Inbound Marketing Part II: Evolutionary Lead Generation Techniques
A subtle revolution is taking place in the marketing industry. Happily, this revolution is not characterized by screaming throngs brandishing pitchforks, but rather smart-phone toting hipsters throwing down viral tweets. The inbound marketing revolution is having just as profound an impact on today’s business environment as our forefathers (and foremothers) had on the political landscape of yesteryear. Just what makes inbound marketing so revolutionary is the topic of this blog.
Most successful inbound marketing companies combine three core lead generation techniques into one integrated suite of services: content creation, search engine optimization (SEO) and social media. Independently they are all essential aspects of today’s marketing mix. Taken together, they provide an efficient means of affordable lead generation.
According to inbound marketing industry leader Hubspot, inbound marketing-dominated organizations experience a 62% lower cost per lead than outbound-marketing dominated organizations.
Content creation is the primary tool that attracts potential customers to your business or website and differentiates you from the crowd. The name of the game is relevance. Your content should be informational, educating interested prospects about various aspects of your industry. Exceptional content must also engage your target audience with information they find relevant and useful. Quality content establishes you as an industry thought leader, building trust with those most interested in your product or service offering. Some examples of creative content offerings are business blogs, white papers, e-books, videos, RSS Feeds and more.
Search engine optimization (SEO) makes it easier for prospects to find your website by maximizing your ranking in search engines, where most customers initiate the buying cycle. SEO works by integrating specific keywords found within your website to organic (unpaid) internet searches. Optimizing web content for search engines essentially “magnetizes” a website, drawing in prospects already interested in your product offering. Inbound marketing takes SEO a step further, creating calls-to-action (CTAs) and landing pages designed to engage prospects with specific product or service offerings.
Social Media is the megaphone that amplifies your message, efficiently disseminating your content through the social network. From web forums and industry-specific blogs to sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Linked In, social media is an effectively way to spread content organically across your social network and into others, giving your business breadth and legitimacy. Inbound Marketers are now linking company websites with their social media, and using SEO techniques to optimize social media lead generation by employing SMO (social media optimization) strategies.
Most importantly, the inbound marketing revolution is empowering small businesses with unlimited scalability. Businesses with attractive products and services can now compete with companies who have traditionally enjoyed a much greater reach with larger marketing budgets. Inbound marketing acts as a giant leveler, allowing businesses to compete with their larger industry rivals on a more even playing field.
Simply put, inbound marketing represents not only a revolution in marketing practices, but an evolution in consumer engagement.
Has your company evolved?
Chris Horton is a Strategic Consultant for SyneCore Technologies. SyneCore Technologies is a full-service provider of marketing technology solutions. Find his blog posts at www.synecoretech.com