How does Inbound Marketing Work?
Inbound marketing is a relatively new approach to generating leads and gaining clients, but it is one of the most effective marketing strategies when done correctly. The key is giving inbound marketing the time it needs to take hold online and start paying back a return on your investment.
What is Inbound Marketing?
In the simplest terms, inbound marketing is a way to gain new customers by publishing valuable information online. Many consumers today find the products and services they need by performing online searches. Inbound strategy creates written materials that direct online consumers toward your site through search engines. If the materials are valuable to the consumer, that individual might find the company more trustworthy and may be more likely to choose that company’s products or services.
How do Businesses Start with Inbound Marketing?
Inbound marketing relies on the use of keywords to generate online traffic, and, consequently, opportunities to increase revenue. Including keywords that sonsumers would likely use in your online content, makes it more likely that these customers will view your inbound marketing content.
While one single web page of inbound content probably won’t make a big difference, as you increase the amount of content online you will also increase your web site’s prominence in online searches. This will ultimately increase online traffic and opportunities to generate leads and sales. It’s a concept similar to fishing with more than one pole: You might not get a bite on every hook, but you will have more opportunities to catch a fish, and your odds will increase accordingly.
DIY Inbound Marketing
Navigating the Internet can feel overwhelming, and if you’re not tech-savvy, it can be easy to get lost in cyber space. Here are a few simple, effective, and affordable tips and tricks for marketing your business.
Start a Blog
Blog posts should be short and sweet – this is better for online reading, and also won’t require too much of your time. Through your blog, you can share helpful information about topics related to the services you provide. For example, if you own a dog grooming business you could write a post about helping dogs find itchy skin relief in dry weather. When a potential customer searches online for such information, finding your blog posts may lead them to you. By providing useful tips to people, you are showing them you care, whether they’re using your services. This helps build trust, and increases the chances that they will come to you when they need to.
Use Social Media
Social Media sites are meant to be more informal and give you the chance to express your company’s personality and mission. You can share links to your website and blog. This is a great way to generate more traffic and grow your website; however, you should also promote other organizations or provide customers with quality information. The idea is to offer your customers a reliable source of information so they realize your services are just as reliable. While blog posts are basically meant to be short articles, Tweets and status updates are meant to be much shorter – a simple, quick blurb will do.
Whenever you need in-page navigation but still you need to make other relevant content available outside of the content area, both on desktop and mobile screens, then this layout is a good multi-purpose content template you can use.
Blog Topics for my Business
Blogs can be a great tool for your small business, but sometimes coming up with topics can be hard. It doesn’t have to be. So, if you find yourself wondering, “What are some great blog topics?”
Here are 4 to get you started:
- Product Comparison – If you have a product that is similar to others, you can post a comparison and state why your product is better. You can also ask a customer if you can use their success story as a testimonial blog post.
- Employee Bios – This offers the customer a glimpse into the lives of the people they already know professionally. This is a great trust building idea.
- FAQ – It’s also a good idea to write a Frequently Asked Questions blog post. If there are things about your company that people ask all the time, why not provide answers to their questions.
- Feature Topic – Have a regular feature for your blog. It can be an item of the week, customer of the week, or any way to connect with customers. Have a contest. Share a picture of the office or store. Let them know you’re human.
Blogging seems intimidating to many at first, but with some practice, it is an easy way to connect with your customers. Instead of wondering, “How can I grow my website?” try starting a blog to talk to your customers. It will keep them connected and thinking about your website and your business!
How to Write Content that Sells Products
There are a lot of things to keep in mind when writing web content meant to sell products.
Consider Your Audience
First and foremost, you must write content with your audience in mind. What are they coming to your website for? What do they need? What is going to be the difference between buying your service and going elsewhere to buy? Your content should be addressing and answering questions. What does the service entail? How much does it cost? How long will it take? What do you guarantee? If you can predict a question from your customer, make sure it’s answered.
Keep It Simple
Most people on the Internet “skim-read” and have little patience for boring exposition. Try to keep your pitches and explanations as short as possible. Focus on using language that really speaks to the customer. Focus on the benefits the customer will receive from your business instead of the features of your product or service.
Your content and your products should stand out from the competition. If you’re a car dealer in a town full of car dealers, your content needs to shine in order to stand out from the crowd but it also needs to prove why you are better than the competition.
By adding images, videos and colorful texts, you can help break up content for the reader and make it much more skim-friendly. Video content, infographics and relevant images can be great selling points and fresh ways for customers to digest your message.
Link, Link, Link
When writing about your services, provide a link where visitors can sign up or contact you. When you are writing about a product of yours, provide a link to where that product can be bought. You should be driving customers to your product or service every time you get a chance.
Remember, a designer will make your website look great but it needs great content to go with it. Put the above advice to use, or you can always seek us out for advice and help.
Can I Really Generate Sales Leads from My Website?
Absolutely, so long as you know how to do it. Any small business can generate meaningful leads via their website.
Collect Customer Data
Your website should have a page where customers can enter their contact information. But even if they don’t leave their information with you, there are ways to collect information that you can use for leads. Your blog comment section should require the entering of an email address before someone can leave a comment.
People love freebies. In addition, it is easy to sign up for free offers online. You should offer some sort of free item or service on your website. In order for the customers to get their freebie, they have to enter their contact information.
How-to, Courses Webinars
Why not offer up an online course or webinar to teach people about an aspect of your business. You can offer the class for free or a small fee. The class should be worthwhile but also leave the door open for people to learn more.
The biggest mistake many small town businesses make with their website is not interacting and following up with customers. If someone leaves a comment on your site or blog, you should interact with that person. If someone sends you an email with a question or concern, you better respond to it in a timely manner.
It should always promote your business and have easy links back to your website and contact information that someone can contact you if need be.