Content Discovery Smackdown: Hootsuite vs. Buffer vs. KloutContent Marketing Minds: Ingredients of the Tastiest Content [Nutrition Label]From the Corn Field to the Digital Era: Content Marketing Starts with TrustContent Marketing: Is 2014 Really Shaping Up to Be the Year of Video?
Your Customers Aren’t Listening! How to Create Consumer Dialogue that Converts4 Tools for Nonprofit Social Listening and Reputation ManagementThe Promising Role of Social Listening in Treating Health IssuesThe Importance of Social Listening for Brands
- Public Relations
Facebook Testing a Way for Users to Buy Products on the Platform7 Website Tips to Attract More Shoppers to Your PagesHow eCommerce, Augmented and Virtual Reality Will Redefine the Retail ExperienceSearch Query Analysis to Increase eCommerce Website Conversions
- Content Marketing
Technology & Data
Social Startups: Bizible Connects All the Dots from Marketing Contributions to RevenueCreating the Perfect Profile for Your Social Media Marketing EffortUsing GPS and Localization for Social AnalyticsAnalytics and Prospect Intel: Discovering Your Ideal Prospect
- Big Data
- Tech & Innovation
3 Security Risks You’re Taking Every Day While Using Social MediaShould the President Have the Power to "Pull the Plug" on the Internet?How Safe is Your WordPress Website From Hackers and Other Malicious Attacks?
- Software & Tools
- Small Business
- Social Organization
Celebrating the Grand Re-Launch of Social Media Today! SBH Podcast Episode 8Why Should You Care If Your Employees Are Thought Leaders?Beyond Engagement: The Art of Managing Social-Media Risk in Employee Advocacy
Why All-in-One Social Media Management Systems Don't Cut It for Social Customer ServiceWhat You Should Know About Customer, Digital, and Contextual ExperienceSurging into Q3: How to Make It Better Than Q2Is How You Serve Your Customers Costing You Business?
Join us September 15th in Atlanta for The Employee Advocacy Summit and learn how to unleash the power of your employees.
Post your event here and we'll share it with our community. If one of our members is featured, we'll promote as well on their profile.
- Marketplace & Webinars
The SMT Marketplace
Your resource for exclusive content and insights from Social Media Today, and opportunities to reach our community of professionals.
The Social Business Book Club brings you books, discussions, and insights from today's to business thought leaders.
Join interactive talks and and panel discussions with leading thinkers and practitioners on social media and networked business, or browse the catalogue of recorded sessions - all completely free.
Reach Social Media Today's community of marketing and communications professionals in an editor-approved context with a native advertising package.
Want To Increase Conversions? Focus On Referral Traffic
Posted on April 19th 2013
While it’s no secret that referral traffic tends to convert better than direct, search and social, many marketers still pour thousands of dollars into interruption-based advertising and yesterday’s SEO tactics, hoping to generate a return. Earned media represents an effective alternative, not only because it focuses on driving referral traffic, but does so in a way that delivers problem-solving content and builds real relationships.
The Power of Referral
Looking at the past quarter of our own traffic, you can see that even though referral traffic represents a relatively smaller percentage of overall traffic, it generates the highest amount of conversions:
A further breakdown shows that referral traffic converts at almost 4x the rate of organic search:
Invest In Earned Media
An effective earned media strategy can drive referral traffic from trusted sources, like online media outlets and industry blogs. By placing your content on highly-reputable sites, you gain more than just a back-link. Your content will be infused with the brand equity of the platform it appears on, gaining you instant credibility.
Earned Media Comes In Many Forms
An earned media placement doesn’t just have to be a link in a blog post. You should also work to gain the attention of social media influencers:
Even an offline mention, such as Rand Fishkin referencing your CTR study in a live presentation, can drive downloads:
While these examples don’t represent “referral traffic” in the traditional sense, they are a form of earned media.
Everything starts with creating quality content on your own channels. By publishing expert content on your own blog, you can gain the attention of influencers, build your credibility and generate community.
Next, identify potential sources of referral traffic. Are there popular blogs in your industry that feature content from and about organizations like yours? Once you’ve identified those outlets, begin building relationships with editors and other gatekeepers.
Finally, tailor new, problem-solving content for those outlets. Remember: the content itself shouldn’t be designed to promote your products and services. That’s why our content centerpiece campaigns are so effective – the content is so helpful to readers that once they discover it, they don’t know how they ever lived without it.
Building relationships and creating helpful content is the key to generating earned media placements that drive highly-converting referral traffic. Not only is it more cost effective, it’s just more fun to generate!
If earned media is a new concept to you, or if you’re interested in more information about the earned media process and how your business can yield measurable results, download our Inbound Marketer’s Guide to Earned Media.