Best of Brand Marketing Distilled is our weekly distillation of the best of brand marketing and business intelligence. We hope the ideas and articles are fuel for your organization’s planning and success. This week’s edition provides a distillation of inbound marketing.
Inbound marketing is a marketing strategy that focuses on having customers and potential customers find you, as opposed to traditional marketing strategy which focuses on finding customers by building brand awareness through advertising, promotion and contacting prospects (that you have identified) directly. When inbound marketing is effective, it is a fantastic way of harnessing the reach of the internet; it is the dream of your ideal customer seeking you out and your team working to convert your ideal lead into a sale. However, like all marketing strategies, to be successful inbound marketing requires careful planning, sufficient resources and persistence.
The four articles listed below provide good primers of the key ingredients to maximize the impact of your inbound marketing content. They also reinforce the importance of ensuring your inbound marketing plan adequately covers each key ingredient and doesn’t fall into the trap of focusing on any one element in isolation.
1. Be Strategic in the Content You Generate
Creating valuable and interesting content are table stakes in inbound marketing. Creating valuable and interesting content isn’t enough. Your content also needs to be found by your target audience. To make that happen, you need your content to be optimized in terms of being keyword rich, so when your ideal prospect searches the internet by typing in a keyword, your content can be found. In internet jargon, ensure SEO (search engine optimization) of your content.
2. Leverage Social Media
Social Media can help disseminate your content so it reaches a wider audience. However, you need to carefully consider what social media channels (twitter, facebook, LinkedIn, etc.) to use and the best way to do so. You will also need to evaluate your efforts on an ongoing basis to determine what channels and approaches are helping you reach your target audience and which ones are not effective.
3. Generate Leads
Generating quality leads is of critical importance. To do that, you need to plan your strategy and tactics for obtaining leads and basic lead coordinates.
4. Nurture Leads
Quality leads are a major milestone in working from inbound marketing strategy to closed sale. Once you have generated leads, don’t squander those leads by ignoring them or by making them feel inundated with noise (or worse spammed). You need to nurture your leads as a way to move these leads further down the sales funnel. Think carefully about your lead nurturing and on segmenting leads into a nurturing program which best fits your lead.
The four articles distilled in this edition are, as follows:
(i) Inbound Marketing Tips from Brian Halligan, Co-Founder of HubSpot by Jamie Turner of @60SecondTweets
(ii) Is Content Marketing Broken by Pamela Vaughan for @HubSpot
(iii) Search Engine Optimization is NOT B2B Demand Generation by Jeff Ogden (@fearlesscomp) of Find New Customers
(iv) 7 Lessons from Social Media and Inbound Marketing All-Stars by Hunter Boyle of @AWeber