INBOUND MARKETING AND WHY YOU NEED IT
Inbound marketing is a way of using content and making it more actionable and thorough. It’s taking content, data, personas and KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators) and making sure they all work cohesively rather than just stand alone ideas that don’t work together. If you aren’t testing, measuring and adjusting based on the data you’re gathering, you’ll never get the traction or return on investment you desire for your business.
Let’s look at a few things you might already be doing:
- Your current marketing practice is to send 1 or 2 emails per month, but you only know who opened the emails and who didn’t. You’re not sure what to do after that.
- Your current marketing practice doesn’t tell you any details about what your customer actually wants or what pain point you can solve.
- You post a message on Facebook, but don’t really know if anyone reads it or cares.
- You have thought about adding some content to your website, but don’t know what to write or how to even figure out if it is having an impact.
Don’t stress if you fall into 1 or more of these camps. (or if the items above are even more than you’re currently doing) Loads of businesses are in the same boat as you.
As an overview, these items could be considered “digital marketing”. They’re basic first steps for businesses that haven’t jumped into any marketing online yet, but it doesn’t accomplish much. The biggest problems with this type of digital marketing is that it doesn’t tell you anything, nor are you tracking or attracting new customers that care about your service or product. You’re essentially shooting in the dark, hoping to land on something.
So, what should you do? How should you use data to create an inbound marketing campaign that has a strategy and attracts customers who are delighted with your business?
Let’s dig in.
Inbound marketing works like this.
- A potential customer finds your website through one of your blogs, some keywords or through social media, and is attracted to your business because of the valuable content you produce.
- This visitor of your site browses your site, reads an article or two and clicks on one of your links to download something and/or purchase something for a very low (or free) cost. This link (or we call it CTA) leads them to a landing page of yours, and that page leads them to a further action. (Let’s pretend the action is providing you their email address)
- Your automation, built into your website, converts them to a lead in your CRM, which leads to an email and corresponding workflow that starts the process of your inbound marketing platform.
- Your lead likes what you have to offer, trusts you more because of your great communication and knowledge, and then decides to become a customer by purchasing something from you of larger value.
- This new customer delights in what you have to offer, becomes a repeat customer and promoter of your business! You gain more knowledge into what led them to do business with you by using surveys, smart content and social media. This new customer trusts your brand and has become an advocate for you.
It’s important to understand the journey a buyer goes through in making the decision to do business with you.
- Stage 1: Awareness Stage – The buyer has a need and they become aware of your business typically through a search online somewhere.
- Stage 2: Consideration Stage – The buyer has found you or your website and considers your business, as well as others, as options to solve their need.
- Stage 3: Decision Stage – The buyer finds that company or individual they trust enough to hand over money for services or products.
An Inbound Marketing plan covers all of these methodologies and more! For business to succeed online in the 21st century, meeting your customer’s needs and understanding their needs is crucial. Meeting them where they are at, showing them the way with valuable content and building their trust. That’s what you’re trying to do right?