What is Inbound Marketing and how does it work?
The way people purchase has fundamentally changed.
The first thing you will do now when buying anything is open a browser and start researching. Your prospects are exactly the same.
60% of the buying decision is now made before a consumer will engage with a ‘sales person’
It follows that you need to bring people to you early , when still in that research mode.
Getting traffic to your website is important, but even more critical is getting the right kind of traffic. What you’re looking for are people who are liable to turn into leads – and, eventually, into loyal customers. To determine who these ideal people are, buyer personas must be developed. Buyer personas illustrate what your ideal customers are like. In addition to reflecting key demographic details, these personas include their pain points, challenges, goals, and typical criticisms that they have about services and products. These buyer personas are the people that your business is dedicated to serving.
These are among the most valuable tools that you should be using to bring the ideal users to your website:
- Blogging - Inbound marketing should always begin with blogging, as this is the most effective individual method for attracting new visitors to your site. If you want potential customers to find you, creating informative content that addresses their questions and concerns is crucial.
- SEO – For your customers, the buying process generally starts when they use a search engine to find the answer to a question. That means you have to make certain that your site is showing up where and when they do that search. To make that happen, you must meticulously, analytically select keywords, generate content, and create links around the terms that your perfect buyers are looking for.
- Pages – The pages of your website are your online storefront, so make them look great! Optimize your site so that it draws in prospective customers and offers a lot of useful, interesting content that will attract the ideal buyers.
- Social Publishing – Remarkable content is at the heart of successful inbound strategies, and social publishing enables you to share that information on social networks while interacting with prospects and establishing a personality for the brand. Get engaged in the places where your ideal potential customers hang out online!
After you have attracted visitors to your website, it’s now time to convert them into leads by getting their contact information (particularly, and at the very least, their email addresses). For the online marketer, contact information is vital currency, and to get it from people, you often must provide them with something valuable in exchange. That “something” is usually some type of content, such as eBooks, articles/whitepapers, tip sheets, or anything else that might appeal to your various buyer personas.
These are among the best tools for converting website visitors into valuable leads:
- Forms – Visitors turn into leads once they fill out and submit a form with their contact information. Be sure to optimize this form so that the lead conversion process is as simple as possible.
- Calls-to-Action – Buttons and links that ask a visitor to take action (e.g., “Attend a Webinar” or “Download This Article”) are known as calls-to-action. You won’t be able to effectively generate leads if your calls-to-action aren’t intriguing enough or if there aren’t enough of them on your site.
- Landing Pages – Clicking on a call-to-action button or link should take the visitor to a landing page. This is the place where the call-to-action’s offer is fulfilled, and where the prospect’s contact information is submitted, thus giving the sales team the lead they need to start interacting with this person. Filling out that form on the landing page is what makes the visitor into a contact.
- Contacts – You should maintain a centralized marketing database where you keep these leads, because having your data stored in a single location helps you track each interaction with your contacts, whether it’s through a landing page, social media, email, or another form of communication. It also helps you optimize your future interactions so that you can better attract, convert, close, and delight your ideal buyer.
Now you’re doing everything right. You have attracted the right types of visitors to your site and converted those leads, but now you have to turn them into customers. What is the most effective way of making this transformation happen? There are some important marketing tools that should be utilized at this point to make certain that the right leads are being closed at the right time.
Among the most effective closing tools are:
- CRM - Keep information about the contacts, companies, and deals in your pipeline organized, so that it is easy to get in touch with the ideal prospects when needed. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems make this process easy by helping you keep track of all these details, allowing you to engage with prospects across every channel.
- Closed-loop Reporting – Are you wondering which marketing strategies are creating the best leads, or if your sales team is effectively transforming those leads into customers? Integration with your CRM system enables you to analyse how your marketing team and sales team are doing so that you can answer those questions.
- Email - What if a visitor to your website clicks on a call-to-action, fills out the form on a landing page, or downloads your content, but still isn’t prepared to become a customer? You can establish trust with prospective customers and prime them to buy by sending out a series of emails that offer relevant, helpful content.
- Marketing Automation – With this process, you tailor your email marketing and lead nurturing to the needs and lifecycle stage of each of the leads. For instance, if a visitor to your website downloaded a paper on a particular topic at one point, you may want to send that person a series of emails on a related subject. However, if they are following you on Twitter and have visited certain pages on your site, you may wish to alter your messaging to appeal to those other interests.
The Inbound way is focused on bringing outstanding content to users, whether they are visitors, leads, or current customers. Even if someone has already written you a cheque, that is no excuse to forget all about them! Inbound companies always keep engaging with, delighting, and upselling their existing customers into enthusiastic champions of the companies and products that they love.
These are some of the preferred tools for delighting customers:
- Surveys – There are few better ways of learning what people want than by simply asking them. Utilize surveys and feedback to make certain that you’re giving customers what they want.
- Smart Calls-to-Action - These provide different users with offers that change according to buyer persona and lifecycle stage.
- Smart Text – Give current customers remarkable content that is specific to their particular interests and challenges. Assist them in achieving their personal goals and introduce them to fresh products and features that may appeal to them.
- Social Monitoring - Track the social conversations that matter to you. Keep an eye out for your customers’ comments, questions, likes, and dislikes – and then be sure to reach out to them with content that they will find relevant and interesting.