What is inbound marketing? And how do you do it right?
If you are a small or medium company with an eye up the ladder, or a start-up testing the waters, you must be familiar with the term inbound marketing. But, for those who feel lost in the junkyard of digital marketing, here’s a simple break-up:
Q. To give that essential leg-up for your business, whom should you please the most?
A. That’s right, your customers.
Q. And how far should they be pleased with you?
A. So much so they keep getting back to you – not merely for another purchase, but to hang out too!
And it depends on your business IQ to set your premises up as ideal spots for them to hang around.
You engage them with stuff that they find interesting - much like an amusement park: Ferris wheels, water coaster rides, space mountains, scramblers and more!
And that is what inbound marketing is all about:
In #inboundmarketing you aren’t the juggler who goes to the carnival and draws attention with your tricks. You bring the carnival home!
You don’t push the crowd around, you pull them in. And, treat them to a feast of information & updates that interests and benefits them, so they will settle down comfortably at your web premises.
Unlike #outboundmarketing that bombards the customers with company-centric promotions and advertisements, inbound marketing is a subtle way of making sure your target audience or customers get hooked on to you in the long run. It is all about impression-building that would influence your brand image and in turn spurs brand loyalty and sales.
Inbound marketing is a marketing methodology to ATTRACT the target audience, ENGAGE them through interesting and useful content and CONVERT them into potential customers through effective channels of pull-marketing like social media, SEO and content marketing.
Successful inbound marketing helps in:
Improving customer engagement
Building brand visibility, awareness, and loyalty
Steady inbound traffic
Improving customer acquisition and retention.
Inbound marketing strategies are flexible and have an extensive range of benefits, are less expensive, and have a higher rate of return.
Now, how do you do it right? What are the different ways in which you could leverage this cost-effective and potential marketing method to your advantage?
Here are five time-tested and proven inbound marketing strategies that can skyrocket your sales and market presence within no time.
5 effective inbound marketing strategies for better sales and business efficiency
1. Invest in your most valuable online asset: On-site content creation
Your first and greatest advantage online is, indeed, your website. It is your home where you usher in your visitors. Make sure you welcome them with sufficient refreshments.
Your on-site content is highly valuable as it determines your reach, image, and presence among your target audience.
Click here for a Handy Checklist to Assess Your Website Content Quality
What you provide matters. Make sure your content is original, interesting and informative to your visitors. Nobody wants to read the same stale content.
Refreshed content doesn’t entertain merely your existing customers, but also brings new traffic to your web pages. New and stellar content that engages your readers boosts up client retention.
Replenish your website with revised, SEO-sharp content, add more and meaningful content-layers including high-quality information-rich blogs. Link your on-site content with your social media and email marketing.
Turn your website into an active hub of relevant content and you will see the crowd coming in, and getting back for more.
2. Show up where the party is: Off-site content generation
As much as you develop your on-site content, it is necessary to flash your name on others’ pages as well. That’s how you do your off-site content marketing.
Generate content – the kind of high-quality, targeted, and original content that you create for your on-site marketing – and get it published on other websites that have a huge market presence or are leading the content battalion - online magazines, media publications or popular blog pages.
This brings a better spotlight on your brand and the more you publish, the more the readers notice and recollect your name. It increases your visibility with a new as well as the targeted audience and brings in referral traffic to your site.
For your corporate content or blog, the tone would be specific, exclusively branded. But off-site content gives you the freedom to be flexible and try out various styles, tones, and topics to connect with a diverse audience. Also, it ensures a wider reach to an audience who may not land on your website otherwise and who may not necessarily be your primary target.
3. Spice up your social life: Social media marketing.
Leverage the spilled-over oomph of social media. It is where the crowd is.
As per the Statistics 2020 from Hubspot, the number of global social media users is predicted to reach 3.43 billion by 2023. (Statista, 2020) .
The crisp canvas of social media can skyrocket your visibility like nowhere else. It extends your boundaries of social engagement, opening doors for better customer interaction and brand loyalty.
With the variety of social media channels out there, you have a flexible and wide range of ways to market. Social media marketing isn’t about adding up followers, but building a community.
Social media is also a great casual-conversation builder. Your customers feel less inhibited when they chat with you on familiar grounds. So, encourage them. Like their posts and converse. They will vouch for you!
Social media is a great place to share and promote your content. Pep up your posts with shared content from your website and off-site content and, soon, you will find steady traffic to your web pages.
4. Bond better with email marketing
Email marketing has an enormous ROI. The number of global email users is set to grow to 4.48 billion users by 2024 (Hubspot Statista, 2019).
Email marketing could sound a bit “outbound” as it looks as if you impose yourself on your customers - asking them to click, login, read or give feedback!
But not when you are sending them parcels of interesting information that they have been searching for!
Read more on effective email marketing: Letters that will Change Your Business
Pamper them with relevant tips, upcoming product launches, exclusive festival offers – any value-added content customised especially for them. Leverage trending topics, events or announcements that your customer might be missing out on.
How would they like it?
Statistics on email marketing (HubSpot, 2020) assures that message personalization is among the No.1 tactics that email marketers use to improve performance. Besides having the liberty to be personal, convenient and easily reachable, emails will work wonders for any dormant customer and is a huge propeller for customer retention and brand loyalty.
Craft beautiful ‘human’ emails that tell them your brand story, invite them to a journey through your production process, send greetings from your staff on a special occasion. Let them know you care, that they do matter, and they will trust you beyond your watermark!
5. Optimise your visibility – the SEO factor
SEO (search engine optimization) must be a worn-out term in marketing. But the process of driving in ‘free’ traffic (organic traffic) from search engines remains the core of any marketing agenda.
About 64% of marketers invest time in active search engine optimization.
How does SEO affect inbound marketing?
Your off-site content is a direct link to your website. The more valuable inbound links your website has, the more it floats atop search engines.
Search Engine Optimisation to boost inbound marketing also requires various other factors like mobile optimisation (as per 2019 reports, about half of global website traffic was generated by mobile devices (Statista, 2020, Hubspot) keyword/phrase optimisation etc. That applies to all your on-site content, like blogs.
Remember that elements like keyword density that were once integral to SEO are no more sovereign as they used to.
If you are new to marketing mantras and would like to do a little bit of vetting on keywords, here you go: Everything You Wanted to Know About Keyword Density.
Today the shift is towards user behaviour. Hence do not let your content strategy not revolve around keywords alone. Consider your customer personas and intent. Address their pain points, analyse their purchase patterns, their topics of interests, check the FAQs.
A well-implemented SEO strategy will help you update your site with the specific information that your targeted audience is looking for, when they land on it.
The above inbound marketing strategies are sharp arrows in your quiver that can aid your business as individual elements but work wonders when clubbed together. All those five have the potential to activate, accentuate, and balance each other, accelerating your marketing momentum.
With the right combination of effective strategies, inbound marketing is your sure-fire tactic to increase your leads, visitors, leads, or customers. Spread yourself on other sites, build your influence and position in the market. Polish your SEO practices.
With inbound marketing, you will have to draw customers in by playing to their tunes – getting to know them better, understanding their needs, whims and dreams as well as pain points. In the process, and using the acquired information, build stellar content around their personas that will pull them in and keep them glued unto you.
To know more about creating a strong inbound marketing strategy with relevant, original, high-quality, versatile content for various content channels, reach us on+91 8448040030.