Permission Based Marketing
Inbound Marketing is a permission based methodology that focuses on driving relevant traffic to your website, converting that traffic to leads, and finally, turning those leads into sales. Relevant traffic is driven to your website through attractive blog articles, social media, and effective search engine optimization techniques. This method of attracting qualified traffic is much more effective than the alternative – blasting a message to thousands of uninterested people in the hopes you’ll have a return rate of around 2%.
Once qualified visitors are on your website, the inbound marketing methodology drives visitors to attractive offers such as premium videos and ebooks. In exchange for these offers, website visitors will provide their contact information. This method of sharing offers is much more effective at generating leads and filling your sales pipeline than the traditional “contact us” link on the navigation bar.
The obvious next step of the sales process would be to turn leads into sales. The inbound marketing methodology utilizes marketing automation to collect social media information about your leads, segment them into targeted leads, and manage the initial follow-up for you. Tools like lead nurturing and e-mail marketing could help close up to 50% more leads.
HubSpot’s marketing automation software is integrated to achieve these results quicker and cost-effectively.
What Inbound Marketing is Not
Simply put, it’s not outbound marketing. This may seem obvious, but the differences between the two cannot be overstated.
Outbound marketing generally consists of marketing methods such as trade shows, e-mail blasts to purchased lists, internal cold calling, outsourced telemarketing, and advertising. There was a time when this was the standard and a very effective method of getting your message out there.
Times changed, and technology evolved. People were no longer using the yellow pages, unwanted marketing messages are easily blocked out by caller ID’s, DVR’s and spam filters. Not to mention the fact that everyone is too busy to meet with a door-to-door salesperson or attend a trade show. Times have changed but the demand for your product or service hasn’t. Are you marketing to those who actually want your product?
The “Let’s just blast this information out there to as many people as possible and hope that we receive a 2-5% response rate” method of marketing is no longer effective.
Why Inbound Marketing Works
Because the inbound marketing method generates more qualified traffic to your website, you’ll be in a much better position to convert this traffic into leads. In fact, studies by HubSpot show a 61% lower cost-per-lead than traditional outbound marketing efforts.
It’s quite simple really, if your website is attracting consumers who are in fact interested in the type of service or products you are offering, the result will be a higher percentage of leads who can be converted into sales.
Services in an Inbound Marketing Program
Marketers using inbound marketing techniques will utilize various services to help achieve their goals. We’ll break this down from start to finish here.
Building a Marketing Strategy for Success
The first part of any successful inbound marketing plan is to identify the goals and current marketing challenges a prospective client faces. The target market must be established and also how they currently use the Internet as part of their buying process. From there, an understanding of what the available budget is for an inbound marketing plan is discussed as well as how fast you want to grow. Lastly, it must be determined how this marketing program will provide a return on investment. Inbound marketing is not an expense; rather an investment in the growth of your business.
A website is the hub of any inbound marketing campaign. It is critical that any inbound marketing strategy start with a lead generating website, preferably on a content management system such as HubSpot or WordPress. It must be clear to the visitor what you do and why they are on your website within the first 5 seconds of being there. Your website also needs to be easy to navigate and has to be built using on-page SEO best practices. Lastly, with a rapid increase in the use of the Internet on smart phones such as iPhone, it’s now essential that all websites are mobile friendly.
Drive Relevant Website Traffic
Once a powerful website has been built, it’s now time to start generating some serious traffic. These are common inbound marketing traffic generating services:
Blogging is an incredible tool used to drive relevant traffic to your website. By blogging, you’re effectively setting yourself aside as an industry expert. Businesses that blog also generate 55% more web traffic than those who don’t.
Be sure to check out our FREE eBook on “How to Start a Business Blog.”
Search Engine Optimization
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) refers to the process of ensuring high search engine rankings for a particular item or keyword on your website. This is a proven process. When your website is optimized efficiently, you can effectively drive more relevant traffic to your website.
If you need help boosting your SEO, check out our FREE eBook on “10 Things You Can Do Right Now to Improve Your SEO.”
Social Media Marketing
Social media provides opportunities for you and your company to engage in two-way dialogue with visitors, customers, and fans. This is important as your company can share deals and insider information that can raise awareness for your brand.
Convert Traffic To Leads
Once your website increases its traffic flow, lead generation techniques are used in order to convert these website visitors into potential customers who will buy your product or service.
Development of Attractive Offers
The creation and implementation of attractive content such as coupons, ebooks, and other offers on your website are an important tool in providing visitors incentive to buy. In exchange for these offers, contact information will be attained to further increase your connections with consumers.
Landing Pages and Fillable Forms
Once your website has attractive offers in place, you’ll want to make sure there are effective landing pages and forms for your website visitors to access once they have clicked on an offer. This helps to convert a visitor into a lead, and eventually, a sale.
An effective call-to-action is an image or text that prompts visitors to take action, either by subscribing to a newsletter, requesting a product demo, or through attractive offers.
Convert Leads to Sales
Once your website is optimized to effectively generate leads, the obvious next step is converting these leads to sales. Through various lead intelligence strategies, following through on lead conversion can be done in an efficient manner.
Lead nurturing is the process of engaging potential leads using relevant and timely communications, such as e-mails, to build trust, generate interest, and raise company awareness until they are ready to move forward in the sales process.
Using e-mail marketing as an integrated tool with an inbound marketing program allows you to take full advantage of technology and trends to help you get more value out of your lists, prospects, leads and customers.
Closed Loop Reporting
Measuring your marketing efforts is a significant process in regards to the success of your company and online efforts. Some of the things we measure include website analytics and competitor tracking.
It’s very important for you to take full advantage of your online presence and fully optimize your website for success. It’s equally important to make the necessary changes to stay current, and we’ll take advantage of our analytical tools to make both calculated and measured changes.
Competitive analysis is extremely important in staying one step ahead of your competition. We help you to compare important website metrics to your competitors so you can effectively adjust your strategy.
What Tools are Used?
Clearly defined as an industry leader in marketing software, HubSpot features cost-effective software that can undoubtedly improve your online marketing efforts by effectively running your company’s website through HubSpot or even alongside it.
Being a certified partner has allowed those of us here at IMPACT to see the value of partnering with such innovative software firsthand, as we work with HubSpots software to help develop and create our inbound marketing services and solutions to maximize your company’s online marketing efforts.
Inbound Marketing Expectations
While the inbound marketing process is certainly a proven, cost-effective winner, patience will play a large role in determining its success. Do not be discouraged if your website doesn’t accrue overnight success. A good, loyal following will take time, but you can get there!
We here at IMPACT are fully invested and believe in the marketing strategies in the inbound marketing work services, however, we cannot guarantee any specific results. From our past experience, we have learned the following:
- You shouldn’t expect overnight success. Simply put, it takes time to develop a relevant and loyal following. Stay both positive and persistent and you will reach the initial goals set forth.
- Focus on connections and relationships. Creating remarkable content and communicating it with your followers will go a long way in building trusting relationships among your clients and consumers.
- Expect change. The world of technology is constantly evolving, so be sure to stay on your toes and be prepared to implement the necessary changes that inevitably come.
- Patience is indeed a virtue. Remember, it’s unrealistic to expect overnight success. It will take time to develop a trusting and loyal following, but you can get there. By staying ahead of the curve and establishing relationships with your followers, as well as engaging with IMPACT’s services for at least a year, you will most certainly be on the right track.
Should You Hire an Inbound Marketing Agency?
Do you have the time to generate blog posts and ideas with enough frequency for it to be a success? Do you have the tools necessary to help with lead generation and other analytical tools?
Are you well versed in the various social media platforms, and will you be able to engage with potential consumers in a frequent manner through them?
These are all questions you must ask yourself when determining if you should hire an inbound marketing agency. If you’ve answered no to many or all of these questions, then it sounds like you should strongly consider doing so.
By doing this, you’ll be free of the burden of constantly having to worry about engaging and staying current with these services. Let a team of “digital natives” handle all of these online tasks for you, and you will undoubtedly realize the value in having a website that is maximized for its potential.
For more info on hiring an inbound marketing agency, download our free “10 Reasons to Hire an Inbound Marketing Agency” ebook.
What Does an Inbound Marketing Partnership Cost?
The cost of an inbound marketing program is really dependent on your needs as a company and what you’re looking to get out of it. You can expect to pay anywhere between $3,500-$10,000/month.
It’s important to view the partnership as an investment rather than a cost. Think of your fully optimized website as a potential return on investment once the necessary pieces are in place to help your company’s website realize its full potential.
If inbound marketing is something that you are interested in but don’t know how to get started, contact us today to schedule your free marketing analysis.