Inbound marketing — the practice of attracting visitors to your website to nurture them into leads — is a crucial part of any marketing strategy. It also touches nearly every aspect of digital marketing today. Brand marketing, social media, virtual events, webinars — each are an element that can contribute to inbound marketing and help organizations meet their goals.
Besides netting powerful results, inbound marketing also yields an attractive ROI. When stacked against paid ads, stats show inbound marketing generates triple the leads for every dollar spent.
The takeaway? If you’re not practicing inbound marketing, it’s time to start.
But how do you begin? What strategies are most effective and where should you focus on attracting as many leads as possible?
Read on to discover five highly effective inbound marketing strategies.
1. Optimize Content To Drive Leads
Creating content is a core inbound marketing strategy. However, the experienced B2B marketer knows that content for content’s sake is not enough.
To achieve optimum success, you need to publish effective content. Here are a couple of reasons this is so important:
- Putting out quality content establishes you as an authority and builds trust with audiences.
- Effective content communicates what audiences can expect when they click through to your website.
- Optimizing content can help you identify stories and messages that resonate with your key audiences.
But not all content holds the same value. A static webpage, like a blog, can only tell how long a person visited, how much they read and if they went anywhere on your website after hitting your landing page.
Engaging content, like content hubs and webinars, can tell you what visitors are engaging with, what they’re looking for and provide them the opportunity to talk directly with you. For example, content hubs — like those powered by ON24 Engagement Hub — can provide insights into the popular content types and topics that generate the most engagement.
Webinars can take engagement insights even further. Attendees can talk directly to sales representatives via chat, download resources and participate in polls and surveys during the event. Webinar producers can also see how long visitors attend an event and how often they engage with the content and messaging.
With this information in hand, marketers can use these insights to optimize their content strategy around topics and formats that drive measurable results.
See engagement data in action. Check out how you can achieve more with ON24.
2. Host Webinars to Attract Inbound Leads
Blogging is one of the most widely used content types for attracting inbound leads. However, if you want to broaden your reach and enhance your lead generation efforts, you should consider webinars.
Hosting informative webinars is a cost-effective way to establish yourself as an industry expert and can help you reach a broader audience.
Webinars can help you capture, nurture and convert leads effectively.
An interesting topic will attract audiences with a knowledgeable host or panel. But more importantly, this virtual event can allow your team to engage directly with participants for upwards of an hour.
Think about that for a moment: in an hour, you can capture audience attention, directly learn their pain points — whether through chat, polling, or Q&A — provide meaningful, relevant content and measure their overall interest in your solution with engagement data.
Your marketing and sales teams can easily take action with this engagement data in hand. Marketing can easily segment and nurture based on activity. Sales can seamlessly continue the conversation based on an attendee’s participation.
The options are limitless.
3. Launch Engaging Social Media Campaigns
Another powerful way to generate inbound leads is through social media marketing,an effective channel for building brand recognition and trust and attracting and establishing meaningful relationships.
However, to effectively gain inbound leads from social media marketing, you must plan ahead. Simply sharing blog posts and events on social media is not enough.
Instead, social media strategy should be based on engagement and sharing your brand’s positioning on given topics. This means having your subject matter experts participate in conversations and encouraging employees to share more about your company’s culture and values.
This often means keeping a bead on industry trends and personalities for inbound marketers. With a firm grasp of industry changes, you can identify the content you want to share, set up a content calendar, and schedule your social posts.
It’s important to monitor the results of your social media efforts, whether they be employee advocacy, multi-media or a drive behind a certain campaign.
Another thing to remember is that not all social platforms are the same and you should always tailor your content accordingly. Every platform attracts different types of users looking for a different content experience.
For instance, audience expectations of videos on TikTok are very different from those on YouTube. Likewise, audiences on Facebook have very different expectations of how they’ll interact with a business than they would on LinkedIn.
However, you don’t need to create different content for every platform. Consider repurposing existing content for use across different channels.
4. Implement Strong SEO
If you want to generate inbound leads, you’ll also need to devote a lot of time to implementing strong search engine optimization. SEO is the practice of optimizing your website and content so it will rank higher on search engines like Google and Bing.
Without good SEO in place, you may lose out on opportunities to connect with audiences interested in what you offer. SEO is essential for inbound marketing.
Some of the fundamental SEO practices include:
- Optimizing website loading speed
- Keyword research
- Incorporating relevant keywords into your pages and content
- Making it easier for search engines to read and understand your website
- Optimizing images for accessibility and loading speed
- Attracting links from other websites
EAT Your Content
Often, Google is going to be the standard search engine for audiences. So, what kind of content performs well on Google?
Generally, the search engine prioritizes content meeting the EAT (shorthand for Expertise, Authoritativeness and Trustworthiness) principle. To establish EAT, Google will often suggest that you publish in-depth, detailed, long-form content that is engaging, clear and informative.
Publishing a short blog post with surface-level information will take you less time and fewer resources but the more in-depth a piece is, the theory goes, the richer in useful information it will be. After all, Google wants to provide its users with the most relevant information, meaning comprehensive, high-quality content is more likely to provide you with more inbound leads over time.
The same principle holds true for video content as well. If you publish a YouTube video that is interesting, informative, well-edited and engaging and — importantly — well-organized, then YouTube’s search engine (one of the most popular search engines in the world) is more likely to recommend your video to a wider audience.
Another benefit of creating high-quality content is that more people are likely to link to it, which is highly advantageous from an SEO perspective.
5. Fine-Tune Your Website Design
Getting someone to your website is one thing, but you need to ensure your site and its content are easy to understand and navigate. A poorly designed website will encourage visitors to skip out on your message and look for better solutions elsewhere.
To avoid this, work with your web development team or agency to optimize your site’s layout, navigability and readability for both search engines and humans.
If you’re unsure where to start optimizing your website, ask yourself a few questions. These can be:
- Can visitors easily navigate the site?
- Is your contact page easily accessible?
- Can your visitors easily navigate to product/solution pages accessible from every page on the website?
- Is your content easy to read?
If not, devote some time and resources to revamping elements of your website. A best practice is to implement an A/B testing regime to find what works best for your audience
There are many ways you can drive traffic to your website and turn that traffic into leads.