Understanding the Principles behind Inbound Marketing
Learn How Inbound Helps you with Lead Nurturing and Attracting Better Qualified Leads
We are without doubt in the age of the customer. This cements the place of Inbound Marketing as the best way to reach and connect with today’s discerning consumer. Its staying power and the outstanding results that many have seen with inbound have proven that it’s a far cry from being the latest marketing buzzword or fad.
As so much content already exists on this topic, we are aware of what it is and why it’s critical to get onboard the Inbound Marketing train. However, there are still a lot of people frustrated that they’re not seeing the kind of fabulous results that the approach promises. Many can spout the four Inbound Marketing actions [Attract-Convert-Close-Delight] that most of us are all too familiar with, but they would also likely have a sob story about how it doesn’t seem to be cutting it for them.
Underlying it all is an even more basic misunderstanding of what the key principles behind Inbound are for each of the four actions. Here we clear these up in the simplest terms.
At this stage the focus is on drawing the right buyer personas in by offering useful content and meeting them where they want to be across multiple channels using a Pull instead of Push strategy.
According to DemandGen Report:
- - 61% of survey respondents agreed that the winning vendor delivered a better mix of content appropriate for each stage of the purchasing process.
- - 52% viewed 8+ pieces of content from the winning vendor.
- - 71% emphasized the importance of relevant information.
When the attraction happens and these strangers are now visiting your site, convert them into leads by ‘leading’ them further down their buyer’s journey and the self realization that your solution can best address a problem or need they have. Lead instead of Lure. When your product/service is the real deal you don’t need to stoop to false advertising to lure people in like some of the more questionable tactics that are remnants from the earlier age of legacy marketing.
Leads nurtured with targeted content produce an increase in sales opportunities of more than 20% - HubSpot
Companies that excel at lead nurturing generate 50% more sales-ready leads at 33% lower cost - Marketing Profs
It often surprises people to find that the key to closing a sale has less to do with how awesome a product is and more to do with how customers (or prospects at this stage) perceive their experience with you. You could be on the verge of signing a deal but if the customer feels something just isn’t right and doesn’t like the interaction he just might take his business elsewhere, perhaps even to a competitor you know has nothing on you. What’s critical to ensure your sale doesn’t slip through the cracks is being customer-centric instead of product-centric.
According to research from McKinsey, “70% of buying experiences are based on how the customer feels they are being treated.”
So you’ve made the sale and that’s the end, right? Well, not quite. It may be just the beginning in fact as you’re better off investing in delighting and thereby retaining the customer you’ve just sold to rather than looking for a new one in an ocean of new leads and prospects. Reciprocity instead of Redundancy is the name of the game here.
Your objective is to ensure you’re not relegated to some vague memory in the cobwebs of their minds. If you go that extra mile to delight your customer, you’re guaranteed long term benefits of Customer-Promotion instead of Self Promotion that continue to accrue and have a ripple effect over time when a happy customer comes back for more and spreads the word among their networks.
It is 6-7 times more expensive to attract a new customer than it is to retain an existing customer (White House Office of Consumer Affairs)
Other Key Inbound Principles
For a successful Inbound strategy, apart from getting the above basics right, there is also the crucial concept of making sure that you have impeccable timing to meet the right prospect, right where they are in their buyer’s journey with the optimal content. This means businesses will see the investment value of hiring a carefully handpicked team for all key components such as content, SEO, website management and in the field sales work (as against one overworked sales and marketing employee).