Outbound advertising used to be the only way to fly. Marketers sprayed their messages far and wide — capturing few leads for their many efforts. Outbound ads continue to have a place in the advertising universe, though it’s been greatly assisted by more modern means for tracking where those messages should go and honing the messages for better results.
But digital advancements have paved the way for a different kind of marketing. Instead of going out to reach your audiences, you can now bring those audiences to you. It’s less intrusive, and if done right, more effective, because you’re focused on people who’ve expressed an interest in your business and/or your products or services.
For most businesses, a healthy mix of inbound and outbound promotions hit the spot. Outbound marketing is the megaphone you use to attract initial attention, and inbound marketing is the magnet you use to reel them in.
Where does inbound and outbound promotions fit into your business model?
Outbound Marketing: The Megaphone
Outbound marketing is what you probably think of when you think of “marketing.” Advertising, direct mail, cold sales calls – things that get your business message out to the largest number of people as possible. Like a megaphone, outbound marketing is the act of spreading your message to as many people as possible.
And there’s a lot of value in that. That’s the reason why so many big brands use outbound advertising to raise awareness about and pique interest in their products – it works. If you use it yourself, and track your efforts appropriately, you’ll quickly see which outbound marketing efforts work best for your business. Plus, today we have more ways of targeting outbound messages than ever before, by segmented social media advertising audiences, geo-targeted digital ads, mailing lists sorted by income and age, and so much more. It isn’t the “spray and hope” of ages old.
We live in an incredibly ad-savvy world. People know where ads are going to be and diligently avoid them. They record shows on DVRs so they can fast-forward through the commercials, or opt for Netflix and ignore your ads entirely. The only way for outbound marketing to be effective is to target only those who are inclined to want your message, using tools like SEO and keywords, well-written and informative blog posts, and a fresh, inviting approach to social media channels.
Inbound Marketing: The Magnet
Once you’ve attracted your audience using smart outbound techniques, you switch to smart inbound tactics. Done right, it doesn’t really feel like marketing at all. Instead of yelling it out through a megaphone to everybody, you’re attracting those most interested in your message to you. It’s the magnet of the marketing world.
Inbound tactics convert the leads drawn in through outbound efforts and nurture them into qualified leads, closed sales, and eventually, delighted customers! This is done through various methods, including lead forms, Calls to Action (CTAs), landing pages, etc. You close the deal using targeted emails, direct calls, smart social media interactions, and other nurturing tactics.
Excellent inbound tools include sleek brochures, an attractive and easily-navigated website, an informative and interesting blog, e-books, whitepapers, valuable email newsletters, and similar methods.
Draws like e-books for free download, email newsletters, and other free (but valuable!) content build your inbound “magnet.”
Compared to outbound, inbound costs significantly less, because instead of paying to reach a gazillion people with no interest in buying or money to buy, you’re reaching out to people with an expressed interest in what you have to offer. Inbound marketing is an essential part of your advertising mix today.
Whether you choose to leverage the magnet, the megaphone, or both, it’s important to have the right partner. Someone who can help you find the mix that makes the most sense for your market and your business.
The Get Smart Group is a talented team with the knowledge and experience poised to help take your business exactly where you want it to go. Let’s get your marketing strategy planning started today with a free consultation.