Straight-forward, inexpensive and easily learned (not necessarily easy to implement, though), inbound marketing is everything your business has ever needed to attract and maintain a strong customer base. But where do you start? You could start with a blog, after all “content” is basically synonymous with “inbound,” or you could start hiring social media experts to increase your presence in this ever-growing, nebulous sphere of influence. Maybe you could design a snazzy website, send personalized email newsletters or throw out monthly Instagram contests? While all of those are great ideas and necessary, you will never get your marketing efforts off the ground if you don’t understand the three basic inbound marketing tips and tricks. Get comfortable, read on for the 3 tips, and start putting together a quality inbound marketing plan!
1. Find “Your” People
Your goal is to attract as many customers as possible, right? Absolutely not. Just like your mother always told you, you can’t please everyone. Your goal is, first and foremost, to find the right audience and then give them everything you’ve got: loyalty, premium content, attention to feedback and everything in between. Why is this a better strategy than trying to get the largest share of the pie? Because if you focus on a key group of people who really “get” what you are trying to do, you will make them very happy, you will speak to them on a much more direct, personal level, and you will have built a foundation of evangelists that few brands ever get to have. When these people decide they love you, they will do everything they can to get their friends, families and anyone who will listen to take up your business. You will never have better marketing than the word of mouth that comes from very satisfied customers.
2. Build Community
Once you’ve got your people, you need to keep them. The best way to do this, and promote your brand at the same time, is to create a community vibe. Notice how successful Starbucks is? It doesn’t matter that a cup of coffee can cost upward of $5, customers, new and old, stay loyal and keep on buying. Why? Because Starbucks listens. One Starbucks idea is a branded community that has over 150,000 members who share what they would like to see happen in their favorite coffee shop; so far, nothing too groundbreaking, just about everyone has some version of a suggestion box. But guess what? Starbucks has implemented nearly 300 of these suggestions into their business! Everything from free Wi-Fi to peach green tea lemonade came from a consumer. Starbucks gets great new ideas at no cost, customers feel appreciated and heard, thereby continuing to be loyal Starbuckers. It’s a win-win! You’re not Starbucks, but the idea is essentially the same. You have a group of people prime for listening to your ideas and giving you feedback; they’ve used your product or service and they can help you make it better. Do as Starbucks does, talk to you clients, share accomplishments, offer workshops and webinars even after you’ve got their money and in return they will pay you back tenfold. Once you have your own little beehive, even outsiders will notice and want to be a part of what you are doing–because what you are doing is surprisingly infrequent, yet powerfully successful.
3. Live Your Story
You may have started out as a single guy or gal, bringing a dream to life, but as you grow, that genesis story can get diluted. More people jump on board, new ideas and new perspectives start to crowd in–nothing bad about that, but remember the WHY of your beginnings and don’t stray from that central mission. This is, after all, why all of your people came on board! Everybody in your team, from administrative assistants to CEOs must not only know and agree with this central story, but also live it in kind. Authenticity is today’s greatest currency and you will never get far without it. Share your truth and your message will truly carry.
You may be asking, how are these inbound tips? Well, you probably already know the details of inbound marketing, but you may be surprised to find that few businesses actually get the mindset behind it. Inbound works because it keys into what people want and finds a niche instead of forcefully blowing up a crater. By extension, if you can internalize the mindset, you will naturally be more successful than the “other guys” who are just parroting the details.
Want more helpful tips and trick on how to get your inbound marketing to where you want it to be? If you contact us, we won’t be able to help ourselves!