In the last post of this series, we looked at why traditional B2B marketing tactics have lost relevance in today’s world order and why it is important for us to adapt to the new marketing order.
Interrupting prospects in the hope that they may be interested in your solution is no longer effective. Why would a prospect listen to your sales call, when they can immediately perform a search, and find solutions to their problems in their own time when they need it?
Why would any rational human being trust a cold call over their own independent research, numerous pieces of online content, and their trusted personal networks?
Quite understandably, they most likely won’t! – which is where inbound marketing comes in.
To succeed in the market today, you need to produce content that helps prospects perform their research, then publish and promote it online. If you run an HR software company, you want your company’s content to be appearing in Google search results when a prospect makes the search “how do I improve employee retention rates” or “how to keep track of sickness days”. If you run a sales training company, you want your company’s content to be appearing when a prospect makes the search “how to improve sales team performance” and “how to motivate salespeople”.
This is done by producing educational blog posts on a regular basis – those that answer the types of questions your prospects are asking. Google finds the posts, and in turn displays them in search results to help searchers overcome their problems. As you produce more content, and your site becomes more popular, your site will in turn rank higher in search results, resulting in a snowball effect.
The key here is that is that your content is educational. It’s useful in and of itself. If a visitor only reads one post on your site, they should learn something new. Great content isn’t glorified sales pitches. Their single purpose is to educate and inform your prospects.
Once you’ve engaged the prospect with your short pieces of content, you then want to keep in touch with them. This means producing more in-depth content that introduces solutions to more complex problems. By putting in-depth content to aid in their research, you ensure that your company’s content is a large part of the buyer’s research process. Educational content that your prospects will want to receive. Not the traditional email marketing spam of yesteryear.
The more of your prospect’s problems you can write about, and help them to overcome, the more they will trust your brand, and in turn the higher the chance they will pick your company when they come to make a purchase decision.
It works because people love to learn, and ensure that their purchases are well informed. They seek out content to learn, and inform them of the best solutions to their problems.
This is especially the case for B2B buyers, where your average buyer not only has to convince themselves that a solution is great, but usually their boss and colleagues too.
Your prospects want to inform themselves and buy in their own way, rather than have a sale shoved down their throat. Inbound marketing provides your prospect with just that. They research and consume information as and when they want to, and don’t talk to a salesperson until they’re convinced.
Your prospects are already doing their research online. The only question is: whose content will they be consuming? Will it be your competitors? Other industry experts? Media companies? Or your company’s?
Go ahead and kick-off your Inbound marketing program today.