The Value of Integrating Different Internet Marketing Methods
The point here is not to boast – these results are due to the collective
efforts of my expert team, not solely my own expertise. The point is to
back up my contention that we practice what we preach and that the vast
majority of our leads come from the internet marketing methods we apply
to our own site. However, there has been much debate over the years in
the search engine marketing community about whether it is proper or even
hypocritical for a search engine marketing company to use other forms
of advertising unrelated to internet marketing. The naysayers generally
have a common argument: a quality search engine marketing company
“shouldn’t need” to engage in any forms of offline marketing. Depending
on the goals one has for their search engine marketing company, this
may actually be true for some. A smaller boutique firm or an independent
consultant may have all the leads they ever want from their internet
marketing methods. They may even be turning business away while they
make blog posts about how companies such as mine shouldn’t need to look
offline for additional business opportunities.
However, this again relates directly to goals. If a search engine
marketing company has capacity even after they maximize their online
leads, and their business plan calls for maximum growth, what is the
issue with engaging in other forms of marketing? As long as other
marketing channels provide an acceptable ROI, I do not buy the argument
that you “shouldn’t need it,” no matter what your situation.
The metrics are obviously what are important. It has been our experience
that our own internet marketing methods provide us with, by far, the
highest ROI of any of our other marketing efforts. However, this does
not mean that the ROI from our online marketing efforts constitutes the
baseline for what is ACCEPTABLE in terms of a return. In fact, we have
done the math, and we know that we can afford to pay much more per lead.
Or, to look at this another way, we often work with companies that are
embarking upon online marketing for the first time. These companies
almost always already have successful offline marketing campaigns in
place (after all, they are successful businesses). They are obviously
delighted when they discover that their cost per lead or cost per sale
with internet marketing is much lower than their other marketing efforts
– but does this mean that they decide to shut those other successful
channels down? Of course not.
And do we, as a responsible search engine marketing company, advise them
that they should shut down those channels and put all of their eggs in
the online basket? Of course not. We just enjoy the fact that our
internet marketing methods provide the best bang for their buck.
Nobody can deny that the advent of various internet marketing methods
has been a game-changer. Some forms of traditional advertising may even
be on their last legs. Trade show attendance is down. Magazines and
newspapers are in decline. I can’t remember the last time a door-to-door
salesperson came up to my house* (except those selling a particular
religion – but that’s a different story).
However, some channels, in our experience, still can provide exceptional
returns. Direct mail, done properly, still works for us. Channel
partnerships with offline marketing businesses can be profitable.
Offline PR, when done properly, provides our search engine marketing
company with exceptional exposure and returns. As long as we are
achieving acceptable margins on these endeavors, we will continue to use
And I will continue to stand incredulous when I hear from those who tell
me that we shouldn’t.
*Unless you count Girl Scouts peddling cookies.
(C) 2010 Medium Blue