When company owners and entrepreneurs first foray into the realm of inbound marketing for business, the sheer amount of data purporting to prove the efficacy of said online marketing method can seem too good to be true. It's more affordable than traditional display marketing, more flexible and targeted than outbound marketing, and can provide more lucrative ROI compared to both. How can this be?
Two factors distinctly make inbound marketing for business relatively more effective in growing a business compared to other forms of advertising:
- The propensity for lead generation; and,
- the integration into the buying cycle
Many different experts can tell you many varied aspects of inbound marketing that give it the competitive edge, but it all boils down to how effective it is in lead generation and how seamlessly intertwined it is within a business' buying cycle, efficiently nurturing leads from one stage of the sales funnel to the next.
Funneling Leads Straight to a Sale
Inbound marketing, as the name suggests, is a mode of marketing to an inbound target audience, as opposed to interruption marketing where the business reaches out to its audience. Inbound marketing kicks in after traffic lands on a business website, and can encompass several marketing channels ranging from search optimization to social media to email marketing.
It's effective in lead generation because an inbound crowd is naturally more susceptible to marketing and sales pitches, as they are already interested enough to go to the platform of marketing (website, landing page, etc.) in the first place. Inbound traffic, especially organic traffic from search and referral traffic from social media, is already targeted traffic, in this sense. All they need is a reason to provide data for lead capture. Some of the most effective tactics used in inbound marketing for business that result in high lead generation rates include:
- Suitably placed and expertly worded calls to action - CTAs that are easily noticeable and highly persuasive are lead generation miracle workers. Add a sense of urgency (e.g. through offering limited stocks) and a touch of special treatment (e.g. members / subscribers received an additional discount or freebie) and they rarely fail to turn casual interest into purchase consideration.
- Closed loop cross-channel marketing - effective inbound marketing for business leverages the complexity of an online buying cycle. It allows potential leads to go from social channels to email to blogs to product pages, but at the same time endeavors to push them along the path towards a closed sale. There are no easy exits and loose ends within the entire buying cycle - each channel leads to another, and leads one step closer to a sale.
- Personalized marketing - marketing messages and ads tailored to the specific preferences of visitors are radically more effective than generic ads. With ecommerce behavioral tracking (i.e. data mining browser cookies and browsing and search history, among others), businesses can better prepare for returning visitors by presenting marketing messages that they are sure to respond to, increasing lead generation through optimizing the return visit experience.
These are just three out of many varied and equally effective tactics in inbound marketing. Through these steps companies can better promote their businesses to nearly pre-qualified traffic and generate more leads, thus growing their entrepreneurial endeavors. Better yet, inbound marketing for business doesn't stop with increasing traffic and generating leads - it guides leads through the sales funnel and straight to a closed sale, directly impacting a business' bottom-line.
It's the potential for lead generation combined with extensive integration into the buying cycle that makes inbound marketing a formidable force that promotes and grows a business.
For more information on our successful methodology and how you can apply it to your business, check out our Free Inforgraphic: