Whether you are just getting your business going or if you are managing a business that has been around for years, it is important to focus on marketing. Marketing is what will lead your company to find more growth as you reach a wider audience. While you may understand the importance of marketing, it is also important to understand the kinds of marketing and what will bring you the most organic traffic.
What is Inbound Marketing?
Inbound marketing is a method of marketing used by many businesses to attract customers to their website or social media platforms. Inbound marketing focuses on creating content that is valuable to the customer and providing experiences that are specifically aimed at the target audience.
In contrast to outbound marketing which interrupts your audience with your content, inbound marketing leads to customers seeking you out. Clients will come to you because you provide solutions to problems they already have and you work to form meaningful connections with them.
Applying Inbound Marketing Strategies
Retaining customers is a much more effective way of doing business than continuously having to create new customers for every purchase. Creating loyal customers means becoming an authority in your field by creating quality content and maintaining meaningful relationships with customers.
Helping customers feel included in your business and empowered in their own lives will keep them coming back to you over and over again. It will also lead them to recommend your company to family and their friends, which will create an even wider customer base. When people receive a recommendation from a friend, they are much more likely to frequent that business than other ways of discovery.
There are three basic categories used to think about inbound marketing strategies in your business. While the specifics will need to be adapted to fit your business and industry, the basic principles can be applied to any company’s marketing strategy.
First, you need to attract customers to your business. You want to make sure that the right people are coming to your store or website, so incorporating web design that relates to your visitor is important. The people you attract need to fall within your target demographic and be interested in your products or services. You can attract the right kind of people by creating content that is pertinent to their lives and facilitating conversations that make you an expert in your field.
Next, you want to engage with the people you attract. You want to show them your level of knowledge by giving them insights and solutions to problems they already have in their lives. You want your content to align with their lifestyle and goals, so they feel like you are the same and understand their needs.
Finally, you want to leave your customers with a good feeling. You want them to walk away from interactions with your business feeling empowered and good about themselves. They will associate that feeling with your company and keep coming back. This doesn’t mean that problems won’t arise, but how you handle issues is much more important than keeping them from ever happening.
Adding these principles to your marketing strategies will help you maintain organic growth in your company. When a customer experiences your inbound marketing strategies, they are going to share their experience with others. Then others come to you, and the process starts over again. This creates sustainable growth and helps to build momentum.
The Importance of Quality Customer Experiences
Your goal is to maintain your business and hopefully grow it. The experiences that your customers have when they interact with your business is going to be the determining factor in your business’s ability to grow and expand. Again, this is another reason to invest in web design that relates to your ideal visitor.
All the different aspects of inbound marketing work to create the best possible customer experience. During the attract phase, you will probably focus on good SEO, intuitive UI and UX, and maximizing CRO for your company. You can also encourage organic growth by making it easy for current customers to make referrals. These tactics maximize your ability to be found by people who are already looking for what you have to offer.
This is going to be much more compelling than paid advertisements like Google Ads or social media ads that interrupt what your customer is doing to introduce your company. While you can tailor these ads to appear to certain people, they will still likely see it as an annoyance that is keeping them from their preferred task.
Inbound Marketing Strategies
Now that you know the benefits of inbound marketing and the principles behind it, the next step is to discover the strategies that you can implement into your business. There are different strategies for the different areas of inbound marketing, so some may be more relevant to your business than others.
The strategies you utilize to attract customers to your business are going to be rooted in creating content and development of products.
Creating content will look different for different businesses, but it is a crucial step in attracting the right kind of people to your company. You can use blog articles, content offers, or social media posts to offer this content to your audience. You can offer guides about how to use certain products you offer, information about how to use products and services to solve problems, customer reviews and testimonials, or coupons or promotion information.
When you publish content, you should give it an extra boost by making sure that you are using SEO strategies. Peppering your content with keywords will allow the right customers to find your posts.
Once you have attracted an audience, you need to engage with them. You want your communication to lead to long-term relationships between the client and you. This focuses a lot on customer service. When a customer needs a problem resolved or has questions, the way you communicate with them is either going to disappoint or impress them. You also want to make sure you are marketing your products as solutions to problems instead of just products.
Strategies like lead flows and lead management will help you engage with the customer. You can also engage in email marketing and conversational bots. You will also want to look into marketing automation as a means to engage with your audience.
You may also want to look into creating videos as a means of getting content to your audience. When people are on the internet, they switch to processing things visually even more than usual. Giving them a short video is not only a great way to give a lot of information in a short time, but it is also very engaging to the customer and gives them a glimpse into your company’s brand.
You want your customers to walk away from you feeling satisfied and supported. You and all your employees should serve as experts and advisors to your customers when they are contemplating a purchase.
Creating feedback is an important part of making sure you can delight your customers and will open up another channel of communication to help your customer be heard. Surveys that request feedback and chatbots that will assist and support the customer are great ways to look into the customer’s journey through your business.
While there are many ways to leave your customer feeling delighted, creating smart content is important. Content that will add value to their lives long after they finish reading it will help you to be in the front of their mind. If it is valuable enough that they come back to it more than once, that is even better!
You can also delight your audience through the use of email marketing and a conversation inbox. Getting the right information to the right persona at the right time will help your customer feel important and understood. It is also a great way to help make sure that the sales and service team members for your company are on the same page and are working towards the same goals.
A Better Measure of Growth
Outbound marketing strategies have their place in the business world, but that place is shrinking. Using these strategies, like paid ads, can drive traffic, but they are not as effective as inbound strategies. With outbound strategies, the customer is interrupted by their regular activities in order to see your ad and learn about your business.
Inbound marketing approaches the customer in a different way. Instead of forcing yourself upon the target demographic, you attempt to gain organic flow by making yourself easy to find by the right people. Since you want to attract customers that are interested in buying your products or services, it is important that the people that find your business already want what you have to offer.
Working on your inbound marketing strategies means that when someone looks for what you have to offer, they can find you easily. This not only leads to more customers who will actually buy from your company, but those customers will also be loyal and recommend you to friends. Inbound marketing is the strategy that builds on itself to grow your business!