Have you ever been asked the question, “what do you do?” only to begin answering and soon notice the person sitting across from you tuned out a long time ago? Judging from the slow, yet excessive head nods accompanied by one too many “uh-huhs” you realize you’ve lost them. You might be asking a similar yet more specific question like, “what does and inbound marketer actually DO?”
I was actually asked this question over the weekend, and I have to say that it was the first time I didn’t feel like I sounded like the teacher from Charlie Brown when I answered…(wah, wah, wah). But there’s always room for improvement. So today’s internet marketing tips help explain the role of the inbound marketer articulated in my own words.
Inbound marketing is based on this methodology developed by HubSpot:
The ultimate goal of inbound marketing for any business is to start by answering the questions potential customers are asking. You do this by attracting them to your business online, which means you have to have an online presence. Here’s how to start:
Identify what potential customers are asking
How do we do this? We help you think about the frequently asked questions your current customers are asking. For example, our customers often ask “how do I market my company?” Then, we use internet marketing tools to identify the actual keywords and phrases that are being asked specific to your industry.
Build keywords around the questions you’ve identified
Once we’ve identified the questions with you, we choose the keywords and phrases that have the best potential to drive traffice to your website and help answer the questions people are typing into the search engine bar. For example, based on research we’ve done for ourselves, we identified and are getting traffic to our website for the keyword phrase “why is social media important.” At the time of this blog being published, we are currently ranking on page 2 of Google, which means more people are seeing us as a potential answer to their question:
Write blogs answering the questions
This is where I spend most of my time – brainstorming topics, writing, and editing blogs both for ourselves and for our internet marketing clients. Blogging is an integral part of an inbound marketing strategy because it offers fresh, consistent content on your website. Each blog article is seen by the search engines as a new page on your site. If the search engines see that you are actively providing new, relevant content then it will rank you higher on the results pages. The topics of the blog use the keywords identified to answer the questions. For example, remember our question is “why is social media important.” Here are a couple of blogs we wrote on the topic:
Blogs help attract your customers so they become visitors to your website.
Create free downloadable offers
Once you have a visitor on your site you want them to become a lead. This conversion happens by having killer calls-to-action on your website that lead to a free downloadable offer of some kind. A call-to-action tells the visitor what you’d like them to do next. For example, here is one of our calls-to-action for a guide about internet marketing:
Once the visitor clicks on the call-to-action they are taken to a landing page, which is basically a mini-website with one sole purpose: to collect the visitor’s basic contact information in exchange for free, helpful content. Once the visitor fills out the form on the landing page, you now have their information so you can start sending them emails nurturing your relationship with them with the end goal of them converting to a customer.
Make customers happy
Let's say your lead is now a customer. Your job from here on out is to continue to provide them with relevant information and updates, good customer service, and anything else to keep your business top of mind so that they will be a promoter of your business. The internet marketing services we provide can help you do this.
So that essentially is what an inbound marketer does. We do a whole lot of other things too and we’ve seen it work. I hope this blog was helpful in trying to clearly articulate the role of an inbound marketer – without sounding like Charlie Brown’s teacher.
What questions do you have about internet marketing?