If they're not snapping their latest hair straightener at me, they're trying to lotion my hands with some sort of miracle cream. It's always something.
Due to my inability to say no when placed in awkward situations, I oftentimes find myself with half straightened hair and hands that smell like potpourri as I attempt to walk away from the situation with my wallet and dignity intact.
It's this type of pushy, solicited marketing that makes me appreciate inbound marketing that much more.
Rather than bombard everyone with your product or service pitch, inbound helps businesses bring the right people to the forefront. You know, the people who actually have an interest in what you're offering.
While I could carry on about my disdain for mall kiosks all day, I've decided to channel my contempt into a blog post that will serve as a guide for businesses looking to focus their marketing efforts towards people who actually want to buy from them. Let's get started.
Know your business
Before you can market to anyone, you have to be sure that everyone on your team is well-versed in who your business is and how you want to be portrayed.
This can be achieved by defining a voice for your business.
Essentially defining a unique voice will help you to articulate not only what you are going to say, but also how you are going to say it.
In terms of attracting prospects, your business' tone of voice should serve as a differentiating factor that sets you apart from your competitors.
It should be distinctive in that each piece of content that you put forth should be conclusive to your business' unique message, objectives, and goals. This type of consistency contributes to believability.
If your business' messaging is suffering from an identity crisis, potential customers are going to a move on to a business that actually has their ducks in a row.
When it comes down to it, the more you know about them, the better you can serve them. The more you know about their pain points, the easier it will be for you to alleviate them. The more you know about their goals, the more resources you can provide them with to help them get there.
Smart inbound marketers don't struggle to spread their message thin across a wide audience, but rather aim to provide their top customers with a personalized, profitable experience.
What problems are they currently facing? Create an offer that provides a solution.
What social media platforms are they hanging out on? Establish a presence there and start engaging.
What factors influence their decision making process? Adjust your sales process to make their purchasing decision as simple as possible.
What time zone are they in? Send them emails at a time that makes sense for them, not you.
Distribute remarkable content
Creating content for the sake of creating content is a waste of time.
Pay attention to what they are responding to. What blog articles are getting shared the most? Which landing pages are converting the best?
Use these insights to inform future content creation. If you know that 75% of your existing customers viewed blog articles X, Y, and Z before closing the deal, leverage this information to create more resources around these topics.
It's also important to keep in mind that creating content isn't enough to draw in your ideal audience. You have to distribute the content across a variety of platforms that appeal to your buyer personas.
Ditch the pitch
We caught up with Jay Baer a few months back and he said something during his interview that really resonated with us:
The biggest problem with most company blogs is that they are simply brochures written in WordPress.
Inbound leads are different in that they are much more educated than leads you may have acquired through traditional marketing practices. Inbound leads don't need to be pitched on what you're all about, because they already have a really good idea.