Inbound marketing, you have probably heard about it given the transformation and evolution of digital in recent years. This business strategy is all about attracting prospects to you and your business using different means.
Capturing the attention of your prospects and making them engage in an action with your brand are the main vocations of inbound marketing. In this article, we will talk about the practical and effective ways to adopt to succeed in your inbound marketing strategy.
Inbound marketing: what is it more precisely?
Originally developed by Seth Godin (former Yahoo marketing manager turned author and speaker), inbound marketing was previously called « permission marketing ». The idea was to get permission from potential customers to send them informative content.
Then, the term « inbound marketing » appeared, the term was spread by Brian Halligan, founder of Hubspot. For him, the concept is as follows: to attract the attention of search engines and Internet users without having to resort to traditional advertising, it was necessary to produce very good quality content.
Unlike the different techniques used in traditional marketing (cold calling, door-to-door …), inbound marketing consists of bringing prospects to yourself rather than looking for them.
The consumer himself undertakes research on solutions or potential answers to his problems and questions. He must get closer to your company in order to obtain them.
The objectives of the concept
Inbound marketing is used to generate traffic, acquire leads, convert them into customers and then retain them. All of this needs to be done by building a relationship between your brand and your audience. The more a company takes care of its audience, the more it will turn visitors into prospects and then loyal customers.
Why did the concept become famous?
There are many reasons for the birth of inbound marketing. Outbound marketing (the most used before) has had several shortcomings that have made this practice much less effective with consumers.
Indeed, on the one hand, the massive production of advertisements from all companies causes an overabundance that only drowns consumers. On the other hand, technological evolution has meant that the techniques deployed in traditional marketing are gradually moving away from consumers, such as anti-spam devices that block certain content in users’ mailboxes.
Social networks and e-commerce have experienced an unparalleled boom. Internet users can now buy online without leaving home on Facebook for example, or at the level of an online store. Companies are then forced to adapt their prospecting methods to each level of their customers’ purchasing journey according to the change in their behavior.
The steps to follow for a successful inbound marketing strategy
Know your avatar
In marketing, the term avatar refers to your ideal customer profile. Knowing your target audience allows you to orient your content according to their needs. With more information about them in your possession, it will be easier to reach them. Offer content tailored to your avatar’s personality, habits, basic needs, and behavior. Offer your target audience a one-of-a-kind experience customized to their needs.
Optimize your visibility to drive traffic
Whether your company operates in B2C or B2B, visibility is essential. To do this, everything lies in the content you offer to your audience as it is he who is the flagship element of an inbound marketing strategy.
Quality content attracts more attention from visitors. In addition, on your company’s website, sharing this content on social networks is also an effective way to gain visibility, because these social platforms bring together almost all Internet users so your potential customers are surely among them.
Convert acquired visitors into leads
Now that you have traffic, it’s time to turn them into leads. A simple visit is not enough to qualify them as prospects. It is now necessary to collect information about them such as an e-mail address, in order to solicit them and also to establish a relationship of trust.
Put online a free and downloadable white paper for example. Offer them to fill in a field for their email address so that they can receive the white paper in question. To make them want to download it, a white paper must cover a specific topic while being useful for your prospects. Call-to-action are the tools to deploy to direct them to this new content.
Convert your leads into customers
If you managed to harvest their email address, it means that they (become leads) are really interested in the content you broadcast to them. Certainly, the goal is to sell your products or services, but do not act by attacking the sale of your products right away and nothing but that. Implement a strategy based on listening to and solving the problems of your prospects so as not to be too intrusive with them.
In order to convert them into customers, you can use tools like the marketing automation tool to deliver the right message at the right time to the target person.
Can we combine outbound and inbound marketing?
Conveying emotions from your content is essential for your inbound marketing strategy. But physical meetings between your sales team and your target are also ideal. Inbound marketing and outbound marketing can complement each other very well.
For example, inbound marketing helps identify the hottest prospects and their needs. Outbound marketing, meanwhile, will be responsible for contacting these hot prospects in a more personalized way and thus increasing the chances of converting them into customers.
Deploying an inbound marketing strategy is an essential step for the development of your business, in the digital age. However, it is necessary to know the essential points to consider in order to take advantage of all the advantages that this practice can bring.