What is Inbound Marketing? Converting Visitors to Customers

With technology getting more progressive each year, competing for customers is getting more challenging than ever. It is a guarantee-to-success for businesses in the first year of operation to implement an effective marketing strategy but choosing the right channels of communication can be a struggle on its own. In this post I will break down some of the key elements in inbound marketing and highlight it differences from traditional marketing

What is Inbound Marketing?

Inbound Marketing is a strategy that is focused around attracting customers through relevant online content that can be accessed via various communication channels such as social media, blogs and search engines. Here’s a short video by Macleod & Co. presenting inbound marketing strategy in action:

Buyer’s Journey: From Strangers to Customers

Think of the last time you decided to purchase an item or a service. Did you wander the streets searching for the right billboard sign? Or did you call a sales person to find out about their service? Nowadays, to make an informed decision about a purchase, it sure is a lot more practical to simply search it online. The amount of information we can find about one product on the internet is just surprising at times or is it?

Modern marketers divide a buyer’s decision-making process otherwise known as ‘buyer’s journey’ into three main stages, which can be seen on the digram. Before making a purchase each individual goes through these stages. An effective inbound marketing strategy ensures there’s an informative content to respond to whatever the stage a person is on.The content that will help strangers seamlessly move down to the last stage to eventually become customers can be considered to have fulfilled its purpose.

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The thing that distinguishes inbound marketing strategy from digital is a sharp focus on the content; and a narrow plan where a certain type of content is generated accordingly to achieve a given objective depending on a strategy goal. 

Although, inbound marketing is usually associated with strategies for B2B companies, it has also proved to be just as effective for B2C companies.

Why Inbound over Traditional?

  • Inbound doesn't pursue customers come to you
  • Interactive, two-way communication with the customer
  • It is focused on adding value (membership & subscription programs)
  • Earning people's interest through engaging content
  • Provides marketers with ability to closely monitor and optimize content
  • Most of the times benefit-cost ratio is in favour of inbound
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