This article is a guest post by Liz Hersh, founder of Hersh PR and Marketing.
As inbound marketing continues to grow in popularity, there are still many questions surrounding this form of marketing and how it works. To add to the confusion, terms like search engine marketing, content marketing and permission marketing are also being mentioned in the conversation. As with many digital marketing strategies, there are both similarities and differences.
Inbound vs. Outbound Marketing
Traditional marketing methods are typically referred to as outbound marketing. Outbound marketing involves reaching consumers through advertisements in mediums such as TV, radio, magazines, or newspapers. You often pay a premium for this space and it’s becoming less effective as consumers find ways to ignore and avoid traditional advertising.
Conversely, inbound marketing focuses on creating educational content that attracts potential customers to your website where they can learn more about what you sell on their own accord. Technology has empowered the consumer with the ability to access the information they want, while ignoring the interruptive messages they don’t want – hence the term permission marketing as opposed to interruptive marketing.
The Key Components of Inbound Marketing
Inbound marketing places an emphasis on boosting the quality and quantity of your online content. The content you create answers your potential customer’s basic questions and needs. This positions you as the expert in your field. By using the right keyword (SEO) strategy, overtime you will rank high for a particular set of keywords. And as you learn more about your target market, you can continue to create content that appeals specifically to them.
Inbound marketing also involves a multi-channel approach. This is because you’ll be interacting with individuals where they want to interact with you – that could be your website, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, etc. So inbound marketing includes a strong social media marketing element.
Another important component of inbound marketing emphasizes the various buying stages of individuals. Your website visitors are going to be in different stages of the buying process – awareness, consideration or decision – so you’ll need different types of content and marketing actions to appeal to them. I explain to my potential clients that this helps avoid “dud” website leads who are price shopping. Yes, you still might generate a few of those, but the goal is to speak with the highly qualified leads.
How Does Inbound Marketing Generate Leads?
The philosophy of inbound marketing is backed by a methodology that helps companies attract, convert, close and delight leads. By nurturing the lead through the buyer’s journey, you’re converting them from strangers to promoters of your brand.
You’ll create content for every step of the process, and delight your target market along the way. Strong calls to actions accompanied with landing pages will help convert visitors into leads, and leads into customers. By getting your visitors excited with relevant content, you can dramatically increase your closing ratio.
Minimizing your outbound marketing in favor of an inbound strategy might feel intimidating at first.
But industry statistics indicate that companies that choose inbound marketing will triple their lead generation for 62 percent less than the cost of outbound activities.
Ultimately, the goal of inbound marketing is to offer people a valuable reason to visit your website. You will be focused on getting customers to find you instead of the other way around. An inbound strategy includes many forms of digital marketing and when combined together, companies can achieve sales growth.
Hersh PR and Marketing is a full-service, digital marketing agency providing cost-effective campaigns designed to help law firms generate leads, build stronger customer relationships and grow sales. You can read more on the company’s inbound marketing blog.
Link #3 http://blog.hershpr.com/