Written by Dave Goates, Director of Human Capital at Launch Leads
We get an increasing number of requests to do inbound marketing campaigns for clients. Why is there so much buzz about it? In a few words:
- Low cost advantage
- Spending on inbound campaigns is growing
- Blogs and social media are generating more customers
- More businesses are blogging
- Businesses are becoming aware of the marketing value of their blog
In a January 2011 survey of 644 marketing professionals, Hubspot reported the cost per lead was 62% lower than outbound campaigns. This is true for a number of reasons, but the most important is the “earned media” value of a company’s presence in the Internet. It’s the best way to attract new customers. Harnessing that interest is how inbound responses can turn into new business.
Spending for inbound marketing, as reported by those surveyed, is growing by 50% in a two-year period from 2009 to 2011. In addition to website creation, vendors increasingly offering a widening menu including SEO, branding, blogging, social media capture, lead qualification, pay-per-lead and landing page design are reporting new profit centers.
Blogs and other social media platforms are inexpensive solutions in creating brand awareness not even available five years ago. Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube are a few examples that can be integrated and coordinated to yield huge results for a company’s desire to advance its brand in the market. Being what your target market WANTS is powerful. Getting the word out has never been easier.
Time was when people were asking, “What’s a blog?” Now, not to blog is to bog down. Don’t get left at the starting gate. In the last two years, businesses that blog grew by a full 20%.
What’s the value of a blog?
- You can become a thought leader in your space
- Offer helpful hints, suggestions and useful data to potential customers
- Make it a critical component of your overall marketing strategy to get the word out
You’re giving it all your best content away for free, and boosting your presence in searches for your services. The more you do, the more relevant you become. A timely and regular blog grows into research that can be rolled up into webinar content and white papers later. It costs you nothing to tell your story to a widening audience. It takes time, but being patient now will pay huge dividends later.
So how do you handle incoming traffic from all your online activity. Some things to think about:
- An inbound lead deteriorates in a matter of minutes, not hours and days
- Having a defined strategy for dealing with inbound calls is critical
- Knowing how to turn on and off the spigot of the lead flow is essential
- Credibility with your sales team depends upon qualification of inbound leads
There are two obvious choices to implement the inbound lead process — you can either do it in house or outsource it. There are costs in either scenario.
We’ll help you evaluate what’s best in upcoming posts.