Top 10 Inbound Marketing Tips for Brands
Are you confused about the benefits of Inbound Marketing for your brand?
Are you tired of outreaching through emails?
Do you want to change your Outbound Marketing, as it is not delivering the intended results?
Are you not being able to handle the costs involved from outbound marketing?
In this article, I will help you with tips and tricks about Inbound Marketing as a digital marketing strategy. I will explain the term, help you scale up your business, and list out the best practices of Inbound Marketing.
Many brands suffer because of a one-dimensional digital marketing strategy. In this era of competition, it is important for brands to ditch traditional means of outreaching, and focus on newer, cost-effective and human-friendly ways of getting consumers.
Due to the information overload, people are tired of getting direct means of outreach. We are all tired about tele-callers calling us at odd-hours, our inboxes being spammed from unknown businesses, and so on. Brands have started to realize this, and they are shifting to effective ways of connecting.
What is Inbound Marketing? A Brief Introduction
Let us first understand what Inbound Marketing means-
Inbound Marketing is the process of attracting visitors to your website through credible content creation. It is different from Outbound Marketing in the sense that you do not reach out to consumers, but let them come to you. It involves-
- Engaging with consumers in a meaningful way once they come to your platform.
- Helping them find solutions for some pain points that they are experiencing.
- Provide credible solutions for their pain points in a humane and affordable way.
- Keep following up once the consumer takes up your solution.
- Repeat the cycle and complete the customer’s purchase cycle.
A standard problem of outbound marketing is the aggressive fights for customer attention. More mails, more calls, more pamphlets, magazines and so on. However, as human society is changing and evolving, this strategy is no longer as effective as it used to be.
Compare this to inbound marketing- here you do not need to fight for the attention of probable consumers. You need to create credible content that customers are looking for. Rather than push your consumers, let them come to you. This helps you come across as a credible and informative voice on the internet.
Inbound Marketing helps you with all the humane aspects of doing business. It teaches you about empathy, it helps you listen, and it keeps you connected with the real requirements of the consumers in the market.
The Stages of Inbound Marketing:
Digital marketing experts swear by inbound marketing because it attends to all dimensions of a consumer’s journey.
From the consideration stage, right to the post-sales service requirements, Inbound Marketing helps consumers. With more and more brands vying for attention, creating a loyal base of repeat consumers is key for success.
However, for the benefit of brands new to Inbound Marketing, let us list out the stages and discuss each-
1. Attracting Consumers to your Platform:
Your aim should be to come across as a problem solver. If your content is great, people will come for you, and not the other way around. Provide information, fix problems, and offer solutions. Find out about the greatest problems people are facing and target it head-on.
2. Engaging Consumers on your Platform:
Once you have been able to make people come, you need to keep them on the platform. This is where one form of the content does not work. Mix it up between infographics, case studies, success stories, videos, and audio books. The more variety of content, the better the engagement.
3. Delighting Consumers on your Platform:
Once you have attracted and engaged, you need to offer more value once visitors have become consumers. You can do this by having a robust after-sales service team, providing updates and improving the post-sales process. In other words, showing gratitude is what will help your customers become repeat consumers.
Top 10 Inbound Marketing Tips: The List:
Let me state at the very outset, that this article is not an advanced guide to Inbound Marketing. Rather, it is a beginner’s guide to help you start the process in the most effective fashion.
Let us get right to it.
1. Start your Brand’s Blog on your website:
First things first, a blog on your brand website is a necessity not to be ignored. This is where you will drive all the traffic. People do not want to spend time on a product page or service pages. Blogs are considered as resourceful, educative and useful.
If you are driving traffic to your blog, you will always have people taking you in the right way. Whatever you want to do- a WordPress Blog, or a PHP Blog, you need a blog section. This will also help you create credible internal links (from your blog to the product page).
(Our Tip- Mix up the content forms on your blog. Listicles, how-to’s, Case Studies, Guides, Video Content, E-Books, etc.)
2. Use Keywords Strategically:
Before you start creating content, you need a roadmap. You need to know what problems people are looking for online. Identifying search patterns and creating content is the right approach. Some people do the opposite. However, it is not that effective.
Using Google Keywords Planner is simple and most effective. By typing in a long tail keyword, you will know about exactly what the search volume for a keyword is. Either you can use paid platforms to do keyword research, or there are many free ones on the market.
(Our Tip- Rather than using focus keywords, try targeting long tail keywords. This makes the audience more niche and targeted. In other words, better conversion rates).
3. Unleash the power of Social Media:
With more than 3.4 billion active users on social media, I should not tell you about its importance. Make your social media the face of your blog section. This is where the first point of contact for your brand will be for any consumer. Your aim should be to get traffic from social media to the blog section of your website.
Create stunning, eye-catching content on social. The same goes for mixing up content types- videos, image albums, GIFs and Live sessions. Think of social media as the face of your brand. It always needs to be well groomed and attractive.
(Our Tip- Make use of social media insights to understand your audiences. All platforms offer insights on visitors and followers. Use it to create content accordingly).
4. Do regular Guest Posting:
As a digital marketing strategy, guest posting stands right at top of the strategy pyramid. If you are looking to attract audiences, you would need help from other credible platforms. Guest posting involves creating content that will be published on a related site.
This helps you drive traffic from the other platform to your website (links redirecting audiences). If you are posting on an authority site, you will become a credible and authentic voice in the industry. Guest posting or guest blogging is effective. However, it needs time, energy and dedication.
(Our Tip- No matter what, always do guest posting on related sites. For Google relevancy is the new page rank!).
5. Employ White Hat Link Building strategies:
You cannot afford to depend on only social media to help drive traffic. Using Google search and ranking well on Google should also be part of your strategy. In this regard, white hat link building will help your site’s metrics and SEO. Link building from authority sites also helps you climb the SERPs.
In other words, if you are on Google’s first page for a keyword search, you will get more hits. However, it is important that you stay away from black hat or grey hat strategies. This involves working through Private Blog Networks (PBNs), Link Directories and Link Resellers.
(Our Tip- Always build links on sites with high metrics. Use guest posting and meaningful outreach to improve link building. When link building for SEO purposes, a ‘Do-Follow’ link is what you should be after).
6. Create Several Content Types on your website:
You need to invest in content creation. This should be your core goal. Without this no matter how hard you try to amplify the content, it will not work. Creating a great article is fantastic. However, people are always looking for more.
You need to mix your content between text, image-based, infographics, videos, case studies, success stories, and testimonials. Your aim should be to provide and engage consumers on different forms of content. This will also help you reach out to a larger audience and keep them engaged on your platform.
(Our Tip- Create sections and tags on your site, so that consumers know which type of content is located where. Set up a good content writing team and always create long format content).
7. Publish Reports and E-Books:
If you want to build credibility, you need to publish reports. For example, you might have noticed consulting companies and B2B companies, publish year-end reports on various issues. They do this to build credibility.
No matter what your business size or category, Google, or one of the consulting financial groups will have some information or the other. Use it to create your own report. This will help you establish your name as a credible authority voice in the industry.
(Our Tip- Create a Year End Report for every year. Give it digital exposure through some social media advertising and paid promotions).
8. Hire a Digital Marketing Agency:
If you are new to digital marketing, your best bet would be to hire experts to help guide you. Good digital marketing agencies will help you set up your Inbound Marketing campaigns. From link building to guest posting, and even social media promotions, agencies offer the complete repertoire of services.
However, the important thing is to find an agency that understands you, is transparent and affordable. Most of the agencies will offer you cost-effective solutions, but the key is finding out what you are getting in that cost.
(Our Tip- Look for a digital marketing agency that has a specialized Content Marketing team. Ask them for writing samples, and see which content sites they own and operate).
9. Go for an Influencer Marketing Campaign:
Once you are familiar with the basics, you can go in for an Influencer Marketing strategy. Pick out some of the industry’s best influencers for your product, and ask them to promote you on their platforms. This involves social media, websites, YouTube channels, and other platforms.
Influencers are the new brand ambassadors and enjoy loyal followings and engagements. Once they endorse your brand, you will see a huge spike in your website visits and sales. Most of the best brands work continuously with influencers round the clock. Your digital marketing agency will able to help you in this regard.
(Our Tip- Rather than go out for an all-money transaction, try to barter your products and services. This is a more effective approach. This will ensure longer usability and control your expenditure).
10. Exercise Patience:
An Inbound Marketing strategy needs time, patience, discipline, and hard work. While results will not be apparent in a month, it will definitely start showing after six months. Inbound marketing helps you build a foundation.
You will need to follow all the tips and the best practices for the strategy to start showing results. Do not abandon the strategy if you are not seeing immediate results. Trust me on this.
(Our Tip- Rather than completely stopping any one of the above points for lack of budgets, you cut down the scale).
The Final Word:
I can list thousands of brands that do Inbound Marketing. However, the important thing to note is why they do it. As human preferences keep evolving, new modes of attraction become important. Today, many have labeled digital as an intrusive medium.
This strategy is a course correction in this regard. Not only does it focus on the consumer’s needs, but it also displays the right kind of human and business intentions. If you are correctly following the list, you will reap the benefits of inbound marketing.
Please feel free to add to the list in the comments section below. If you want to narrate any successful inbound marketing case studies, I am all ears.
If you have any other queries regarding-
- Inbound Marketing
- Digital Marketing
- Content Marketing
Please feel free to reach out to me: firstname.lastname@example.org
Until then I wish you all the best with your inbound marketing attempts…