Think of inbound marketing as a way to inspire curiosity about your product or service. Instead of spending money on advertising, you’ll be focusing on creating content that will be shared freely and organically, without any cost to you.
People will always be drawn to quality content. As long as you’re providing something valuable, your audience will share it. So how do you get started? Here are 5 easy steps on how to create an inbound marketing strategy that works for your business.
Whatever business you’re in, make sure that there are goals guiding your actions and decisions. More importantly, be sure to stick to these goals. Whether you’re at that exciting stage of planning your first-ever inbound marketing strategy to get things off the ground or you’re a veteran developing new ways to improve results, always be guided by your goals.
It’s a simple step that’s easy to overlook, but setting goals is a crucial part of inbound marketing.
Yet another obvious step in finding an inbound marketing strategy that works is the planning phase. As obvious as this is, you’d still be surprised that just like goal-setting, lots of businesses and companies fail at this.
If you’re thinking about what inbound strategy to implement, there are a number of decisions at the beginning of the planning process that you can’t afford to ignore. These include: who will do the work? (in-house, outsource or a combination of the two), who are we targeting?, who will create the content? (write blogs, develop premium content), who will promote the content? Who will keep track of the incoming lead flow and follow up with the leads?
These questions may seem like no-brainers, but trust us, answering these key questions is necessary if you want to find an inbound strategy that fits.
Content is a huge part of inbound strategies, but before you start developing content you have to know a lot about who you are targeting with your content. You’ll need to make sure that your content is seen and shared by the right people.
However, the reality is that you can’t always rely on people to like and share what they see. Often, this happens when you create content that is marketed or targeted at the wrong audience.
That said, creating target personas is a must because you don’t want to be just guessing who your prospects are, what they’re interested in, what they’re thinking, and what they’re doing. If you’re really serious about your inbound strategy, don’t be like companies that know so little about their customers and prospects. Before you even jump to content creation, make sure you create “real” target persona that include insights on current customers and prospects.
Dig as much about them as you can if you want to know about the stuff they’re interested in. If you don’t, you’ll just be wasting money and effort on content that isn’t useful to anyone.
Content may be king, but creating content isn’t as easy as people make it out to be. One of the biggest hurdles to inbound strategy success is content creation.
One of the first things you can do if you’re struggling with content is to create a blog. If you haven’t set up a blog (have you been living under a rock?) you’ll need to pick up the pace and make one, pronto! There are plenty of great options to help you get started on your path to blogging dominance. Blog sites like WordPress, Squarespace, Wix, Medium, etc., are some of the best options that offer ready-to-use platforms to fully customisable templates. Some of these platforms also offer a host of free services and tools so you no longer have any reason to skip on blogging.
If a blog is too complicated for you (seriously?), you can also start with social media posts. Instead of bombarding your audience with pictures of your products, use social media to create content that connects and resonates with your audience. This shouldn’t be difficult as social networks tend to be more relaxed and informal.
That gives you plenty of room to be playful and show a different side of your brand. These networks are also a great way to connect with other bloggers and influencers that can promote your business and different pieces of content. Social shares can help boost your conversion rates and drive more traffic to your site. You can also use your social media channels to promote user-generated content that makes your brand authoritative.
If you’re struggling to find an inbound marketing strategy, you shouldn’t throw the towel and quit right away. The key for companies struggling with their inbound program is to take a step back and think things through before starting settling into a strategy.
If you don’t have the resources nor the expertise, you may want to consider bringing in an outside expert to provide guidance and help craft a sound strategy that can translate into a content creation plan and development of target personas. Let us know if we can help. That’s what we’re good at.
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