The war between inbound and outbound marketers has been raging for quite some time. As a result, we are convinced we will never hear the end. With the traditional outbound approach, we are considering television, billboards, direct mail, banners and publicity stunts.
This type of marketing has been around for ages. On the other hand, inbound marketing is more targeted and audience-centred because it uses various Search Engine Optimisation techniques and digital social media marketing platforms to engage prospective customers and make them interested in purchasing. Both these types of marketing face us every single day of the year. However, there is always a certain level of caution in how consumers approach some forms of advertising in the outbound area. Below is a look at the two strategies and their differences.
Inbound marketing is attracting, engaging and delighting customers through content and conversations. Inbound marketing is a strategic approach focused on attracting potential customers to your business website through SEO content marketing , search engine optimistion and social media marketing.
Inbound SEO marketing tools to attract potential customers to your business website. Inbound marketing aims to capture the attention of those interested in what you offer rather than trying to convince them they need your product or service.
The key difference between traditional outbound and inbound marketing is that inbound marketing focuses on creating valuable SEO friendly content for consumers. In contrast, outbound marketing uses advertising to drive people towards a product or service.
Traditional outbound methods such as advertising can be costly and often result in low conversions. In contrast, inbound strategies have been proven time and time again to generate more leads and sales at a lower cost than traditional outbound methods such as direct mail or cold calling.
Outbound marketing is a type of marketing that involves sending direct mail, email and other types of messages to potential customers. It is one of the most traditional types of marketing and can be used in conjunction with other forms of outbound marketing.
Outbound marketing can be a great way to reach new customers and build brand awareness. It allows you to target individuals and businesses that have not yet heard about your business.
Many different strategies for outbound marketing can help drive traffic to your website or generate leads for your business. Some examples include:
Direct mail campaigns – Direct mail campaigns are printed pieces sent through the postal system that contains information about your company or products, along with an offer or coupon. The idea behind direct mail is that it gets people’s attention because they have no choice but to look at it (especially if they’re waiting for their packages). People usually don’t throw away offers right away, which gives them time to decide whether or not they want to use them.
Email marketing campaigns – Email campaigns are messages sent through email servers using various software programs like MailChimp, Constant Contact or Aweber. These programs allow you to send multiple messages at once or schedule them ahead of time so
Conversational vs One-Sided
Inbound marketers such as SEO services pull in the consumer. They work hard at creating a platform in which conversations can take place. They aim to generate inbound leads by ensuring a particular forum is tried out. When users get there, there is a dialogue regarding how they feel about a product.
The talk is two ways and actively engaging. This is not so much the case with outbound marketing. Television commercials yell across from the screen, hoping to catch viewers’ attention. There is no attempt to pull them in but a deliberate gimmick with plenty of pitch. However, prospective customers want to feel engaged and part of the conversation. Inbound marketing works hard at this aspect.
Targeted vs General
Put yourself in the shoes of the consumer. Supposing you are watching a television program and a commercial for real estate comes on. The chances are that you could be interested, but there is an even higher probability that you do not care about the real estate industry. Therefore, you are out of the demographic of the marketer.
That is the folly of outbound marketing; looking for a needle in a haystack and missing even the haystack. Inbound marketing is vastly different. The marketers will isolate prospective customers in a particular niche. For example, a real estate broker could create a blog to educate and attract customers to buy services.
This blog will target those in real estate, so if you are not, you will not have to subscribe to the particular blog; hence, you will not have to suffer marketing messages you do not need. If we target a strategy, the conversion will likely be high. However, people will start walking away if you stand in a crowd and yell.
Choice vs The Illusion Of Choice
Think like the consumer. Look at billboards. If a commercial comes on during a particular segment of your favourite show, you have no choice but to watch, but the advertiser wants you to believe you have a choice.
How can there be a choice when you do not have the chance to choose? How can there be a choice when you have a single option? Inbound marketing exemplifies choice. They point you in the right direction. In the earlier analogy, you subscribed to a real estate blog. You could have registered for a health blog or a technology blog or subscribed to the feeds of a relationships website, but you did not.
You walked away from thousands of sites, crying out for inbound leads, and chose the one you wanted. But, of course, you could also have stayed away altogether. In a nutshell, the potential for choice is limitless with inbound marketing. This makes you feel more comfortable because no one is trying to ram anything down your throat, which is something that advertisers should carefully look at.
Education vs Obfuscation
To source, inbound leads, marketers and businesses work hard at informing the consumer. However, they do not put the sales pitch ahead of the need to know. A growing SEO trend in this marketing line is for forum owners to cut out an image as an authority in their niche. For example, a website about weight loss will not solely focus on promoting its products. Still, it will also provide general information such that even if one does not make purchases, they leave the page the wiser and in a position to make choices.
Sure, there is an attempt at pitching, but it is always very discreet. Outbound marketing is very duplicitous. There is no attempt at information. A commercial banner will show why a particular manufacturer is the best and competitors’ products are not good enough. It is very little in the way of depth of content; it all has a single motive: to sell units, and it will stop at nothing to achieve that.
Quantifiable vs Immeasurable
As a marketer, you will always want to track your progress to understand the market better and implement a more focused approach. Unfortunately, adopting outbound marketing strategies is tricky. First, the scope is too general since you throw messages at random people. It makes tracking your progress very difficult.
There are valuable statistics about your audience you will never likely get. For example, how will you know what motivated people to access your commercials? Even with all the studies and research, outbound marketing is akin to probing in the dark, feeling your way, and getting lost.
Inbound marketing, such as is entirely different. Once a user lands on your page, you have their IP address. You know where they were before they got to you and discovered why they came. You understand your consumers very well. Analytics will also provide you with a truckload of data. You know how many visitors clicked through, how long they stayed on your page, what they were looking for, how many left dissatisfied, and how many took decisive action. This information is going to shape your marketing strategies in the future.
Outbound marketing comes up short against the overwhelming finesse of its inbound counterpart. With the latter, you are talking to people who chose to seek you out. They are interested and want to hear what you have to say. They can trust you because you seem credible. They have listened to you in the past and feel they can trust you.