Getting started with Inbound Marketing
Inbound marketing includes a variety of different channels, from SEO to social media and analytics. As such, marketers have a range of tactics they will need to master and it’s easy therefore to become quite overwhelmed.That is why we have put together the information below. We hope it will help you as marketers to gain a better understanding of the whole process, from being visible online, generating leads and converting these to customers, through to measuring your success.
Research and education
As with anything, it can take a little time to learn everything you will need to know about inbound marketing. The great news is, the methodology is pretty intuitive and there are vast amounts of free resources out there for you as a proactive marketer.
Building your team
Marketing is a core competency in itself and a central aspect of building a successful company. As such, in order to get it right, you need a team dedicated to it, including a marketing coordinator, a web developer, a designer, a content copywriter and a marketing strategist. Of course, depending upon the nature of the company, it may not be appropriate to manage these in house. However, all of these can be outsourced, if required.
Assessing your current marketing
How is your company performing currently? If you don’t know, it is time to take an audit and ask the following questions:
– What are our current assets, in terms of marketing? That includes things like the website, branding, presentations, videos, printed content and online content.
– What budget do we have for marketing?
– What marketing activities are we regularly carrying out?
– How are these performing?
Defining your goals
Marketing goals are essential. You need to have a good idea about what you are trying to achieve and how you will do this. Marketing goals must be aligned with business goals and also be SMART goals – Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely.
Define your product and your target audience.
Build personas for your target audience, including their desires, problems and above all, their story. How can your product or service help them? How can they find you and what makes them decide to buy? These are all questions which need to be answered before an effective strategy can be developed.
Next, it is time to lay out the game plan.
Focusing around your marketing goals, begin building your inbound marketing plan. This includes deciding which resources and tools you will need, in order to achieve these. For example, what technology will you need, what will your conversion paths be and what content strategy will you use?
Once the marketing game plan is in place, you can build a website around it. By doing it this way round, you can ensure the website reflects all of these goals.
Publish and promote content
Establish your company as a leader and work to reach the top of the search results, using social media, email and other methods of advertising. Engage!
Evaluate to progress
The rule now is to never stop evaluating. Evaluate, progress, report, test and repeat. Doing this will drive you towards and beyond your goals.