If your goal is to put your business out there, you will need a marketing approach that zeroes in on the needs of your customer. This is why Inbound Marketing is creating a buzz in the modern marketing landscape. Unlike the Outbound methodology where marketers chase their leads, Inbound Marketing is more focused on making the customers come to you. This approach is not only less disruptive, it is also more targeted.
Inbound Marketing is a type of digital marketing strategy that aims to attract, engage, and delight customers to grow and scale a business.
A deeper probe into the Inbound approach
The Inbound approach is often characterized by the value it provides to the customers as well as its strong focus on building trust.
To ensure value, Inbound marketers put content at the core of their Inbound strategy. They use a myriad of tools and follow different processes to plan, develop, and promote compelling and relevant content that speaks to their target audience.
To build trust, they continue to use content strategically. This helps them establish their credibility in the industry. They may use different platforms to engage their audience and promote brand loyalty. Keeping the customers satisfied gives them more opportunity to upsell. It also helps encourage their customers to refer them to their personal network, thus expanding their brand’s reach.
The ultimate goal of Inbound is to attract new leads, engage them, convert them into prospects and customers, and nurture them to encourage brand loyalty. To achieve this goal, Inbound marketers integrate different digital marketing tactics. Some of the most common tactics include Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Pay-Per-Click (PPC), Content Marketing, Email Marketing, and Social Media Marketing.
Benefits of going Inbound
Inbound Marketing helps generate more leads
Inbound Marketing generates more qualified leads, social shares, and inbound links because the strategy used in this approach is more targeted. Through a strong focus on the customers— which is an important aspect of the Inbound framework—Inbound marketers are able to tap their target market more effectively.
Inbound Marketing supports SEO
As one of the most powerful digital marketing tactics used by marketers today, SEO is a crucial aspect in Inbound Marketing. By aligning a company’s core SEO strategy with the overall Inbound Marketing strategy, the results lead to higher ranks in Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).
Inbound Marketing increases brand awareness
Using content marketing to its full potential, Inbound marketing increases brand awareness. Thus keeping the brand at the top of the mind of consumers when they are looking for products and services that are similar to what the company is offering.
Inbound Marketing enables customer engagement
Through social media marketing and community management, Inbound marketers are able to interact more with their customers. When customers are more engaged, they feel more connected to the brand.
Inbound Marketing encourages repeat purchase
Lead nurturing is essential in Inbound Marketing. By delighting customers and keeping them happy, Inbound marketers encourage repeat purchase and creates more opportunities to upsell in the future.
How to Jumpstart your Inbound Marketing Campaign
Should you leap into Inbound the moment you realize its potential in driving business growth? The short answer is no. Keep in mind that an effective Inbound Marketing strategy is one that is carefully devised and planned according to the company’s business goals. Before planning your strategy, identify your goals first. Better yet, make sure the goals you are setting are SMART goals—Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely.
Once you have identified your goals, the next thing to do is to start mapping out your Inbound Marketing strategy. There is no specific formula when it comes to doing Inbound. However, there are some non-negotiables that you need to consider: your target audience, your brand’s value proposition, your digital channels, your content plan, and the metrics you plan to use to gauge your strategy’s performance.
The basics of an Inbound Marketing Strategy
Identify your target audience
When you do Inbound, it is crucial to know your target market. It is not enough to identify who your target audience is. Apart from knowing your profiled buyers, you also need to explore their problems, challenges, and the best ways to reach them. This is best done by creating a buyer persona.
A buyer persona is defined by Hubspot as a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customers based on consumer research and real data about your existing customers.
To guide you further into developing a more accurate buyer persona, you need to obtain pertinent information about your target buyers. Find out more about their personal demographics, educational background, their challenges and goals, their buying habits, how they interact with vendors, and how you can reach them online.
Determine your brand’s unique value proposition
The contemporary business setting is often a highly saturated one. The question is, how can you stand out among your competitors? The best way to set yourself apart from the competition is to identify your unique value proposition. To know your unique value proposition, list out all the things you offer to your customers and pick out those that your competitors are not offering.
Once you have properly it, think of ways to clearly communicate this proposition to your customers. By doing so, you can attract the kind of customers that you want to cater to.
Choose your digital channels
There are many digital channel options to choose from when you decide to go Inbound. In general, the digital channels you will include in your strategy should relate to your target market. The most basic digital channel is your company’s website. A website is more than just an online catalogue of your products and services. It is also a good place to start attracting leads so you can start rolling out your Inbound strategy.
Apart from your website, other common digital channels include email, blogs, and social media.
Create your content calendar
A content calendar is a document that contains your content plan. A basic content calendar lists out the article topics you plan to write, the keywords, the persona you want to target for each article, and the date the articles need to be published. A more comprehensive content calendar may also include your email marketing campaigns, social media posts, and content offers.
Prior to creating a content calendar, be sure you are clear on the purpose of your content and the type of content you want to develop.
Remember, strategic content takes into consideration the three stages of the Buyer’s Journey.
The Buyer’s Journey is the buyer’s process for finalizing a purchase. The first stage is the Awareness Stage, the second is the Consideration Stage, and the last is the Decision Stage. To succeed in Inbound Marketing, you need to create content that is perfectly aligned for each of these stages. Doing this will help you move your buyers from one stage of the journey to the next, until it finally leads to a purchase.
During the Awareness Stage, you are dealing with buyers who have just identified their problems and challenges. In this stage, the buyers are looking for more information about their most pressing concerns. Types of content that are perfect for this stage are blogs, whitepapers, eBooks, checklists, and webinars.
In the Consideration Stage, the buyers are fully aware of their problems and challenges. What they need in this stage are the possible solutions that can help them solve their problems and challenges. This is the best time to showcase in-depth research and other resources that directly relate to the product or service you are offering. When writing content for this stage, make sure you are clearly communicating the features and benefits of your offers.
Some of the best content ideas for this stage include product webinars, case studies, FAQs, Datasheets, and Demo videos
The Decision Stage is the last stage where the buyer chooses the best solution for the problem. The previous stages require marketing content but for this stage, you will need to shift to writing a sales copy to convince buyers to finalize a purchase.
Some of the most ideal types of content you can try in this stage are free trials, live demos,and consultations to name a few.
Publish and promote
As soon as you are able to put together your content calendar, you can start developing your content. Publishing and promoting your regular content is recommended if you want your Inbound efforts to pay off.
Set and monitor your KPIs
What is a KPI? Key Performance Indicators or KPIs are metrics that help determine the performance of your strategy. You can set your KPIs by identifying your goals and enumerating the KPIs that you think are crucial in helping you reach these goals.
When you have selected the KPIs that align with your strategy, determine your target for those KPIs and proceed with reviewing the progress of your strategy. Some of the common KPIs for marketing are monthly leads, qualified leads growth, marketing qualified leads, retention and attrition rates, cost per conversion, monthly website traffic, and traffic from organic search.
Inbound Marketing is a great opportunity to grow and scale your business. Do you want your business to gear towards that kind of growth? At Gohan Concepts, we believe in the potential of Inbound marketing in driving business growth. To know more about the digital marketing landscape and how you can leverage it to generate more leads and increase sales, Book a consultation with our team.