Inbound marketing has continued to evolve since the term was coined in 2005. The new Performable integration with the HubSpot Enterprise solution is an example. The new features and functionality require a reexamination of the old inbound marketing methodology in order to account for the new capabilities of today. Pete Caputa of HubSpot reminded us of this yesterday by introducing the new five step inbound marketing methodology for powering inbound campaigns into the future.
1. Attract Traffic
Attracting traffic can be broken down into three areas – create, optimize and promote. These steps to attract traffic have been well known for a long time and haven’t changed much over the years. However, some of the tools and tactics have.
- Create – You can’t do much marketing online without creating a website and content. This includes landing pages, whitepapers, video assets, social media accounts, etc.
- Optimize – Making sure your content is visible by search engines with SEO and is easily shareable through SMO is critical in today’s competitive Internet environment. Add to that A/B testing and you’ll be well on your way to the highest optimization levels.
- Promote – Executing campaigns via social media, PPC, email, outbound, etc. will help promote your content and drive web traffic.
2. Convert Visitors to Leads
Through the use of moral bribes, unique value propositions (UVPs), calls to action (CTAs) and advanced content you can build an organic list of leads to nurture and explore for sales opportunities.
3. Convert Leads to Sales
This is a joint marketing and sales effort. Through the use of strategically written lead nurturing emails and properly timed warm calling the sales cycle can be shortened. It also leads to prospects contacting you directly.
4. Turn Customers into Repeat Higher Margin Customers
This is a major piece of inbound marketing’s evolution and has been called 3rd Generation Inbound Marketing and MOFU. With the technology available today it’s possible to determine at a scalable level what pieces and types of content produce the best results (i.e. lead generation, best margins, repeat business, etc.) and what the best time to deliver that content in the sales funnel is. Not only that, but it’s possible to use multiple channels like email, social media, websites, mobile etc. to deliver this content according to the multi-channel behavior of prospects and existing customers.
5. Analyze for Continuous Improvement
In order to drive traffic while offering and delivering the content your potential and current customers want, when they want it, and how they want it delivered it is critical to track the results of your campaign in order to tell what works and what could use improvement.
The above doesn’t represent a reinvention of the wheel. However, it does represent a new spoke. Companies which invest in this methodology will have a major competitive advantage in their market place and geeks like me will have many new toys to play with.