June 6, 2010 Michael Bickerton
We have developed a smart process to generate qualified leads online. In essence, we help clients make the shift from “hunting for customers” to “being hunted by customers”. And for almost all it makes perfect sense. They nod their heads and even engaged in good questions and they truly “get it”.
Yet they continue to buy newspaper and radio ads. They continue to use the expensive, mass media options we all grew up with (or at least most of us). The 2 most alarming or mind-boggling responses we get are:
“We have no budget for online lead generation this year – we will look at it next year” – well folks that may be one of the best examples of closing the barn doors after the horses are out” that I have seen. The consumer has already changed the way they buy. In fact, The Globe and Mail recently interviewed the CFO of Google who reported that more than 70% of all consumers do their research online before buying. In other words – they come up with their short list. It’s really simple: if you are not there, you do not make the short list. This year, or next! We know change is often difficult, but stop wasting money on expensive mass media options. We now know they don’t work.
Target smart. Allow yourself to BFOUND when people are looking.
“Who are they?” – that’s the typical response when we show a “traditional marketer” the Google results of the term they think they should dominate online. You see they know their product inside out. They know that they are the best at X. Problem is: the rest of the world (and Google) does not know. They have not done the basics. The fundamentals of being found.
So what comes up on the search page elicits the response “Who are they?” as they point at the new competitors who are eating their lunch. They know business is off, but they blame it on the soft economy. They don’t realize it is never coming back. Like it or not, Google has changed the world. Now people know how to find you easily when they need you (or somebody else just like you). The consumer has become the hunter and the marketer must learn to be the hunted.
That’s a mind trip isn’t it?
Wake up while you can still influence the organic listings for certain productive search terms. In a few years the competition will be fierce and the cost to impact organic positioning for important keywords or phrases will be stiff.
Me thinks Google is in the cat-bird seat.
Michael Bickerton, Raven5, March 2007