Inbound marketing is an effective way to increase leads and boost sales. Outbound marketing, on the other hand, is a costly strategy for reaching potential customers. This article will explore how inbound marketing can help you build your business from the inside out.
But that doesn't mean outbound marketing is dead. There are use cases for both. we will also explore a holistic approach that marries the two together.
What is Inbound Marketing
Inbound marketing is a marketing strategy that focuses on drawing customers in by creating quality content that is relevant to their interests. Inbound marketing aims to create a relationship of trust and understanding between the customer and the business. This can be achieved through the creation of valuable content such as blog posts, ebooks, whitepapers, etc.
What is Outbound Marketing
Outbound marketing is a traditional marketing strategy that involves reaching out to potential customers through methods such as TV ads, cold calling, and direct mail. Outbound marketing is often seen as less effective than inbound marketing, as it can be seen as interruptive and often disregards the preferences of the customer.
But Outbound marketing is still majorly important for marketing professionals. A lot of digital marketing activities rely heavily on outbound marketing.
Differences between Inbound and Outbound Marketing
The main difference between inbound and outbound marketing is the way that they attract customers. Inbound marketing relies on creating quality content that is relevant to the interests of the customer.
Outbound marketing, on the other hand, involves reaching out to potential customers through methods such as TV ads, cold calling, and direct mail. Outbound marketing is often seen as less effective than inbound marketing, as it can be seen as interruptive and often disregards the preferences of the customer.
There are a number of pros to inbound marketing. Firstly, inbound marketing is cheaper and more effective than outbound marketing in some situations. Inbound marketing also allows you to target potential customers that are already interested in what you have to offer. Additionally, inbound marketing helps you build a relationship of trust and understanding with your customers, which can lead to more sales in the long run.
The main con of inbound marketing is that it can be expensive to produce quality content. In order to be successful, you need to invest time and resources into creating content that is interesting and relevant to your customers. Additionally, inbound marketing can be difficult to scale up, as you may not be able to reach as many potential customers as you would with outbound marketing.
Outbound marketing has a number of pros that make it an attractive option for businesses. Firstly, outbound marketing is often more effective than inbound marketing, as it allows you to reach a larger number of potential customers. Additionally, outbound marketing is a great way to build brand awareness and attract new customers. Outbound marketing is also a great way to generate leads, as potential customers are more likely to respond to direct offers.
There are a number of cons to outbound marketing. Firstly, outbound marketing is often more expensive than inbound marketing. Outbound marketing also requires a lot of effort to generate leads, and can be difficult to scale up. Additionally, outbound marketing can be seen as interruptive and often disregards the preferences of the customer.
Find the right marketing strategy for you
Just because and inbound marketing strategy is all the buzz doesn't mean it's necessarily the right path for you. At the end of the day you need to allocate your marketing budget that will generate the best return on investment. And when it comes to inbound vs outbound marketing we believe in a balances holistic approach.
By utilizing a balance of inbound and outbound marketing you will gain clients as you invest in inbound marketing efforts.
And more importantly you can work with your clients to determine the best course of action on how to acquire them.
Grow with Outbound
Since outbound marketing is usually much faster to get started and scale, most companies can start here. This is where you can really define the buying journey. This is also where you can establish your sales funnel, and sales cycle.
Once you have a sales process in place, then set up an outbound strategy to fill your sales pipeline. Outbound tactics include things such as digital content, magazine ads, banner ads, radio ads, and tv commercials.
The key to any advertising, is to make a clear unique value proposition. And to present that message in an area where your audience is likely to be. If your target audience consumes television than television ads make sense.
Alternatively for B2B outbound marketing examples are trade shows, yellow pages, and Cold calling.
Once your company has determined a couple of outbound strategies that are generating a positive return on investment. Move into a combined strategy.
Once you have a stable and reliable outbound strategy building an inbound strategy makes sense. Part of your inbound strategy will no doubt be search engine optimization, email marketing, and website content.
A major key to your digital marketing is to create content such as a blog post, video, or free guide. This content provides value and attracts viewers. By doing content marketing and generating high quality relevant content your will be attracting customers.
Using SEO strategy to make sure your originally published content shows up on the first page. And with really high quality blog content you can grow a large online audience.
Lease vs Own
This really highlights one of the main differences in inbound and outbound marketing. This is the Lease vs own principle. When you are doing inbound marketing you are generally investing in platforms (such as blogs) that you own.
With traditional marketing you are putting ads for your services on platforms someone else owns. You are in effect leasing space for advertising.
Become a domain Authority
This leads us to the one of the greatest marketing strategies that marketers aspire too. Becoming a domain authority. This is the endgame for inbound marketing. If you are attempting to become a domain authority, then you will need to invest in your brand. You should expect that your branding marketing spend is equal if not more than the traditional advertising approach.
You will need to publish high quality content consistently. And post enough that your company becomes a recognized resource. It's also important that you become a subject matter expert.
If your focus is on achieving domain authority status, then this will be your ultimate goal. Domain authority allows you to generate organic qualified free traffic from search engines. This is one of the highest forms of ROI marketing there is.
Test Cheap & Fast
One other strategy that is a combination of inbound and outbound marketing is testing fast and inexpensively. This works well for companies that have a limited budget, but don't want to miss out on marketing opportunities.
Using tools such as social media groups and forums allows you to quickly seize an opportunity. You can do quick tests measuring your ROI very easily. This approach allows you to quickly evaluate if a particular headline, image, or video appeals more.
Setup easy to build landing pages, and then optimize. This is how you can use a combination of inbound strategies and outbound to test content. And get meaningful feedback on your content much faster.
So which is really better
Our opinion when it comes to inbound vs outbound marketing is there is no winner. Marketing should be focused on higher roi,. And marketers should not chase hype - but long term growth.
Both inbound and outbound marketing can be effective. It's important to find a balance between the two that works for your business/brand. Most importantly, you should focus on generating sales, leads, and happy customers. And then using analytics to measure your ROI and improve over time.