What hurts your marketing isn’t what you know, it’s what you don’t know.
There’s a lot of misinformation about inbound marketing out there.
A lot of folks don’t understand how to unlock the full potential of their inbound marketing strategies. And worse still, some misunderstand the point of inbound marketing and approach their content creation the wrong way.
Inbound marketing is powerful, but only if it’s used right. Below, we’ve listed five of the main things that inbound can do for your business …and five things it can’t.
1. Inbound marketing is more than a single strategy.
Inbound marketing is a complex process that includes all of the ideas and strategies that bring your customers to you. Inbound marketing tactics often involve a complete shift of the way your customers see you. You’re not just another salesman any more. You’re a thought leader in your field. An industry expert that can solve actual problems your customers have.
Inbound marketing is more than a one-time promotion, campaign, or idea. It’s not a singular tactic that brings you business, or a single channel strategy. Inbound marketing encompasses all of these steps (and more) to achieve results. Any marketers thinking of going inbound must be aware of the steps needed to bring the full benefits to light.
2. Inbound marketing is self-sustaining.
Inbound marketing tactics build on themselves over time. As your content library grows, the value you provide grows with it. As you learn more about your audience, you can create content that is tailored to their exact interests. Data and analytics let you use past feedback to improve your outreach as time goes on. This can be valuable—a consumer survey by Moz showed that 93.2 percent of respondents had used online search to look up information about a brand in the past week.
No marketing strategy is ever “finished.” As time passes, your content and business strategies will start to become dated. Use the data you collect to streamline your marketing efforts over time. Inbound marketing strategies must be refreshed every once in a while to keep your viewers engaged.
3. Inbound marketing pays off.
It won’t happen overnight, but the value of effective inbound marketing strategies make them well worth the investment. The marketing experts at Hubspot estimated that the average business saves $20,000 per year by focusing more on inbound strategies.
Though the overall cost per lead of inbound strategies is cheaper than outbound strategies, inbound marketing is an investment that must build some momentum before it pays out. The enhanced ROI that we all seek will only appear when you produce some measureable marketing results.
4. Inbound marketing uses social media…
Social media inbound marketing is a great way to distribute content. A common problem faced by marketers over the ages has always been how to get more eyes on their material. And with social media, we now have the perfect solution. Managing social media is an important part of content delivery and customer management for your marketing goals.
However, inbound marketing isn’t about being the biggest brand on Facebook. It doesn’t rely only on social platforms. Social media on its own can’t even begin to provide the value that quality marketing provides. Despite all the attention that marketers give it these days, social media is just one more piece of your inbound marketing framework.
5. Inbound marketing is a trust-based relationship.
Inbound marketing relies on trust—and as far as your customers know, you’re just another voice in the crowd. You must build your relationship with your prospects before you try to sell to them.
This can be tricky, though, as customers are good at filtering out irrelevant information on the Internet. If you want your market to trust your business, you must prove that you can help them. Creating value-driving content that makes their lives less stressful is a good first step. Create audience personas and target your content to their needs to really demonstrate that you have their interests at heart. Show them that you’re there to help, and they’ll start turning to you to receive it.
Understanding Inbound Marketing
Inbound marketing tactics are designed to bring customers to your brand. By providing value-driving information, you show customers what you can do for them. This is the beginning of lead generation, conversions, and building a lifelong relationship with your customers. Inbound marketing strategies can’t solve ALL of your problems, but implementing it in the right way may make you wonder how you ever used to market without it.