When it comes to dating, being pursued is typically preferred to being the pursuer. There is hardly any difference when it comes to digital marketing tactics – even businesses need to feel wanted!
Inbound marketing is becoming more of the norm because it lets brands share their knowledge and products or services – making the consumer the one with the power and phone number and your business the one at home on a Saturday (Monday) night (morning) waiting for the call.
This marketing method is increasingly effective as society becomes more digitally-focused, and consumers are more in charge of their Internet experience. While traditional outbound marketing was a one-way street, inbound marketing is embracing all that is modern and making it more of a reciprocal partnership.
The two-way communication found in inbound marketing tactics is largely due to social media and the digital shift in interpersonal interactions. Social networks allow a brand to engage with consumers in a unique way that was certainly unheard of in the days of generic mass print ads.
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Each social media platform attracts a slightly different audience, and gives businesses the opportunity to tailor messages depending upon the recipient. Within the top social networks, 57% of companies reported acquiring customers through LinkedIn accounts and company blogs. 48% have acquired new customers through Facebook and 42% through Twitter.
Across all of those networks – as well as on company blogs – quality content is key. You have to ensure what you are publishing is platform-appropriate, relevant and engaging. This varies greatly according to your industry and products/services, but this little piece of first-date advice applies to everyone in all aspects of life: be yourself. Lying or using gimmicks to attract new customers will not be beneficial in the long run (and they are unlikely to contact you again).
Company blogs are a big part of inbound marketing because they communicate the value you have to offer. Thought leadership generates sales leads and sets you apart from others in your industry. Similarly, educational documents such as white papers provide credibility, and podcasts offer a more personalized learning experience. Comments and feedback from your community should be encouraged in all formats of inbound marketing.
Although we wouldn’t go so far as to call it a cheap date, inbound marketing does cost nearly half the average of outbound marketing when it comes to generating leads. Plus, all of the tactics within inbound marketing can notably increase SEO as well.