Before we share our three secrets to success with Inbound Marketing, It’s important that one has a basic understanding of what Inbound Marketing is and how it differs from, “Old School” or “outbound” advertising.
The concept of Inbound Marketing all boils down to common sense. It refers to online marketing activities that direct visitors to you (Inbound), rather than marketers having to go out to get a prospects’ attention (Outbound). Inbound Marketing earns the attention of customers, makes the company easy to be found, and instantly includes your company in the clients conversation of their needs. The Inbound approach draws customers to your website by engaging clients with interesting and valuable content.
“The Inbound Methodology is: The best way to turn strangers into customers and promoters of your business.” Hubspot explains.
When businesses begin to think like their potential customers, that’s when the lightbulb goes on. The statistics are overwhelming. 86% of the buying population no longer trust “outbound advertising” no longer are the days when a business can put out a message about themselves that doesn’t match what the client feedback and experiences are. At best, the message is ignored, at worst, it’s refuted publicly through social media channels. For example, GAP’s attempt last year to present a new logo and image was blasted by followers and fans alike until GAP actually pulled the new branding campaign and reversed its position.
If potential customers don’t trust your business’ “outbound” message, you might ask what’s the point of marketing at all? This is exactly the point- the same people who don’t trust your advertising message do trust their friends reviews and recommendations at a whopping 77% and interestingly they trust Google’s recommendations even more at 92%… That’s where Inbound Marketing comes in. You are delivering information to people that they really are interested in, making sure your reviews and targeted placements are showing up in the correct searches so that they share it and recommend you to their friends. Basically, you are meeting your current and potential new clients where they are at instead of telling them to meet you on your terms.
You may wonder how you can start applying this to your business. Here’s Our Three Secrets to Success that have helped us grow our business over 300% and many other businesses in Alaska and beyond using Inbound Marketing.
- Learn about your customers. Its not just their demographics, but their interests, and their preferences. How can you start providing helpful information if you don’t know what they are interested in? If you are selling running shoes, your target demographic may be very interested in what the best running trails are in the area. If you are providing those answers and solutions to your clients deeper interests and needs- you will have raving fans indeed.
- Be More Helpful! When your potential client interacts with you whether it be on your website, Facebook or Instagram- Are you more helpful than your competitors? Is your website user friendly and easy for them to find what they need? Do you have videos explaining your product or service? Do you respond to questions on social media when they are asked? Being more helpful and easy to work with is a natural extension of the Inbound Marketing process. You’ve already gotten their attention by providing the information they are interested in- now convert them to clients by making it easy to do business with you.
- Master Your Niche and Delight Your Fans! If you really want to be successful using Inbound Marketing you need to know your stuff. Work to become an expert in your field and then share that information freely. At first, it seems counterintuitive to give away your expertise, but when you realize that it’s in the the very act of giving away helpful and useful information that establishes you as the expert and the person/company they want to do business with- then- it’s worth it. We’ve put this into practice in our own industry. We founded the Alaska Inbound Marketing Summit, which brings to Alaska the best of the best in the industry from Facebook, Google, Hubspot Partners, LinkedIn, Pinterest & more. This one day annual event with knock your socks off with Inbound Marketing knowledge. We’re giving away our knowledge, connections and best practices to potential clients and competitors alike. Our efforts in putting this event together have produced an incredible fan base, new clients, awards and speaking engagements all over the state. We’ve established our niche and hope to continue to delight our fans for many years to come.
I hope these three secrets of our success inspire you to jump in to this new world of Inbound Marketing. There’s no question that Inbound Marketing is winning the battle in the advertising and marketing world- more and more dollars are being spent on these methods and the stats show that the return on investment yields a triple return from traditional advertising. That’s great news for all my small and medium business friends- saving money on marketing and increasing sales is always a good thing!
If you have questions on how Inbound Marketing can or will help your business – send us a message, tweet, Facebook message, email or even a phone call (907-563-6008). We are truly thrilled and excited to help Alaska become a leader in Inbound Marketing’s best practices!