Inbound marketing follows a step by step process to create visitors, leads, customers and promoters of your brand and offerings. It’s a tall order to start with strangers and move them all the way to active promoters who recommend your brand to other people. There are five major steps involved:
Identify – During this step, you’ll need to identify your target customer. Who is the person or group of people who are most ideally suited for your products or services? Creating a target persona will help streamline your inbound marketing efforts and make them more effective. The persona will include the goals, challenges, pain points, common objections, as well as demographic information, of your ideal customers.
Attract – Using this target persona, you can start to take action to attract the right people. Targeted keyword selection and optimization can get your pages found by the right searchers in Google and other search engines. Strategic website development helps your prospects understand what you do and what steps to take next. Blogging and content creation can help educate your prospects, show them what you can do and keep them informed about changes in your industry – as well as give the search engines a reason to index your site. Smart social media activity can attract new visitors and help your search engine rankings. When these four tools are used together, they lay a strong foundation for connecting with the right people.
Convert – Your attraction tools will get the right traffic to your site – but what do they do once they get there? Calls to action, landing pages and forms are essential for successful inbound marketing. You need to entice your visitors to give up their contact information by providing them with additional information that they would love. By inviting your visitors to submit their contact information for an ebook, white paper, tips sheet or other resource, you can convert that traffic into a qualified leads list.
Close – Transforming those qualified leads into customers is the next big step. There are several inbound marketing tools that you can use to make sure you’re reaching out to leads consistently and effectively. Creating email marketing campaigns, scoring leads through your website and matching marketing to the lifecycle of each lead can make a dramatic difference in how many leads you’re able to convert.
Analyze and Repeat – Analyzing your results and repeating the tactics that work best is essential to inbound marketing success. Having integrating tracking tools that give you a picture of the entire process is key.
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