Let’s have a look back in history
In the past, methods like an advertisement, door-to-door promotion, public relations and sales etc. were used to attract consumers for any product of a company. This method is called Outbound Marketing and has many drawbacks and flaws, including expensiveness of campaign, disgust by people and difficulty in getting feedbacks. Inbound Marketing strategy, although appropriately introduced in 2005 by HubSpot, has roots falling back in the 19th century when Cyrus Hall McCormick used developed methods of inbound Marketing for his harvesting company’s promotion in the 1850s. At the same time, a similar kind of marketing technique was being used by Richard W. Sears and Alvan Roebuck in the 1880s when they developed their mail-order catalogue that became a prominent sale attracting tool globally. In the 20th century, this strategy of marketing was frequently used by Drucker, who used it for his product development, promotion and selling.
After passing through a gradual process of development, this technique came to its most advanced shape when HubSpot’s CEO Brian Halligan and his copartner, Dharmesh Shah, used it by establishing customer service centers. It was the first time when this technique was coined appropriately under the phrase of “Inbound Marketing.” This technique was used as blips and bleeps until 2012 when it started its process as full. Nowadays, Inbound Marketing strategy is mainly being used for the promotion of business and a growing number of new leads and customers.
So, what is Inbound Marketing ?
Inbound marketing is a kind of marketing in which a specific audience is selected, and a beautiful way of communication is used for the sales process. All this happens by using social medias, blogs, organic search and other online platforms. Inbound Marketing is a strategy used for communicating with the potential customers of a company and also assists them with a full-level potential using the above-said carriers.
HubSpot is the largest software platform that helps companies attracting visitors and making sales through their services. It provides every tool needed for generating leads, such as marketing automation, or email marketing tools
According to HubSpot, Inbound marketing has properties like:
Inbound Marketing includes content marketing, that is creating content that helps consumers and customers to buy products and also to resolve problems that they may face during the usage of the product.
Lifecycle Marketing deals with assisting your consumer by providing services they need, or they demand. This kind of marketing can be useful in converting a prospect to a customer and then a customer to an advocate.
Changing or developing your content according to the trend of customers. Personalizing your content can help you knowing about your leads and consequently increasing your Inbound sales.
Inbound Marketing is a multi-channel marketing strategy. Means you can catch your customer at more than one platform. It helps in growing your business at a steady and fast speed.
In short, Inbound Marketing is the easiest and accessible way to increase sales and boosting business online by using different social media and search engines’ platforms.
What is a Flywheel in Marketing ?
The first and foremost work that is done in Inbound Marketing is attracting consumers and prospects to your website or social media platform. That is done by using different tools like Search Engine Optimization (SEO) to create quality content that can rank higher in Search Engines when a consumer searches for any keyword related to your product or business. When your product is rank on the top in Search Engine results, consumer mostly goes to your website. In this way, traffic in the form of potential customers is gained. After getting enough traffic and even after getting enough customers, the main task is to make them permanent consumers of your product. It can be done by providing quality facilities to them i.e.by providing them with the services of their need and want. The whole course of attracting your customers, making them happy by your services and by engaging them with you for future sales is known as HubSpot Flywheel. HubSpot Flywheel is a tool of attracting, delighting and engaging your prospects and customers.
Nowadays, when most shopping and business happens online, there is a race between companies to sell their products more and more than others. Consumers do online shopping by using a search engine, typing specific keywords of their interest and going to different websites to buy products of their need and want. So, it has become necessary for each company to shape their websites such that people can quickly come to them rather than going to others’. It can be done by quality content creation that can satisfy prospects. For producing the right level of content, a proper content strategy is developed. A good content strategy includes well-optimized written content, graphics and video content that can attract customers. Written content must be optimized by using some SEO strategy, i.e. by adding keywords related to your product and those keywords that can assist customers. Video content can include an introduction, qualities and prices of any product. Another benefit of adding a description video of any product is that it may dramatically increase the viewership of the content. It is estimated that websites that add video content in their pages have four times more viewership and interest of people than those who don’t. So, attracting people and converting them into customers is entirely dependent on the content of the website and, more importantly quality of the content, i.e. how relevant that content is to consumer’s demand and want.
When a prospect turns into a customer and buys the product for the first time, it is the essential work to make such relationships with him/her that he/she always looks forward to buying your product whenever needed in the future. This process includes a constant providence of quality services that lead to building trust between company and customer. The company must provide the customer with everything of its need and want. When the right level of trust is made between the company and customer, this can also prove to be very beneficial to nurture new leads in the future.
Customers can be engaged with a website or company for a long time if a company develops a proper digital marketing strategy to satisfy and solve every problem faced by the customer. This strategy includes the appropriate setup of customer care services. The company should recruit representatives whom customers feel comfortable with and who can adequately understand and resolve problems of the customer. The company must assure that its attention toward problem-solving is more than product selling. In this way, the engagement between the customers and the company is built. And the customer produces a long-lasting trust for the company.
Once a company sells a product to a customer, it must make sure that its customer is happy, satisfied and comfortable with the company and its service. The delight strategy of HubSpot flywheel deals with providing sound experience and perfect the customer journey. After customers are made through the sales process by using social media advertisements, SEO etc. and sales lead is closed, the company should not forget about the customer who has bought a product once. If a company provides its full and best services to the customer even after selling a product, it may lead to an increase in sales of the company if the customer feels satisfied with its products. It can also be useful in product or even company promotion when a customer tells other people about your product and services; this kind of development is termed as “word of mouth promotion”. The techniques that can be used to delight and produce long term relation with the customers. It could be sending follow up emails, hosting surveys in targeted consumers about your product, creating smart and unique content creating different events for promotion and using social media to help customers feeling comfortable and resolving their problems instantly. These activities can help a company building customer loyalty.
The Future of Marketing (Inbound Marketing)
Inbound Marketing has helped companies to boost their business and lead generation to a maximum level. The conventional method of marketing, i.e. outbound marketing, requires a lot of marketing efforts and is less effective and more expensive as a continuous investment has to be made, and people dislike it because they are forced to see things that they don’t want. Unlike this, Inbound Marketing requires only online advertisements of products and promotions are made only by the consent of the public. Moreover, several experienced marketers think that outbound marketing and conventional publicity is an overrated and old method, and there is a need to advance marketing strategy, and that could never be better than Inbound Marketing Strategy.
As the trend of the world is turning toward e-commerce, there is a very vast scope of Inbound Marketing in the upcoming future, as seen by statistics. For example, the retail of e-commerce sales was 1336 USD in 2014 that has become 4206 USD in 2020, and a very sharp upriser in this trend seems imminent as an estimate of e-commerce sales is 7000 USD as of 2024. The second reason why the future of Inbound Marketing is bright includes a fact that in this kind of marketing, the product is more natural to buy as a customer doesn’t require experts to research the best product for them. Third, as the internet is available to almost every person in every society, buying a product online has also become easy. So inbound marketing strategy can be adopted to get a more significant number of the customer as compared to that by using traditional marketing.