Inbound marketing has been waiting to bloom for decades. It all started around 1969 when Al Gore invented the internet at the age of 21… wait, that’s not right. ArpaNet, a government project created a packet switching network in 1969 from which the modern day internet evolved. In 1993, the first ever commercial website was created by O’Reilly and Associates, and the rest is history. Consumer research via the world wide web is now commonplace. According to Google and CEB, nearly 60% of the traditional sales process takes place before consumers make contact with your sales team. Thus, the strategic process of inbound marketing manifested only a handful of years ago. Some say that inbound marketing services are just SEO services in disguise, but there is so much more to this new marketing trend than organic search results.
Inbound Marketing Success Revolves Around Great Content
No matter how you look at it, the first step of the inbound marketing funnel begins with GREAT content. Good content is what your competitors pump out on a daily basis. This daily “good” content is what clouds the minds of your potential customers, and is the reason that search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo are so valuable to consumers. These search engines exist in order to sort through the clutter to deliver the most valuable, relevant, and informative content to the organic searches of consumers. What remains at the top of the search engine results are pages that contain GREAT content… and that is what customers will see. Here are the three steps that you will take to end up on top…
Step 1: Invest in Inbound Marketing Software
Inbound marketing software will help you apply the Pareto principle to your content creation efforts. Research has proven time and time again that 20% of your content is delivering 80% of your results. By investing in quality software, you will be able to determine which 20% is working, and which 80% you need to either improve or eliminate. The following is a list of the features that your software should have to make your job easier…
- KPI Tracking
- Lead Scoring
- Easy-to-Understand Content Creation Interface
- Content Syndication
- Predictive Content Analytics
Step 2: Have the Right Team in Place
A great inbound marketing company will have a team in place that can navigate the software, and leverage it to its greatest potential. It is important to be capable of using all of the tools listed in step 1, but even more important to actually use them on a consistent basis. A great team will be able to communicate with customers, establish a strategy, and execute the right steps at the right time.
Step 3: Create Attractive Content
The essence of inbound marketing is that your content will bring potential customers to you without you having to go out and look for them; do this by creating attractive content. Part of having a good team means acquiring writing talent, or training existing employees to write. Follow the 4:1:1 rule (made popular by Joe Pulizzi) when it comes to your content. Share 4 pieces of great industry content that will demonstrate your company’s sensibility and intelligence. Have your team create one GREAT piece of content. Then create 1 piece of content that is a shameless promotion for your product or service. This rule will be enough to keep you busy, and will ensure that your target audience is listening to what you have to say.
If these three steps seem a bit overwhelming, don’t be afraid to look for third party inbound marketing services. If you think that your company has what it takes to be successful, but you’re not sure where to start; employ inbound marketing consulting. Our Enfusen Inbound Marketing Company will help you figure out where you are now, and what weaknesses you may need to overcome to actualize your marketing potential. Request your assessment today to optimize your marketing, and make your life easier.