“What is inbound marketing?”
You’ve heard and read about it online and offline. You’ve heard it’s what entrepreneurs are doing to build and grow their businesses. But do you know exactly what inbound marketing is?
To understand this marketing methodology, you need to understand the buyer’s journey first.
People buy products that they think can solve a specific problem that they have. So, to get their attention, you must position yourself as a guide who can help them find a solution to their problem. Treat your customer like they’re a hero on a quest, facing great difficulty. You are their guide who can provide them with a plan, helping them go home victorious.
Inbound marketing is how you can gain your customer’s trust so they can look at you and say, “You’re the Gandalf to my Frodo.”
What is Inbound Marketing?
Inbound marketing is a marketing strategy that attracts, captivates, and delights customers through educational content and valuable conversations. It positions you or your business as someone consumers can trust and go to for advice.
At the heart of the inbound methodology is content. To be seen as an authority in your niche or industry, you must create content that answers your audience’s questions and concerns. You must use blogging, SEO, and social media to apply this methodology. These channels will help you reach your buyer persona while they are looking for solutions to their problems and browsing products of interest.
Inbound marketing is the exact opposite of outbound marketing. While inbound marketing allows consumers to find you when they need you, outbound marketing -- through cold-calling, email spamming, text blasts, and TV ads -- interrupts people with content they don’t always want.
Who can benefit from Inbound Marketing?
Inbound marketing is for any business, big or small, that wants to build a deep relationship with its customers. It is, however, especially beneficial to startups and small businesses because it is more affordable and sustainable than outbound marketing.
Inbound marketing creates a library of educational, entertaining, evergreen content. As long as you devote some time and effort to maintaining your inbound marketing, it can produce significant ROI for a long time.
If you are a startup or a small business with a meager budget, you can use the inbound methodology to your advantage. See, inbound leads cost 60% less than outbound leads. With some effort, you can compete with bigger brands by answering questions and solving problems that are relevant to your target customers.
What services does an Inbound Marketing Agency offer?
Now that you understand what inbound marketing is and how it can help grow your business, you might wonder if it’s time to consult an inbound marketing agency.
Inbound marketing agencies differ in various ways. Some may specialize in SEO and content marketing, while some are experts in marketing automation and social media. Still, some inbound marketing agencies offer full-service inbound marketing. They can provide all of the services you need to achieve your inbound sales goals. Some of the services they may offer include:
- Search engine optimization (SEO)
- Content marketing
- Email marketing
- Marketing automation
- Social media
- Growth-driven website design (GDD)
An inbound marketing agency can be of great help thanks to their expertise and experience. Outsourcing your inbound marketing to a dependable inbound marketing agency can be more cost-efficient than handling it in-house. Hiring, training and managing staff members don’t come cheap.
Do I need HubSpot for inbound marketing?
The inbound methodology has four stages: attract, convert, close, and delight. There are strategies for each stage. For instance, to attract your target audience, you publish search-engine-optimized blog articles and social media posts that are relevant to them. To convert your visitors to leads, you use forms and landing pages.
You can do all these without HubSpot, but it would be a messy, complicated, and expensive endeavor.
Let’s take blogging as an example. You may have heard that blogging is an excellent way of getting organic traffic to your website. No wonder 89% of marketers said they use blogs in their content strategy.
You probably also know that WordPress is the most popular blogging platform. So why not use it instead of HubSpot? Well, WordPress is great. But it does not come with a powerful keyword research tool. HubSpot does.
HubSpot’s keyword tool is worth its weight in gold. It has features that can help you rank high on search engine results pages (SERPs). It can help you:
- Understand the competition, such as what keywords they are ranking for
- Find out what keywords are sending you visitors but are not converting into leads
- Discover keywords you can easily rank for on the first page of search engines
HubSpot makes your inbound marketing strategy more affordable and effective. If you are looking for a professional HubSpot Agency in Chicago then Treetop Growth Strategy will come to your aid.
What's the best way to start with inbound marketing?
If you have been focusing on outbound marketing methods and would like to switch to inbound marketing, be ready to roll your sleeves and work.
The first step is to do a digital marketing audit. This step will help you assess your current digital marketing performance. It will tell you what's working and what’s not in your marketing methods.
Simply put, a digital marketing audit will inform you about:
- Your target customer
- Your marketing goals
- Key performance indicators (KPIs)
- Opportunities for growth
- Barriers to success
- What initiatives to prioritize
At the heart of inbound marketing is your target customer. You must understand who your prospective customers are. You need to identify their pain points and their needs. Your digital marketing audit can provide the data you need to create your buyer persona.
A buyer persona is a detailed description of your target audience. It includes their age, gender, interests, income, career goals, problems and pain points, and how you can help them.
Once you have your buyer persona, you can put together your new inbound marketing plan, a map that outlines the road to success. It identifies areas in your old digital marketing that you can skip so you will know where to focus your marketing efforts. With a carefully planned inbound marketing strategy, you can publish content that your customers want when they want it.
So, what is inbound marketing?
Inbound marketing is not just marketing. Inbound marketing is a philosophy. It can affect how you communicate with your customers and change your company culture. Inbound marketing attracts high-quality leads and better employees. Your organization will naturally attract people because they will see that you care. The result is increased revenue and improved profit.