Let’s face it, traditional marketing is no longer working. Faced with so much data and advertising in our everyday lives, the consumer is shunning irrelevant content and ads being pushed to their face. Do-not-call lists, switching channels during TV commercials and bulk-clearing junk emails are just some of the common ways you and I reduce unwanted information. Think about it, will you be more receptive to signing up to the services of a financial planner with quality personal finance content (inbound marketing) on his website, or receiving a call (outbound) from someone unfamiliar, asking you for an appointment to sell you insurance?
Before We Go On Further, What Exactly Is Inbound Marketing?
By “Inbound Marketing”, we refer to the creation of quality content that drives people towards a company and its product. In contrast, outbound marketing tries to reach out to potential consumers directly with their services or products using methods such as email blasts and telemarketing.
So why is outbound marketing declining? This is in response to the change in consumer behaviour, as well as the changing information landscape. We are bombarded by so much advertising message in our everyday life that people now want more control of the information they receive. And this is where inbound marketing works wonders – only by delivering quality content and what consumers want can you get to them successfully. You earn your customers’ trust by providing quality content, rather than push something they don’t want to them.
How Do I Start With Inbound Marketing?
You might already have used certain marketing tactics that is considered inbound marketing without knowing it. Lots of it has to do with generating content in different forms to attract audience and increase engagement but those are definitely not just it.
Inbound Marketing Tools
- White Papers
- Content Articles on Company blog
- Social Media content generation/engagement
- Online Advertorials/Sponsored Content
- Search Engine Optimization
- Calls-to-Action on Website Homepage
Now that you know which tools to use, let us explain how using the tools above can translate viewers/audiences to sales.
The Inbound Marketing Process
There are 5 different steps needed to build a successful inbound marketing strategy:
- Research: In order to create relevant content, you need to know your audience, what channels they use to receive information and the probable keywords they use to search for the products/services you are offering
- Create: Create quality content in different format to appeal to a wide range of audience – videos, articles, infographics are great ways to reach out.
- Attract: Not only is the content important, where you choose to share it can affect your returns as well. While Facebook looks like a popular channel for many lifestyle products, financial products may work better via explainer videos. If you are targeting businesses, a long form content on Linkedin might bring you more quality leads even if the reach is smaller. Good content will also be shared easily and help to spread your company’s brand. The resulting backlinks can significantly improve your website’s ranking on Google.
- Convert: Do not stop at the above! Your ultimate aim is still to convert audiences to clients so you need to collect their information in order to contact them. Offer something of value to them – an insightful whitepaper, a monthly newsletter or participation in contests for attractive prizes can entice users to sign up.
- Delight: Now that you are seeing results – increased traffic to your website, more quality leads generated and increased social mentions, you need to continue to delight current customers in order to build long term brand equity. This will help to change current customers into long term customers and create brand advocates out of them.
Inbound marketing has been proven to be cheaper, provide higher and better-quality returns and is the new way consumers prefer to receive information. For companies who are not ready to embrace these changes to the marketing and advertising landscape, be prepared to look like the guy on the right.
If you are looking to create interesting content that engages your audience to embark on your inbound marketing journey, contact Pixel Tie for a free consultation!