You can either market your business through inbound or outbound marketing. With inbound marketing, you basically create value for your market by producing high quality content. This can include anything from your blog to the development of eBooks, etc. Outbound marketing is traditional advertising such as email marketing, display advertising, etc. So, which approach should you take with your business? As an Internet marketing company, we always tell our clients that both are important and can be used effectively to produce results.
Let’s take a look at the benefits of each. With inbound marketing, you are able to position yourself as a true leader within your industry and maximize viral marketing. By using your blog as the hub of your inbound marketing campaign, you’re able to publish high quality content and feed your social media channels from Facebook to Twitter and Google+. The production of fresh content is also an important component of SEO to show search engines that your company is producing fresh content and is important to your industry. Additionally, your search engine ranking will be improved since search engines factor in shares and likes into how they rank your pages.
The downside to inbound marketing is that it does take time. You’re not going to get an immediate burst of traffic to your site. It’s going to take time to establish your brand and position yourself as a thought leader. And there is an expense associated with inbound marketing. That expense is time. It takes a considerable amount of time to produce high quality content week after week. So, be smart about the way that you produce content. If you own or work for a small company, try to find a writer that can work at an affordable cost, where you provide the initial direction and sign off. If you are part of a larger organization, have your product managers take on this responsibility.
With outbound marketing, you can generate traffic, leads, and sales very quickly. If you need a quick burst of traffic, email marketing, pay per click, or working with affiliates is the way to go. You can even try advertorials if you would like to create more value, similar to the inbound approach. The downside with outbound marketing is the advertising cost. So, it’s vital to set up your campaigns to get the best possible marketing return on investment.
To maximize your return, develop your campaigns as a three part sequence. We refer to this as the 3-Zones. The 3-Zones are traffic generation, website conversion, and email conversion. To get the best possible result from your outbound Internet marketing campaign, you want to develop a campaign that tells a story through the 3-Zones. Your ads should be completely consistent with your landing pages to maximize lead generation or online sales, depending on the goals of your campaign. Since leads convert at different time frames, you want to maintain a relationship with the leads that you have generated. This is where automated email campaigns come in.
Regardless of which marketing strategy you choose – inbound, outbound, or both, it’s all about developing an immersive campaign. At each step in your campaign, your prospects should be immersed in the value that you can provide for them. And this is achieved through multiple steps and over time. The 3-Zones of Internet Marketing e-Book provides more information on the 3-Zones. If you have any questions regarding inbound marketing, outbound marketing, or both, please feel free to comment.