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What is Inbound Marketing?

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Being in the Marketing Landscape you must have heard about the term Inbound Marketing somewhere of the other. The common questions that arise after that are what is Inbound Marketing and how is it right for your business?

Perhaps, we are here to answer all your questions and provide a comprehensive analysis of Inbound Marketing. Over the time the behavioural pattern of the people has considerably changed.

After becoming hesitant towards the traditional marketing tactics, they have become inclined those marketing strategies that provide them with certain valuable insights. This is where Inbound Marketing comes in.

What is Inbound Marketing?

What is Inbound Marketing

What is Inbound Marketing

Inbound Marketing is that marketing strategy which attracts the attention of the prospects towards the products and services through content marketing, social media marketing, search engine optimization, events and webinars. The main objective of Inbound Marketing is to create a valuable relationship with the prospects that have a positive impact on your business as well as potential customers.

Inbound Marketing deals around the notion of creating content that directly addresses to the problems and needs of your ideal customers. Furthermore, this helps you in attracting qualified leads and build credibility for your business.

Being a part of the Digital Marketing strategy, Inbound Marketing uses a perfect blend of Content Marketing, Search Engine Optimization & Social Media to attract the attention of potential customers. Precisely, Inbound Marketing uses the “earned” and “owned” media rather than the paid one to drive qualified traffic, initiate engagement & increase conversions.

Why is Inbound Marketing in Vogue Today?

What is Inbound Marketing

Why is Inbound Marketing in Vogue Today

Gone were the days when the marketers and advertisers relied on the traditional methods of advertising. Perhaps, to make the marketing landscape even better, accurate and result oriented, Inbound Marketing was evolved which proved its worth at a fast pace and showcased its efficiency. There are a number of reason as to why the prospects, as well as advertisers, are more inclined towards Inbound Marketing. Firstly, Inbound Marketing provides the prospects with helpful content rather than the typical sales pitch. Secondly, it targets the most suitable audience, thereby generating high-quality leads. Thirdly, it presents the marketers as trusted sources of information.

The effectiveness of Inbound Marketing can be assessed on the basis of the following parameters:

(I) Inbound Marketing perfectly complements Modern Marketing

With the evolution in technology, the behavioural pattern of the people has also changed. They are more inclined towards interacting with valuable and informational content. Here, Inbound Marketing proves its worth by targeting the specific audience and earning their trust by providing the desired solutions to their problems.
Unlike the traditional methods of marketing, Inbound Marketing delivers more value to potential customers, nurtures them and helps them through their buying process. These ways it complements modern marketing in the most suitable manner.

(II) Inbound Marketing offers Relevant Solutions to the Prospects

Nowadays, people have an excessively hectic routine. On top of this, sending them emails regarding irrelevant sales pitch or giving automated sales call might lead to a negative impact of your business to them. Moreover, people tend to block email ids and phone numbers. These strategies simply defame your relationship rather than developing.
On the other hand, Inbound Marketing works in the other direction. Rather than disturbing the prospect, it grabs their attention by offering them valuable information.

There are certain Inbound Marketing Statistics worth sharing:

What is Inbound Marketing

Inbound Marketing Statistics

1. According to Hubspot, 46% of the marketers have said that they have generated a higher ROI with the help of Inbound Marketing. While 56% the marketers have reported that inbound marketing produces higher quality leads for sales.
2. Top Rank Blog says that 39% of the marketing budget is spent on content marketing by the most effective B2B Marketers and on an average, they use 13 content marketing strategies.
3. The leads generated from Inbound Marketing is 61% less costly than the outbound leads.
4. For converting leads, the inbound marketing is 10 times more effective than outbound.
5. Marketers who preferred Inbound Marketing were able to double the average website conversion rate from 6% to 12%.

The Proven Inbound Methodology for Growing Business

As we all are familiar that the buying or purchasing behaviour of the people has considerably changed over time. The way they look for information, communicate and what all they expect from a certain business, everything has changed.

The Inbound Marketing Methodology is a strategical process of 4 stages viz attract, convert, close and delight. This process is specially designed to target customers at various levels. The combination of this methodology with technology has helped businesses to match the pace of the changing behaviour of the customers.

Inbound Marketing provides spectacular results not only in the financial aspect but also in building a strong and long-term relationship with customers. The inbound methodology revolves around the notion of responding to the customers in the best possible way. Attracting customers with the help of knowledgeable and valuable content. Converting by using Call-to-Actions and Landing Page. Further closing your leads and converting them into long-lasting customers. Lastly, delighting them with consistent social media and content activities.

Components of the Inbound Methodology

What is Inbound Marketing

Components of Inbound Marketing

The Inbound Marketing Methodology is divided into 4 stages: Attract, Convert, Close and Delight. Let us study the breakdown in detail.

1. Attract

This is the very first stage of the Inbound Marketing Methodology. This stage is precisely designed for converting the strangers into visitors. While looking forward to creating relationships, you should attract individuals who are interested in your product and service and also have the potential of becoming your valued consumers. You should take all your inbound marketing activities keeping them in mind. To understand the behaviour of your prospects, you need to create buyer personas for them. A buyer persona is a set of characteristics and features that your potential customers possess. The next step is to create content that grabs the attention of your potential customers in addition to persuading them to take the next step in the buying process.

For attracting the customers, you can use the following strategies:

Blogging

Blogging is one of the best techniques for attracting prospects. It allows the prospects to get engaged with your brand. Hence, it is recommended to start a blog and then integrate it with the main website. Include tips, trends, reviews, comparisons, strategies, techniques and even visual content like videos and infographics in your blog. Use simple language and address as if you are speaking to them.

Social Media

A majority of the population is present and is consistently active on social media. All thanks to the smartphone and the telecom industry that made social media connection convenient with just a click of the power button of the phone. Referring to the fact that majority of the people are online on social media makes it pretty mandatory for you to connect with them there itself. Social media not only acts as a great resource to share your content but also proves to be a potential factor that builds a connection between you and your prospects.

Keywords

The web is cluttered with billions of websites and the competition is intense. In order to gain visibility and competitive advantage, you need to make sure to derive a better rank on the Search Engine Results Page. Moreover, to rank high and derive qualified traffic to your website, optimize the keywords that are present on your website. For this, you need to know the type of search queries your prospects type in when they look for products/services like you. On the more, derive keywords from these search queries and place them in the URL, page title, body text, alt text for images and tags. These keywords help the search engines in determining what the page is all about. This lets the search engines provide relevant results to the users. Also, avoid the use of unnecessary keywords in the text.

Landing Pages

Apart from the optimization of keywords, the landing pages should also be optimized so that they become visually as well as interactively appealing. To make the landing posing eye catchy, you should use image and videos, have a user-friendly navigation along with interconnected links. Attractive landing pages are responsible for retaining the user for a longer time and increasing the engagement rate. Along with linking your website internally, it is exceptionally important to include some outbound links. Since these outbound links provide the website with some authority which has a direct effect on the ranking of the website.

2. Convert

The next thing that comes after attracting the visitors is to convert them into long-term and loyal visitors.  Primarily, you need to obtain their contact information to get ahead with the conversion process. The challenge arises when it comes to obtaining the contact information of all the potential customers. Generally, when you need something you have to pay a certain cost for it. However, in this case, you can’t pay someone for filling their contact information. Because like this, even the unwanted audience also dives in. Thus, to make sure that you get the contact information of the targeted audience only, you will have to give them something in return which they can use. Offer something that is important as well valuable to them. This can include ebooks, reports, case studies, webinars and other educational stuff.

Call-to-Action (CTAs)

Call-to-Actions are special buttons or links which are designed by keeping a special conversion in mind. They convince your visitors to take the desired action that you want them to take. For Example, “Download Ebook” or “Register Now”. Since the Call-to-Actions are responsible for initiating more conversions, they should be easily noticeable and clear along with compelling words.

Contact List

Obtaining the contacts is not enough, you need to maintain a proper database. This database is required to keep a track of all the interactions that you have had with those particular leads. It should clearly state the number of leads that have been contacted and till where the process has reached. Also, the next steps to take should also be included in it.

3. Close

The next step after conversion is the closing the leads and making them your customers. Before closing the leads into customers, ensure that they are sales oriented and are ready to make the purchase of your product/service. However, there are certain tools and marketing techniques that push your leads through the conversion funnel.

Emails

Emails are the traditional method of guiding your leads towards conversion funnel. Generally, marketers use the email technique for those leads who have interacted with their content but have not made the purchase. The general objective of this email tactic is to create a sense of trust in your lead so that they are motivated to take the final conversion step. Sending relevant, valuable and engaging content to the leads can help you in achieving those long-term customers.

Lead Scoring

This is a way to judge whether the generated leads are sales-oriented or not. In this technique, a certain numerical value is assigned to the leads on the basis of how sales focussed they are. This is done by tracking web activities of the leads.

4. Delight

Well, Inbound Marketing does not end with the sale of a product or service. It continues after your leads have been converted into loyal customers. Remember, we have been talking about converting the leads into loyal and long-term customers. Delight is the component where the importance of long-term customers come in. The purpose of Inbound Marketing is not to just build a huge list of customers, rather, Inbound Marketing looks forward to making those customers the promoters of the products and services. Thus, to establish brand loyalty, you need to deliver value to your customers even after the sales process. This is also done so that your existing customers do not forget about you in the course of time.

Benefits of Inbound Marketing

What is Inbound Marketing

Benefits of Inbound Marketing

1. Generates Quality Traffic

One of the primary benefits of Inbound Marketing is that it is laser-focused on reaching the right audience at the right time. This results in a high engagement rate of the target audience. When you connect with the target audience at the right time, they tend to get attracted towards your offer. As a result, Inbound Marketing not only attracts traffic, rather it attracts qualified traffic that acts as assets.

2. Increases Trust

Inbound Marketing provides the target audience with all the relevant and valuable information that they are looking for. This initiates a trust factor in them and they develop faith in your product or service. As Inbound Marketing does not push sales but provides information, it tends to make your business credible.

3. Cost Effective

Inbound Marketing is not only effective when it comes lead generation. It is also cost effective and this is a suitable method of marketing for almost all types of business as it does not include a huge budget. Inbound Marketing uses a wide range of free tools that automate the process and deliver you optimal results.

How to initiate Inbound Marketing?

The more you invest in Inbound Marketing, the greater and optimal results you get. Inbound Marketing does not push sales but provides informational and valuable insights to the target audience. Taking this thought into consideration you should focus on creating exceptionally valuable content. The content should be focussed on solving the pain points of the audience and also give a clarity to all their doubts.

Steps to get started with Inbound Marketing

  • Identify with the Target Audience
  • Conduct thorough research on their tastes and preferences
  • Create your unique and compelling story
  • Choose the platforms for delivery (social media, blogs, email etc)
  • Create a calendar and follow it

Types of Inbound Marketing

What is Inbound Marketing

Types of Inbound Marketing

1. Search Engine Optimization

Search Engine Optimization is a well-framed process of making quality changes in various areas of your website. This is done to so that the search engines can find relevant information and deliver the same to the target audience. In order to reach out to the target audience in an organic manner, you need to rank higher in the SERP. Furthermore, the SEO process looks forward in making your website optimally best and helps in getting a higher rank.

2. Social Media

Social Media is another emerging platform that helps marketers connects with the target audience on a personal level. As more and more people are becoming active on social media, it has become one of the most effective platforms to get connected with the targeted audience. Hence, you just cannot afford to miss this popular form of Inbound Marketing where the target audience can easily form connections with you.

3. Content Marketing

Content is a huge part of Inbound Marketing. By creating and sharing a lot of informational and valuable content with the target audience, it develops a trustworthy relationship. Various types of content can be shared like blogs, videos, podcasts, infographics and what not. Content Marketing does not really force people to read the information. Interested people automatically reach out to the information.

Closing Thoughts

The world has become digital. Traditional methods of marketing have been taken over by Digital ones. People are inclined towards grabbing more valuable information. Rather than just purchasing any product or service, they want to learn every bit about it. Owing to the fact that the buying behaviour of the people has changed, outbound marketing alone cannot deliver the expected and desired results. Thus, Inbound Marketing techniques are brought forward and optimally executed to complement the Outbound Marketing to attract more leads and increase conversions.

Pic Credits: Make Web Better, Nerds That Care, Wired Flame and In Expanse.

An enthusiastic Content Writer & Marketer with 2 years of expertise in writing & curating Digital Marketing content. She is well-versed in writing website content, blogs, white papers, business collaterals, case studies & digital marketing content. She is passionate about Digital Marketing which keeps her updated with all the recent updates and trends of Digital Marketing.

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