So what is Inbound Marketing exactly? Inbound Marketing is marketing focused on getting found by customers. Instead of overtly broadcasting a message to an audience who may or may not be interested in your product or service at that particular moment, you prepare for when they are looking for you.
Inbound marketing and Google ZMOT (zero moment of truth)
In 2011, Google introduced the Zero Moment of Truth, or ZMOT, which describes a revolution in the way consumers search for information online and make decisions about brands.
“Whether we’re shopping for corn flakes, concert tickets or a honeymoon in Paris, the Internet has changed how we decide what to buy. At Google, we call this online decision-making moment the Zero Moment of Truth — or simply ZMOT.”
The ZMOT, or Zero Moment of Truth, exists both in the online and offline world. For example, a couple planning their wedding may need send invitations. They could go to a bridal store and browse invitation books. Which one of the printer’s books the store carries will zero in the sale? Or they could search online for them, which ones will be displayed first and therefore stand a chance to close a sale at the ZMOT?
What’s the difference with outbound? In outbound marketing you may advertise on a bridal magazine or you may even purchase a list of brides to showcase your invitations but more than likely many of them already ordered theirs or not be ready to buy yet. The question here is, what is your cost per lead?
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So, what is inbound marketing, anyway?
Inbound marketing seems simple although we know not everybody can make it to the first page of Google results. There are only 10 places on that page. And inbound marketing is much more than search engine optimization and blogging.
Here is a list of inbound marketing tactics:
- SEO & PPC
- Opt-in Email Lists
- Community Outreach Efforts both online and offline (supporting/sponsoring events, sharing useful information, community building, influencer outreach)
- Grassroots marketing
- Press coverage and Public Relations
- Thought Leadership & Public Speaking
- Content Marketing (blogging, content development, videos, infographics)
- Word-of-Mouth or Buzz Generation (ambient and guerrilla marketing, viral campaigns)
Everything and anything that will drive the prospect to you when THEY are searching for your products or services.
Many companies believe that content development alone will make inbound happen. But content marketing does not work in a vacuum, it needs to be integrated to your search engine optimization strategy, your email marketing campaigns, your social media and other inbound strategies.
Always make sure to develop a cohesive inbound marketing strategy.
Why should you care about inbound marketing?
Because it works. Because is cost effective. Because people want to be in control of their decisions.
For example, Target Latino has never resorted to outbound marketing and 100% of its clients, speaking engagements, and media appearances have been generated by inbound marketing. We have been doing this for us and for our clients since 2003. (shameless self plug)
If this does not convince you of the power of inbound marketing, here’s a few more inbound marketing stats:
- The B2B companies that have a blog and create content have 67% more leads per month than the ones who do not. (Social Media B2B)
- In average a blog gives a site an increase of 434% more indexed pages and 97% more indexed urls (Content+)
- According to Search Engine Land, 80% of the people ignore Google paid ads
- 72% of marketers think branded content is more effective that print advertising, 69% that is is superior to Direct Mail and Public Relations. (Custom Content Council)
- Hubspot shared that 75% of the online population never go further than the first page of search engines results.
- Inbound leads are 60% less expensive than outbound leads (Search Engine Journal)
- Clicks from shared content are 5 times more likely to result in a purchase (Voltier Digital)
- Organic search leads have a 14% closing rate while outbound marketing leads have a 1.7%
- People want to be in control of the content they receive. 86% skip commercials, 44% of direct mail goes unopened. (Content Marketing Institute)
- Articles with images have 94% more views than those who do not have any (Content+)
- Around 60% of the population has a visual style of learning giving a big advantage to visual content
- 46% of people say a website’s design is the number one criterion for discerning the credibility of the company. (Stanford Persuasive Technology Lab)
- 58% of consumers trust editorial content.
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