How does your business find sales leads? A billboard on a major highway? An ad that airs during a TV show that your target audience might never see?
What if there was a way to make sure you were getting the right marketing content to the people who would benefit from it the most?
“Tell us more,” you say? Well, we’re talking about inbound marketing, a strategy based around the idea of letting your customers – and potential customers – find you.
The Salesforce blog recently listed six ways inbound marketing can generate more qualified leads for your business. Here’s that list, along with some input of our own.
1. It Engages Your Customers Before They Know They’re Your Customers
“Inbound marketing, when done well, meets your customers where they want to be,” writes Stuart Leung of Salesforce.
With inbound marketing, the content you create is designed to line up with what your customers are interested in at various stages of the buyer’s journey:
- Awareness, in which your leads have a problem they need to solve.
- Consideration, in which they’ve begun to look for someone to solve the problem.
- Decision, in which they’ve settled on a company to handle their problem.
Because you’re giving them information that’s interesting/important to them, they’ll be more likely to download your offers, and thus turn over their information to your sales team.
2. Keep Track Of Your Leads With A CRM
CRM stands for a customer relationship management system, which will help you maintain your list of leads. A CRM will help you determine who your best prospects are, and give you more insight into their backgrounds. The more detailed and accurate your information is, the more you’ll show your prospects that you’ve taken the time to learn about them.
3. Use Your Blog To Solve Problems
In the first section, we talked about the stages of the buyer’s journey. Your blog is an excellent place to attract people who are in the first stage. They have problems related to your industry. You have your blog, where you can publish posts on how to solve those problems.
For example: Let’s say you’re a company that manufactures supplies for doctors’ offices. You could write a blog post about 10 ways to make a medical practice more efficient. It helps your potential customers solve a problem and establishes you as an authority in your field.
4. A picture Is Worth 1,000 Words, And A Video Is Worth 1,000 Pictures
That’s not a real statistic, but we’re using it to underline the importance of visual content, especially visual content in the form of video.
We’ve made this point before and we’ll likely make it again: Video marketing is part of inbound marketing, and video is expected to become the dominant form of internet traffic in the next few years.
Video is naturally engaging, and that’s vital in a time where people are overwhelmed by information. By presenting content in video form, you’re giving prospects and customers something that’s easy to digest.
That doesn’t mean there’s no place for still imagery in your marketing strategy. On social media, posts using photos or infographics tend to get more shares than ones that just feature words. And speaking of social media…
5. Social Media Isn’t Just For Business-To-Consumer Companies
Anyone who uses Facebook and Twitter long enough will see adds targeted to them. But there’s a third social media platform business-to-business companies think about when trying to attract leads.
We’re talking about LinkedIn. As Salesforce’s Leung puts it: “Because LinkedIn is a professional social network, users aren't turned off by business-related marketing on their feed. The mindset and expectations of the user is entirely different when compared to consumer-focused networks and that's a good thing when it comes to B2B leads.”
6. Inbound Marketing Needs To Be Continuous
You may have a solid inbound marketing strategy, but you can’t rest on your laurels. Finding and nurturing leads takes time, so you’ll need to keep creating content that attracts leads at every step of the journey, while also enticing people just starting on their buyer’s journey.
If you’re ready to launch your inbound campaign but still have questions on how to begin, get in touch with IQnection. Our marketing experts can help you populate your website and social media feeds with the type of content that will keep customers and soon-to-be customers coming back.