Inbound marketing involves getting found by your potential customers through search, content and social media. Inbound marketing is more effective than traditional outbound marketing methods because you aren’t interrupting people to get their attention, with emails, cold calls, commercials, and so on.
With inbound marketing through the Web, you create a useful, informative website and let visitors find and come to you.
A common myth about inbound marketing is that it’s a mysterious, dark art that can only be done by the search marketing elite. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Inbound marketing is something that, with the right system in place, you can do yourself.
Traditionally businesses have relied on broadcast style marketing and advertising to create awareness of their existence and offerings. Television, radio, press, billboards and Yellow Pages have all been the cornerstone of marketing efforts for the last 50 years. And these media have served us well, offering the most efficient means with which to reach a large audience quickly.
Broadcast marketing by its nature is like using a shotgun. You aim it roughly in the right direction (ie. general target demographic), pull the trigger and hope that you hit the right audience. Of course, you’re also paying to hit some unwilling bystanders (non-target demographic) but that’s unavoidable. You then trust that the people you have hit will react to your efforts.
Inbound marketing turns this approach upside down. It involves discovering where potential customers are searching, positioning yourself correctly so they’ll find you and letting them discover whether you have what they are looking for.
Notice the difference? Rather than trying to force yourself onto unsuspecting masses, qualified prospects are ambling up to you.
Broadcast marketing relies on potential customers noticing you when YOU are ready (spending money on advertisements). It also means they won’t notice you if you aren’t active.
Inbound marketing allows potential customers to find you when THEY are ready. Any time, any place. It delivers motivated, qualified consumers to your door (website) 24 hours a day, 7 days per week.
Inbound marketing basics:
- Create a search engine friendly website
- Discover what customers are really searching for and how many of them are searching monthly
- Optimize your website to be found in these relevant searches
- Give visitors to your site information that will help in their decision making process
- Capture information about visitors to your site
- Provide methods for visitors to make inquiries or purchases