The way consumers interact with brands is changing rapidly. In the age of digital marketing, it’s easy for consumers to avoid advertisements and other marketing messages. In response, marketers are turning to inbound marketing strategies. Here’s the truth about what inbound marketing can do for your business in 2021 and how to get started.

What is inbound marketing?

Inbound marketing refers to a series of methods that attract customers to a brand by creating content that is valuable to them. Marketing messages can provide information that potential customers are looking for or help them solve problems. Inbound marketing strategies also include tailored experiences for potential customers that only your business can deliver. The idea is to build a relationship and bond before you make a sale.

On the other hand, traditional marketing – aka outbound marketing – relies on disrupting your audience. Perhaps the most obvious example of outbound marketing is TV ads. While this could have been a useful strategy when consumers have had to attend advertisements, It does not work well in a digital environment.

Why is this important?

In 2021, consumers have learned to ignore interruptive marketing messages. Instead, they prefer to learn about a product or service on their own terms. This includes performing their own Google searches, reading articles, and watching videos.

According to Demand measurement, 70% of consumers prefer to read an article about a company rather than watch an advertisement. Millennials are considered to be virtually blind to digital banner ads.

Most importantly, inbound marketing will help you get more with your existing marketing budget. Generating leads through inbound methods is 61 percent cheaper than outgoing prospects.

Inbound marketing strategies for 2021

The goal inbound marketing is to attract your target audience with content that is useful to them. By offering ideas and solutions to potential problems, you engage potential customers and build trust. Being trustworthy will make customers more likely to buy from you. Inbound marketing doesn’t stop with a purchase. The most successful marketers provide support to help customers get the most out of the product.

Here are some of the best inbound marketing strategies of 2021:

1. Blog

Long blogs remain one of the best strategies for attracting customers to your brand in 2021.

Blogs drive traffic to your website. Consistent blogging will help you grow your brand and establish yourself as an authority in your field. However, it takes time to build an audience if you don’t already have one. In this case, think of guest blogs.

Getting featured in an established and popular blog exposes your brand to a wider audience. It also helps you attract qualified and relevant visitors to your own website.

2. Videos and live streaming

Live streaming and video messaging exploded in 2020 due to social distancing restrictions. Although this development started out of necessity, many brands recognized the potential of how-to videos and digital events.

Video not only helps your brand connect with potential customers around the world. It also helps reduce the costs associated with in-person events, while creating the same buzz and atmosphere.

Live streaming allows your audience to ask direct questions or provide feedback. It is a powerful tool when it comes to building relationships with customers.

While video marketing has been developing for a number of years, short videos are proving particularly popular. If your business isn’t using video as a format yet, it’s definitely worth exploring its potential.

3. Social networks won

Social media followers have chosen to connect with your brand. Consistently delivering relevant and useful content is a great way to keep them engaged.

However, listening is just as important. One way to do this is to make a point of rewarding customer feedback by taking it seriously. Responding to comments and requests in a thoughtful and timely manner is another.

4. Limit forms – think about chatbots instead

Inbound marketing is all about building relationships with potential customers.

Using forms to “block” access to a white paper, for example, can cause potential customers to look for the information elsewhere. Few users are happy to part with their personal information before you’ve at least given them some valuable content.

For years, closed content has worked very well for digital marketers. However, they produce fewer conversions in 2021. Alternatives include shorter forms, requiring only a person’s email address. Another option is chatbots, simulating a conversation to create a connection with a potential customer. A live chat system allows people to connect with you when it’s convenient for them or if they need your help. It eliminates the need to wait for a response.

Inbound marketing can help you stretch your marketing budget even further and get customers looking for you. Unlike traditional interrupt marketing, these methods help build relationships between businesses and customers that turn into sales. These relationships tend to last longer and lead to higher lifetime sales.

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