Your Quick Guide to Success with Inbound Marketing
Inbound marketing is rapidly becoming one of the most popular, (and most efficient) marketing strategies adopted by marketers across the globe. It is effective because it makes use of personalised content to attract and generate visitors and converting them into paying customers. Inbound strategy aligns your business content, campaigns and outreach with the interests of your target market and most importantly the key decision makers and influencers within a buying cycle; consequently empowering your clients while they purchase your product.
The four key elements of inbound marketing as well as the whole inbound process can be seen in more detail in the Gripped ebook: Incoming: The Complete Guide to Inbound Marketing. The four key elements of inbound marketing are: attract; convert; close; and engage. Before going any further into the elements, there are some other things you need before getting started.
A Solid Brand Position
Building a reliable brand is just the first step. It isn't necessary to rebrand or change anything about your existing brand. What you need to do is aligning your messaging, positioning and proposition with your customers and the common questions that they pose.
You can adopt a streamlined branding process where you organise a boot camp workshop for your brand. Your team is likely to hold the key to unlocking your brand position and more importantly a fundamental understanding of your target customers. The nuggets of insight, information and data points they hold in their heads are critical. Holding an open, honest and robust workshop that teases out and captures these points is crucial. The advantage of this method is that you will able to strengthen your competitive advantage collaboratively. With this, you will become a thought leader in your niche and build a reliable messaging or positioning platform from which to build your inbound strategy. With adequate planning, you can build a trusted brand and position into growth for your business.
Know Your Business Goals
Undoubtedly, the purpose of every business investment such as marketing is to increase the return on investment. However, for you to achieve this aim, you must consider your target audience or market, revenue goals and the conversion paths. You will need first to analyse your business goals and create a comprehensive sales funnel before you can develop successful marketing campaigns and outperform your competitors.
Buyer personas are your ideal target customers. Depending upon your current position they may look a lot like your key existing clients. Buyer personas are fictitious characters that are created after a researching your market. This guide will help you scope your initial view on a buyer persona.
This first persona will act as a foundation for all future work. The importance of these buyer personas is that it helps in refining and aligning your marketing strategy around your target customers. While trying to identify your buyer personas, you will also be able to determine their absolute need or problem and how your business will meet this need or solve the problem. Once created you must put your buyer personas and need (or problem) into consideration when planning every piece of marketing activity. One of these is your website architecture. When visitors to your site see that the website has been designed to meet their needs or solve their problems, they feel enthused and will remember your brand.
Another important part of a successful inbound marketing strategy is creating clear conversion paths. Further detail of conversion paths will follow, but it's essential that you define and document the conversion paths that prospects will take in the process of buying your product.
Conversion paths start with a call-to-action (something that gets your web visitors to take action). When you have a call-to-action, the next thing is to drive your visitors through your sales funnel, ensuring that your messages and content is aligned with the persona of your buyers. Efficient mapping from call to action to conversion will increase your success rate because all your messaging and content is targeted at the need or problem of your buyers.