“Plans are worthless, but planning is everything.” — Dwight D. Eisenhower
While you have grand marketing plans for the company, it is crucial to look for specific, measurable action steps. Planning a strategic roadmap for your inbound marketing is everything.
It is important to know what works for your company. You must have wondered if your inbound marketing content is hitting the right note with your customers and if your customers see value and potential in your content and feel a strong connection with your brand. Is your content in alignment with your company´s strategy, execution, production, and distribution, social media, landing pages, customer conversion and acquisition and measurement? How do you know for sure that you are doing it right with your inbound marketing content?
We bring you some really simple but highly effective techniques to boost your inbound marketing efforts.
- Content – Before creating your content, you need to understand your target customer group – their psyche, persona, needs, likes and dislikes etc. Based on the clear understanding of your target audience, you need to decide the type of content that best fits in with the requirements of your audience. When you have the customer at the heart of your content, your inbound marketing efforts become an effective lead-generation tool automatically.
- Catch words and phrases – Keywords are truly the key to letting customers find you easily. In fact, it lies at the crux of inbound marketing which is based on the principle of letting customers reach you on their own volition instead of the other way around. Apart from keywords, it really pays to include catchy titles, phrases or lines to generate interest and attract a sizeable number of audience to your page. A great way to enhance your keyword generation skills is to use Google’s Keyword Planner.
- Consider Buyer’s Journey – You need to build content not only based on your target audience but also on which level your audience is in the buyer’s journey. Let us draw an analogy of the buyer’s journey to a funnel! The top of the funnel is for the brand new audience, the middle of the funnel for the ´audience transitioning to the customer´ stage and the bottom of the funnel is for the end customers. In that case, your marketing efforts must be to generate awareness to your audience who lie at the top of the funnel. If they lie in the middle of the funnel. your job is to get the audience to consider your offer to buy. And, your content should be concentrated on the final purchase decisions when your audience lies at the bottom of the funnel. The first two steps of generating awareness and getting your customers to consider purchasing from your company are vital in inbound marketing. If your content is not effective to getting the catching the attention and interest of the audience, concentration on the bottom of the funnel is futile.
- Customer Path – Now that you have figured out your customer´s journey, you need to figure out what path you want your customers to take. In other words, what are the customer touch points that you want to access so as to make the dots and connections. Your first customer touch point can be email, Twitter, LinkedIn or Facebook. Once your customer connects with the first touch point, where do you want them to connect with you nt. It could be another social media channel or your web page. Make sure the content in all your customer touch points are clear and matches the content everywhere in style, tone, description, message etc. Most companies have a minimum of 2 touch points but the decision on the number of customer touch points vary from company to company, industry to industry and in how many points do you want your customers to connect with you.
- Landing Page – Where your customers ultimately land in your website is called the “landing page”. In other words, the ultimate destination of all customer touch points will be your landing page on your website. This is where you need to create engaging content to connect with your customers. Apart from crafting content that creates an emotional connection with your customers, you have to ensure that the content on your landing page matches with the tone and message of the content in all the other customer touch points. Be it text or visual!
- Value offerings – One of the ways to boost your inbound marketing efforts is to provide value offerings to your customer time and again. This will also help you effectively engage with your customer as well as give you the golden chance to build customer loyalty and long-term relationship. You can offer anything from a discount coupon, live demo, video, ebook, podcast, case study etc. to your customers. This will surely entice your audience and keep the momentum of engagement going.
- Call to Action (CTA) – After your customer visits on your landing page, you need to persuade them to act. The motive for having a ´call to action´ strategy is to keep the conversation between the customer and you going. You can encourage them by asking them to ´Learn More´, ´Click this video´, ´Download´, ´Take a quiz´or ´Fill a form´. This will give you an idea of their interest in your product and company. You will also learn straight from the horse´s mouth, more about themselves. This will provide more food for fodder for your marketing team.
- Measuring efficacy – Finally, you need to know whether your inbound marketing strategy is working. You need to find what methods you are going to adopt and what trends you want to track. This will help you understand the marketing process and your customers much deeper. It will also help you to plug in all the loopholes and build efficiency in your inbound marketing.
If you are like me, you want to produce great content that generates leads and helps to position the brand. You also want your content to work exactly as you expect it to (or close). Whether it’s designed for the top of the funnel to generate awareness or the middle, to educate and help the customer make a decision; Regardless of where your content is, it’s important to understand where in the sales funnel it will most likely perform at the highest level to create a conversion.
Our last word is that irrespective of your inbound marketing content, you have to give it time and attention to build, develop and provide value and purpose to your customer. You need to sit down, reflect and find a strategy based on the points we just discussed in the context of your company. You have to focus on producing great content that generates leads, awareness, helps you position your brand, help customers make a purchase decision, keep the momentum of engagement going and sustain long term customer relationships.
Snigdha Mazumdar is founder and owner of Webtage, a digital build + market firm that delivers digital experiences to drive top line growth and operational efficiencies. As the owner of Webtage, she has deep expertise in helping organizations launch, optimize, and grow their online presence by spearheading digital programs targeted to increasing revenue and maximizing returns on investment.