Inbound marketing – I’m sure you’ve heard the term. Popularized by Hubspot, it’s a way to define the customer-centric, content driven marketing model that has become the norm for many businesses. The rapid increase in information and advertising messages has resulted in a general population that is tired of being sold to. With inbound marketing, you lay the groundwork and the process to get customers to come to you, rather than you spending your time, energy and budget pitching at them.
With a focus on education, building a relationship and telling a story, inbound marketing relies heavily on excellent content creation. Through content, your inbound marketing plan can invite website visitors to become part of your story. You can increase your leads and opportunities through a “pulling” your prospects in, rather than “pushing” out your message.
Here are the top 9 ways to use content to support your inbound marketing goals:
1. Website Content
This is the starting point for any successful inbound marketing plan. Your other techniques will bring traffic to your website, but if your website doesn’t build trust and tell a story, all that traffic will be for naught. Work to develop content resources that will help your prospects get passionate about your solutions and want to learn more.
2. Blog posts.
Blogs are the simplest way to support other inbound marketing techniques because they give you fresh content to share and discuss. Maintaining consistency with blogging can be a challenge, but you’ll find the process easier when you establish a plan and get support from trusted outsourcing solutions.
3. Email marketing.
Although sending out email blasts is traditionally an outbound marketing technique, it can help your inbound marketing goals. Rather than only sending email marketing messages when you have something to sell, develop a schedule for sending out informative newsletters with your latest blog posts and other tips. You’ll stay fresh in your potential customer’s minds and develop a profitable relationship.
4. Social media profiles.
No matter what business you are in, it’s very likely that your prospects are using social media. Your profiles are an important place to build trust and communicate your story. The terms you use on your social media profiles and the way that you present yourself can make a difference in your leads.
5. Social media updates.
Build your inbound marketing leads with updates and resources that your target market would find interesting and usable. Social media sites aren’t an invitation to promote yourself. Balance updates about your products or services with social media updates that highlight resources from others.
6. SlideShare presentations.
SlideShare is like the forgotten analog cousin of YouTube. Uploading your last PowerPoint presentation or creating one from scratch can increase your leads – especially for B2B companies.
7. White papers and ebooks.
These long form content pieces can help your company take a stand on an important issue, explain a complex problem, offer a unique solution or discuss industry trends. It’s important to share and inform rather than sell in order to get the most out of these pieces. In addition, you can repurpose the content as a series of blog posts.
8. Teleseminars and webinars.
Expose your business to more prospects by hosting one of these online events. Your content will reach audiences you may not have encountered before, and your presentation can be repurposed on SlideShare or as a series of blog posts.
9. Live presentations.
In the same vein as teleseminars and webinars, live presentations can introduce you to a variety of different prospects. Your presentation should be focused on solving one major problem for your prospects and encourage attendees to check out your website and blog posts.