Southern Illinois Marketing Blog

Inbound Marketing: A Crash-Course

Written by Sara Fisher on August 22, 2018

The world of marketing and sales has changed dramatically since the information age—consumers are more informed than ever and have the ability to easily find the information they want, and they don't want to be bothered. 

So, how does your marketing need to adapt to this shift in order to effectively grow your business? Inbound Marketing is the answer. 

Inbound Marketing has been replacing Outbound Marketing since the information age. Outbound Marketing is the old-school approach of hounding prospects for sales and blasting prospects with (oftentimes irrelevant) advertisements. Simply put, this outdated approach isn't getting through to consumers anymore.

So, how are businesses adapting to this change? By following some of the basic principles of Inbound Marketing (listed below), businesses around the world are successfully keeping current and prospective customers engaged. 

Inbound Marketing is a new marketing approach based around these principles:

    Let the customers come to you (and only when they're ready).
    Provide helpful, relevant, and valuable content to the customers every step of the way.
    Avoid using any marketing or sales tactics that are interruptive, aggressive, or pushy.
    Build and consistently maintain trusting relationships with customers.

Unsure if your website uses inbound marketing techniques? Let the experts help. 
There are many other aspects to Inbound Marketing, but this is a crash course, so we'll keep it short and sweet. 

In the past, the sales team held the power. In today's world, the consumers hold the power, and the sales teams must adapt in order to experience business growth. Today's consumers need marketers and sales reps to act as their guide, not their boss. 

Through means of communication like targeted and retargeted ad campaigns, nurturing email drip campaigns, and content marketing (sharing valuable content through downloadable PDFs, blog posts, videos, and more), businesses can effectively build relationships with current and prospective customers in non-interruptive and successful ways. 

Still not convinced that Inbound Marketing is the way to go? Check out these statistics:

    Content marketing costs 62% less than traditional marketing and generates about 3 times as many leads. (source)
    91% of people say ads are more intrusive today than two years ago. (source)
    33% of inbound marketers and 31% of outbound marketers rank outbound marketing practices, such as paid advertising, as the top waste of time and resources. (source)
    Ad blocking in the US has increased from 15%-30% since 2014. (source)

    Only 18% of marketers say outbound practices provide the highest quality leads for sales. (source)

Successful Inbound Marketing won't happen overnight. It takes patience, experimentation, and planning. There will be some campaigns that fail, and it's important to keep your brand's momentum moving forward with subsequent Inbound approaches and campaigns. Over time, you'll gather valuable data about your leads and be able to make more educated choices as to what your next marketing campaign should be.