If you want to generate more revenue and higher quality leads whilst reducing marketing costs, inbound marketing is definitely for you. That’s only the tip of the iceberg though; the inbound methodology looks to ensure the long-term success and efficiency of your company’s marketing efforts. You’re going to need a lot of dedication and patience, but ask yourself this: would you want to grace the cover of a single magazine that’s limited to the print section of your local store (for 30 days), or, would you prefer to have highly targeted visitors checking your site out on a daily basis?
The days of tricking your prospects are long gone. After all, you can only fool someone so many times before they catch on. Over the last 5 decades, traditional marketers have essentially conditioned entire generations to ignore intrusive marketing efforts due their saturation levels. Let’s take a look at Times Square (pictured below).
The crowds at Times Square are massive, but so is the amount of ads on display. The entire environment is overwhelming and there’s no guarantee that an ad will reach its intended targets (with the exception of the few giant ones which completely stand out).
The inbound methodology isn’t concerned with swinging for the fences. It aims to connect the right people with the product or service. Exposing your messaging to millions of people is utterly useless if no new leads are generated.
Inbound marketing aims to resolve this issue with the careful use of buyer personas. A buyer persona is a semi-fictitious profile of your ideal customer. You can feel free to construct a BP as an actual person, just make sure that you do your research! Since the BP serves as the foundation for all of your inbound efforts, it’s absolutely vital for it to be as accurate as possible. By targeting prospects who are potentially interested in your offer, your business should be able to generate greater amounts of high quality leads when compared to traditional marketing methods. Consider the following criteria when crafting your buyer persona: demographic data, personal background, professional role, interests, goals, and daily challenges.
Nowadays, banner ads and pop-ups offer between little to no lasting value (you might even argue that this was always the case). Let’s assume that our friend Bob goes to a website he seems to like, and clicks on a banner ad.
The next time Bob visits the site, the banner ad will most likely get ignored. Furthermore, if the banner is overly spammy, it might actually generate negative sentiment about the brand, thus ultimately discouraging Bob from visiting the site.
However, by creating quality content, inbound efforts aim to capture Bob’s imagination and encourage him to come back. If Bob (or any other visitors) is exposed to a consistently updated blog about a topic of interest, he’ll want to come back and maybe even share the content with his friends. By establishing a credible relationship between the visitor and the brand, you stand a much better chance of generating a high quality lead. This inbound approach takes a lot of patience, but it’s much more effective than finding Waldo at a Waldo-themed parade (aka swinging for the fences).
Keep in mind that maintaining a quality blog is not the inbound methodology itself, it’s just one of the many strategies which your business can greatly benefit from. Despite this, one of the core principles of inbound marketing is to create a dedicated audience which will further spread brand awareness and messaging. You ideally want to capture the attention of strangers, captivate them, and turn them into brand advocates.
Though this post has only focused on 2 advantages of inbound marketing, rest assured that many more exist. Make sure to grab the whitepaper below to develop a more in-depth knowledge of the inbound methodology.