At Revenue Architects, we are big advocates of inbound marketing with leading solutions like HubSpot, Act-On, Marketo, and Mailchimp for email marketing but we also work with a number of industry sectors where a stronger outbound approach is still needed. For example at professional services businesses like consulting, law firms, financial advisors, the promise of “inbound” is a bit over-hyped and a more balanced approach is critical.
Wouldn’t It be great if we could operate a “lights out” marketing operation where our prospects all found us via a web search, self-sold themselves with our content, visited our landing pages and filled out our form describing their needs? Our social media and content marketing reach and engagement would attract new audiences and with the large volume of new leads coming through the website we would use marketing automation to nurture prospects and prioritize leads for sales follow-up. We would be generating leads as we sleep!
OK, but is this scenario a reality for your business? Where is your company on the inbound-to-outbound marketing spectrum?
For high volume B2B and “considered sale” B2C environments, inbound marketing should remain a primary marketing strategy. As more B2B and high-end B2C companies embrace inbound strategies and use search visibility with SEO and PPC programs to capture inbound leads, it will become harder to stand out. For professional and people-centric businesses a balanced approach includes a strong web presence and inbound marketing capabilities along with better enabled sales and targeted outbound activities for relationship development and referrals.
The key is finding the right mix.
- Break down your revenue by segment to identify your lead gen requirements based on close rates, people capacity and cycle times
- Identify the percentage of leads by source
- Identify how each segment of clients/customers will learn about you
- Map out your customer/ client journey and identify the critical points – and the role of the web in your relationship lifecycle?
- Deploy content and services that allow your prospects to self-sell so when the meet with you, they will already know what they want and you can save time.
You may find that you need to generate leads and nurture prospects using more traditional outbound strategies along with an inbound approach.