A Hosting Provider's Marketing Guide to Attracting New Clients

Posted by Mary McCoy on Jun 3, 2016 11:52:44 AM

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The web and app hosting world is changing. As a small provider, you’re excited to make the most of new opportunities. Here at R1Soft we applaud your foresight. And your fortitude – it’s not easy facing major change with a smile. But you have a plan. 

It takes strategic marketing to activate your business plan. How can you reach out to people most effectively? How can you stay in touch with them, so you can convert prospects into customers and customers into long-term loyalists?

You’re already off to a good start.

You’ve redefined your target audience(s). Now consider:

  • Which segments (types of user groups) are new markets for you
  • Which segments are already familiar with your company and your up-till-now scope of services
  • Why your web and app hosting firm is their best choice partner in a changing business environment (theirs)

You’ve revised your menu of product and service offerings -- adding here, subtracting there. Now consider:

  • Which of your existing customers will want these new options
  • How you will deliver them (as a la carte items or bundled)

 

Now you know what you want to market, and to whom. You need to introduce existing customers to what’s new and explain why these new introductions will benefit them. You can build a multi-channel marketing campaign around each product/service. You need to introduce your company to new targets, whether you’ve changed your niche focus or plan to expand into new geographic areas. You can build a multi-channel campaign aimed at each new audience.

 

How? Web and app hosting providers should integrate all these marketing techniques:

 

Website

Is yours ready to support your business changes? Update your site with everything new and remove anything you will no longer offer to avoid confusion. This is the first step to execute your new marketing strategy. Your website is the primary resource for prospects and customers to learn more about you. There’s no point in advertising new products or services if prospects hit a dead end at your website.

So your site has to be 100% up-to-date and easy to navigate. It also has to be optimized for mobile users. More than half of online searchers now use a mobile device to do that.

Need help with your site? Check out this Getting Started with Website Optimization Collection!

 

Landing Pages/Conversion Tools

These are where you will convert visitors into leads and then engage with those leads until they become customers. Create e-books or whitepapers that explain why your target customers should be using particular products or services you offer. Case studies that show how a specific company benefited from your products or services (they can be anonymous). How to choose a web and app hosting provider for the future. You get the idea. 

Each of these items should have its own landing page – a short description of what it is, why your prospect/customer needs it (how it will help grow their business) and a call to action (“download now”). Provide a short form where your visitor can enter their email address to complete the transaction. They get your e-book, etc. and you get their email address to stay in touch and learn more about their business needs and goals.

 

Blog

This is the single-most effective way to drive traffic to your website. Use your blog to talk about industry trends, new technologies, new products or services you offer, new partners you’re working with. Offer tips to help your target businesses improve their IT planning or implementation. Link to your own relevant blog articles or web pages, or to articles by important industry experts. 

Be sure to invite visitors to subscribe to your blog, so they automatically receive an alert each time you publish a new article. This keeps your name in front of them on a regular basis, and it allows you to capture their email address.

Blogging is a fundamental aspect of any marketing strategy. What are others? Get started with content marketing here!

 

Email

You can use email to converse with customers or prospects one-on-one. When you send individual emails, be sure to include a link to something timely below your signature. That might be your most recent blog post, invitation to an upcoming webinar or announcement of a new case study.

Email is also a key tactic to engage and nurture leads. You can create a series of related emails, called a work flow, around a single topic. Each series is a mini-marketing campaign. Let’s say you want to introduce a new product or service. Your work flow might start like this:

  1. Hey, Mike, check out our new offering. Include 3-5 bullets that list how this product can benefit Mike’s company and an invitation to “call us” to learn more. Don’t forget your name and phone number.
  2. Mike, are you wondering if (the new product) is right for your business? This case study shows how a company like yours is cashing in. Link to the case study and repeat your invitation to chat.
  3. Mike, we bet you found the case study we sent interesting. But how does (the new product) compare to other options on the market? Here are some resources that may interest you. Provide 1-3 bulleted links to relevant blog articles, industry publication articles, etc.

 

As you see, each email builds on the previous one, offering progressive opportunities to further engage your prospect. Send 4-6 total; if they don’t respond by then they aren’t interested right now. But you still have their email address to reconnect with them later on.

 

Social Media

LinkedIn and even Facebook or other social sites can be fertile ground for reaching and engaging with prospective customers. Regular participation reinforces your brand/name familiarity. Be sure to include links to your blog, etc. from time to time. 

 

You can also consider paid mobile or other advertising. Talk to your marketing team about whether this makes financial and strategic sense for your firm. With a new business plan backed up by multi-channel marketing, your web and app hosting company is truly ready to face change with a smile and build a successful BDR sales and marketing strategy.

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Meet Mary! Mary McCoy is Continuum’s resident Inbound Marketing Specialist and social media enthusiast. She recently graduated from the University of Virginia (Wahoowa!) with a BA in Economics and served as digital marketing intern for Citi Performing Arts Center (Citi Center), spearheading the nonprofit’s #GivingTuesday social media campaign. Like her school’s founder, Thomas Jefferson, Mary believes learning never ends. She considers herself a passionate, lifelong student of content creation and inbound marketing.

Topics: Backups, Webhosting, Marketing

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