With the internet now available on nearly every desktop computer, smartphones, and tablets, the ability to connect with customers and potential customers in any location and at any time has become a reality. As a result, many businesses have shifted their marketing strategies to take advantage of this new reality, with some companies opting to completely revamp the traditional ways of doing business.
To learn more, I reached out to Matt Steinmetz, the Director of Marketing at HubSpot, a digital marketing software company that specializes in inbound marketing.
What is Inbound Marketing?
The concept of inbound marketing is that rather than push out marketing emails seeking engagements or demanding feedback, business owners and marketers should instead focus on attracting and engaging customers through various digital platforms (such as blog posts, social media, YouTube videos, and email marketing) with the intention of eventually turning them into paying customers. Inbound marketing encourages marketers to find the pleasure and enjoyment in delivering value to people with the goal of eventually converting them into leads and customers.
Inbound marketing was developed by a pair of entrepreneurs, Hunter Walker and Steve Fisher, who originally wanted to create a podcasting platform that integrated sales and marketing content. As a result, they launched Podiagility, but quickly realized they needed additional resources to grow their business. So, in 2012, they decided to spin off their marketing-oriented efforts into a separate company named HubSpot. Since then, HubSpot Marketing has taken the world by storm and has become the go-to source for all things digital marketing. To learn more, you can visit their website, www.hubspot.com.
Why Should Marketers Adopt an Inbound Marketing Approach?
If you’re looking for a marketing strategy that doesn’t require you to push large quantities of unsolicited emails or make costly cold calls, then inbound marketing is for you. Inbound marketing is about creating value for customers, not spending large amounts of money on expensive ad campaigns.
As a marketer, will you be able to determine the precise marketing messages that resonate with your audience? Will you be able to closely monitor the performance of your campaign to ensure you are continuously improving your results?
Inbound marketing is about having a clear and open communication channel with your customers and prospects. One of the fundamental principles of inbound marketing is that you should be willing to change and evolve with the times. As a marketer, will you be able to effectively incorporate the latest trends into your strategy?
The Rise of Virtual Marketing
With more and more people turning to the internet for their news and information, it only makes sense that businesses would begin to take advantage of this by creating websites, landing pages, and social media profiles to attract potential customers.
A relatively new entrant to the world of digital marketing is virtual marketing. While traditional marketing involves individuals or businesses physically traveling to an address to receive products or services, virtual marketing takes place entirely online. As a result, businesses can easily reach a much wider audience and gain a greater amount of traction than ever before.
The challenge for marketers is that they now have to compete for attention on a crowded marketplace. In the past, businesses could write a compelling blog article and perhaps land a couple thousand words of content on the first page of Google’s search results. Today, with hundreds of thousands of blog articles published every day, that same piece of content might only show up in the fifth or sixth spot on the first page of results.
To beat the competition, marketers are having to resort to more sophisticated tactics, like search engine optimization, to drive more traffic to their websites. However, keeping up with the ever-changing SEO landscape is difficult, and a full-time job in itself. To find the resources you need without having to constantly monitor and update your content, you can use a tool like HubSpot’s SEO tool to get an accurate snapshot of how your site’s SEO is performing at any given moment.
How Can Marketers Measure the Success of Their Digital Marketing Campaigns?
If you’ve ever launched a marketing campaign and then checked back a few weeks or months later to see how it was performing, you’ll know that precise analytics to measure the success of your campaign is not easily replicable. This is primarily due to the fact that Google’s algorithm continues to evolve and change, making it difficult to attribute campaign performance to a single factor.
The Evolution of Marketing
The evolution of marketing is constantly reshaping the industry, and digital marketing is no exception.
While the methods to reach customers and prospects have changed immensely, the fundamentals of marketing remain the same. Traditional marketing evolved with the times and took advantage of the new platforms that digital marketing made available. With new methods and tactics emerging all the time, it’s difficult to keep up and establish clear benchmarks for success.
From an online store that sells t-shirts to a clothing brand, a luxury goods company, or a small business that wants to grow its web presence, to a medium-sized business that wants to attract customers to its site through social media, all marketers must walk a fine line between being educational and entertaining while also engaging consumers and encouraging them to take action.
In the next section, you’ll learn how to put together a winning digital marketing campaign that seamlessly integrates both marketing and sales in order to drive revenues and profits towards your business.