You may have heard about inbound marketing, outbound marketing, or both, but what exactly makes them different? The main difference between these two types of marketing is the strategy used to catch your target audience’s attention. We’ll dive into the details of each type and their differences.
Outbound marketing is considered the more traditional approach to marketing. With outbound marketing, you are the one initiating the sales conversation with your audience. This method can be seen when you receive promotional email blasts, see a television commercial, receive cold calls or telemarketing, and more.
The strategy of outbound marketing is to spread your message far and wide and hope to catch as many potential customers as possible. It’s when you are reaching out to people hoping they will become interested in your product or service.
Over time consumers have become overwhelmed by the amount of marketing messages tossed at them, and they have found ways to avoid these marketing messages or ignore them. This has resulted in outbound marketing becoming less effective as it used to be, giving rise to the art of inbound marketing.
Inbound marketing is focused around attracting potential customers to your business. However, just attracting your audience to your business is not enough. This marketing strategy focuses on attracting, engaging, and delighting customers. How do you do this? You create content that informs and supports your audience through their journey of choosing to purchase a product or service, called the buyers journey. This can be done through blogging, SEO, social media, opt-in email marketing, and more.
Inbound marketing has shown to be more effective than outbound marketing because it creates a connection with your audience and builds trust. You aren’t interrupting what they are doing with a salesy advertisement, rather you are creating and sharing positive, helpful content that they can choose to engage with or not. The targeting for inbound marketing is much more precise than that of outbound marketing, as you are creating content that is tailored to your ideal customer. This method of marketing requires providing a much more individualized experience for your potential customers.
Getting Started with Inbound Marketing
You may be wondering how to even begin to implement an inbound marketing strategy for your business. The best place to start is with creating buyer personas. This will help to guide you in planning what content you’ll create and how to best engage with and help your target customers along their buyer journeys. You can read our post on creating buyer personas to learn more.
Once you’ve defined who your ideal customers are and worked through learning more about your target audience, it’s time to begin developing your marketing strategy. You’ll need to do research and decide how you will attract, engage, and delight your customers throughout their journey. HubSpot provides a great explanation on how to plan for each of these stages. You’ll also need to decide what type of content you want to create and where you want to be active online. This decision should be influenced by where your target audience is and how they prefer to receive information. As you plan out content, be sure to make content that your target audience will love. Creating content is great, but you want it to be something your audience will want to read or watch or interact with. These are great steps to get your ideas and planning moving in the right direction for creating and implementing inbound marketing for your business. Interested in learning more details on creating your inbound marketing strategy? Check back next week for our blog post that will dive into the specifics of developing and improving your business’ inbound marketing. See you then!