You’re coming on in leaps and bounds!
Inbound marketing is the process of making potential customers aware of your company. This can be done by utilising content marketing, blogs (like this one), SEO, social media or in many other ways like webinars or events – any form of helpful content, really.
In this article, we’ll be going over it in a little bit more detail, explaining why you should use it for your business strategy, and ways you can go about effectively marketing using an inbound technique.
What’s inbound marketing?
Instead of invasive advertising campaigns, inbound marketing is a more natural approach to building up a customer base. By providing potential customers with helpful information, showing off your business in a positive light or anything else, the customer is free to make their own decision on whether or not they’ll buy from you.
The main purpose of inbound marketing is brand visibility. Anything to increase this, like generating business awareness, building commercial relationships or developing new business leads is considered a form of inbound marketing.
Bringing new people into the sphere of your business through social media, letting them know what you offer through your website, and perhaps convincing them to purchase your product or service through a discount or limited-time offer, is an example of successful inbound marketing.
Benefits of inbound marketing
When compared to outbound marketing, inbound marketing saves you money on intensive ad campaigns and arguably gives you more of a chance that a prospect will make a purchase decision in the long run. Often, an inbound approach is viewed more favourably, as it’s less pushy and gives the potential customer more freedom of choice.
81% of retail shoppers conduct online research before making a purchase decision. If the potential customer feels like the brand is a worthwhile investment – for example, offering a solution for their problem, or beating the competition in terms of price or customer service, then inbound marketing has been successful and a purchase is more likely to occur.
Additionally, as well as building trust and credibility in the eyes of your audience, inbound marketing curates customers who are more likely to engage with and buy from a company. Customers who associate their own positive emotions and experiences with a company will stick around, and buy again in future.
Stages of inbound marketing
Inbound marketing, when done right, is a multi-stage process. You need to first attract an audience, convert those visitors into business leads, nurture them into paying customers and then delight them. Phew!
1. Attract visitors
The first stage of inbound marketing needs visitors – otherwise, your marketing will fall on deaf ears. No matter how they reach you, all that matters is informing them of your business and offerings.
You can make informational content such as blog posts, videos or anything else – as long as it’s content, you’re rolling! Stick in some links back to other content and to your website, and you’ll grasp an audience’s attention!
Additionally, spreading visibility of both your content and your company never hurts. Consider learning the ropes of SEO or using social media to spread visibility far and wide. Chances are, a lot of your potential customers spend time online, so by inserting yourself into similar circles, you’ll graze hands eventually.
2. Convert visitors into leads
After those lucky customers have found you, you’ll need to work your magic on them to keep them close.
By having a top-quality landing page (the first page a customer gets redirected to after clicking on an advert), you ensure visitors have all the information they need to make the only correct decision – parting with their money! Add a call to action to really get them invested.
3. Nurture leads into customers
Now, they’re invested. All you have to do is let your products or services speak for themselves – but a nudge in the right direction can be applied.
This is where you might want to sweeten the deal by sticking in a banner ad with a discount code, or anything equally as convincing.
4. Delight and keep customers
Congratulations, you’ve made a sale. But it’s not over yet! By delighting your existing customers, maybe with excellent customer service or loyalty offers, you increase the chances of them staying put.
There may even be the chance of them giving you excellent reviews, which will draw in more happy customers! If you want to signpost them in the right direction, offer a survey – you can use its results to see what you’re doing right, and what they’re appreciative of.
Thanks for reading! We’ve given you a comprehensive rundown of the inbound marketing methodology, including examples of how you can use it as an asset for your business. Try implementing it yourself, and see if it improves your customer’s experience!