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Inbound Marketing: What Exactly is It?

  • Post category:Marketing
  • Reading time:6 mins read

Inbound marketing may seem like a daunting task, but the opposite couldn’t be more accurate. Inbound marketing involves delivering solutions and opportunities that have a positive impact on people and your business. The big, looming question is, how do you go about doing this?

Inbound marketing consists of using several different channels and types of content to appeal to prospects and customers. Inbound marketing aims to attract said prospects and customers to your website. However, inbound marketing is simply one piece of a more significant movement in the business world. It’s the essential foundation for the idea that it simply isn’t enough to attract people to your website. In addition to attracting users to your site, one must continue to help, support, and empower them. This is how your business grows. By linking Marketing, Sales, and Service, such that they can continue to focus on helping current and future customers.

This system is known as the inbound marketing flywheel. The general concepts of inbound ooze from and power the flywheel. Said flywheel consists of attracting, engaging, and delighting prospects and customers alike. This cycle helps your business grow faster and better.

Inbound Marketing Flywheel

What is inbound marketing?

The forefront task of inbound marketing is to attract prospects to your website. Once prospects arrive at your site, your sales team can then engage with them via conventional tools such as email and chat. This instills ongoing value as said prospects continue to learn about your brand. The service team then steps in once your sales team has worked their magic. This is when you delight visitors long after they’ve become customers. The overarching purpose of your service team is to act as an empathetic advisor and expert on your product.

Inbound marketing is a system of attracting, engaging, and delighting individuals with the aim of growing a business that provides value and forms trust. With technology constantly shifting, inbound guides an approach to doing business in a human and helpful fashion. Inbound is a more effective way to market, a more efficient way to sell, and a strong way to serve your customers. This is true because when good-for-the-customer means good-for-the-business, your organization can grow better over the long term. Through creating content designed to conquer problems and the needs of your ideal customers, you not only attract qualified prospects, but you also build trust and credibility for your business.

Inbound marketing strategies

The following strategies will serve to help you effectively market to your ideal target audience the inbound way. The following tactics will show you the specific means for each inbound method for attracting, engaging, and delighting consumers to help your business grow better.

Attracting strategies

Inbound marketing strategies that attract your ideal target audience and buyer personas are linked to content creation and development.

In order to reach your audience, you need to start off by creating and publishing content. Said content can consist of blogs, content offers, and social media. Regardless of the method, your content needs to provide some sort of value. Some examples include guides on how to use your product, information about how your solution can solve their challenges, and customer testimonials.

Inbound Marketing Attracting
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To attract your audience members on a deeper level via inbound marketing, you need to optimize all of your content with an SEO strategy. An SEO strategy requires you to target specific keywords and phrases related to your products or services, the challenges you solve for customers, and the ways in which you help target audience members.

Doing so will allow your content and information to appear organically on search engine result pages (SERPs) for those who are actively seeking out said information. This is also known as your target audience or the right customers for your business.

Engaging strategies

Whenever you use inbound tactics to engage with your audience, ensure that you’re communicating with prospects in a way that makes them want to build long-term relationships with you. When you use these engagement strategies, make sure to inject info about the value that your business will provide them.

Specific engagement strategies may include but are not limited to how you handle and manage your inbound sales calls. This is a great chance to focus on how customer service reps handle calls from interested people and prospects. Furthermore, make sure that you’re always selling a solution, not just a product or service. This will help you ensure that all deals conclude in mutually beneficial agreements for customers and your business. This means that you provide value for your right-fit customers.

Delighting strategies

Inbound strategies that delight ensure customers are happy, satisfied and supported long after their initial purchase. These strategies involve team members taking on roles such as advisors and experts who assist customers throughout the entire process.

Inbound Marketing Delight
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Social media listening is a critical strategy when it comes to delighting your customers. Social media followers may make use of your social profiles to provide feedback, ask questions, or share their experiences with your products or services. You can respond to these interactions with information that helps, supports and encourages followers. All in all, this shows your followers that you not only hear them but that you genuinely care about them.

Lastly, the trademark of an inbound strategy focuses on delighting customers is one that assists and supports customers in any situation – regardless of whether or not your business gets any value out of it. It’s critical to remember that a delighted customer becomes a brand ambassador and promoter, so handle all interactions, both big and small, with great care.

The proven method for growing your business

Over the past few years, the same shift in buying behavior that ignited the inbound marketing trend has also spread throughout the entire customer experience. In short, the way in which people communicate and what they expect from your business has changed.

So, what about the good news? The inbound approach, along with technology, further helps businesses adjust to fast-changing needs. These changes extend beyond marketing throughout the entire customer experience.

Using inbound in marketing

Inbound marketers aim to attract new prospects to their company, engage with them at scale, and delight them individually. You’ll also team up with your sales and services teams in order to keep the flywheel spinning. This is an effective way to help your business grow. It’s definitely a big job, but you’re in good hands just as long as you embrace the inbound marketing methodology.

Inbound Marketing
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Using inbound in sales

Inbound sales professionals spend their days doing three things:

  1. Attracting new leads to fuel their pipeline,
  2. Engaging with people who are ready to have a sales conversation,
  3. Delighting them with their solutions to their problems

Using inbound in services

Inbound service pros also do three things, they:

  1. Help existing customers seek out answers to their questions
  2. Provide help when customers need it and deliver it how they want it
  3. Enjoy their experience with you

Andrew Roche

Andrew Roche is a Digital Consultant at Shift Digital. He is also pursuing an MBA in Marketing & Finance through the Mike Ilitch School of Business at Wayne State University