Inbound marketing is a popular marketing methodology that has been adopted by thousands of companies across the US. The notion of inbound marketing is not commonly known in the UK but as it’s increasing leads, converting customers and making sales in the US, we’ve decided to examine inbound and see why it works so well with the new psychology underpinning the modern buying process.
What is inbound marketing?
Inbound marketing was created as a result of changing buyer habits.
Disruptive marketing is not as successful as it used to be. People can use mobile technology and faster internet to get instant information whenever they need it. People have more power over what adverts they want to see. The old sales methods don’t work as well they once did.
- 86% of people skip TV adverts
- 44% of direct mail is ignored and deleted
As the influence of outbound techniques has decreased, marketers in the US have turned to more inbound tactics. Instead of hassling buyers all the time with outbound, inbound focuses on engaging customers when they are ready to be approached by a business.
Today, the buyer has more control over what they want to see and hear online. They can stop, skip and ignore adverts. That’s why inbound focuses on interacting with the buyer at the right point of the ‘Buyer’s Journey.’
The Buyer’s Journey describes each segment an individual buyer goes through before they buy: awareness, consideration and decision stages.
The focus of the inbound marketing methodology works to move the buyer onto each stage of the ‘journey’ with engaging information and interactions. For inbound to work, inbound marketers have to understand the psychology of their ideal buyers.
They have to understand what their motivations are, their interests, their buying attitudes, etc. Inbound marketers have to get into the psychological mindset of their buyers to create effective marketing strategies their buyers will actually engage with.
Inbound answers the buyers’ needs
In 2014 eMarketer recorded businesses in the US were spending $180.12 billion on advertising. How much of that advertising was actually effective?
As modern buyers have more power on what they buy, inbound marketing focuses to interact with ‘ideal’ customers rather than wasting advertising on the masses. Thanks to instant internet access and mobile technology, people can access the World Wide Web whenever they have a query. So inbound marketing focuses on creating interesting and high quality information that will engage with their ideal buyers.
As you can see in the Buyer’s Journey diagram above. the inbound methodology works to create different forms of content to move the buyer onto the next stage.
Helpful blogs that answer common questions about a certain topic can attract ‘strangers’ into ‘visitors.’ By creating calls-to-actions and sign up forms you can then convert ‘visitors’ into ‘leads.’ Then finally you can close the deal and turn them into customers.
By using valuable and insightful content, you are engaging with buyers and their needs. Internet and mobile tech has empowered modern buyers and marketing strategies have to adapt to interact effectively with customers.
US marketers are turning to inbound
The idea of inbound marketing is still relatively new. It was only in 2007 when Hubspot (the leading inbound marketing software) introduced their online management system and it only took a couple of years before the marketing concept took off in the US.
Since then, more businesses have adopted the inbound methodology into their marketing strategies. Major companies are using it and inbound is giving smaller businesses a powerful edge over bigger businesses with bigger budgets.
Buyers are responding to inbound marketing:
- Inbound leads have a higher close rate over outbound techniques. Inbound has a rate of 14.6% whilst outbound is 1.7%.
How can you use the inbound methodology in your marketing strategy?
Whilst more businesses are using inbound in the US, in the UK, the notion of inbound marketing is still quite unknown. This is great news for you as that means you’re still ahead of the competition.
In the US, businesses were using inbound from before 2009 whereas in the UK, companies were only starting to use inbound in 2012. And, look how it’s growing.
Inbound is a marketing strategy that has adapted to the changing dynamics of buyer behaviour. The impact of outbound techniques has declined as the power of the modern buyer has evolved so you have to be willing to update your marketing strategies.
You can improve your engagement with buyers and convert more leads by:
- Learn more about inbound by reading valuable resources like:
- Look at your business plan and your marketing strategy
- Would your budgets and efforts be better spent on inbound strategies rather than outbound?
- Get a consultation from a certified inbound agency to see if your business could benefit from inbound
- Before you decide to jump on the inbound train, you need to know if inbound will work with your business.
As a UK certified inbound marketing agency we have seen the rise in major and small businesses benefiting from going inbound. Today’s buyers are more empowered and you have to understand their psychology to improve your engagement with customers. Stay ahead of your competitors by going inbound.