Still making cold calls? Buying emails lists? Scrounging around for leads?
If you are doing those things, AND you are still in business, you're one of the lucky ones. But wouldn't you rather be thriving than surviving?
We’ll be blunt: Most traditional methods of outbound marketing suck. Who sits at home waiting for a stranger to call and try to shove a product down their ear-holes? Do you think anyone actually gives their blessing to have their email address sold to highest bidders so they can watch their inbox fill with emails from reps who clearly don’t know or care who you are? If that’s you, we recommend that you get on Google and search for a good psychiatrist in your area.
At Tribute Media, we believe wholeheartedly in the inbound approach to marketing. Why? Because it’s more effective in these Internet-dominated times.
Inbound marketing builds your reputation and gives your business a solid foundation on which it can grow and prosper. Your customers and prospects prefer this approach, which leads to greater success for your company.
How does inbound marketing do these things? By enticing the right customers to come to you.
Sharing is Caring
Outbound marketing involves a sort of carpet-bombing approach to informing customers about your business. It could mean sponsoring events, paying for radio and TV ads, making billboards and more.
Inbound marketing, on the other hand, focuses on drawing in your dream customers. You do this by creating and sharing content that speaks directly to these people—their problems, their needs, their aspirations.
With substantive, personalized content, you can attract more qualified prospects. Better still, not only will they come back for more, these people will help promote your business and get you even more leads.
Buyer Personas and the 4 Actions of Inbound
Shifting to an inbound approach to marketing takes a substantial shift in thinking from traditional, outbound marketing strategy. When you are ready to dive in, we've got the tools, resources and best practices to help you succeed, but we can only scratch the surface on this one website page, so here is the TL;DR version:
Inbound marketing centers on buyer personas. These are composite profiles of your ideal customers. They include such information as:
- Position in company
- Standard objections to products and services
For more about buyer personas, read our blog, "What is a Buyer Persona and How Can It Revolutionize My Business?"
The 4 Actions of Inbound
Once you figure out your buyer personas, you craft content that will take the people who fit these profiles through the process we all go through before making a purchase: the buyer's journey.
Read more about the buyer's journey here: "The Buyer's Journey Explained."
To successfully guide your personas through the buyer's journey, you'll want to understand these four key steps or actions on inbound marketing:
In the first step, you pique the customer’s interest. You do this through:
- Website Content
- Social Media
This content needs to be where your buyer personas are, and it must speak to their needs. When it does, it will draw them to your website.
Once you’ve attracted visitors to your site, you convert them into leads. You can't just ask for their email address, though. Instead, you offer them valuable content that will help them solve a problem. These could be:
- An eBook
- A Whitepaper
- A Tip Sheet
These visitors fill out a form to download the content, but it's not as though their email address is just the currency that buys this content. As you are establishing yourself as a valuable resource to them, they'll be happy to receive more helpful information from you.
Typical tools for converting site visitors into leads include:
- Landing Pages
So you’ve attracted the right people and converted them into leads. Next, you need to turn those leads into customers.
At this point, different marketing tools can come into play to ensure that you close the right leads. These include:
- Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Systems
- Emails with offers for additional relevant content
- Closed-loop reporting that shows how your sales team handles your leads
Great! You’ve closed the deal and made the sale. That’s the end of the process, right?
Nope. It’s just the beginning.
With inbound marketing, the connection between you and your customers doesn’t stop after a sale. Instead, you cultivate those relationships and give the people value above and beyond what they expected.
The ways you delight your customers can vary. You could invite them to take a survey and use their feedback to fine-tune your offerings. You could address their problems and questions via social media.
However you do it, the focus is on turning your clients into active promoters of your business. It’s about generating the most powerful form of marketing—word of mouth.
More on Digital Marketing
For more details on Tribute Media’s Digital Marketing services, check out these pages:
Got questions for us? Go to our Contact Us page and drop us a line!