Why email marketing beats social media in lead generation, and what you can do about it

When it comes to lead gen, email marketing will always beat social media

Social media has many legitimate marketing uses. When used right, social lets you build a genuine relationship with your customers. It helps you find out what people are saying about your brand and it enables you to share interesting content with your audience. Regardless of whether they’re in B2B or B2C, most businesses today can’t afford not to have a social media presence.

But there’s one thing that social media isn’t great for: lead generation. Social media works effectively for many marketing activities, but generating new leads isn’t one of them. In fact, when it comes to generating leads, the good ol’ email will always beat social media. One 2014 study from management consulting firm McKinsey & Company suggests that email conversion rates are 40 times higher compared to Facebook and Twitter combined. “The rate at which e-mails prompt purchases is not only estimated to be at least three times that of social media, but the average order value is also 17 percent higher,” according to the report.

An understanding of its drawbacks as a lead gen tool is critical to getting the most out of social media marketing. So why is email, a relatively old channel, better suited for generating leads? Here are a few reasons why.

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5 Steps to Allocating Your 2015 Social Media Marketing Budget

Social media budgeting for 2015

This is a guest post from Ivan Serrano, a social media and business journalist comfortably living in the Bay Area of California. You can follow him on Twitter and Google+

As the new year approaches, businesses should expect big changes for their social media strategy.

Social media experienced some big changes in 2014. New platforms such as Ello were introduced, Snapchat introduced Snapcash, and Facebook began taking action to create more organic content on its platform.

With these changes, brands are going to need to know what trends will impact their social media strategy in 2015. As you continue to plan your social media marketing for 2015, here are five things you should keep in mind:

1. Adapt to mobile marketing.

Do you have a mobile social media marketing budget in place? If not, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity to reach a larger audience of consumers.

People are spending more time on social media with their mobile device than they do on a laptop or computer. In fact, smartphone users spend more than seven hours each month using Facebook’s mobile app to access their accounts.

When allocating your 2015 social media marketing budget, make sure you create room for mobile marketing. Mobile marketing enables brands to pay attention to their customers’ location and engage with them on a local level. You can also take advantage of photo dependent networks like Instagram to build awareness of your brand on-the-go.

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The smart marketer’s guide to using Buffer for social media efficiency {updated regularly}

If there’s one social media management tool that you absolutely cannot live without, what would it be?

For me, that’s Buffer.

I first discovered Buffer not through their software but through their awesome blog. The folks at Buffer do in-depth, well-researched articles about marketing and life hacks, and more than a year ago, I came across one of their posts. I read their blog posts religiously, and after a few weeks, I was intrigued so I finally tried their software. To this day, the Buffer blog is one of my favorite corporate blogs around.

But Buffer not only has a great blog—they also have a great product. And if you’re serious about having a decent social media presence, you absolutely must use it. I use it to maintain my personal Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn accounts. And for me, Buffer is more than just a social media scheduling service.

How to use Buffer for social media efficiency

Whether you’re a Buffer newbie or a regular user, here are some tips and tricks you should try today.

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How to use Feedly to replace Google Alerts

Use Feedly instead of Google Alerts

Are you using Google Alerts to keep track of news about your brand, industry and competitors?

Google Alerts is great because it’s easy to set up and it helps you monitor the latest relevant Google results (web, news, etc.). Recently it also got a fresh, new look. But if you’re one of the many people who suffer from email overload, getting emails whenever someone mentions your brand may be less helpful and more annoying.

Here’s a better solution: Use Feedly. You may already be using this site as an RSS reader—as a replacement for Google Reader. But you can also use it in lieu of Google Alerts.

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7 flawless marketing lessons from BEYONCÉ

Beyoncé - Flawless marketing lessons

Visual album. 14 songs, 17 videos. And the fans didn’t see it coming at all.

On December 13, 2013, without a preceding marketing campaign, Beyoncé Knowles dropped a visual album on iTunes. The self-titled LP is an instant critical and commercial success, easily beating the total sales of Beyoncé’s last record.

But contrary to what some believe, the release of the visual album does not demonstrate that marketing is dead. Yes, the album’s strategy was unconventional, but BEYONCÉ shows that marketing is even more important than ever. Here are seven marketing lessons you can learn from the “Single Ladies” singer:

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