What is more effective Inbound Marketing or traditional Outbound Marketing? This is the new age question being tossed around the water cooler these days. Times are changing so chances are you will be having this conversation with your employees soon. Let’s first layout both marketing approaches to allow you to make the decision for your company.
Outbound Marketing is the kind of marketing most of salespeople learned with our first gig out of college or the type of marketing we were exposed to growing up. Outbound marketing can be anything from cold calls to media outlets such as taking an ad out in the Sunday paper. While outbound marketing still has many advantages for those of us that are able to pick up the phone, dial the number of a prospect and close the deal. Traditional media outlets such a paper advertisements or TV commercials truly offer a low ROI and once the ad expires you must start from scratch. Besides a small amount of brand recognition from your client base, all that money you spent on the ad can no longer work for you once it expires. This means the ad you placed with a traditional media outlet will not have a residual benefit.
An even bigger issue these days are the costs associated with traditional media outlets. Most small businesses aren’t able to purchase that 30 second TV commercial during the Super Bowl. Most small businesses don’t have the budget to take an ad out in the daily paper or your local TV station. Paying for advertisement space is like taking a stab in the dark. Your assuming your customer base will be watching the TV or reading the Sunday paper. The costs associated with these forms of advertisements are too much to be taking a blind stab.
Inbound Marketing is marketing 2.0. If Outbound Marketing is based on quantity then Inbound Marketing is based on quality. With the growing of the online market place people can now pick and choose where they get information or where they are entertained. Inbound marketing and the internet have leveled the playing field for small business and large corporations. Now if a website or blog is well optimized and has “remarkable” content, people will be able to find your product or service much easier. If you provide the best source of information in your industry, it’s only a matter of time before your rankings go up.
Inbound marketing has provided a platform for small businesses to interact with their customers. Never before have businesses been provided such a tremendous opportunity to spread the word about a new product or service instantly. By conducting the necessary research to target your market you can get a beat on what your customers want and need. With social media tools and outlets for discussion you too are able to help market your business. These tools are not enough to put your company over the hump but with persistence and the right know how, you can gain traction in Google just like the big corporations.
A little noise online can go a long way. Let’s remember the days of print ads are gone as more and more people are relying on the internet to bring them news. Knowing the right paths to follow with your marketing can take you down the long road of success. You must make the decision on what’s right for your company or your brand. It may not be easy but the right choice can be the difference on winning new customers or losing old ones.