Marketing is no longer about the stuff that you make, but about the stories you tell.” – Seth Godin.
Seth is right; marketing is indeed about storytelling. And inbound marketing exploits this truth in reeling in customers.
To make your business discoverable, inbound marketing strategies are geared at providing valuable information to customers. If your authority radiates through the content, they’ll seek your input.
Inbound marketing has been proven to be effective compared to its outbound counterpart for one sole reason: it’s not interruptive.
Customers are seeking the information, and you’re offering them content that matches their needs.
Types of Inbound Marketing
There are several levels of inbound marketing. Each aspect of this marketing strategy plays a specific role in establishing your business as a dominant force in the industry.
In this phase of the marketing process, prospects are attracted to your website through a few unique ways. This could be through optimizing for search engines, pay per click, and others.
“Google only loves you when everyone else loves you first.” – Wendy Piersall
Wendy’s statement isn’t only restricted to Google; Bing and other search engines follow the same route in ranking your website for search result pages (SERP).
What does this mean for your business?
Prospects must find your content valuable; else, it’s a no-show for your business.
These search engines have different metrics to verify if the content truly resonates with your target audience. Keyword optimization isn’t enough anymore. High-tech algorithms applied by search engines have drilled nails into that coffin.
With the work involved in creating the desired content, many businesses would instead take the convenient route – pay-per-click (PPC).
By paying search engine platforms to put your business out there, you can get the ranking you desire. But like any approach that circumvents the norm of valuable content, this approach has its pitfalls.
Customers aren’t searching for suitable products; they are mostly searching for helpful content. Promoting your products at the top of the search result page would get you the barest of clicks with little or no conversion.
Prospects and customers tend to avoid such promotions as a plague – people aren’t enthusiastic about paid ads. But you can always promote helpful content and subtly promote your product. What could be more win-win than that?
“Getting the like is easy. It’s a light action. Anything else requires trust.”- Jon Loomer
Jon’s assertion holds in the inbound marketing strategy. You can lure customers to your website through valuable content, but getting them to ‘drink’ up those mouthwatering offers will require some level of trust in your credibility.
To get around this, avoid hitting them with offers, regardless of how ridiculously low your prices might be. Instead, focus on building a healthy relationship with them. Interact with them. Allow them to come forward with the challenges they are facing and provide your products as solutions to these problems.
This is the easiest way to keep your customers loyal to your brand.
Keep them happy
“A satisfied customer is the best form of advertisement” – G.S. Alag
You can’t fault Alag’s statement. A thoroughly pleased customer will speak for you in places you can’t possibly reach. Customers can open certain doors that are locked to anyone else. This reinforces the need to go beyond just offering a solution, but being a part of their journey.
Offer assistance when necessary as customers are humans – they remember the businesses that helped, even in the smallest of ways.
You can use the chatbox to communicate with the customers. This gives them the impression that you care about them beyond just getting their money.
There’s also the need to provide them with a sense of belonging by seeking their input through surveys. Customers are always happy when the business is about them. Making them a part of your brand’s story gives off that special vibes that get customers ecstatic about your enterprise.
While captivating your customers, endeavor to treat everyone equally. Never make any of them feel superior to the other, regardless of their spending power. Acting contrary to this could spell doom for the image of your brand.
Inbound marketing has its perks. Being non-interruptive, conversions are bound to be higher compared to the outbound variant. Interestingly, businesses are cashing in on its many advantages.
However, many of these enterprises appear to skip certain phases of the journey, jeopardizing the potential of taking their business to the next level. Hopefully, this article helps you to avoid being added to this number.