As marketers and business owners we're all striving for the same thing; constant improvement. The harsh reality is, you simply cannot count on that occurring these days if you're still heavily relying on traditional, outbound methods of marketing your business.
Consumer behavior has changed dramatically. Our collective attention spans as a society have decreased significantly due to advances in technology we're all enjoying.
Therefore the way we market to these consumers needs to adapt as well.We've detailed 6 things to consider when considering switching to an inbound marketing strategy.
1. A Marketing Team / Dedicated Marketing Manager
There is a variety of tasks that go into managing an inbound marketing campaign. From creating a lead generating website, to writing good content, managing a search engine optimization program, preparing video content, and optimizing landing pages, there is a lot to do. It’s important to have a team that successfuly do all of these tasks on an either project or routine basis.
Don’t freak out, not everyone can afford to hire an inbound marketing department. But it’s still critical that small businesses looking to implement inbound marketing have at least a member of their team dedicated to the inbound marketing process. From there, that individual can work closely with an inbound marketing agency, like IMPACT, to support with the campaign and provide the services that your business cannot fulfil in- house.
2. Analysis of Your Current Marketing Efforts
Before you can think about moving forward with inbound marketing, you need to know exactly where you are right now with your marketing. How much traffic are you driving to your site? How much of that traffic converts to leads? And from that, how many custom- ers do you have? A detailed analysis of your current marketing efforts is necessary in order to understand what needs to happen with your new marketing strategy.
3. Objectives and Benchmarks
So now that you know where you are, where do you want to be in the future? Identifying the objectives and goals of your inbound marketing campaign early on can give both you and your company an idea as to what you want out of you campaign. How many leads or sales do you need a month in order for your company to be profitable? What actions and decisions need to be made in order to reach this goal? With this information in mind, you can accurately plan your inbound marketing to be tailored to your goals and objectives.
4. Brand Development
Who are you as a company? What are your company’s goals? Inbound Marketing is all about encompassing your brand and making it seen by your potential market. If you as a company don’t know your ultimate goals as to who you are, then inbound marketing wouldn’t work for you. If you and your employees have different ideas as to what it is you want your company to accomplish, then this is the place to start before you do anything else.
5. Understanding of Buyer Personas
Who are you trying to sell to? How does your target market differ among different de- mographics? By defining set and standard buyer personas, you identify your different potential markets, so that you know exactly what you need to do to sell to them.
You will always have variety among the people you are trying to sell to, so you need to treat them differently in order to generate the most amount of leads possible. You wouldn’t try selling a frilly dress to a 40 year-old man, would you? By having these buyer personas, you don’t waste precious time and money on unqualified leads.
6. Inbound Marketing GamePlan
Now it's time to get started! Plan out your inbound marketing campaign and make ad- justments accordingly. Create a detailed schedule that includes goals and benchmarks as to how many leads you want to generate per month, and discuss what exactly you need to do to reach these goals.
Have a plan that illustrates when certain tasks need to be completed, so that you stay on track for reaching your goals.
As the Marketing Director of IMPACT from 2013-May 2015, John lead the IMPACT marketing team. He also wrote for the HubSpot Blog, Social Media Examiner, and Convince & Convert among others. In his free time, John enjoys playing guitar, high-fives, and anything with marinara sauce.