Arguing that the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires businesses with physical stores to make their online platforms disabled friendly, Robles’ attorneys convinced the court about the importance of accessibility. This prompted a whole series of lawsuits which saw other major US companies caught short on the issue. And the tide is beginning to turn on European shores.
To avoid similar lawsuits, B2Bs must become better versed with accessibility standards. Moving away from PDFs, for example, would be a good starting point. That’s because screen readers can’t understand the content on them.
For B2Bs, content operations provides a scalable framework for content production. It does this by equipping content marketers with a toolkit that allows them to take control of every stage of the content workflow.
Canva, for example, gives marketers the autonomy to create blog, social and ad visuals. This means:
As Canva streamlines content production, strategies can pivot quickly, tapping into emerging conversations.
At Turtl, we’re also working to enable content democratisation. Our platform means anyone can produce a slick playbook or whitepaper. To do this, we hard code brand guidelines into our tools, reducing the need for expert input.
Because of the squeeze on marketing budgets, content operations is becoming a smart investment for CMOs. That means hiring in this area is likely to shoot up.
Conversation drives action. That’s why conversational marketing is becoming a trending tactic for B2B brands. For example, B2Bs are using popups and chatbots to address users by name. They also make customised suggestions based on their historical engagements with companies.
Companies like Drift are helping facilitate this shift. With Drift, B2Bs can steer prospects in different directions depending on whether they’re unique or return visitors. This creates tailored experiences for every prospect, depending on their position in the buyer journey.
We can vouch for the impact of conversational marketing too. When we started pushing out a piece called “The 7 types of humour” through our chatbot, the results were incredible.
To initiate the conversation, our chatbox asked visitors: “Hey, do you fancy a laugh?” When they engaged, the chatbot sent them the piece, which wasn’t linked to our software or services. This was a great hook for visitors, often leading them to our next question: “Hey, do you want to see a really neat trick?”
If the visitor answered positively, they were asked for professional information as well as the type of scenery they like. Once the chatbot gathered this information, it auto-generated a piece of content for them along with their name, company and desired scenery.
From these two conversations, we got a five fold completion rate compared to our previous chatbot conversation. We also got a tonne of new prospects requesting demos. The success owes a lot to being human, building relationships and making any content simple to engage with.
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For the fresh-faced content marketer, lead generation feels like sorcery. How can that blog you wrote in a caffeine-induced haze ever become actionable content? And why isn’t every other content creator as stressed about this as you?
Well firstly, they sober up. Then they check that their 2am ramblings are relevant to their target audience. And finally, they read a hell of a lot of guides like this one.
Content marketing lead generation is achievable for every level of content marketer. And we put five tactics together to prove it.
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The keyword-packing SEO hacks of yesteryear are no more. Google now rewards content that’s helpful to readers. In fact, its RankBrain algorithm uses machine learning to determine search intent. In Google’s own words:
Search algorithms look at many factors, including the words of your query, relevance and usability of pages, expertise of sources and your location and settings. The weight applied to each factor varies depending on the nature of your query – for example, the freshness of the content plays a bigger role in answering queries about current news topics than it does about dictionary definitions.
This means that while you must please the Google crawler by doing things like:
You must also answer questions that your target audience has about your niche if you want to generate leads. And comprehensively. Research shows that top 10 results tend to be north of 2,000 words.
Only writing content that plugs your product or service will make you hard to discover on the search engine results page (SERP). Meanwhile, writing content that never plugs your product or service will turn leads towards your competitors. That’s why creating content for different stages of the buyer’s journey is so important.
In the Awareness stage, buyers know they have a problem but they don’t know how to solve it. On search engines, they’ll make informational queries like:
When the buyer is working out solutions to their problem in the Consideration stage, they’ll make navigational queries like:
They’re also likely to carry out some commercial investigations by searching:
In the Decision Stage, when the buyer is ready to choose their fate, they’ll make transactional queries like:
For content marketing lead generation, you must create a blend of this content. By doing this, you’ll be able to guide them from A to Z. A detailed picture of your ideal customer also helps in this process. With one, you’ll be able to specific wants, needs and pain points in every piece.
Achieving your lead gen goals is directly linked to your visibility on search engines. And getting to page one of the SERP is crucial. That’s because 75% of searchers don’t get as far as page two. So, choose your target keywords and track them.
And if you don’t quite reach page one, think about adding more value. To do this, you could create an infographic to your piece, adding relevant alt text. You could also Google search your keyword and review FAQs and related searches. This will help to improve the depth of your content.
Tools like Google Analytics also give you key metrics like session length, bounce rate and click-through rate (CTR). The more data you gather, the more effective you’ll be in recreating content types that your audience responds to.
Say your blogs about content marketing have high session lengths and low bounce rates. Whereas your blogs about tips for startups have low session lengths and high bounce rates. To action that data, you’d exchange your content about startup tips for more content marketing pieces.
If you’re ranking in the number one spot for your search term, your competitors are trying to dethrone you. The good news is you can stay ahead of the game by updating your content. Identifying keyword gaps and including new research to back up your points prompts Google to re-crawl your content.
Increasing your reach is also an important content amplification strategy. And industry influencers can help you achieve it. That’s because they have large and targeted followings. Their endorsement gives you a gateway into untapped audiences and helps support your SEO efforts.
Beyond socials, influencer networks and organic SEO, where do you turn to push your latest Ultimate Guide, webinar or online event? Well, part of the answer lies in channels you already own.
Email, for example, is a largely untapped marketing resource. And if employees send 40 emails on average per day and the business has 100 workers, that gives you 4,000 opportunities to push your content. Per day.
Email signature software allows marketers to centrally control marketing campaigns. This means you can push different campaigns to different audience segments and measure their success.
Lead capture software, website visitor tracking platforms and social proof tools could also help you drive your content marketing lead generation.
Learn how businesses like yours ramped up their lead generation.