Discover what inbound means and why it is the single most powerful FREE marketing tool available to you today.
So what precisely does inbound mean?
Inbound means moving towards or something like that in the dictionary but here in marketing land, it means leaving really attractive content out there on the internet which makes people want to interact with you and to move towards you or your brand.
The kind of content that will attract people to your brand is really well written, useful blog articles, certainly lots of videos and you should also consider all your social content to be inbound opportunities.
The next level of inbound marketing comes once we’ve made the initial attraction. We still don’t need to go out and interrupt people while they have dinner because we provide them with content tailored for them which we serve them perhaps by emails and other marketing automation.
I guess I had a small personal caveat to this which is that once someone has interacted with you a few times and enjoyed your content – perhaps even made an enquiry – then I think running some outbound alongside to nudge them back certainly has a place. But remember your cost per click when they see your ad will be much lower once content marketing has worked its magic.
Inbound drives massive Google results
For all you hard-headed commercial types out there (yes that’s us too), the first thing to know about inbound is that it will drive huge visit numbers via Google at a fraction of the cost of PPC or other outbound. And since we’re in our hard numbers mode let’s cite Hubspot’s study which noted that the cost of acquiring a lead via PPC was likely to be $364 vs $135 for inbound. Oh and did I mention that we are all bombarded with over 2000 outbound messages every day – do you want to be one of those?
Inbound fits with today’s buyer
One of my fascinations when talking to marketing people and looking at their work is that they can quite happily do marketing which doesn’t align with their personal buying habit at all!
Ask a marketing person if they find it frustrating when they can’t find a price on a B2B website and they will agree: ‘ Yes ! So annoying’
Do they then have their company’s prices on their website? Nope !
Equally if you asked anyone what they would you like to know all about a product or service and they all say things such as: ‘I Want to know the problems’, “ I want to understand the subject’, ‘I want to read reviews and know any hidden costs’
Of course you do ! We ALL do !
A good inbound strategy will provide all of this and much much more to the prospective buyer.
Successful inbound educates the buyer with honest non-sales copy non-sales video that simply seeks to share your great knowledge of your product or sector with the buyer.
Hubspot’s Flywheel model is a useful way to breakdown inbound activities
Hubspot’s model of inbound marketing is very useful
Inbound Builds trust
A great inbound content strategy will mean that a buyer arriving to buy a product or perhaps to speak to a salesperson will already trust you.
Afterall, You have already given them a broad education in the sector; you have highlighted any potential reasons why your product or service may be a bad fit; you have honestly shared any problems or concerns and you’ve told them about any comparable products or services they may wish to look at.
What could be more inspiring of trust than this?
If you have a sales team try asking them how long they spend answering the same question in sales call after sales call after sales call guarantee it will be a high number and this is where inbound really has a huge part to play
You can take those questions away or it can be used by the sales team to answer them without taking up lots of precious time in a sales call well educated Bayer who already knows a lot about the sector and your service or product you turn up to a sales call is clearly a very warm prospect only good inbound can deliver this
Inbound Marketing is a wonderful chance to humanise your brand and to bring your people to the fore. Videos of you talking about your product or service not only educate the buyer but also they bring a human face and warmth to the transaction before you had to jump on that zoom call, attend that meeting or pick up the phone.
When I meet prospects for the first time, people often smile and say ‘hello Nick’ in a way that make me think ‘oh my goodness I must have met this person before!’ Of course I haven’t but they have watched two or three videos that I’m in and feel quite rightly very comfortable with me. It’s wonderful!
So to humanise this interaction, here’s a picture of me with my greyhound Ginny. If you’d like to talk about greyhounds or inbound marketing then I’d love both !