Inbound Marketing is the method of getting found by customers. It is new marketing to a new customer. Technology has made traditional or outbound marketing (sometimes referred to as interruption marketing) less effective and also more expensive. With Tivo, spam filters, caller ID, XM radio, and RSS feeds, customers have evolved with new technology, refusing to be interrupted. Your marketing needs to evolve, too. The days of successfully interrupting people with your message are long gone. These messages are not highly targeted and not very cost effective. If you want to attract new customers, customers of today, you need to be reaching customers where they are and providing them with information that they find valuable, interesting, or useful.
Inbound marketing is just the opposite of outbound marketing. It uses new methods to reach today’s customers. Replace TV ads with online videos. Replace cold calling with content creation. It also replaces a one-way conversation website with a lead generating website. Inbound marketing provides customers with information they want to subscribe to, download, and opt-in to. Basically, you can scream you are great all over the place and no one cares. It is expected of you as a company to say you are great. Today’s customer also will not allow you to pound your message repeatedly into their brains. They have evolved and have learned to ignore this type of messaging. Inbound marketing will attract qualified customers to your business like a magnet. You no longer need to pay for expensive outbound marketing tactics to reach customers. With inbound marketing, customers will find you.
Inbound Marketing campaigns have three main components:
Content – Content is the heart of an inbound marketing campaign. Content is the magnet attracting potential customers to your business.
SEO – SEO (Search Engine Optimization) allows customers to find your site and your content. On-page and off-page SEO practices set the goal of achieving a higher ranking in search engines. Search engines are where your buyers are going to begin their buying process or information search.
Social Media – Your content is promoted is the social media networks. Here it is distributed across many channels by people who have developed personal relationships with others. As your content is shared, it gains more authority and will attract more qualified buyers.
Call to Actions – You need specific call to actions on each page of your website that entice visitors to receive your optimized content in exchange for their information. You never know what page a website visitor may land on.
Landing Pages – Each content offer needs to be available for download on a landing page. Each call to action will click-through to the specified landing page. On the landing page, a visitor will provide you with their personal information in exchange for your content.
Lead Nurturing – Once you have received a lead from your website, you will need to nurture that lead, sliding them through your sales funnel, until they are ready to make a purchase from you.
Analyze – Analyze your data to determine which blog posts are getting the most traffic, which call to actions have the highest click-through rate, which content offers are downloaded the most, etc. Improving your marketing month over month saves time and money in the future.
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