You're collecting prospects but they're not mature enough?
Is your trade speech too early in your acquisition process?
Wasting valuable time studying applications from unqualified prospects?
An adapted inbound marketing strategy is needed to acquire qualified B2B leads!
Check out our tips in the rest of the article!
Follow the funnel of inbound marketing
Choose the acquisition levers best suited to your inbound marketing strategy
Create content: the key to inbound marketing
Keep your inbound marketing strategy alive
Inbound marketing can be translated into "incoming marketing," which sums up its principle: it involves taking your prospects step by step to consider your product or service in order to turn them into customers. This requires offering them quality content in open access, disinterested in any commercial and advertising discourse, and then positioning you as obvious and necessary. It is a long-term strategy, available across multiple channels. It allows you to: make them aware of your offer, then stand out from your competitors by showing your value proposition and finally convert your prospects by capitalizing on the various points of contact established during marketing actions.
But to know who is aiming exactly with what content and precisely hitting its target, you need to know it.
1. UNDERSTAND AND IDENTIFY YOUR TARGET
This first step will allow you to determine which actions to implement and which channels to use. It's about taking the time to analyze and better understand your environment in order to decide who you're talking to, what's your ideal target and what your expectations are, and at what stage of the buying process.
Define your marketing target, which answers the question "Who do we want to sell to?"
You can divide it into three levels:
- The target heart, or the audience to reach as a priority to convert it. It is indeed the one that earns you the most, the easiest and the fastest to convert because you meet a specific and central need for it.
- The main, broader target: potential prospects. These are the ones that might be interested in your product/service but may take longer to convert or pay less.
- Secondary targets: prescribers (distribution networks, opinion leaders, etc.), who could relay your product/service and reach your target indirectly.
To expand your target, also rely on the data you already have. Analyze your customer base and your lead pipeline to understand the ratio of time spent prospecting to the turnover generated, the time of the sales cycle, the types of interlocutors and decision makers and your ability to convince them quickly…
You can represent them in the form of personas, i.e. create profiles of prospects that you customize according to the data you have: age, geographic location, consumption habits, CSP (marketing manager, head of such BU, CEO etc.), and above all consumer insight (the formulation of the consumer's perception of the offer and its market situation).
Knowing your target will allow you to adjust your strategy to its expectations and create relevant content throughout its buying journey. Be sure to identify each target very precisely so that you can then put in place a suitable strategy and not risk missing it in your communication actions.
2. FOLLOW THE FUNNEL OF INBOUND MARKETING
The goal of a good strategy is to reach so-called "cold" and non-mature prospects because they do not yet know your product/service, and convince them in order to turn them over time into customers. This conversion funnel takes place in several successive stages.
- Attracting, i.e. turning strangers into qualified visitors through content
- Convert visitors to leads by collecting data
- Qualify the maturity level of leads. It's the role of marketing to make them mature.
- Accompany leads and turn them into a sales opportunity. This is the role of the sales team
- Closing the sale and retaining new customers
Marketing Qualified Leads ≠ Sales Qualified Leads
The degree of qualification differs. MQLs are numerous and not necessarily relevant to salespeople who trade with SQL, leads more likely to be converted.
3. CHOOSE THE ACQUISITION LEVERS BEST SUITED TO YOUR INBOUND MARKETING STRATEGY
The acquisition refers to acquiring new visitors in order to generate online traffic. The main inbound marketing acquisition channels are:
- Social networks
- The SEO
- The display
With 3.8 billion users worldwide in 2019, social networks are a key advertising element, bringing together multiple audiences and opportunities. It is up to each individual to define his strategy according to his objective and the specifics of the chosen network. Instagram, for example, allows you to unite a community committed to a brand image or Facebook to generate conversions among a targeted audience.
Writing blog posts is one of the main levers of SEO, which allows, thanks to natural referencing on search engines, to position a site in first place, as an expert on the targeted subject.
The display corresponds to the purchase of advertising space on the Internet, and is usually presented on websites in the form of digital graphics placements, banners, cobblestones, pop-ups etc. It allows custom content to be delivered to a wide audience drained by the chosen display site.
Thanks to your existing and ever-growing database, emailing will then be used to spread your message, sequenced in stages (funnel) according to your objectives.
Identify the most suitable broadcast channels for your goals and target, then create your content and broadcast it.
4. CREATE CONTENT: THE KEY TO INBOUND MARKETING
We will introduce you to a number of inbound marketing content and detail how they are used.
The main content of inbound marketing are:
- Product sheet
- Press release
- Case study
- white paper
- Computer graphics
- Landing page
Textual content, whether it is an article, a white paper or even a study, must be quality, disinterested and above all open access (accessible for example after information of the email address). Your reader should feel that he is learning something from your content, without it costing him anything. He will experience some form of recognition for you, and will regularly check your articles if they meet his needs. With this loyalty, you will gradually develop an expertise that will make you a reference on the subject you have decided to target.
You can also rely on visual content. Infographics, for example, are a great way to visually summarize a complex idea. If you use images, make sure they are free of rights. You can find a multitude of great quality on image banks like Unsplash. The newsletter, which combines text and image, is also a great way to relay your content, retain your audience and acquire new leads, thanks to the addresses you will collect on the landing registration page. You can implement email automation policies that will categorize your content and send it to your audience according to certain criteria (new subscribers, raise, etc.).
Audiovisual content is also highly acclaimed. Video or podcast, it allows you to focus on a topic and explain it in detail. The podcast has the great advantage of requiring fewer means of recording and can then be listened to at any time of the day by your audience (in transport, at home etc).
5. KEEP YOUR INBOUND MARKETING STRATEGY ALIVE
The more you work on your strategy and content, the more proud you will be of what you will publish and the feedback you receive. But for your efforts to bear fruit, you will need to maintain them in the long term.The main thing is of course to publish regularly.
To do this, set achievable goals. Rather than working very long and complex content and not posting anything for a month, choose to divide it into several parts, and broadcast them successively and regularly.
This strategy will not only allow you to be regularly indexed by Google's robots, which is excellent for your natural referencing, but will also be very positive towards your audience. If the content has interested her, she will come back regularly to expand her knowledge of the subject.
For your part, you can also work to turn these visitors into prospects. When creating your advertising campaigns, for example, you can set up retargeting readers of your articles with relevant content related to the initial topic, or retargeting those who watched x seconds of one of your videos… Or the setting up of thematic automation emails for the addresses that have downloaded your white papers.
Each of your visitors is a potential prospect, so you need to make sure you keep in touch with them in order to get their data, and if they are qualified to turn it into a customer.
You're armed to launch your content and win new audiences with a strong inbound marketing strategy! You can then work on developing your outbound marketing to transform your leads and maximize your lead conversion.
At the Sparkling Agency, it's our job to help you succeed in your marketing strategy, so if you have any questions or need advice, don't hesitate to contact us!