What is inbound marketing?
When discussing marketing, most people will think of print and social media ads, email notifications, and maybe even cold calls. If we’re being honest, we’d admit that it is getting more difficult to create marketing campaigns of these types that are fully effective. Consumers may end up being more annoyed than engaged, and that is not the way to attract and keep customers.
So as how people interact with media and messaging changes, so must marketing strategies. While we consider what we just described in the previous paragraph as “outbound marketing”, “inbound marketing” is proving to be a more appealing approach for consumers and brands alike.
Inbound marketing relies on attracting your target audience’s attention and having them go to you, as opposed to outbound marketing, which inserts itself in front of consumers, interrupting them. Outbound marketing is the brand shouting “look at me!” at consumers, while inbound marketing gets consumers saying, “let me check that out” and visiting the brand.
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Inbound marketing vs outbound marketing
Another way to differentiate between inbound and outbound marketing is to think of outbound marketing as paid, such as traditional print or tv ads or as online display or pay-per-click ads, and of inbound as owned or earned, such as through your own website, blog, or social media profiles as well as organic mentions in third-party channels’ articles, reviews, and the like.
Furthermore, in addition to being channels that require expenditures, consumers are likely to try to avoid outbound marketing. Think of spam folders, adblockers, call screening, etc. Also, since inbound marketing is designed for consumers to “discover” your brand on their own, it goes a long way to establish trust and credibility for your brand, creating a fruitful relationship for all involved.
Benefits of inbound marketing
Along with this serendipity and relationship building, inbound marketing has benefits that extend to:
- Lower expenses: Inbound marketing relies on channels you don’t have to pay for, so there’s no need to budget for ad spends as you would with outbound marketing.
- Brand confidence: Attracting consumers with explainers or informative content can build brand loyalty much more effective than slick advertisements as people find their way to you through online research or serendipitous finds on social media.
- Increased traffic: With social media campaigns, organic SEO rankings, and reviews or mentions on other sites and social media, you can extend your reach to more people to draw more traffic to your website.
- Product or service development: Inbound marketing allows you to interact with your target audience. This could be through direct communications through social media platforms or website chatbots or through analyzing posts and comments about your product or services. This way, you can have immediate feedback on how your brand is doing.
There are many channels and opportunities for inbound marketing that your brand can take advantage of. By attracting visitors through your content, you can convert them into customers. You then can continue leveraging inbound marketing to foster customers into even more loyal customers with delightful and appealing content and communications.
If you are interested in utilizing inbound marketing for your brand but are not sure how to begin, consult the digital marketing experts at IBEX Media Group. We can help you build an inbound marketing strategy to best suit your purposes. Contact us today to find out how.