The answer to this question is a big factor when deciding if you should invest in internet marketing or not. Hopefully the below will shed some light.
Do My Potential Customers Use The Internet?
In some industries people tend to assume that their potential clients don’t use the internet. Sometimes people will assume that an important segment of their potential clients like “business clients” or “high net worth clients” don’t use the internet.
In my personal experience with clients people use the internet to choose what solicitor to use for personal family matters like divorce, businesses and employees looking for employment law solicitors, people looking to make PPI claims, people who have had an accident and want to claim, people looking for an Accountant and many other areas that are much more complex than just shopping for products.
Why It Might Not Have Worked Last Time
If you ran Adwords and you fell short of some of the points mentioned in my previous article “How Good Is Your Google Adwords Campaign?” then a poorly managed campaign may be the reason why.
If you did SEO usually you concentrate on a narrow set of keywords compared to Google Adwords. This narrow set of keywords may:
- not get enough traffic even when you are first
- have other meanings to other people so they aren’t actually looking for your service
- only be used by people that are early on in the buying cycle and not ready to convert
Also the problem may be with your website. There is a conflict between making a website search engine friendly and optimising it to encourage visitors to fill in the enquiry form. You may not have found the right balance. Also your website may only appeal to a certain market segment alienating other potential clients.
There may be a long delay between an initial enquiry and the final order so you may not have ran your marketing long enough or you didn’t correctly attributed the work you got to your marketing effort.
You may have tried Adwords when you should have done SEO or vice versa. If there is a lot of traffic and a wide variety of keywords people use then Adwords can work well. This is especially true where people are likely to do a lot of research first. If there is less variety in keywords or less traffic then SEO may be better as the natural rankings get a higher percentage of clicks than the paid ads.
Why It May Never Work
If you offer a new or relatively unknown product or service then people may not be searching for it yet so search based marketing may not be ideal.
Your area of expertise may be so specific that even if you are getting a slice of the traffic that is out there it may only be enough to bring in a couple of enquiries a year. This can make it seem risky to keep up the SEO or Adwords for a long period of time waiting for that big ticket client.
You may specialise in a particular type of client but there may not be a particular keyword that your target client uses. For example if you only do accountancy work for Solicitors chances are most solicitors just type in “accountant” + their location the same as everyone else. So your cost per enquiry would be very high as you would be turning away 99% of your website visitors as they aren’t solicitors.
What Should I Do?
If you have tried in the past but it hasn’t worked it may worth asking an independent expert to review your past efforts and see if they can identify what went wrong.
If you suspect you are in the “Why It May Never Work” category it may be worth using Google’s keyword tool to see how many searches a month there are for your product or if there are niche search terms like “accountants for solicitors” that you can target.
I can help you review your previous effort or do keyword research on your behalf. I offer both of these services as part of free initial advice I give to anyone who is interested.