Posted by Todd Hockenberry ● Jan 22, 2016
Turning a Catalog Website into a B2B Lead Generation Machine
About Durable Technologies
Durable Technologies manufactures and supplies a wide selection of traditional marking tools for industrial part marking, package date coding as well as hot stamping and branding applications. They service a wide cross-section of industries including, but not limited to, aerospace, automotive, metal fabrication, forging, defense, firearms, food and beverage, pharmaceutical, medical and jewelry.
What makes Durable different is.....
- 100+ years of application experience - there is nothing they haven't seen or done when it comes to marking
- Durable Technologies' broad line of product solutions for direct part marking – they develop and recommend the best solution for their customers
- Durable Technologies has a solution for every budget, every delivery need, and just about every direct part marking requirement - they can easily and cost-effectively meet all of their customer’s marking needs
The problem was that not enough people knew that this extraordinary company existed.
In 2009 Durable realized that they were not being well-served by their website in terms of visits, leads, and credibility. They outsourced website management and development to a local web marketing firm and had no tools to be able to work on the site themselves.
While this firm did the bare minimum to maintain the site, Durable would have to send requests for minor changes and would get a quote for the most basic of updates. There was no specific strategy to develop content, optimize keywords to reach target audiences, or mechanisms on the site to convert visitors to leads.
So not only was the website ineffective it was annoying to work with and costly to update.
“We needed a website that generated demand and leads for us and was not just an online catalog of our products” said Kari Lunden, CEO and President Durable Technologies.
With no internal capabilities to manage their website Durable was faced with a need to continue outsourcing online marketing but to also be able to exert more control over their online presence.
Durable had also purchased another company and needed to integrate all of the marketing and sales efforts into one system.
Durable’s traditional sources of leads were no longer yielding the same quantity and quality of leads as in the past. Many of Durable’s traditional customers in the manufacturing sector were either struggling with reduced volume or going out of business entirely.
Durable did not rely heavily on trade shows or advertising in trade publications but the ones that they did invest in were not returning enough leads and customers.
Durable needed a methodology for developing significantly more high quality leads that turned into customers. Durable wanted a consistent, reliable, and dependable source of lead generation and engagement with their target customers.
Durable needed a demand generation tool that was cost effective and generated a high ROI on an ongoing basis.
In early 2010 Todd started working with Durable to help them launch some new products and penetrate new markets.
When we became aware of the situation with the website, we suggested that Durable move the website hosting to HubSpot and take back control of the ability to manage, update, and develop their website. Durable was happy with Todd's other consulting work so they asked us to take over the management and development of the website using HubSpot. Thus, Durable became our first customer using HubSpot and sent us on the road to becoming a Silver Level HubSpot VAR.
“Obviously the results have been great and they speak for themselves. What I really like about HubSpot is the way I have control of our website – I can edit and add new content, manage new leads, and the software allows me to manipulate the analytics in so many different ways. I’d have to say I’m a big fan of HubSpot!”, says Matt Martin, Director of Sales & Marketing Durable Technologies.
Initial efforts focused almost solely on cleaning up mistakes and errors on the site and beginning the process of search engine optimization (SEO). Basic SEO best practices were not followed previously so with 150+ pages to fix the first effort was to build the foundation for the site so it would begin to attract visitors.
The steps in the process were:
- determine the target audiences for each product and page
- develop target keyword sets for each
- add the appropriate metadata to pages and images
- make on-page adjustments to headers, captions, and body text
We also launched a blog and began to regularly publish marking solutions blog posts. We started targeted e-mail campaigns using the HubSpot e-mail tool.
From the launch of HubSpot with the old site to the launch of their redesigned site in Sept. 2011 we achieved the following results:
- Increased by 400% the number of website generated leads
- Increased organic search generated site visits by over 350%
Lead quality had also improved as more people were contacting Durable with specific product questions and quote requests. Leads were now converting into sales at a higher rate and even with the overall market for direct part marking technology taking a serious hit during the recession Durable was able to maintain sales levels and even grow in some key product areas – many of the sales were from new customers seeking new suppliers that found Durable using online search.
The challenge in 2011 was to continue to increase visits, leads, and sales by adding new content, offers, and landing pages, to the site. Durable also requested a site re-design to reflect a consolidation of subsidiary companies under a new corporate umbrella.
Along with migrating the existing content to the new design
- We created new content that reflected ongoing keyword research and visit data.
- We built new offers for products, applications, and problems.
- We began publishing regular, customer-focused, blog posts.
- We engaged existing customers through Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
- We began sending regular emails to our leads and customers.
One of the most important changes we made was making every page a landing page. People searching online for marking solutions could find the Durable site in many ways and we found that by adding conversion forms to each page we gave visitors a quick way to convert into a lead and request more information.
2011 Results continued to show the power of HubSpot and inbound marketing. Overall site visits were up over 250% with leads up 200% from 2010 levels.
Visit to lead conversion % had doubled.
Most importantly sales also grew and Durable enjoyed their best sales year ever in 2011.
2012 started off with a bang with January being the best month ever for organic visits, overall visits, and leads.
“Not only are we getting significantly more leads but the leads are of higher quality. We talk to people that have specific problems we can solve and they are ready to buy”, states Matt Martin.
Results of Site Re-Design and Optimization:
- More than doubled organic searches from 1,389 in Nov., 2011 to 2,843 in Jan. 2012
- Increased leads from 66 in Nov. 2011 to 116 in Jan. 2012 or an increase of 76% in just 90 days.
The SEO efforts are clearly starting to pay off in terms of targeted visits and sales-qualified leads. One trend we want to continue is that more leads are coming in asking for very specific quotes for products. This tells us that our SEO efforts match the target personas and that the content on the site answers their questions and solves their problems. More of the leads are also from new prospects and represent incremental sales growth opportunities in the future.
From 2012 into 2015 we continued to build on the success of the initial inbound marketing work and the website re-design. Our tactical implementation steps include the following.
Developing a testimonials blog
The new testimonials blog is where we run stories about customers and how they apply the products and ideas they buy from Durable Technologies to do their jobs better. We have had customers very willing to share their stories from a division of GE to a hand craftsman making high-end knives. They share their content and we promote their products.
Long Tail Keyword Blogging
We continue to publish articles meant for very narrow niche applications in the marking and part identification world. Durable Technologies knows who their customers are and writes focused content that helps them in practical ways. Long-tail SEO works very well for them and continues to drive leads and traffic.
Durable Technologies has an ever-expanding contacts list of thousands of technical people, business owners, and shop floor managers that listen when send blog and offer updates via email.
The results from 2013 and 2015 have been impressive and match the company goals of slow and steady growth.
Future plans center on expanding our inbound marketing efforts in social media including building Twitter groups that are formed around specific industries and then publish specific content that relates to marking and identification problems and solutions.
We will also beef up Durable’s Facebook and LinkedIn content to attract people interested in our types of solutions.
We will be using more video as well as a way to show how people can deal with unique marking and identification problems along with attracting more prospects by optimizing the videos on YouTube.
We are creating e-books relating to specific customer applications. Our goal is to be the go-to place for expertise relating to manual direct part marking.
After 3 years a design update is also on the horizon.
“Todd and his team have been and will continue to be our marketing for manufacturing partner for one simple reason – they deliver results. We continue to meet and exceed our sales goals due to the marketing and lead generation system Todd and our team have created and we expect to continue to do so.”
CEO and President Durable Technologies
Topics: Case Studies