Outbound vs. Inbound
We think of Outbound Marketing as a way of “yelling” at consumers as to why they should purchase your product or service. Tactics like radio, tv, print, and outside sales all fall within the umbrella of Outbound Marketing.
Over the years, consumers have increasingly grown tired of these types of advertisements. You can see examples of this in the development of the DVR—allowing tv viewers to skip through television ads, streamed radio—like Spotify and Pandora that permit users to listen ad-free, and subscription-based digital news print that gives users the content they want, digitally, without many of the ads that normally appear in print.
As marketers, we’ve had to work to overcome the challenges these tools present for our brands. How can we get our message to our audience without being “sales-y”, and cut through the clutter? One way is to use what is called Inbound Marketing.
The goal of Inbound Marketing is to create value through our advertising—building a relationship with our audience before they even make a purchase. In a world where consumers are exposed to thousands of advertisements in a single day, they’ve become numb to most of the ads they see. To combat this, marketers understood that their brands needed to create value for audiences who see their ads. They also knew that they would have to reconsider what a traditional advertisement looked like.
Inbound Marketing deploys the creation of valuable content for each of your audiences to educate and entertain. If your brand understands the pain points and content wants of each of its Buyer Personas, you can begin to develop content, like blogs, videos, infographics, events, imagery, and more, that provides your audiences with the information and entertainment that they are seeking out. We know that your potential customers are online, this is about connecting with them early on, building a relationship with them by providing value, and when they are ready to make purchasing decision, you’ll have already won the business.
At ARM Creative, we like to say Create. Captivate. Engage.
CREATE value through your content that solves a pain point for your consumers. For example, if you own vintage furniture store, you may want to establish a blog or video series educating consumers with tips andt ricks for vintage interior design. A bakeshop might consider a social media video series dedicated to teaching audiences how-to bake different treats or host a free baking class.
Note: content can even be in-person events like speaker sessions and classes.
CAPTIVATE your audience with your content. Don’t attempt to sell viewers—it’s not the time nor the place and they’ll be able to tell if that is your agenda. Pay attention to the feedback you receive in the comments and watch for engagement trends in your content; what is working well and what do your viewers not like? Make adjustments to your content as necessary.
ENGAGE your viewers by driving traffic to your site and in-store with valuable content. As viewers begin to discover your content and find value in it, they’ll share it with friends and family via social and word-of-mouth, This effect is contagious and a huge win for your brand. As the relationship with your audiences builds, you’ll drive the traffic to your site and in-store where they are likely to convert, now that a relationship has already been in the making.
Provide value-based content for your audience through videos, imagery, blogs, and events. You’ll begin to establish a relationship with your audiences early-on, putting your brand ahead of the competition when your consumers are looking to make a purchasing decision.