TopRank Marketing Editor

SES San Jose: Global Search for the B2B SEM

TopRank Marketing Editor     Online Marketing, Search Engine Strategies, SEO

Global Search for the B2B SEM

The global market represents a huge opportunity for those who can master the nuances of local customs and languages.

In this session, leading global B2B search marketers Patricia Hursh, President of SmartSearch Marketing, Kevin Lee, Executive Chairman and Co-Founder for Didit, and Jeffrey Pruitt, President of SEMPO and VP of Corporate Sponsorships for iCrossing share their advice on how to optimize your global search efforts to improve ROI for global B2B campaigns.

Patricia Hursh kicked off the session, giving tips on how to get started in global B2B search.

Before launching a global B2B search campaign, consider:

  • Which search engines to focus on
  • The importance of translation
  • Regional search trends
  • Ease of PPC campaign set-up

To identify where to focus efforts, first you need to understand what search engine is used within the targeted country/region.

  • China Search Engine Market Share. Baidu is the number one search engine in China with 60% of the market share. Baidu is also the third largest search engine used around the world.
  • Japan Search Engine Market Share. MSN is the number one search engine in Japan. Biadu only just officially launched in Japan eight months ago.

In addition to understanding search patterns, it is important to research seasonality, not just in the US, but across the globe. Don’t expect the trends to be the same as in the US markets.

The Importance of local language varies based on:

  • Search engine requirements
  • Target audience language skills
  • Searcher preferences
  • Acceptable methods

Go beyond translation…Think localization

  • Capitalize on local dialect, vernacular, cultural references, current events and regional word preferences. Use a ‘local voice’
  • Work with native speakers currently living in the country
  • Utilize translation memory tools

One thing to keep in mind is that click volume may be harder to estimate in other countries. Google PPC is much more consistent and re-establishing credit is not required for global campaigns.

Kevin Lee discussed some of the challenges seen in B2B search as well as global markets.

Challenges in B2B Search:

  • No single decision maker
  • Offline conversions
  • Long lead time and lagged conversion
  • Keywords are often not B2B specific
  • Huge range in lead quality
  • Huge range in LTV of a closed deal
  • Leads can cool off fast
  • Buying cycle and buying process variations

So, how do you deal with B2B metric uncertainly?

  • Lead forms/whitepaper requests/newsletter registrations
  • Visits to the contact us page
  • Phone calls (tracking at the keyword level)
  • Immediate orders
  • Site stickiness
  • Lead scoring

Why geographic segmentation may be the most powerful method of segmentation you have:

  • Clicks are worth different amounts
  • Customers have different profit profiles
  • Prospects respond to different messages

However, geo targeting is only one segment lever, other segment levers include:

  • Time of day
  • Day of week
  • Network click source (context vs. search)
  • Demographics

The Power Segment is like the perfect storm and happens if the same geo or daypart segment has:

  • Better conversions from click to lead/sale
  • Higher immediate revenue value
  • Better lifetime value of the customer

Should all regions use the same metrics?
Sites and communication strategies may need to vary by regions due to:

  • Different success metrics
  • Different values assigned to metrics
  • More touchpoints may be needed
  • Competitive landscape is different by region

Kevin summarized with the advice to B2B owners, stay educated on best practices and pick the right technology for your target audience.

Jeff Pruitt covered some trends in B2B SEO & SEM. He urged that in order to launch a successful B2B campaign, you have to identify your strategy.

Things to consider when developing your campaign strategy:

  • Understand the communication flow
  • Successful global marketing strategies rely on localization
  • Determine your global business goals and objectives to select the right tactics

B2B trends in SEO / SEM

  • Mobil
  • Display offers
  • Social engagement
  • Web Development

Extending search into the local B2B market is difficult enough. To take it globally, you need to look at the program management process. Understanding search triggers is important to identify the search channels to leverage.

Campaign execution factors to consider:

  • Localization
  • Know your space

Does your global B2B marketing campaign take into account what search engine iyour target market using?

For more photos from SES San Jose, be sure to visit TopRank on Flickr.

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  1. Nice coverage Jessica. Glad you emphasized localization as it seems everyone made sure to mention that on the panel. Best question was, “Is it okay to use translation software?”. Resounding answer, NO!