Rather than pursuing customers with traditional “outbound” marketing tactics, inbound marketing entices customers to approach the brand themselves.
In order to generate new business, a company must:
- Create brand awareness
- Drive conversions
- Close sales
- Retain existing customers
Traditionally, marketers have sought consumer attention by “disrupting.” The idea is that once a brand has forcefully placed itself in front of a potential customer, she’ll immediately be interested in buying. This strategy is what’s commonly known as outbound marketing. Some examples of outbound marketing include TV advertisements, billboards, telemarketing, radio ads and direct mail.
But is this disruptive form of marketing really the most effective way of creating loyal customers? According to HubSpot’s State of Inbound Report, twice as many marketers (45%) cited inbound marketing as their primary source of lead generation versus outbound (22%). And that’s not all; HubSpot also reported that 46% of marketers said inbound marketing gave a higher ROI, while only 12% reported outbound did.
These numbers indicate a growing trend in consumer behavior. The traditional outbound tactics simply don’t generate the revenue they once did. Instead, consumers are more attracted to brands that offer relevant, interesting content.
Consider this: 90% of consumers find custom content useful and 78% believe that organizations providing custom content are interested in building good relationships with them. Conversely, 84% of 25-to-34-year-olds have left a favorite website because of intrusive or irrelevant advertising.
This demonstrates that modern consumers are more likely to respond positively to the inbound approach. If a brand can build a relationship through relevant content, the consumer will most likely be willing to become a customer.