inbound marketing

Outbound marketing hasn’t died yet – billboard, television, radio and newspaper are still useful and successful media for advertising. However, this is the new age. Social media now plays an important role in the consumer’s world and the Internet has become a great marketing battlefield.

Today, almost 40% of the world’s population is using the Internet for communication, research, shopping, etc. Moreover, a great number of these people have an account on at least one social network. According to the statistics provided by Digital Insights here are the five leading social platforms:

  • Facebook

>1.15 billion users

  • Twitter

>500 million users

  • Google+

>500 million users

  • LinkedIn

>238 million users

  • Instagram

>130 million users

Consumers now search for alternative methods in which they can buy, sell and research brands and products and Social Media had a great influence on that. The old, conventional marketing techniques have been adapted to social media – an inbound marketing tool. This kind of marketing requires interactive communication with the consumer, but it provides a far greater success ratio than any kind of outbound marketing technique.

The goal of an inbound marketing campaign is not to find and buy people, but to help people find you. It is a known fact that people talk to people. If their friends and people of interest like a particular clothing-shop, you will most likely visit the same shop and even decide to buy from it if you had good referrals and positive customer feedback. There are various forms of inbound marketing, but they all lead to the same goal.

Exactly because of constant search engine updates, it is important to keep up with the changes in the world of inbound marketing. In the following, I will list some forms of inbound marketing as well as the benefits and advantages, in comparison to traditional, outbound marketing techniques.

E-mail Marketing

email-marketing

Newsletters are an important part of every marketing strategy. Although it might not seem that way, promotional material sent via e-mail along with information about your product updates can lead to loads of engaging customers. However, this shouldn’t be done recklessly. Just like with regular mail newsletters and promotional material (flyers, coupons, etc.), a great deal of them simply ends up in the trash without ever being read. Bur, this is where inbound marketing wins one a round. If done right (the recipient is a regular visitor/consumer and has a subscription option checked) your newsletter will have greater chances of being read and that it will engage your potential customers.

PPC Advertising

PPC

Pay-per-Click is a form of advertising offered by Google which allows you to create a banner advertisement which will appear on top of a Google search for a specific keyword. This way, you can create a simple, optimized advertisement connected to a targeted keyword related to your business and use it to attract more potential customers. The price of one click on your ad is measured according to relevance and according to the competition. For example, if you are running an online shop and you would like to promote leather jackets as the product you are selling, you will need to engage in a keyword auction with numerous competitive companies, who are bidding on the same word. Only three top bidders get in Google search results as paid advertisement on the first page of that keyword search. This form of inbound marketing is expensive, but worthwhile.

SEO and Social Media

seo-social-media

Although PPC advertising is probably the finest and most precise form of inbound marketing, it is not the best one. It is more of a one-way ad which implies no further involvement. It might sound odd, but only 6% of all Google users actually buy whey they follow the link. As we said, people talk to people – the other 94% are engaging in organic search results and they get referrals from friends, acquaintances, people of interest and people of authority. White hat SEO along with social media sharing can help you connect with your readers, get them to learn about your product and improve your connections with them. This is done with quality and relevant content that you provide to your audience. It will not only help you find the targeted audience and filter the potential customers, but will also help you generate long-term relationships with them. This way, you will build up your brand naturally and gain authority in the particular niche you are working in.

Inbound marketing has huge benefits over the conventional marketing. The consistency and effort you need to implement in your outbound strategy are much more demanding than with an online marketing campaign. Not only that, but the conversion rates and the efficiency of an online marketing campaign are much, much greater.