Inbound marketing is the effort of creating quality content meant to attract, inform and delight your audience and potential sales prospects. With the rise & noted success of inbound marketing, many businesses and industries alike are questioning their traditional sales approaches.
“The cold call is flawed in the assumption it carries that everyone is an active buyer.” – Derek Miller, Entrepreneur Magazine
Think about it, we do everything online. Shopping, research, networking, you name it. And it, is available via desktop, tablet or mobile. Inbound marketing works to help drive that much needed traffic to your blog, social media or website to gather information; or (gasp!), even make that conversion you’re seeking.
However, inbound alone is not necessarily the best approach according to Derek Miller a contributor for Entrepreneur magazine, and I agree. According to Miller, “Sales teams are more outbound oriented. But let me clarify that a sales team is not dispensable or useless. In fact, I think the sales department is a necessary complement for inbound marketing to reach its full potential.” Outbound sales are certainly valuable, and when coupled with an inbound approach you not only work to establish your brand but to help drive sales both on and off-line.
The traditional sales tactics of cold calling and giving someone your ‘pitch’ may not work in today’s market. As Miller points out prospects like to arrive at a decision on their own. Inbound marketing helps buyers get to this point by keeping in mind that every potential prospect is at a different point in the buyer’s journey.
This journey consists of 3 key stages:
Tailored content both on and off site (think social media, email, blogging) can help to bring your services, products and other useful information to the forefront of a prospects mind depending on their stage of the journey. Just remember to follow the 80/20 rule:
- 80% of your content should be interesting and helpful to your audience
- 20% of your content should be promotional
A HubSpot study showed that 54 percent more leads are created through inbound versus outbound practices and at a cost of 62 percent less per lead!
Who doesn’t want an opportunity to gain more business and save a little money in the effort?
If you’re looking to revamp your marketing approach let FMDi help you reach your target prospects where they spend their time… online!