What is Inbound Marketing? Chances are, I’m doing it to you right now. Don’t worry, it’s a good thing. Just go with it.
Whereas the old way of marketing, “Outbound Marketing,” used more traditional forms of advertising such as TV commercials and newspaper ads to try and attract the attention of customers, Inbound Marketing uses content like blog posts, videos, podcasts, etc. to bring people in and convert them into customers.
So what was wrong with the old way? Didn’t we all go out and buy that dog from that one Super Bowl commercial just like the advertisers wanted us to? Or was it a horse? Or a beer…
You see the problem. It used to be that people had a very limited way of getting their information. A handful of TV channels, radio, local paper, some magazines. All you had to do, was latch onto one of those information sources, distract people from their entertainment or information gathering for a few seconds, and bingo-bango, marketing accomplished.
Now, people have hundreds of thousands of ways to get their information and entertainment, and outbound marketing has too frequently become a low-brow shouting match that has a tendency toward being obnoxious, confusing, or simply unseen.
Instead of partaking in the shouting match, there’s now a better way, and that’s Inbound Marketing. Instead of chasing after your potential customers, you give them a reason to come to you. By providing valuable content in the form of informative blog posts, (such as this one - aren’t you lucky?) videos, or other web content, you can boost SEO and actually attract your ideal customers. You’re going after the people you desire most, who are most likely to be legitimately interested in your business, and you don’t even have to be invasive or annoying to do it. Once you’ve brought them in, you can then ask them to stick around for a while, have them give you the opportunity to get back in touch, and they’ll even come back and take advantage of your product or service.
You might be thinking this all sounds like crazy internet voodoo, but I promise, it’s pretty simple. Okay, it’s actually incredibly fluid and complex, but the principles behind it are simple, and way more importantly, Inbound Marketing is tangible, effective and affordable in a way that Outbound Marketing never was.