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Inbound Marketing Methodology 101: How Does it Work?

By Sara Beth Jonassen
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Want to attract visitors to your website and convert on leads? Welcome to inbound methodolodgy 101!

The inbound methodology has four major action components: attract, convert, close and delight.

Using these 4 simple actions, your visitors are guided through the buyer’s journey and sales funnel, from strangers, to customers, to promoters.

According to Hubspot, inbound marketing is all about:

  • Building trust, not skepticism.
  • Being loved, not ignored by your customers.
  • Outsmarting, not outspending your competitors.

The inbound methodology helps facilitate the buyer’s journey through the sales funnel. It works by attracting ideal customers, converting and closing on those opportunities, and finally delighting visitors, leads and customers through a variety of channels, such as social media, blogging, SEO, landing pages, forms and email.

Step 1: Attract Strangers

The first step in your inbound strategy is to attract the right potential leads to your website with content that is valuable, relevant, and easy to find.

By providing the very best, most thorough content on your persona's pain point, you will naturally draw them to your landing pages, free of costs per click.  

What kind of content will get them there?

  • Content that describes their BIG problem
  • Content that offers a simple, uncomplicated solution
  • Content that tells a great story they can relate to
  • Content that motivates an action, change or growth spurt 

This content can take the form of blog articles, website pages, and social media posts. Just don’t forget to include competitive keywords so that organic searches will list your good content and make it easy for your potential customers to find.

Quick tip! Having a targeted Buyer Persona helps construct just the right content in just the right tone of voice.

Here are some ways to “Attract” strangers to your content:

  1. Blogging
  2. Social Media
  3. Competitive Keywords

 

Step 2. Convert Visitors to Leads

You capitalize on your visitors’ interest in your website’s strong content by having compelling CTAs (calls-to-action) that point to a top-of-the-funnel landing page.

The landing page has one sole purpose: to sell your visitor on your great offer and collect their contact information via a form, thereby transforming them into a marketable lead.

Encourage conversions on the form by offering excellent incentives to your visitor, information that will help inform their problem. Some examples of good top of the funnel content are eBooks, infographics, and free checklists.

Next, provide a simple form with a bare minimum of information required to receive offer fulfillment. Then give ample social sharing opportunities, so that their friends and colleagues can take advantage of your good offer, too, creating even more new leads.

Here are the tools used to execute the “Convert” stage:

  1. Calls-to-Action
  2. Landing Pages
  3. Forms
  4. Social Sharing

 

Step 3. Close Leads into Customers

After providing useful content and gathering contact information from your new lead, your job as a marketer is to nurture that lead to closing, making them customers.

Targeted email nurturing campaigns and social media interaction are ways of nurturing your lead. These can include middle-of-the-funnel offers, which reveals the ways your product or service might help solve their particular problem. Examples of some middle funnel offers are: case studies, videos, buyer’s guides and success kits, review and testimonials, or FAQs.

Middle funnel offers are followed, in turn, by bottom-of the funnel offers, which are usually one-on-one consultations, free business reviews or evaluations. This is the highest level of offer you have to provide for free, and it should be something your lead would be willing to pay for. Here is where you get the most detailed information about your lead’s problem or need, and can address it with your product or service, or provide your lead with a better alternative.

Here are the components used to execute the “Close” stage:

  1. Email Nurturing Campaigns
  2. Social Media Interaction
  3. Middle-of-the-Funnel Offers
  4. Bottom-of-the-Funnel Offers

 

Step 4. Delight Customers into Promoters

The inbound methodology ends with delighting your customers thoroughly, thereby transforming them into brand promoters.

This can be done at all stages in the buyer’s journey, but it is especially important at the end of the sale, so that they are compelled to share your company with others, and also tell their friends and colleagues.

Ways to delight your customers:

  1. Personalized Offers
  2. Personalized Messages
  3. Social Media Monitoring

Use context and personalization to deliver tailored messages that make your customer feel valued and important. Continue to suggest ways your services or product might help them in the future, always keeping their preferences in mind. Take surveys and monitor their social media activity to learn how to better serve them in the future.

That’s it for now! Use the inbound marketing methods for your own business to ATTRACT, CONVERT, CLOSE and DELIGHT your visitors!


Want to Get Your Feet Wet with Inbound? Build Buyer Personas!

Define and attract your ideal customer by learning all about your ideal customer! Building trust from the onset, you will be able to attract the most valuable visitors, leads, and customers to your business.

Discover more by downloading our "How to Create Accurate Buyer Personas" eBook.  

 Creating Accurate Buyer Personas

Have a Question? 

If you have a question or would just like to leave me your feedback on the blog, feel free to post your comment below!