The process of systematically comparing two versions of a web-page, email or advertisement to see which performs better. An example of A/B Testing might be randomly serving visitors two different pages, and measuring the respective click-through rates of both pages.
This type of testing may also be used for paid search advertising. By experimenting with different rotating ads, content that improves the performance of the advertisement can be prioritised over time. A/B testing is an important part of developing optimised content.
Analytics are sets of data extracted from campaigns to analyse trends and develop actionable insights. In regards to B2B marketing, this involves measuring marketing activities to evaluate trends in order to optimise campaigns over time.
For example, you may use Google Analytics planted in the header of your website to measure where most of the traffic is flowing. You may wish to prioritise content based on these insights. Analytics also form a crucial part of any paid online advertising campaign. The analytics measured allow the operator to adjust spending and strategy to attain the highest return on investment (ROI).
Application Programming Interface (API)
/aplɪˈkeɪʃ(ə)n ˈprəʊɡramɪŋ ˈɪntəfeɪs/ Noun
APIs are a series of programming rules that enable different applications (often built in completely different language or technology) to extract information from one software service and use that information either in their own application. In layman’s terms, APIs are essentially clearly defined methods of communication between various software components.
An adjective used to describe when a business sells to other businesses. Specifically this relates to the marketing activities uses to sell to other businesses for resale or wholesale. The transactions in B2B marketing are notoriously more complex and will often involve selling to a variety of decision-makers within an organisation over a long time.
An adjective used to describe when businesses sell to consumers. Business to consumer marketing is about selling products directly to consumers. As a result, many of the channels and strategies employed in B2C marketing vary greatly from B2B marketing.
A regularly updated website or web-page run by an individual or small group. Often written in a conversational style. Blogging is a crucial element of most organisation’s inbound marketing strategy. Blogs can increase SEO, generate traffic and assist in raising awareness of a company’s goods and services.
Blogging is employed often by B2B marketers, as demonstrating knowledge of an industry, product or service, helps to position a company favourably within the eyes of other B2B purchasers.
Bottom of the Funnel
Refers to the purchasing stage of the sales funnel. The sales funnel itself is representative of the journey a consumer makes from the first point of contact with a business to the eventual purchase.
Bottom of the funnel activities refer to the final sales-ready stage of the lead cycle. This may take the form of a sales team targeting an account using CRM software. Sales ready leads may be invited to talk in person, or made an exclusive offer to encourage them to purchase.
The percentage of visitors of webpage, or those open an email, who later navigate away from the page without clicking any further links. This metric is a very easy way to see how engaged users are. Ideally you want visitors to click-through to another page or follow a specific call to action. Bounce rates vary depending on the content and type. A ‘good’ bounce rate is roughly 40-55%.
A profile that represents your ideal customer. Unlike simply establishing a target audience, buyer personas are a way to personalise your content. By describing your ideal customer, you can write and prepare content specifically targeted towards them.
While knowing your target audience (age, demographic, gender) can help you generally, having painted a specific mental portrait of the ideal buyer will allow you to speak to them in a very specific.
An invitation for a customer to undertake a specific action, instruction or directive. A call-to-action, or CTA, is the key to unlocking your sales funnel. Think of a CTA as the guide for customers to follow. By provoking the customer with irresistible offers, you are slowly nurturing them and bringing them to a point where they are sales ready. CTAs must be specific, have a direct action associated with them and offer a benefit to the user.
A percentage rate at which customers stop subscribing. This metric is used in B2B email marketing to determine how many customers are being lost on average per campaign. Your churn rate can indicate whether you should be sending off content more or less often, as well as many other insights.
Clickthrough Rate (CTR)
The metric that identifies the amount of visitors to a page who click a hyperlink compared to the number of visitors total. Clickthrough rates, or CTRs, are vital metrics for measuring the flow if your sales channel. By measuring the CTR of paid advertising and email marketing, for example, you can determine how successfully campaign is running.
Improving your CTR can be done by experimenting with new content and optimising your CTAs. CTR is a staple of most analytics dashboards.
A description of the steps taken by an anonymous visitor towards becoming a verified lead. The conversion path is a complete description of the sales funnel and buyers journey. It is best thought of as a map of the path you want your visitors to go down.
Any form of textual, visual or aural content that makes part of a user’s experience. Content is the lifeblood of inbound marketing. It is used to describe blogs, artwork, advertising copy, podcasts, videos, and much, much more.
Good content will bring your audience to you. As they say in that Kevin Costner film, Field of Dreams, ‘If you build it they will come.’
Content Management System (CMS)
A system that manages the modification and creation of content for multiple users. WordPress is one of the most popular forms of CMS. The whole point of building your website around a CMS is that it allows users to easily edit and change the website without having to trawl through endless code.
Conversion Rate (CVR)
The percentage of visitors who completed undertook a desired course of action. The conversion rate, of CVR, is a metric used to measure acquisitions and conversions. An example of this may be a lead magnet on a landing page. Though many may visit the page, those that download the lead magnet may be much fewer. CVR is a good indication of the overall success of campaign.
Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO)
Is the systematic and scientific process of increasing the likelihood of your website visitors to undertake a desired action. Conversion rate optimisation, or CRO, involves a range of activities, that may include A/B testing, CTA optimisation or ad rotation, to name a few.
In simple terms, it is the financial value it costs your marketing organisation to acquire a lead. The cost-per-lead, or CPL, is a key metric for understanding ROI. By optimising you campaigns, you can improve the quality of your marketing spend and hopefully lower your overall CPL.
User generated content that is then edited and prepared to share. As marketing has become less of a one-way communication model and more two-way, interacting engaging with users has become a priority for many organisations.
User generated content allows your stakeholders to engage with your brand, and provide content that can be shared. This type of content is often much more effective as it comes directly from the audience you are trying to target, and makes your audience feel invested in your brand.
Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)
Total Sales and Marketing cost divided by number of new customers acquired. If your customer acquisition cost, or CAC, is higher than your ROI, then you do not have a sustainable business model. By optimising your campaigns you may be able to lower your CAC over time.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
Software that allows the management of relationships and interactions with customers and leads. CRM software is often used by sales teams to manage accounts that the team are targeting. Although information may be relevant to the marketing team, it is often associated with bottom of the funnel activities.
Cascading Style Sheet (CSS)
CSS is an acronym for Cascading Style Sheet, and it’s what gives your entire website its style, like colors, fonts, and background images. CSS will take your website from a series of unorganised text, icons and images and format it in a way that improves the overall visually appeal of your content.
Personalised content that changes depending on the the viewer. Dynamic content is being used more and more by marketers to personalise interactions with clients. A simple example maybe using cookies and location targeting to change the the name of the city referenced in an advertisement to refer to the user’s location.
More complex forms of dynamic content are being explored to optimise site content. Using machine learning, some companies are experimenting with changing the language of copy over time using A/B testing to improve it over time in an automated fashion. This is only one or many ways dynamic content is being utilised by marketers across the globe.
Electronic version of a printed book. Ebooks are often used by marketers as lead magnets. By collating the best content an organisation has, they can offer visitors a high quality product that will hopefully entice them to surrender their email address and other lead information. Most eBooks do not tend to be longer than 20-30 pages, however some can be the length of a short novel.
A calendar used to define and manage the process of content creation from concept to publication. Editorial calendars are invaluable ways to manage large swathes of content. Not only do they allow you to plan content well in advance, they also allow you to track the content you have already posted.
/ˈiːmeɪl/ Noun, Verb
Messages distributed by electronic means via a network. Email is the most common form of communication in business, as such it is also one of the key tools for B2B marketers. Email marketing itself is a whole branch of B2B marketing, that has been written about in depth.
A percentage that demonstrates the number of users who interact with a website, email or piece of content. Engagement rate is an excellent metric to determine how well your content is performing. A high number of followers on a social media channel, for example, but a low degree of engagement. Is not as effective as a lower number of followers with a higher degree of engagement. Building engagement is the key to nurturing leads and improving your overall campaign ROI.
/ˈfeɪsbʊk/ Noun, Verb
To say that Facebook is a ‘a popular online social media platform’ is a bit of an understatement. Facebook is a social phenomenon that has swept the globe. In B2B marketing, Facebook is not an ideal channel as it is mainly a channel directed towards end-consumers.
The place your page visitors will supply information in exchange for your offer. Forms can be prepared using plugins if you are using WordPress. They may also come in the form of an exit intent pop-up, that appears when users seek to leave a page.
Any element (image, layout, content structure) of your website, application or other digital marketing activity that is confusing, distracting, or causes stress for visitors, causing them to leave your page. Friction is a catchall slang term to describe where your sales funnel is failing you.
Google+ is Google’s online social media platform, originally designed to compete against Facebook. While it is not as popular as Google may have liked it to be, it is still a valuable channel as it integrates directly with Google’s other functions.
A phrase preceded by the hash sign (#) used to identify topics of interest on Twitter and other social media platforms. Hashtags were designed to help search functions for users and have since grown in popularity. Hashtags are now being employed on channels where you might least expect it, such as LinkedIn.
An acronym for HyperText Markup Language, a language used to write web pages. HTML is the foundation of the Internet. An understanding of HTML, however basic, can be very helpful for digital marketers, as it allows you greater understanding and control of the online environment.
Inbound marketing is a B2B buzzword that refers to dedicated marketing activities that aims to draw visitors in,rather than businesses having to go out to get prospects’ attention. Inbound marketing is used predominantly in B2B marketing. Given the long lead cycles involved in B2B marketing, inbound marketing activities provide a resource for leads to return to time again.
Content marketing is a particularly influential part of any inbound marketing strategy. By creating useful content, you will find that customers will come to you when they are ready. Outbound marketing is potentially intrusive and can be met with negative reactions, inbound marketing allows users to visit your product or service at their own pace.
An inbound link is a hyperlink from another site to your own website. These links are very important for SEO purposes. The more links you have from high-ranking sites, the more of an authority Google ranks your page. These backlinks are the foundation of external SEO campaigns.
A visual representation of information or data. Infographics are a popular way to disseminate information, These pieces of content are often branded and then shared across the Internet.
A free online photo-sharing application and social media platform. Whilst primarily a B2C channel, B2B marketers occasionally find this channel useful depending on the industry.
Key Performance Indicator (KPI)
A quantifiable metric used to evaluate the success of a defined objective. Key performance indicators, or KPIs, are crucial elements of marketing planning and strategy. KPIs must be specific, measurable and timely. Without KPIs, as the old saying goes, how will you ever know when you have arrived?
Keywords are the topics that web-pages get indexed for in search results by engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Keywords are the currency of paid search advertising, as you are bidding on keywords in order to come up first when users type them into Google.
Optimising your site’s content to target keywords is another key SEO tactic. Although, if you stuff your content with too many keywords, Google’s Algorithm may punish you for it.
A web page, often specifically designed, that serves as the entry point for a website. Landing pages are often associated with paid online advertising. If an online ad advertises a specific product or service, a proper suited landing page will refer directly to that offer as opposed to being a general home page.
It is common for landing pages to be A/B tested to improve performance over time. A good landing page with have a high CTR and hopefully very little friction. Landing pages are also best kept simple.
A person or company who has shown a specific interest in a product or service. Leads are the bread and butter of marketing and sales. It is the job of the marketing team to generate and nurture them, and the job of the sales team to convert them. In B2B marketing, there are a range of different types of leads, from prospects, through to Marketing Qualified Leads (MQLs) and finally Sales-Qualified-Leads.
A process, essential for any B2B Marketing strategy, with the focus on developing relationships with buyers at each stage of the sales funnel. Lead nurturing, alongside lead generation, is one of the key foundations of B2B marketing. A B2B marketers job is simply to create more and better quality leads.
A business-oriented social networking site that has become a staple of the B2B marketing mix. LinkedIn provides access to business accounts and professionals. As well as paid advertising, they allow companies to engage in social sharing. The platform also hosts a popular presentation sharing network called SlideShare, which has become a valuable tool for many professionals across the globe.
Lifetime Value (LTV)
A calculation used to determine the long-term net profit attributed to the entire relationship with a customer over time. Lifetime value, or LTV, is a great way to determine whether there is an appropriate ROI for all your sales and marketing efforts. Although you may not break even with in terms of CAC, your customer LTV may pay off in the long term.
A long-tail keyword is a targeted search phrase that contains three or more words. By targeting long-tail keywords, you will reach a specific audience. Most users tend to type in three or more keywords in a search. If you target a wide variety of long-tail keywords you are increasing chance of gaining a preferential position for your advertising.
Refers to software designed to automate the actions of marketers. Marketing automation software is used significantly in email marketing, and the two terms are often conflated or confused. Email marketing is an easily automated activity, as such a lot marketing automation software allows users to map out lead nurturing emails and what triggers them.
As AI and machine learning improve the performance of automation, this software is becoming used more and more often by marketers to optimise campaigns and nurture leads.
A cross between a landing page and separate website. Similar to a landing page, but may have a separate domain or subdomain name. Microsites are useful if you wish to distinguish a brand from it’s parent brand.
Middle of the Funnel
This refers to the stage that a lead enters after identifying a problem and begin engaging with your brand. The sales funnel itself is a description of the overall buyer’s journey from the first point of contact to the final purchase.
The middle of the funnel activities typically refer to lead nurturing and improving engagement with the brand. Email marketing, remarketing, and targeted advertisements are typical activities associated with this part of the sales funnel.
The optimising of marketing for mobile devices to provide visitors with time- and location- sensitive, personalized information for promoting goods, services, and ideas. Mobiles are almost universal, and expected to be, for all intents and purposes, universal by the year 2020. Mobile marketing can include mobile optimisation of sites, SMS marketing or even mobile specific advertisements.
Mobile optimisation is the strategy for designing and formatting your website so that it’s easy to read and navigate from a mobile device. Given that most emails and websites are viewed on a mobile, this has become a non-negotiable necessity.
A specific form of digital advertising delivery that takes on the form and function of the platform it appears on. Native advertising looks like any old content, much like advertorials in the days of old.
A service by which news is provided on a continuous basis. News feeds are fed information using RSS feeds. News feeds allow information to be disseminated widely and easily. They may also refer to dashboards where news populates the feed.
In today’s digital world, “offers” have a new meaning. Most offers are knowledge-based assets that live behind a lead generation form on a landing page. An offer might come in the form of a competition or a lead magnet (such as an eBook). Offers must be genuinely useful. Poor incentives mean poor campaign results.
SEO based solely on a webpage and the various elements within the HTML. On-page optimisation might include updating meta-descriptions, adding internal links to key pages, or improving the word count and keyword concentration. There are hundreds of SEO related activities that can be applied to improve a website’s page ranking.
Marketing activities where traffic is generated naturally over time, as opposed to inorganic traffic that is mainly paid. Organic traffic typically takes a longer time to generate. Often businesses will have a mix of organic and inorganic traffic.
The optimisation of outside factors that impact how a web-page is indexed in search results. Off-page optimisation may include creating backlinks, guest-posting or creating off-page communities that link back to your main site.
A request to load a single web page on the internet. Page views are a metric used in analytics to measure how much traffic is flowing to a page. This metric can also be helpful to measure blogs for high performing content.
The amount it costs to get a digital advertisement clicked (as opposed to Pay-per-impression). Pay-per-click, or PPC, advertising is the most common billing methods for search advertising.
An online image sharing social network. Although a popular social media channel, it is very rarely used for B2B marketing purposes.
A prospect who has expressed interest in buying your product according lead qualification scoring. Lead scoring may involve creating a points system for leads based on activities they have performed or characteristics that match the business’ ideal customer-base. A qualified lead is one that is nurtured enough to move on from the middle to the bottom of the sales funnel.
A code consisting of black modules arranged in a square pattern on a white background used for storing URLs and other information. The popularity and usage of QR codes has waned in recent years in Australia, however it is as possible as ever in other place around the world, such as China.
An approach to web design that allows for flexible layouts and CSS queries to accommodate various devices. Responsive design has become mandatory for all websites, as most visits to a site are likely to come from mobile or other small-screen devices.
Return On Investment (ROI)
A performance measurement calculation used to evaluate the efficiency and profitability of a marketing activity investment (we marketers try to avoid calling it a cost). Return on investment, or ROI, is key to developing a sustainable marketing campaign, as well as explaining your budget to executives and clients.
/riːtwiːt/ Verb, Noun
A re-posting of a tweet posted by another user on the digital platform Twitter. Twitter is not a common B2B marketing platform, and is not as popular in Australia as it is in the United States for example.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
The process of maximising the number of visitors to a website by improving the search ranking of a website. Search engine optimisation, or SEO, is acknowledge as key marketing activity by most businesses. It may take the form of both on-page and off-page optimisation.
Activities associated with SEO include: backlinking, guest-posting, internal link building, content optimisation and much, much more.
An email marketing term that refers to a reputation rating for your outgoing mail server IP address. This metric is important for email marketers who wish to avoid ending up in the spam folder of their recipients.
Small-to-Medium Business (SMB)
According to the ABS definition, SMBs are defined as companies that have between 1 and 499 employees. Small to medium businesses make up a majority (96%) of the Australian economy.
A strategy that focuses on aligning Sales and Marketing efforts and activities. This handy piece of slang is commonly used to refer to the divide between the two departments, and bringing them together.
A (relatively new) social media application where users send and receive time-sensitive photos and videos known as ‘snaps’. Snapchat is rarely used in B2B marketing, or B2C. Honestly, we’re sure of the point of Snapchat, except for the gamification of ‘streaks’. One of our team is on 168 straight days and counting…
Seriously, do you really need to know what Social Media is? Websites and applications that allow users to create and share content on an interactive platform. Social media management is one of the foundations of modern digital marketing. In terms of B2B marketing, LinkedIn is the most commonly used social media platform.
The phenomenon where people look to the actions of others to determine correct behaviour in any given situation. Often times marketers will use this phenomenon to generate excitement around a product or service. Using reviews, social media and other tactics, it is possible to shape opinions favourably.
Software that is managed and hosted by another company, which stores your information in the cloud. Software as a Service, or SaaS, is increasingly being used for a huge range of business technologies as well as to facilitate marketing technology services.
Top of the Funnel
The early awareness and engagement phase of the sales funnel. The sales funnel itself is the complete journey the buyer takes from the first point of contact to the final purchase.
Top of the funnel activities are associated with the awareness and lead generation phase of a campaign. This may include social media, paid digital advertising, blogs or other content marketing strategies.
A free microblogging social network. Not commonly used in B2B marketing, but not as rare as some other platforms, such as Pinterest or Snapchat.
A person who visits your website for the first time within a period of time. Unique visitors are used to distinguish between how many visitors are arriving for the first time and how many are repeat visitors.
Short for Uniform Resource Locator; this is the text-friendly (hopefully) address of a piece of information that can be used to find, identify and load a piece of content on the web such as a page, image, or document.
User Experience (UX)
The overall experience an individual has with a particular brand, organisation or business. UX is shorthand for User eXperience and includes the strategy of considering and manipulating a user: from their discovery and awareness of the brand (usually via a website or app) all the way through their interactions including purchase, use, and even advocacy of that brand.
UX design is a whole new philosophy being employed by web developers and marketers. Creating an easy to use interface facilitates the flow of a campaign and avoids friction of the sales funnel.
User Interface (UI)
A form of user-to-technology interface that allows users to easily control a software application or hardware device. Apple are recognised as the leaders in UI since the inception of their Apple computers in 1984 used the now ubiquitous “desktop, trash, files and folders” approach to navigating a personal computer. User interfaces are anything from a web-page to a content management system.
An extremely popular piece of content that is shared widely. Viral content is the Holy Grail of content marketing. Creating popular content is what will eventually drive traffic and sales for your business.
A website is a series of connected pages within the overall World Wide Web. Websites are built using programming languages such as CSS and HTML. They may be built on top of a content management system (CMS).
The passing of information, advice and brand advocacy from person-to-person. Word-of-mouth advertising is organic and the best way to gain leads.
Describes the process and flow of a campaign. Workflows can be mapped out and measured using analytics and other measurement and evaluation methods.
A file that lists URLs for a website. Stored for the purposes of allowing search engines to crawl more efficiently. Optimising your XML sitemap is a tactic employed for SEO purposes.
A popular online video sharing platform. YouTube is owned by the same group that own Google. Content on YouTube is therefore prioritised on Google’s search engine. Many B2B marketers post on this site as part of their video marketing efforts.
/zɪp’ə’diː’duːdɑː/ Noun (Informal)
The song you sing to celebrate a successful B2B marketing campaign!
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