You’ve heard about inbound marketing, but do you know what is it and why you should be using it for your business?
Inbound marketing is a marketing strategy for the 21st Century. It is a technique that has customers looking for you; or what you do, rather than pushing messages out to them on television, radio or the yellow pages. It includes social media marketing, search engine optimization, email and content marketing.
Traditional marketing techniques, aka: outbound marketing, are becoming less effective in attracting customers, as this presentation; Big Fat Lies About Advertising, shows.
Customers are smarter and far better equipped with choices than ever before. 78% of people search for products before they buy. They rely on online resources such as search engines, social media and blogs to choose who they prefer to do business with.
HubSpot, the inbound marketing specialists that we are affiliated with, reports that inbound marketing generated leads cost as much as 60% less than leads captured through traditional outbound marketing efforts, such as cold-calling, direct mail, radio and television ads.
If you’re looking for a way to get started with your inbound marketing efforts, here are the 3 Best Inbound Practices to use in your business.
Create a search engine friendly website Make sure your website is accessible to the major search engines. Being listed on Google, Yahoo and Bing is absolutely imperative! The quality and quantity of other websites linking back to your website determines how a piece of content is ranked. Good content, such as web copy and blog posts, are rewarded with quality inbound links. Not only does it drive traffic to your site, it also elevates your content’s search engine rankings.
Create compelling content Create content that is useful and interesting. Using soft-sell techniques with material the searcher can use is a sure way to build trust and credibility for your products and/or services. Content that gets easily consumed includes eBooks, white papers videos and blog posts-like the one you’re reading now. Don’t know what to post? Start with questions customers frequently ask.
- Share your content via social media What good are your brilliant thoughts going to do if no one sees them? Share your musings on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and any other social platform that fits in well with your business. Share your content directly from your website by embedding a Facebook “Like” button and Twitter’s “tweet” button into your blog posts. In fact, if you like what we’ve written, share it on your favorite social media site.
Inbound marketing offers your business a unique value proposition
- it costs far less than traditional media,
- it allows you to target your best prospects for more qualified leads and
- it helps you earn well deserved visibility without paying through the nose for it.
Perhaps best of all, it eliminates the ?needle in a haystack? search for customers that nearly all traditional advertising mediums rely on.
If you’re still not convinced that inbound marketing will work for you, let me leave you with a video, Dude, Cold Calling is for Losers, produced by our friends at HubSpot. Does the scenario look familiar?