Does the term “inbound marketing” have any meaning or relevance to you? If you have a website for your business or organization, it should — and it can.
Simply put, inbound marketing is a strategy to help your business “get found” on the Web. The goal is to drive more traffic to your website.
Consider the image of a funnel. Now, think of your website as a sales funnel and the central hub for all of your online activities, including any business-related social media accounts you might have. The more traffic to drive into the top of your sales funnel, the more leads, prospects and potential customers you’ll get out of the bottom of the funnel – producing for you greater opportunities to boost your revenue.
Inbound marketing, a growing and increasing marketing strategy, contrasts with old-style outbound marketing in several key ways.
• Inbound marketing seeks to attract customers on their time, while outbound marketing tends to pound a sales message with methods that often interrupt and annoy people.
• Inbound marketing tools include blogging, social media sites, specialized and targeted content generation, online videos, newsletters, and website search-engine optimization (SEO). Outbound marketing makes heavy use of traditional print and TV/radio ads, direct mail, telemarketing, directory listings, brochures, and trade shows.
• Inbound marketing communication with customers and potential customers is interactive (back and forth), while outbound marketing pushes products and services with one-way communication.
• Inbound marketing often entertains and educates, which rarely can be said about outbound marketing.
As mentioned earlier, a website often is the hub for an inbound marketing program, but just having a website isn’t enough. Website start-up and maintenance costs will more than pay for themselves if you’ll:
• Create remarkable, relevant and reliable content for the site.
• Share the content through your Facebook, Twitter and related social media accounts.
• Make sure the content can be found in Google, Yahoo! and other Internet search engines.
• Measure and analyze your website traffic.
• Use the findings from your website analysis to produce offers, products and services your prospects really want.
By DAVID KIESSLING
Advertising Account Executive, Central Florida Media Group