Some people call what we do “inbound marketing” and the term is becoming more prevalent. The days of investing heavily in traditional media to passively get infront of your target audience are becoming a distant memory, the reason being there are more effective ways to gain customers through the rise of the internet.
What is the difference between Inbound and Outbound Marketing
Well, inbound marketing is where you advertise to customers that are actively seeking your services or products. Outbound marketing is targeting customers through newspapers, TV, radio and other traditional media that aims to increase brand awareness and indirectly sell to customers. Outbound marketing targets customers that aren’t necessarily “in the moment” to make a purchasing decision and you are engaging with them to either get them in the mood, or provide a reminder that your services or products exist that could be beneficial to you.
So what ways can you do inbound marketing?
Well, the rise of the search engines has led to a decrease in outbound marketing as advertisers are putting their investment into SEO and PPC. More than 90% of consumers use a search engine now before they purchase a product. Appearing at the top of Google for target keywords that have high consumer intent to purchase or enquire about services can make a significant difference to the sales of any company.
So who is it relevant to?
Any company that has website. We have been speaking to a number of niche local companies recently, many of which are tradespeople. These companies are heavily reliant on word of mouth within the local areas and the opportunity for them to tap into inbound marketing on search engines is huge. 15 years ago consumers would consult their Yellow Pages to find a local plumber, today it is either their Auntie Majorie round the corner or Google. 20% of Google searches are made with local intent and we feel that inbound marketing for local companies is currently underinvested. That is why we have designed our local SEO service for small businesses that want an affordable way of marketing on Google.
So the future for Outbound marketing?
Well it will always have a place. Word of mouth, brand recognition, the power of association in social media all subtly impact consumer behaviour in your favour but it is more difficult to track, and achieve, ROI. In a recent survey 91% of all email subscribers or opted into email marketing campaigns end up opting out, 86% of people skip TV adverts now and 44% of direct mail letters are never opened!
So if you have a finite marketing budget and you are a new business we always recommend seeking professional advise and making an informed decision into which marketing channel to utilise. We recommend you start with inbound marketing techniques, get the sales and enquiries through and then grow your business and marketing strategy from there. To find out more about our inbound marketing services and how we can help you then please feel free to contact us.