So, you're not seeing a return on your marketing investment. What the heck are you doing wrong? Often, the issue is that you're just ticking off boxes and doing what you think you're supposed to be doing with no thought to how your various attempts are supposed to work together. But don't worry! With smarter strategy and inbound, it's totally fixable.
Below you'll find six inbound marketing tactics that, if implemented correctly and carried through long-term, could help you increase your marketing ROI significantly. And let's be real, who doesn't want that?
1. SEO-First Ideation
If you've been in your industry a long time or are part of a company with a product that isn't very exciting, it might be hard for you to come up with fresh content ideas regularly.
One good tip to keep in mind, though, is that what might be basic knowledge or uninteresting to you could be entirely new and thrilling for your audience. Try looking at your industry as if you've never heard of it before - what kind of topics might be useful to your audience then?
With this fresh take, it's important to remember that all your content should be SEO-focused. With new content being created by the second, it's vital that everything you publish is search engine optimized.
According to SEO guru Neil Patel, SEO is a method of optimizing your content for the search engines, helping it rank higher than content from other sites that target the same search terms. So as you're coming up with your list of content ideas, make sure you're keeping your company's top-ranking SEO search terms in mind! This will help your target audience find you and, hopefully, move them through the funnel.
2. Topic Clusters
HubSpot refers to topic clusters as the next evolution of SEO. But if you've never heard of them, that's ok.
SEO practices are evolving as the web grows and search engines shift how they view content. Implementing a topic cluster model means having a pillar page that acts as the main hub for overarching topics on your site. Then each pillar page will link to subsequent content pages that fall under the same category, and the content pages will link back to the pillar page and to each other. Not only is this a more organized way to lay out your website, this method also helps communicate authority to search engines and may help your pages rank higher over time.
Searchers are more comfortable typing in complex questions, and they expect specific answers. So while you and your team may not feel comfortable overhauling your whole site to match this topic cluster design, it should be noted that as searchers are evolving, search engines are evolving, and you should be adjusting and growing to meet them where they are if your goal is to stay relevant and timely while also getting the most out of your marketing budget.
3. Clickable CTAs
Let's say you've worked for months on an eBook for your audience and you're excited about sending it out into the world. You've even set up your ads and put in the work to build a fantastic landing page.
You sit back to watch the downloads roll in, but nothing happens. Where did you go wrong? It could be your call to action (CTA) is boring or unclear. Your CTA should tell your audience exactly what you want them to do. When you put your ads together, a button that says Download might seem like an excellent idea. But it doesn't really convey to your audience exactly what will happen. A better option might be Click here to download your FREE eBook! By adding something as simple as an exclamation point and the word "free" you can evoke enthusiasm with your readers.
And don't forget to customize your CTA to the type of device being used. For example, if your CTA is for people to call your business, Google will allow you to set a mobile preference for your ads so your ad will only pop up for mobile users.
4. Lead-Capturing Forms
Another area where you might be botching your marketing budget and not even know it is in your website forms. Forms are important for capturing your lead's information and opening the lines of communication for further information to be shared. But what happens if you have a killer CTA, people are coming to your landing page to gather their freebie, but they don't seem to be filling out your forms? It might be time to optimize a little bit.
Your form should be easily viewed on your landing page; it should fall above the fold. If your viewers have to scroll to find out where they can enter their information to get the freebie you promised them, you're likely to lose viewers and potential customers.
You'll also want to make sure you're only asking for the appropriate amount of information for what you're offering them. If you're giving them a three page PDF, you probably don't need to know how much money they make in a year. Don't drive people away by asking for their life story. Instead, figure out what your offer is worth, and ask the appropriate questions.
5. Implementing a Chatbot or Messaging Feature
More than half of customers (56%) would rather message than call customer service, according to a study of global Facebook data. People are turning away from phone calls and turning towards the convenience and promptness of messaging services.
With so many people tied to their mobile devices where they can look up reviews, find local restaurants, and buy products with the click of a button, it only makes sense that they would want this type of convenience in their customer service experiences, as well.
Implementing a messaging service or setting up a chatbot to help walk your customers through their questions as they peruse your site or help them when they have questions or concerns about a service that you offer will not only leave your customers feeling cared for and heard, but it frees up company time that would have otherwise been spent answering phone calls.
Not to mention, customers will be able to message you 24/7, leaving them feeling like they're in control of their buyer journey, and not restricting you and your company to certain time limits for answering questions. You may still have set office hours laid out, but your customers will be able to message you any time.
6. Proper Lead Nurturing
Lead nurturing may be last on the list, but it's certainly not the least important. In fact, proper lead nurturing is vital for the growth and sustainability of your company. Providing relevant information at each stage of the buyer's journey will help you actively move your prospects through the funnel and turn them into happy customers and, hopefully, evangelists.
With inbound marketing, you'll get a consistent number of leads coming your way. However, very few of your new leads will be ready to purchase, which leaves you with as much as 90% of your inbound leads on the table.
When working with your leads, one size does not fit all. This is where buyer personas come in handy. Each persona should represent a different lead group that you cater to. This way, you can create content that is helpful specifically to that persona group.
If that content is in the form of an email, along with targeted content, you should also look at implementing personalization. A recent study by Experian indicated that personalized emails can generate up to six times higher revenue per email than non-personalized campaigns do.
Need some personalization inspo? Check out this helpful blog post.
Inbound marketing is a wonderful way for your target audience to find you, but it does come with it's own set of challenges. If you're struggling to get your content up to par, maybe you want to think about a content audit! Follow the link below to set up a FREE 30-minute consultation with Impressa's founder and CEO, Julie. She'll help you see how you can make your content shine.