Inbound marketing is fundamentally about making your company’s website an active component of the sales process rather than static “brochureware.” It combines a fresh stream of compelling content with interactivity to promote engagement and SEO to make your site more “findable” when prospects are looking for what you offer.

Its use is becoming widespread (though adoption varies somewhat by company size), and offers some compelling advantages over traditional outbound (advertising, direct response, cold calling, etc.) activities. The most successful marketers though are likely combine both approaches in a coordinated manner.

This infographic from Akken Cloud was developed for the staffing industry, but most of its findings apply much more broadly across industries. It explains inbound tactics and benefits, and provides several intriguing facts and statistics about inbound marketing, such as:

  • 85% of marketers now state they are using inbound marketing practices.
  • But this varies by size: a whopping 93% of companies with marketing budgets in the $1 million to $5 million range do inbound marketing.
  • Marketers who prioritize blogging are 13 times more likely to achieve positive ROI.
  • It’s no surprise that different tactics are viewed as “rising in importance” among inbound and outbound marketers. However, both groups are in rough agreement regarding the importance of email, PPC advertising, and trade shows.
  • Content creation is viewed as the most important (65%) element of inbound marketing, but also cited as the most difficult by 57%. SEO (54%) was cited as the second most important inbound marketing tactic.

Courtesy of: Akken Cloud

It’s interesting also to note the degree of overlap between inbound marketing (first image below) and web presence optimization (WPO – second image below).

WPO can be viewed as inbound marketing plus online advertising, content strategy, industry/community marketing (industry analysts, trade associations, event-related online tactics, community-based marketing, etc.), and business-level online marketing measurement.

Inbound Marketing Tactics. Image credit: Akken Cloud
The Web Presence Optimization (WPO) Model