Many think that creating a business is not that hard. Build it and the customers will come, some say. Reality is completely different. When you create your vision and transform it into a business, customers will never come if they don’t know about your value proposition and what is it that you do differently from the rest. Many business ventures fail not because the idea is a bad one or due to a lack of the necessary resources to create the business, most can’t keep going forward with their companies because they don’t have the adequate amount of clients for surviving the first months or years of operation.
Usually, the answer to this problem would be creating a marketing campaign that could reach the largest amount of clients as possible: radio, newspapers, TV, etc. Widely spread messages are created in the hope that someone will be interested in what you’re offering. Usually this approach is popular, but can be ineffective and expensive.
In this article we will talk about another way of creating potential clients, a way for them to feel attracted towards your store or product instead of forcing them to do so. What is this new way of doing marketing called? The answer is Inbound Marketing.
What is Inbound Marketing?
This strategy focuses on enabling your clients to find you and get to your online store based on out of the ordinary content generation. This is the opposite of the annoying telemarketer trying to sell something when you least need it and at the worst possible moment. Inbound Marketing tries to provide interesting and useful information instead of trying to steal attention. It’s made clear with a few examples:
- Blogs and articles
- Demonstration Videos
Let’s talk about the archenemy: What is Outbound Marketing.
Here are some examples that will show you the traditional approach of attracting clients, Outbound Marketing:
- TV or radio commercials
- E-mail marketing
- Mass events
In the last couple of years there’s been a decline in the effectiveness of Outbound Marketing and an even more pronounced one when speaking of e-commerce related campaigns. One of the main reasons for this change in effectiveness is due to modern consumers’ low tolerance to be interrupted or to receive an excess of irrelevant advertising. According to a study by HubSpot in 2016, 84% of consumers between the ages of 25 and 34 stopped visiting their favorite online store’s website because they were being forced to see advertising that was irrelevant for them.
Inbound marketing to the rescue
Inbound marketing is an effective way of attracting potential clients to your online store and being in touch until clients return. For an online store, the use of inbound marketing techniques start with good, search engine optimized content that lures people to share it and visit your online store. Here are some of the great benefits of inbound marketing any online store can take advantage of:
Acquire informed clients that are willing to buy
Maybe setting up a huge billboard on the highway would be a good way to draw customers to your virtual store? Bad idea. Not only because of the high cost, but also because you will be attracting a type of customer that’s not ideal for your store. Overall, Outbound Marketing campaigns only attract a small number of potential clients to your store. Most of them will arrive without being really interested in what you’re offering. They’ll only get there because they fell for a highway billboard. With e-commerce the ideal is that most of the visitors to your store would be customers with the intention of buying, people who value what you’re offering. Inbound Marketing offers this option. By creating relevant, quality content that will enhance the day to day life of your clients, they will gather into an ever growing group of followers and loyal customers.
Traditional ways of doing marketing are extremely costly. Have you tried to set up a newspaper ad? Certainly not within everyone’s reach. Same goes for radio or TV ads. For Inbound Marketing techniques though, the costs are considerably lower. On average, Inbound Marketing campaigns can cost up to 61% less than traditional campaigns. If you’re just starting your business, don’t think of money as a barrier when attracting customers. With traditional marketing, money is clearly a limiting factor as you’ll never be able to afford that kind of campaign. On the contrary, if you go for a more “lean” mentality and you focus on creating a blog and generating relevant content, for example, customers will arrive steadily at a much lower acquisition cost.
Generate unpaid organic content
Google and other search engines will be your best friends if you start generating fresh and effective content. When you publish content that’s optimized for search engines, your ranking will quickly raise and you’ll appear among the top results of a search. Studies show that Google’s second page only receives 0.85% of the traffic. Also, 61% of consumers use search engines to read about a variety of products before buying, to compare prices and look at other customers’ reviews.
Pick a content niche where you have opportunities to generate high quality articles at a constant rate and where you don’t have much competition. Without even realizing it, you’ll see how you’ll be in the search engine’s top results. Customers with the intention of buying will start arriving.
Here is a summary of What is Inbound Marketing?:
- This strategy focuses on enabling the clients to find and get to your store based on unique content generation.
- Some famous tools for inbound marketing are SEO, Blogs, Webinars, Podcasts and Infographics etc.
- Inbound marketing allows you to acquire informed clients that are willing to buy.
- Is relatively inexpensive.
- Can use unpaid organic content.