The Advanced Guide to Marketing an IoT Startup


In this article I will present to you the SEO audit I run on a startup website in the IoT industry.

You will find out how they perform in the most important incoming traffic channels, suggestions to optimize their marketing and other stuff.

Contents

  1. A small intro about this Startup
  2. What is the market offer of this IoT Startup
  3. What are their Target Audiences / Customer Segments
  4. Business Goals / Targets / Important KPIs
  5. What Tactics They Currently Employ
  6. How Efficient are They on Social Networks
  7. Some Traffic Data
  8. Paid Search Stats
  9. SEO Stats
  10. SEO Keywords
  11. Organic Search Rankings
  12. Conclusions

Let’s see what the findings are. Does the business website have enough traffic and are there issues to address?

 

A small intro about this Startup

The company (name not disclosed) GmbH is a start-up company with ten employees located somewhere in Germany founded 2 years ago. Its industry is the Software as a Service (SaaS). The company offers cloud services and connectivity products for the Internet of Things (IoT). They advertise that their products help users to connect, manage, and control devices and services on a global or local scale.

 

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What is the market offer of this IoT Startup

They offer 3 main products or services:

  1. SIM cards that follow a Pay-As-You-Grow pricing model
  2. IoT software solutions
  3. Network components

 

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What are their Target Audiences / Customer Segments

The business focus is B2B with customers spun over 40 countries. Here are some customer segments:

  1. Companies using IoT connectivity services i.e. cloud services or buy licenses for connectivity software
  2. Companies using hardware products i.e. network components
  3. Resellers of their Pay-As-You-Grow SIM cards to their customers
  4. Resellers of all products/services mentioned in points 1-2

 

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Business Goals / Targets / Important KPIs

Questions to ask:

What does this business need to grow its revenue? What are the main KPIs?

  1. Increase online leads (a % of them will sooner or later convert into customers)
  2. Generate more sales (New Customer Acquisition). Leads p.1 help to increase the client base
  3. Keep the customer (Customer Retention)

 

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What Tactics They Currently Employ

Let’s take a look at the current status of their online marketing.

This view will not include networking, traditional PR, display or other off-line marketing.

  1. Releasing company news (PR) and publishing on industry sites. Good point.
  2. Regularly blog posting explaining the services and promoting new products. Good point.

Conclusion: PR is helping with raising brand awareness.

Blog posting creates engagement, shows that the business is interested in helping the customers know more about their products/services before they buy and raises consumer trust.

But there are little gains from the content marketing effort as not integrated with a marketing plan.

Suggestion: Studying the needs of the customers will guide into building a content marketing plan with performance tracking.

 

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How Efficient are They on Social Networks

Questions to ask:

  1. What are the Social Networks they use?
  2. How big is the follower base? Do they monitor their followers and have insights on the demographics/behavior?
  3. How optimized is their content for each audience segment?
  4. What is the performance for each social media/network?
  5. Do social readers interact with the posts?
  6. Do social readers visit the landing pages?
  7. Do website visitors convert?
  8. What are the channels that drive more conversions?
  9. What is the Cost-Per-Conversion or Registration (CPR) for each network?

Here are the data:

  • Only Facebook shows little traction; the other networks don’t show much data. acebook: 25 followers not regular posts
  • Twitter: 246 followers but not frequent tweets

social signals

  • Linkedin: 530 company followers but no frequent updates
  • YouTube: 1 video posted, 16 subscribers to the channel

Conclusion: There are not any gains from using the social media channels.

Suggestion: The business needs to study its audiences i.e. behavior, networks they live online, what the competitors are doing. Then plan outreach actions with accurate tracking in place to test the performance of each network and decide next steps.

 

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Some Traffic Data

  1. Search traffic (both channels): 58%
  2. Direct (Typed) traffic: 42%
  3. Social channels: 0% (confirms our earlier point, needs to grow)
  4. Referral traffic: 0% (needs to grow)

traffic sources

Page views from all channels are not performing well. There is no MoM growth; traffic looks flat.

all traffic sources

Unique Visits, similar trends with Page Views. No MoM growth, flat traffic line.

unique visits

Average Visit Duration, last month of the report around 30 seconds (too low).

average visit duration

Visitors leave the website thus increasing the Bounce Rate (negative signal to Google). Conversions are undoubtedly affected.

As the Avg. Visits are ~30 seconds; the Bounce Rate is too high >60%. Visitors seem to find no interest in the website content, and they drop off. Conversions will suffer.

bounce rate

Suggestion: The website needs a content audit and conversion optimization.

 

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Paid Search Stats

The Paid channel looks like there is a lot of experimentation but overall the monthly paid performance is close to zero.

paid search

Suggestion: Research for more opportunities, adopt the competition best practices, optimize bids for better placements.

 

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SEO Stats

Quality and Power metrics show normal development.

majestic

moz

There are no obvious issues with its link profile nor over-optimization of anchor texts.

 

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SEO Keywords

The keyword volume is either too high (competitive) or too low (long-tail or low-traffic terms).

keyword volume

Suggestion: Competition Research and Keyword mapping needed to grow the organic traffic.

 

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Organic Search Rankings

Their rankings are not the best for the keyword terms they wish to rank. Remember that their keywords were not high-volume either.

keyword rankings

 

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Conclusions

The website suffers regarding traffic. It is not a channel that’s not performing. Their marketing plan is inefficient.

To get online leads the business needs a marketing plan that offers a channel mix testing and tracking channel performance. Then working with only those channels that make sense because they deliver.

Namely, they need to optimize and grow in Organic and Paid Search, Social Media and maybe explore more traffic opportunities from other channels i.e. Display Advertising, Affiliate marketing, etc.

Not all channels are delivering leads, but they are useful for raising brand awareness a KPI that is valuable to every startup business.

 

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About Ted Politidis

★ Search Marketer w/ a Masters Degree & 10 yrs in Digital Marketing ★ Have managed 6-digit Marketing Budgets ★ Google Certified Partner in: Mobile Sites; AdWords; Analytics; Mobile Ads; Video Ads; Display Ads; Shopping Ads; Digital Sales ★ Certified SEO by the University of California, Davis ★ Startup Mentor.

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