Inbound Marketing vs. Outbound Selling

Collection of blog posts about email automation, marketing technology, outbound sales, landing pages, PPC, and more.

11 March 2015 smashdeck Leave a comment Content Marketing

I consider myself to be an inbound marketer for sales teams. My greatest thrill in life aside from the nights when I can get a full 8-hrs of sleep is to help organizations transition from traditional outbound selling to inbound marketing.

Inbound marketing is about earning leads instead of buying them. I can’t tell you how many companies I know still buying email lists. Email is a very effective marketing channel. However, these companies are blowing it by “blasting” users who have no interest in their product or service in the first place.

Let’s first define inbound marketing according to HubSpot. “Inbound marketing focuses on creating quality content that pulls people toward your company and product, where they naturally want to be. By aligning the content you publish with your customer’s interests, you naturally attract inbound traffic that you can then convert, close, and delight over time.” If HubSpot didn’t coin the term “inbound marketing” they sure have spent lots of time and money convincing us they have! Well done, HubSpot.

Inbound marketing is about earning leads instead of buying them. I can’t tell you how many companies I know still buying email lists. Email is a very effective marketing channel. However, these companies are blowing it by “blasting” users who have no interest in their product or service in the first place.

Sign up for our free webinar on May 7, 2015 at 10:30 PST to learn more about inbound marketing

More Sales This Way. Inbound Marketing: The Process.

Let’s first define inbound marketing according to HubSpot. “Inbound marketing focuses on creating quality content that pulls people toward your company and product, where they naturally want to be. By aligning the content you publish with your customer’s interests, you naturally attract inbound traffic that you can then convert, close, and delight over time.” If HubSpot didn’t coin the term “inbound marketing” they sure have spent lots of time and money convincing us they have! Well done, HubSpot.

Whereas in the past “traditional marketing” and “digital marketing” referred to the the distribution method of content, inbound marketing is all about the message itself – its educational, informative and provides a platform for thought leadership. As a buyer of things we consume more content than we think. Our minds are making brand decisions in our sleep – we just don’t know it! Think about the last time you read about a new product on Facebook or spent hours surfing websites that returned organic links from your search term. This is inbound marketing at work. What I like to tell clients is that if you are not educating your customer than your competition is.

Speaking of competition, inbound marketing levels the playing field among competitors. Very few companies can outspend their competition. Don’t get me wrong content production is plenty expensive and hiring marketing talent to carry out the work costs money. However, what used to be who can spend the most on a full-page ad unit in a major publication got the business is now who can withstand the time it takes to produce enough quantity and qualitative content to attract buyers. The good news is that many companies give up way too soon, like attention span of a knat too soon. Evolutionary principles apply here folks. Its survival of the fittest for marketers, how cool is that!

Leads are great but sales are better. Here are some great stats on what content marketing can do for your sales.

  1. Customers who receive email newsletters spend 82% more when they buy from the company. (iContact)
  2. Nurtured leads make 47% larger purchases than non-nurtured leads. (The Annuitas Group)
  3. Companies that automate lead management see a 10% or greater increase in revenue in 6-9 months. (Gartner Research)
  4. Companies with mature lead generation and management practices have a 9.3% higher sales quota achievement rate. (CSO Insights)
  5. Nurtured leads produce, on average, a 20% increase in sales opportunities versus non-nurtured leads. (DemandGen Report)

If you are stuck on the fence about inbound marketing, just remember inbound marketing costs 62% less per lead than traditional outbound marketing.

This video is from HubSpot ’13 and by far my favorite depiction of outbound selling tactics. You must watch if you never have.<a

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