The social world of blogs and Twitter has changed how we use and measure conversions and the very idea of how to turn a visitor into a potential lead.
Consider how email or web marketing used to operate with a few traditional interactions:
- Subscribing to the company email newsletter
- Downloading a demo of a tool or piece of software
- Downloading a special report or white paper
In all these cases, the contact details of the person interacting with the brand can be easily captured and then followed up – turning the interaction into a potential lead very easily.
But these days it is unusual to see brands ask for an email address in return for a white paper – it feels old fashioned even – so what are the new interactions that can create an opportunity for conversion?
- Commenting on a blog
- Liking a Facebook post
- Retweeting a post on Twitter or replying to a post
- Interacting with another social network, such as a +1 on Google Plus or pinning something on Pinterest
These are now far more common interactions with a brand and these changes are outlined in an interesting article on B2C magazine here.
B2C concludes that what you really need to measure in this new world is the engagement itself. Do the interactions match what you are trying to say as a business and do they eventually create leads?
I would add that this applies also to B2B companies too, except the interaction is one level removed. If the engagement influences and engages those who influence your customers then it can be successful – for most B2B companies that would include the press, analysts, consultants and advisers.
This engagement may seem harder to measure than the old direct conversion from interest into a lead, but true engagement will generally show a much higher level of interest in what you are doing and can therefore be more highly valued that the old days of someone who just download a white paper or joined the newsletter.
Photo by Sharon Pruitt licensed under Creative Commons