inbound marketing

It’s time to give inbound marketing a try…

Ten years ago, all you?had to do to be successful in business was create a nice website, use some outbound marketing tools like newspaper ads, radio, tv, or direct mail, and email blasts, and you were in business. All you had to do was wait for the customers to show up with their credit cards ready to buy your product or service. But then something happened. What used to work, stopped. Ads began to be ignored or blocked, people started using PVR to skip commercials, they would change the station to listen to music rather than your ad, and your direct mail ended up in the recycle bin. Consumers had become overwhelmed and, quite frankly, fed up with being bombarded all day long with someone’s idea of marketing.

The purpose of business is to create a keep a customer.? – Peter F. Drucker

Today, your companies website and other digital assets must engage and connect with your audience. It needs to change from a one-way sales message to a living, breathing reflection of your marketplace. This is how inbound marketing is different. Having a static website that doesn’t draw a user in with new, and interesting content, is guaranteed to lead to a high bounce rate. When you first designed your website, you worried about the logo, the colors, the right font, navigability,?the right pictures, etc. But people don’t care about any of that. Potential customers come to your site seeking information about you, your company, and if you can help them solve a problem.

You will get people to initially come to your site because of the money you spend on ads,?but then never return. With fewer people willing to click or call, the effectiveness of your ads and website will continue to diminish. Statistics show that an average person sees between 300 to 5000 ads on a given day. People are literally digging through a massive amount of noise to find what they want. Even with a refresh, the website may now look and feel new and relevant, but as they say, content is king. Without the new content to continually bring people back and want to connect and contribute, the value of your digital asset eventually erodes.

So how do you change your companies digital marketing mind frame?

It’s all about how you think about your website. What is the role of the website in the overall marketing plan of the business? It’s all about clarity. Is it simply a nicer version of your sales brochure? If so, then that’s all it will ever be. If you want your website to draw in a continual stream of new and excited users, then you need to make sure it provides a hub for all of your companies activities. This is the heart of inbound marketing. It takes the different social media channels and digital assets that a company presently is using, and connects them, with the website becoming the focal point for all of them. Using a blog for your business, attached to your website, will allow your followers to interact with you in meaningful ways.

You are now able to link all of your social media assets to your main website, and start building links that bring your site to life. Soon, people within your industry will begin to subscribe and share the content you are producing, this, in turn, gets shared, and soon you’ve created an authoritative website that people love to follow. Your brand now becomes a?trusted authority in your industry. This trust leads to relationships with visitors that would have been impossible to replicate using old school outbound marketing techniques.

Soon, these visitors turn into new warm leads. The difference is that these visitors are now more willing to buy and become repeat customers. The time, effort, and money invested have now come to the point of taking these visitors and converting them into leads. That means getting them to do something. Calls to action now come into play. Getting these people to leave their information or take out their credit card will be much easier because of the trust you have built with them over time.

The new marketing trend today is to build a community that people have a sense of belonging too…that they can engage with, and creates a feeling that they have a direct role in its direction and growth. Changing the mindset when designing your brand’s marketing that it isn’t just about increasing?sales, but provide a real, genuine experience that your customers enjoy participating in.

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