Integrating Search into your overall marketing plan


Since 1993, I have worked in technology marketing. Before the advent of the internet, email and social campaigns, the main medium to identify, track and get customers into a pipeline was through live events. Those consisted of tradeshows, seminars and analyst meetings. Companies spent tens of millions every year to plan and execute these events. After months of planning, events came down to three to five days of intense marketing to the masses with the result being a “pile of leads” which would be passed off to an internal or external sales group for further qualification.

In speaking with customers either through direct mail, email or phone calls companies had to place an educated guess on how their potential customers were thinking of their product. If you were a company selling routers or Ethernet switches, how would people identify with your product? Would they more readily identify with “Ethernet switch” or “Ethernet switches for financial applications”? This question was often answered with guess work and the only quantitative way marketers could know whether the message was effective was to measure the quantity and quality of leads that were gathered at the event and the individual demo station.

15 years later companies are still doing loads of events, seminars and conferences, but today they have additional information that is not being utilized to attract new customers. As individuals or companies are searching for new solutions to a problem, this data is being recorded and then released to those who know how to acquire it.So if you are a networking company and selling Ethernet switches for the financial market then your marketing team should be coordinating with your search vendor to find out how people are thinking of your product or service. A good search team will be able to tell you the exact words and phrases that people are using to search for your product. If the SEO or search team identifies that potential customers are searching for “Ethernet Switches for Financial” then this exact term should be found in your signage, literature and communication to the wider public. If your signage and other marketing material reflects what your audience is already searching for, then you will be far more successful in your combined marketing efforts.