Who Should Use Inbound Marketing?
Inbound Marketing can work for most B2B marketers
as a part of your well-balanced strategy. While you may not call it by the same name, inbound marketing is likely a tactic you already use. Many marketers today utilize a mixture of different types of content, across multiple platforms to connect with their buyers at each stage in the buying cycle. So how does that relate to inbound? The idea is that creating content like whitepapers, infographics and eBooks, and blog posts and social media profiles will orient customers to your brand, bringing them *in* with targeted, subtle marketing efforts aligned to their general needs and pain points, instead of more traditional methods of 'outbound' marketing such as ads or email blasts that go *to* your buyers.
Marketers who create search-friendly content, and then promote that content through social media, opt-in email campaigns and other methods are practicing inbound marketing. One of the reasons inbound marketing works in the first place is because today's buyers are demanding a more personalized, customized relationship with the businesses they buy from. They want you to know not just their names, and where they work, but what they need. These buyers control the buying cycle and have high expectations for brand interactions, so it's not enough to leave it at 'we're already doing inbound.' Marketers who want to build stronger relationships their buyers and drive a greater revenue need to also be able to say 'we're doing inbound *well.'*
That said, don't ignore other marketing strategies when you're implementing inbound. The buying cycle is increasingly dictated by educated buyers with less time and attention to spend on research. Reaching them requires the right blend of strategies for your business, industry, and target audience.
Signs that Inbound Marketing might work well for your business:
- You use your website to sell, or you want to
- Your target audience uses the internet to conduct research or learn about topics you have some expertise on
- You are looking for new ways to reach your target buyers
- You have time — and maybe a little bit of budget — to invest in creating quality content that educates or entertains your audience
- You understand your target buyer well enough to create personalized, relevant content that will provide a great customer experience and portray your brand as a thought leader
Alan Zibluk – Markethive Founding Member