Generating leads through inbound marketing works because buyer behavior has changed. When making a purchase, it is common for people to do some sort of research online. Think about the last time you were about to make a purchase. Did you do research online before buying? Did you go online to read reviews? Chances are you did. In fact, according to Retailing Today, 81% of shoppers do research online before buying. When it comes to generating leads, no matter what industry you are in, it is likely that people have done some research online before even calling a sales person. Inbound marketing focuses on creating content online to lead those people to your website.
Here are 3 ways you can begin to generate leads with inbound marketing:
1. Buyer Personas
The first thing to do to generate leads with inbound marketing is to create buyer personas. You want to know who your customers are so that the marketing you do reaches the right people and generates high quality leads. HubSpot defines buyer personas as "Semi-fictional representations of your ideal customer based on real data and some select educated speculation about customer demographics, behavior patterns, motivations, and goals." Having this information gives you a target so that you create content that will be directed at the right people.
Creating a buyer persona starts with research. You want to identify the things that are important to them and what motivates their behavior. In the end, you want to tell a story of everything from where they work, to their shopping preferences. Everything that you do with your inbound marketing campaigns should be filtered through your buyer persona. Once you have painted a good picture you are ready to move on to the next step.
2. Create Great Content
Content is key for inbound marketing. In order to generate leads for your business, you need to create great content and put in the places where your buyer personas are looking already. Inbound marketing differs from traditional methods that focus on interrupting people with a message and will sometimes even create a negative response. Instead, inbound marketing focuses on creating great content online that will draw people to your website. Your content needs to be interesting and relevent to people so that they will find it and use it when doing research. This will also benefit your SEO and make you look like the expert in your industry. Some great ideas for content include: a blog on your website, eBooks, slideshare, case studies, podcasts, or anything else that your buyer persona would find useful.
3. Inbound Marketing Campaigns
What you do after you have someone's attention is just as important as actually getting it. Traditional marketing methods are so focused on getting attention that they forget to do anything once they have it. Campaigns are the way you can nurture and convert a website visitor into a lead. A campaign is simply an offer on your website that visitors can download. An example of this could be an offer to download a free eBook that provides information that website visitors want to know. Through this download, businesses can receive data such as email addresses that you can use to follow up. These people have shown interest in your offer and can become great leads for your business. After someone has received your offer, it is important to say thank you. That’s right, use your manners and make your mom proud. Delighting your customers can contribute to turning customers into brand promoters and ideally, more potential leads.
Using an Inbound marketing strategy is a great way to generate leads for your business. You can get your foot in the door and connect with potential leads before they have contacted any sales people. If you create a structure to nurture website visitors into leads, you will be well on your way to having a successful inbound marketing campaign. If starting an inbound marketing campaign feels like too big of a task to do yourself, a full service marketing agency may be best to help you generate leads for your business. We've show you how to use inbound marketing to generate leads and with tips like these and more in our free ebook, you can be on the path to greatness like a professional inbound marketing agency.