Inbound Marketing for Small Business: 4 Reasons You Can’t Afford Not To!

Sometimes inbound marketing gets called out for being the new kid on the block. Truth is, inbound marketing has a reliable method of research, content creation and evaluation to find your audiences and generate leads. Using inbound marketing can turn strangers into leads, customers and promoters for your business by zeroing in on their needs and building a two-way relationship.

But the proof is in the pudding. According to the Hubspot Annual State of Inbound Marketing, more than half of marketing agencies in the U.S. reported a positive return on investment for their inbound marketing efforts in 2013, and 89 percent of businesses plan to maintain or grow their inbound marketing budgets this year.

Keep reading to learn more about why inbound marketing could be a good fit for you.

 Turn Down the Noise

Noise is the name given to all the distractions that detract from messaging you are trying to promote. Noise can range from news articles that surround print ads to kids in the backseat.

Mashable.com held a survey and found over 86 percent of television viewers skip through commercials. Since TiVo was invented, this phenomenon advertising agencies call “zipping” has shortened the public’s attention span for loud and, honestly, annoying media. Viewers without the feature still tend toward “zapping” (flipping) channels during commercial breaks.

Cold-calling has begun dying too. Last year, the FTC reported the national do-not-call list reached over 200 million phone numbers. (There are only 318 million people in the U.S.!) And 44 percent of direct mail is never opened, according to the EPA.

The advantage of inbound marketing is it doesn’t rely upon holding the attention of consumers while interrupting their busy lives. Inbound marketing brings the user who needs to know more about what you offer to your front door on their own time.

 Earn Their Trust

Inbound marketing is called earned media because you have to put time and value into your content before users can see it. Traditional marketing, however, is considered paid media, and the ethics of paying to create buzz has worn on consumer consciousness.

Mashable found 78 percent of participants said they don’t trust claims made in advertisements. In contrast, 80 percent of business decision-makers prefer to get information in a series of in-house articles, according to the Content Marketing Institute.

 Measure Your Results

Built into the process of creating valuable content is a method of review to evaluate what your investment into an inbound marketing plan is bringing you.

Google Analytics allows you to track your website traffic, search engine optimization and click-through rate. Other sources of inbound marketing, like social media and blogging, can be evaluated by subscriptions and interactions.

Most importantly, being able to check in at any time means being able to boost growing areas and reposition others for better performance to make the most of your investment.

 Keep Some Cash

In times of teetering economics, inbound marketing is simply cheaper to keep. An advertising agency has to build in their staff’s wages, research costs, production costs and ad placement costs into budgets. However, inbound marketing is primarily forged by the creative mind with few other costs.

On average, leads that come from inbound marketing campaigns cost an average of $135 per lead. Traditional marketing leads run closer to $346 each according to Eloqua. That’s 2.5 times more for a user that hasn’t purchased yet.

Here at BoldThink, we believe inbound marketing brings more value to brands while being more economical and traceable. Do you trust advertising or original content more? Let us know why in the comments below.

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