Social Media and Web 2.0 by enterprises is rapidly changing the way companies are running their Sales and Marketing activities.
Consider the following facts:
- 83% of B2B decision makers starts their purchase process with internet research
- 41% contacts the solution provider directly after their research was complete
- Only 7% connects with a vendor via cold calling
- Roughly 3% of site traffic is ready to buy
- The 97% is often ignored or pushed into a mindless cycle of sporadic communications
- 9 out 10 internet users visit a social networking site minimum once a month
- Companies that blog get 55% more website visitors
What is Inbound Marketing?
Potential customers no longer look to salespeople to provide the information they seek about a product or service they are in need of... in fact, many actively seek to avoid salespeople.
The traditional outbound marketing doesn't work anymore:
- 86% of people skip TV ads
- 44% of direct mail is never even opened
- 46% decline in spending on tech trade shows in 2010
Sources: The Guardian, EPA.gov, Hubspot
Why is this? Why do the tried-and-true marketing methods of the past continue to be less and less effective? Because they are interruptions, distractions in our daily lives that, 99% of the time, are not offering something we are interested in or care about at that particular moment. And we are becoming better and better at blocking out these interruptions.
So what is your business supposed to do?
The answer is INBOUND MARKETING.
Inbound Marketing is a process that allows interested buyers to actually FIND YOU via a combination of:
- Content Marketing - Providing information relevant to your business that your potential customers are interested in learning about.
- Search Engine Optimization - Showing up in Google and other search engines when your potential customers search for something you can provide.
- Social Media - Using online word-of-mouth to build relationships, spread your message and drive more traffic to your website.
- Lead Generation & Nurturing - Capturing leads through your website and nurturing them until they are ready to buy.
Moreover, a recent survey concluded that Inbound Marketing cost 62% less per lead than traditional, outbound marketing. Thousands of businesses (including ours) have jumped the traditional marketing ship and are boarding the Inbound Marketing train.
How will Inbound Marketing help you grow your business?
When properly executed, Inbound Marketing aligns with your business goals and sales process to create measurable results that have a real impact on your company's bottom line. The ROI of Inbound Marketing is not measured in increased "awareness" or stronger "engagement", it's measured in leads, new customers and direct sales revenue.
The four ways that Inbound Marketing will help you grow your business are by:
- Attracting more visitors to your website.
- Converting more of your visitors to qualified leads.
- Nurturing leads until they are sales ready.
- Measuring your results so you can make improvements.
The best part is that Inbound Marketing can be automated, and fully integrated with your CRM. Your marketing activities will be focussing on generating contents and attracting your potential buyers to this contents.
Marketing Automation is the solution to cover the whole process.