Inbound MarketingAs we write this, there are 323,492,252 people in the United States, according to the Census Bureau’s population clock. Nearly all of those people are on the national Do Not Call Registry.

Why do we mention this?

Because when marketing experts talk about marketing, the Do Not Call list is something they point to illustrate why traditional marketing methods no longer work. It’s an argument we’ve made ourselves in the past.

But rather than talking about why outbound marketing doesn’t work, we’ll use this post to look at inbound marketing and whether it’s right for your business.

Customers Want To Know More About You.

It’s tempting to say inbound works for every business. And in some ways, it does. It’s never been a bad idea to create and share content that helps your customers, but the impact will depend on the nature of your industry.

If you’re in a more technical field making a less-than-exciting product, inbound gives you the chance to inform potential customers about your business. And although your industry may not seem glamorous to the world at large, there are people who are curious about your field. Inbound marketing seems custom-made for companies that get a lot of questions about what they do before they land a customer.

What Makes You Stand Out?

As we’ve said in previous blog entries, it’s not enough to say you’re “the best.” That’s an argument anyone can make. Instead, talk about what makes you stand out.

Here are a few ways to differentiate yourself through inbound marketing:

1. The Content You Create Should Solve Problems

Not everyone who visits your website is there because they want to be your customer. They may just have a need or a problem that needs solving. The content you create at this stage of their journey should be focused on helping them meet that need and solve that problem.

Let’s say you’re a company that repairs industrial tools. Rather than writing about what your business excels at, you could address problems facing the people that use the tools that you repair: How to care for heavy equipment, or what skills a construction engineer should have.

2. Continue The Conversation On Social Media

Your social media platforms – whether you’re on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or LinkedIn – allow you to continue the conversations you began when you created your content. You can share what you’ve written, and engage with fans of your company.

When you answer their questions and offer input into the discussions they’re having, you establish your authority in your field and make them advocates for your company. They’ll be more likely to share your content, which can bring new leads to your site.

3. Keep In Contact

Your blog is essentially a free piece of content, but other content you create should come with a trade-off. When you write e-books, white papers or other offers, the audience should give you something in exchange: a name and e-mail address.

When you have that information, keep in contact. The people who took the time to download your content and share their information must have some interest in what you have to say, and will want to learn about similar content. They’ll also keep you in mind when it’s time to purchase your product.