I was once in college learning about all the latest trends in marketing. This was about the time social media was becoming the next big marketing channel. I remember thinking, “Wow how cool is this.” Years later every brand, company, and public figure are using social media. Odds are you are doing the same.
The point is that marketing continues to evolve all the time. So your business must be utilizing all marketing channels to maximize your reach. Further, you can’t just continue to send out more and more offers, you have to create something of value to the customer. Let’s discuss the importance of inbound marketing for your small business.
What Is Inbound Marketing
Inbound Marketing is part of the integrated marketing approach and changes the way you think about marketing. No more buying direct mail list, no more spending thousands of dollars at trade shows, no more cold calling. Let’s attract customers with your most valuable marketing asset, your website.
The main difference between inbound marketing versus outbound marketing is we are not interrupting potential customers. We are attracting customers and pulling them through the sales cycle. Inbound marketing attracts these customers through keyword research, social media, and blogging.
Once on your website, you are able to add a value offer, an eBook, a case study, or anything the customer might find beneficial. No more pushing unwanted offers to your customers, it is time to start pulling them in with great marketing. So cast your net and get ready for the haul of your lifetime.
The Importance Of Inbound Marketing
Now we know what inbound marketing is, but why is inbound marketing so important to your business? Here are a few reasons you need to implement an inbound marketing approach in your marketing today.
Attract More Website Visitors
Inbound marketing is all about getting the most out of your website. Part of the process is creating great content that your customers will want. Your blog becomes an asset that drives traffic to your website. You are able to identify “keywords” that your customers are searching. By blogging for business, you are able to answer your customer’s questions and build trust before you ever talk to them. Get out in front of your customers and answer their questions.
If you commit to the inbound marketing process you are able to drive more visitors to your website. This can increase your chances of converting visitors to leads.
Convert More Leads
Now that your website is receiving more web traffic it is time to convert this traffic into leads. The inbound marketing approach you create clear calls to action. This encourages visitors to learn more about your products or services, in exchange for their contact information. So you have to make the call to action compelling enough for the customer to want to learn more.
The calls to actions on your web pages help to convert the right customers to leads. If the customer is not ready to buy you should not waste your time talking to them. This process will help you produce quality leads that want your products and services.
Converting your web traffic to leads is critical in the inbound marketing process. By converting the web traffic to quality leads, you are able to increase your success rate of closing the lead to a customer. This also helps your sales team focus on the right leads.
Close More Customers
Now your website is starting to generate quality leads. It is time to nurture these leads and create customers. Using tools like email marketing, social media, and marketing automation helps pull leads through the sales funnel.
For example, as the customer is doing research about your company you may share content that is general to the industry. As the customer turns into a lead you might want to tell them how your company is better than the competition. This is a more targeted approach and it can help sell your company during the closing stage.
Maximize Return on Investment
Inbound marketing is about creating content that potential customers are searching for. This is different than buying advertising or “outbound marketing” in print, TV, radio, or pay per click. By creating content, you answer your customer’s questions you are able to cut your marketing budget. In fact, the average cost per “outbound” lead is $346, compared to only $135 per inbound lead. This is a 60% reduction in cost. Inbound marketing takes creativity, but it can help your bottom line.
Can You Use More Time?
As small business owners, time is the most valuable asset. Inbound marketing never stops working for your company. In fact most of the tactics you can automate. Once you create valuable content you are able to let the system work for you. Implementing marketing automation helps you sell your products around the clock. This saves you as a business owner and your sales department time.
Inbound marketing can help your small business maximize your return on investment and save time. The importance of inbound marketing goes beyond just not blogging or lack of social media marketing. Inbound marketing is the marketing tool that generates more leads and closes more customers. The inbound marketing methodology is the only marketing framework that focuses on the customer throughout the buyer’s journey. So stop wasting time and get more out of your marketing.