8 Benefits of Inbound Marketing

You’ve undoubtedly seen outbound marketing though you may not be aware of the term. The Superbowl Half-Time commercials. Radio ads for a new app for your smartphone. The billboard for a restaurant on an upcoming exit.

Outbound marketing is essentially any kind of marketing that sends a message out to a large group of people. It’s similar to casting a wide net. And, as I’m sure you could guess, it’s expensive.

tv-from-the-past

Photo by Paul Townsend

How expensive?

For billboards? Somewhere in the neighborhood of $1000-2500… A month.

That’s a lot. And for a short amount of time.

TV commercials even more so. Try $90-2500 for one 30-second bit. And let’s not get into those Superbowl commercials.

And how much are you getting out of these expensive ads? Is there any way of documenting? Unless you survey those who contact you or who come into your location, not really.

So, if outbound marketing is so expensive and so unable-to-document, why do people continue to use it?

Outbound marketing is important to get your business’s name out there. So if you’re in the first five years of your business, it may be a good time to use a little outbound to spread the word.

Otherwise, if you aren’t using inbound, you’re missing out on potentially well-qualified prospects knocking on your door.

Inbound marketing is the opposite of outbound. It is a form of marketing that advertises to those who are already looking for your product or service.

For many people who are in the market for something, they will rely on inbound marketing to give them an idea of who to purchase from. These individuals are already qualified as they are already looking to purchase.

So these people go to Google or Bing and search for the thing they’re looking for. What comes up? Blogs? Social Media? Reviews?

These are all forms of inbound marketing. And they’re not just important but more trustworthy than their outbound counterparts.

So, in a nutshell, what are the key benefits of Inbound Marketing?

1) Inbound Marketing has a higher ROI (Return-on-Investment).

Whereas you could be paying the high fees for a billboard or television ad with contracts, blogs or social media can be very inexpensive. In fact, you can usually get a blog for $100 or less that caters to your audience and your company’s personality.

2) Inbound Marketing has a lower CAC (Customer Acquisition Cost).

When you’re paying the fee to have your company broadcasted, you’re spreading a super wide net. I mean, how many people are probably going to drive by your billboard a day? A lot, right? Much more than will “drive by” your blog.

However, how many of those people driving by your billboard will need your product and service you’re advertising?

Far fewer than who come by your website.

It is better to advertise to fewer people and have them all qualified, than spend more to advertise to more people who probably aren’t your ideal client.

3) Inbound Marketing lasts forever… Or as long as you want it to.

Going back to the outbound analogy, imagine you no longer want the billboard. You saw results but it’s becoming pricey. So you void the contract and move on, right?

What then becomes of your billboard? It too moves on.

In the world of outbound marketing, your money is directly influenced by how much money you put into it. With inbound marketing, it’s different.

You can continue to pay someone to write your blogs or man the blogs and social media campaigns yourself but if you cease, that information is still on there. You’re still probably going to receive traffic from it if it’s awesome content.

Inbound marketing isn’t just going to stick around as long as you do but it continues to work for you for some time after. And once you start back on the inbound marketing horse, you have back information to help solidify yourself as an expert in your field.

talk-to-the-experts

Photo by Mai Le

4) Inbound Marketing is more trustworthy.

Crest toothpaste is recommended by 9/10 dentists, right? But what about the news about the plastic pieces inside the toothpaste that do not dissolve and instead embed themselves within the gums of the consumer and cause serious gum problems.

Do we trust Crest? Not particularly. Especially now that P&G (the parent company) is forced to change many lines of their toothpaste.

Big win for Colgate.

What does any of this have to do with inbound marketing?

Everything.

Outbound marketing can be deceptive. It can be wrong. But inbound marketing can’t lie. It’s you answering the questions for your clients and prospects and giving them the information they need to make an informed decision.

Prospects will get the information they’re looking for somewhere and that place should be you. By getting them unbiased information and showing yourself in a manner in which you want to help others, you are building the trust with your customers that outbound marketing isn’t going to do.

Trustworthiness is so important.

5) Inbound Marketing is made to prove you are a reliable expert in your field.

By giving prospective customers or clients the information they are looking for within the field of your product or service, you are creating an atmosphere of intelligence. With internal links, you can keep them at your website longer by providing great related material that is easy to find.

Being the expert in your field is important. People tend to purchase from the expert. No one wants to purchase something from someone who is amateur.

Instead, people are looking for a great, quality purchase with the comfort behind knowing it was recommended by someone who knows what they’re talking about.

6) Inbound Marketing builds relationships.

Looking for some referrals? Why not have your clients and customers do it for you?

Every business would love a situation in which the prospects coming through their door was referred by a client. Why can’t this be the case?

With inbound marketing, you are building the relationship you need to come to the top of the minds of your clients. By answers questions and giving superior customer service even after your product or service transaction is complete makes for a incredible customer service experience.

Sadly, that isn’t too common anymore.

So stand out in the crowd using your social media pages and you’ll be having people come to you looking for that something special in their business relationships.

7) Inbound Marketing can be tracked.

How many people did you receive from your last outbound marketing campaign? How many prospects from your ads became actual customers?

It’s hard to tell. Unless you include some questionnaire with each prospect you encounter, you’re not going to have any idea of how many people came to you because of your campaign… Especially if you are also trying to take into consideration the amount of people who saw your ad and didn’t follow through.

With inbound marketing (and Google Analytics), you can see the beginning through to the end and where a prospect may have veered away on your website or social media page. It’s far easier to calculate and then to fix any issues you may find from the incoming traffic patterns.

Fix these issues and see how your traffic has changed. Have visitors stayed around longer? Have you obtained more clients? These can both be answered using inbound.

computer-work-hands-keyboard

Photo by Eric Bridiers

8) Inbound Marketing can be done yourself.

You do not need to have a college degree in inbound marketing to promote yourself using inbound marketing techniques.

By giving great information on your many channels, you can increase your chances of obtaining more qualified prospects to your pages.

Instead of contacting the local billboard agency, try funneling some of your advertising budget into inbound marketing or vow to do some of it yourself.

Who knows, it could be something you really enjoy by responding to satisfied customers and answering the questions to those who may convert with your wisdom.

Now It’s Your Turn

As always, you guys have some awesome advice.

What benefits are you seeing come through from your inbound marketing efforts? Have any questions? Share with us below!

If you are interested in learning more about inbound marketing or how we can help build your business, contact us today. We will be happy to schedule your consultation around your calendar.

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