In today’s cluttered digital landscape, the importance of inbound marketing has gained some serious traction. It’s a powerful way to increase your online visibility, and yet, so many brands are doing it wrong. Let’s unpack some of the common mistakes, identifying easy improvements to take your inbound strategy up a notch.
What is Inbound Marketing?
Inbound marketing is all about building long-lasting relationships and a positive brand reputation. It’s a business methodology, attracting customers to your product through valuable content and experiences.
Unlike outbound marketing, it forms connections with your users, providing solutions to their problems. It’s a tricky strategy combining SEO, blogs, content marketing, and social media. All in the name of “earning attention.”
Understanding the Inbound Marketing Methodology
The inbound methodology includes four key elements: attract, convert, close, and delight. The attract stage is all about utilizing SEO, creating inbound content that will bring customers into your funnel. It means producing the right content for the right people at the right time.
Once you’ve attracted these customers, your next goal is to convert. This stage is all about lead generation, creating custom conversion paths, and optimizing your website. In essence, you need to convince visitors to share their contact information. You can do this by offering something in exchange. Think premium content offers or blog subscriptions.
[Read more: 6 Ways to Generate More Leads For Your Business]
Once you’ve acquired your lead, it’s about how you close. You can do it via email marketing, marketing automation, lead nurturing, and lead scoring. Discounts and promotions also work well.
Lastly, your strategy should aim to delight. You’ve made the sale, now what do you do? You have to keep actively working to ensure continued customer satisfaction. You intend to create loyal customers so you’ll have shift gears into a retention strategy.
[Read more: Benefits of Customer Retention Marketing]
These basic principles of inbound marketing are critical to your marketing success, yet so many brands make simple mistakes. Don’t fall into the trap. Here are five mistakes you should leave behind.
1 Missing a strategy.
One of the most common mistakes when it comes to inbound marketing is not accounting for it in your strategy. You can’t just dump content on your channels and hope that it’ll perform. Drive your content creation with the data available to you. Make it conceptual and considered.
Most companies are guilty of only including elements of an inbound strategy like SEO or email promotions. But, without looking at the whole methodology, you’re not going to achieve the same results. Start by acknowledging the entire flow, and you’ll kickstart your inbound marketing.
2 Short-term thinking.
As marketers, you naturally want to see instant results from your strategies and campaigns. But a thorough inbound process is a long-term play. When you focus on the short term, you end up generating quick-fix solutions and taking shortcuts, failing to address your overarching objectives.
If done right, inbound marketing can have a compound effect on your brand. You may not reap the rewards of your rejuvenated blog content on day one, but after month two, you’ll see a dramatic increase in traffic. Just think what it’ll be like after a year!
3 No targets or goals.
Any sound strategy requires clear targets and goals. You need to be conscious of your desired outcome, as this will ultimately steer your process. Are you more interested in generating traffic to your site? Do you want to grow your social media following? Is your email database your main concern?
These are all essential questions you need to ask yourself because having a clear purpose allows you to curate the right content.
Spend some time curating KPI’s for your inbound strategy. While your initial figures might not be overly exciting, it’ll help you measure your performance over time.
4 Choosing quantity over quality.
An integral part of your inbound strategy will be content creation, but this doesn’t mean spamming your channels to increase visibility. Writing content for the web is a skill, and it’s worth compromising on quantity to deliver optimized content.
You don’t want to fall into the trap of creating content just for the sake of it. You could start losing readers.
5 Forgetting about mobile.
You have to account for it in your inbound marketing. Simple checks include ensuring that your website is mobile-friendly and investing in a responsive theme for your blog. Get into the habit of checking your content on a mobile device.
Watch Your Brand Flourish.
Inbound marketing is an exciting opportunity for brands. It has the potential to seriously up your revenue if you take the time to do it properly. Just by crafting an inbound marketing strategy, you’re already a step closer to success. Avoid the other mistakes, and you’ll be sitting pretty.