More and more of our clients are asking about the lead generation benefits of Inbound Marketing these days, so I thought it might be fun to take you on an “alphabetical tour” … all the important things you need to know about Inbound Marketing from A to Z.
A is for Automation
Inbound Marketing automates the process of attracting new visitors to your website, capturing them as leads, converting them to customers and delighting them until they become evangelists for your product or service.
B is for Blog
Blogging is a key component of Inbound Marketing. Every time you blog about answers to key questions that your buyer prospects may be searching online provides you with a great new opportunity to rank highly in the search engines. That means more traffic to your website.
C is for Content
The fuel that powers Inbound Marketing is content (which is why it is often referred to as content marketing). The idea is to produce content that is both educational and engaging, and have it posted in places where your customer prospects are likely to be looking when researching their next purchase for your type of product or service. That content can include web pages, blog posts, emails, images, videos, webinars, SlideShare presentations, white papers, case studies and eBooks.
D is for Download
Customer prospects will be willing to provide their contact information in exchange for valuable information they can instantly download. The more content they download from you, the better your chances of successfully nurturing them through your sales funnel.
E is for Email
You use email workflows to nurture your leads through your sales funnel with a variety of download offers until they have enough helpful information to make a buying decision in your favour.
F is for Form
Lead capture is all about getting visitors to fill out forms that you place on key landing pages of your website. You can use forms to not only capture key contact information like name and email address, but also to identify the key challenges facing prospects so you’ll better know how to follow up with them.
G is for Goals
Setting monthly SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-bound) for metrics like website traffic, lead generation, and customer conversion, is the key to keeping your Inbound Marketing activities on track.
H is for HubSpot
HubSpot literally wrote the book on Inbound Marketing (In 2009, HubSpot founders Brain Halligan and Darmesh Shah wrote a book entitled Inbound Marketing). The HubSpot software platform provides a complete suite of Inbound Marketing tools for creating and tracking your content.
I is for Inbound
It’s called Inbound Marketing because, by definition, the process pulls customer prospects “in” to discover what you and your business are all about.
J is for Justification
Because every aspect of Inbound Marketing can be tracked using a software platform like HubSpot, you will finally be able to justify the cost versus benefit of your marketing spending.
K is for Keywords
There’s no point in producing content unless there’s a good chance that people will find it. That’s why you need to optimize your web pages, blog posts and videos using the keyword phrases that your customer prospects will likely be searching in Google and Bing.
L is for Landing Pages
Every piece of helpful content you create needs its own landing page on your website, where you describe the benefits customer prospects can expect to receive and where you include a form for them to fill out in exchange for instant download access.
M is for Marketing
Need I say more?
N is for Next
A big part of Inbound Marketing is prompting customer prospects what to do next using Calls-to-Action placed within your content. Calls-to-Action can be links, buttons or banners (usually prompting viewers to click for download access or more information).
O is for Offer
Inbound Marketing is all about the offer. You capture and nurture leads with offers of valuable content that they can immediately access to help then with their buying decisions.
P is for Personas
Buyer personas are fictional representations of your ideal customers. They go beyond simple demographic and psychographic descriptions, and make educated guesses about their personal histories, behaviours, motivations and pain points as they relate to your product or service. The content you create as part of your Inbound Marketing efforts should be specific to the individual personas that you identify (i.e. one size does NOT fit all).
Q is for Qualifying
How often have you heard the sales department complaining about the poor quality of leads being generated by the marketing department? The lead nurturing process within Inbound Marketing allows you to track and label prospects as they move from being subscribers to leads to Marketing Qualified Leads to Sales Qualified Leads to customers.
R is for ROI
By using an Inbound Marketing platform like HubSpot which includes a fabulous CRM system, you can do closed-loop analytics to calculate the ROI of your marketing efforts. This is a huge advantage that Inbound Marketing provides compared to traditional Outbound Marketing activities like TV, Radio and Print advertising.
S is for Social Media
Inbound Marketing uses popular social media channels like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Google+ to promote and encourage sharing of the content you create.
T is for Tracking
Using a software platform like HubSpot, you’ll be able to track every aspect of your Inbound Marketing. You’ll have a complete history of the action each visitor took to find your website and all of the interactions they have with it as they move through your sales funnel.
U is for Universal
The principles behind Inbound Marketing work anywhere in the world for both B2C and B2B.
V is for Video
When it comes to content creation, video is a great digital content element to add to your website and your download offers to help differentiate you from competitors and build like and trust with customer prospects.
W is for Websites
Inbound Marketing transforms your website from an electronic brochure into a powerful lead capture magnet using persona-tailored content, Calls-to-Action, and landing pages with forms.
X is for XML Feed
A common example of an XML feed is having subscribers to your blog receive an email notification every time you publish a new post. That’s a great way to keep them coming back to your website for more helpful content!
Y is for YouTube
YouTube (owned by Google) is the second largest search engine. So, it makes sense to create lots of video content and post it on YouTube where it can be indexed to show up in search rankings to drive traffic to your website and landing pages.
Z is for Zealous
This is how you’ll feel when you start seeing success with your Inbound Marketing!
There you have it … Inbound Marketing from A to Z.