Why Does Inbound Marketing Matter?
Today, consumers are in the driver’s seat. They control what they research, how they search and have alternatives lined up before they even interact with someone. As consumer journeys are evolving, so should your marketing campaigns. Inbound marketing can lead the perfect consumer right to your landing page.
Inbound vs. Outbound
The main difference between inbound and outbound marketing strategies is how they interact with potential clients or customers. Both are strategic, effective marketing approaches, but one is company-driven while the other is customer-focused.
For example, outbound marketing focuses mostly on attracting potential sales through outward reach. Think cold calling, direct mail, door-to-door sales, commercials, trade shows, and telemarketing. Outbound marketing techniques like these are company-driven. They push messages outward with the hope that it places the company in front of someone willing to listen. This strategy is proven to be successful, as commercials, trade shows, and direct mail can help inform potential prospects of what they didn’t know they needed to know and lead to sales. By directly telling the public about the company and what it offers, a business can make a lasting impression.
However, while they are still powerful awareness tactics, they must be placed with exceptional creativity. Predictable and dull advertisements cannot make an impact to get noticed with the high level of competition. The average person sees about 4,000 to 10,000 ads a day. This makes our brains tune out most messages we see. You’ve got to put some creative effort into your outbound communications or you can expect little noticeable effect.
Inbound marketing, in contrast, is less direct. Rather, it is marketing efforts that are strategically placed to interact with the right audience at the right time. Social media posts, blog content, search engine optimization, podcasts, and webinars- these customer-focused efforts are a more subtle way of interacting with potential prospects. With inbound marketing, content must add value to a user’s experience by educating first, and advertising second. Well-placed optimization interacts with a customer at any point in their buyer’s journey. By helping a user solve a problem or answer a question, you gain their trust and increase your authority on the matter. With this, you’re branded as a reliable source, memorable, and increase user experience tenfold.
How Does Inbound Marketing Drive Results?
“A frequent mistake B2B organizations make is educating the buyer on their own company, product, or service. The buyer isn’t ready for that; they are just beginning to understand their problem.” Applying marketing efforts to elements that drive inbound success targets the needs, interests, and challenges of those that are making purchases for their organization.
So, to drive that purchase motivation, relevant and engaging content attracts strangers and converts them into visitors to your website. Once there, you have a higher chance of converting them into leads, maintaining that customer relationship, and encouraging them to promote your organization or service.
But do the numbers add up? Experts say that SEO-induced leads cost 62% less and have a 14.6% close rate, compared to 1.7% for outbound leads. Start tracking your inbound marketing costs over some time. What is the % of inbound-influenced revenue and how is it growing? How have your revenue retention and customer retention been influenced? In time, you’ll see higher ROI and efficiency when you make consumer-focused efforts a permanent member of your campaign.
Inbound marketing strategies apply to all types of businesses and industries. For smaller organizations, it may be the most advantageous. But for larger corporations, a combination of inbound and outbound could be the smartest route. But one doesn’t necessarily outweigh the other- strategic planning means combining the two to best fit your business
Something to Crow About
Red Crow Marketing is a personal-sized advertising agency that has provided expert consulting, media buying, production services, and more to our valued clients since 2004. Tucked away in Southwest Missouri, we help fill marketing gaps in the service, manufacturing, and healthcare industries. If you have some questions, we have answers. Let’s meet!