Toolbox: Online video, e-mail, lead generation, Web site

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How can I unleash the marketing power of my site?

"Your Web site can be the most important, and often most underused, asset in the marketing arsenal," says Robert Rose, VP of marketing and strategy, CrownPeak.

Companies need to be creative with every dollar and leverage three strategies: First, make it easy to help customers find exactly what they want on the first click. "This often means directing them to a dedicated landing page rather than the homepage," he says. 

Next, create a call to action. "Getting users to the right page is only half the battle — the next step is showing them what to do. This can mean everything from a 'buy' button to a link to a recent whitepaper," he explains.

Finally, check your success. "The previous two strategies won't do much good if you aren't capturing conversion data to know which programs, campaigns and activities are getting you results," he notes.


How can I stop buying worthless leads? 

"Run leads through a real-time marketing information services provider that can assign each lead a quality score," answers Jeff Liebl, VP, marketing and business development at eBureau. "This predictive modeling process will enable you to reject fraudulent and worthless leads back to the lead provider and to consider paying more for the highest scoring leads."

Lead buyers and sellers both stand to gain from this approach, Liebl contends: "Companies can no longer afford to fly blind in assessing new lead sources and pricing their leads," he says. "An objective, third-party quality score is required for cost-per-lead advertising to grow and achieve wider market acceptance."


How can I vet an online video advertising RFP?

Seek out transparency and make sure ads are only placed alongside quality content, suggests Tod Sacerdoti, CEO and co-founder of BrightRoll. "New and old media companies tend to operate differently, so many online video advertising newcomers are unsure of what to look for when scanning their first RFP," he explains. "Advertisers should know which specific sites they will be running on, and they should be able to see campaign performance broken out on a site-by-site basis. Advertisers should also make sure their entire allocated budget is served. Video publishers are notorious about over-committing to inventory allocations and then under-delivering," he says.

Sacerdoti also recommends individual agencies use their existing ad servers for billing and tracking purposes because discrepancies are common in online video advertising. 


What should I send first to new e-mail subscribers?

"The early stage of the relationship between senders and new subscribers is very important," replies Kevin Senne, director of deliverability and strategic services for Premiere Global Services. "You may never get the chance to impact the customer psyche as much as in those first messages, so the goal of every marketer should be to develop a one-to-one relationship with subscribers from the get-go."

Start out by introducing subscribers to your e-mail program and Web site, Senne says. "Knowing what to expect from your e-mails, how to navigate information they receive, and how to get more involved builds trust among recipients, he explains. "Don't come on too strong right away and scare away your new friends." l


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