What Valentine’s Day Can Teach You About Inbound Marketing
It’s almost Valentine’s day! The day of love, where you put your loved one in the spotlight and spice things up. This famous or - for some of us - infamous day can teach you a lot about inbound marketing. You have to put in a little extra effort into your relationship to stay connected to your significant one, which is also very applicable in business life. And that’s precisely what inbound can help you with! Read this blog to discover how.
What Is Inbound?
Inbound is a growth strategy that helps you and your organization build valuable, long-term relationships with your target audience, leads, and customers. How? By discovering the journey they go through and help them achieve their goals in every step of this experience journey.
The inbound methodology exists of four steps: attract, convert, close, and delight. Each of these steps follows up on each other endlessly. When your customers share the success they achieved with your help with others, they will attract new leads. And that’s exactly why the flywheel is used to illustrate the inbound methodology.
These four inbound steps are linear to your audience’s experience journey and the funnel models your organization uses. At the same time, your marketing, sales, and service team also join these steps since they are the ones that add force to the flywheel. And that’s how all your teams together keep the flywheel spinning. Turning leads into customers, and customers into true fans who attract new leads.
Of course, we understand that this all sounds too good to be true, and you’re wondering how you can use this in your organization. And what has this all to do with Valentine’s day, to begin with? That’s what you’ll learn below.
Nice To Meet You; I’m Inbound.
Like we said before, the inbound methodology consists of four critical steps: attract, convert, close, and delight. And this is what these steps are all about:
It all begins with the attract phase. You’re walking through the main street, are dancing in a bar, or swiping through your Tinder profiles. Suddenly, you come face to face with HIM (or her, of course). Right away, you know you’re perfect for each other. But how do you make sure you get their attention?
The attract phase is all about attracting the right visitors. Within inbound, you can achieve this by creating interesting and relevant content for each step of the experience journey. Since you’ve already created extensive personas to define your target audience, you know exactly which questions and challenges they face at every step of the journey. You can use this information to your advantage and create relevant (knowledge) articles, specified landing pages, or extensive pillar pages.
Do you want to get started creating relevant content? Download our experience journey framework now
Now you’ve finally drawn their attention; it’s time to get to know each other. How old are you? Do you have any hobbies? What about siblings? And where do you live? After opening up to each other, you exchange phone numbers so you will never have to stop talking to each other. The beginning of a serious relationship has started.
Within inbound, the convert step is entirely focused on collecting information about your website visitors. Who are they? Are you attracting the right people? By offering e-books, whitepapers, and webinars that are only accessible after filling in a form, you get to know those unknown visitors better and better. In exchange for a little of their information, they can access e-books, whitepapers, factsheets, masterclasses, and webinars that tell them even more about those things relevant to them.
Do keep in mind that a one-time action might not be enough to really get to know each other, just like dating. Following up on interesting leads is necessary to stay top of mind and learn more about each other. So follow up on your leads by sending one or more emails with more interesting content. This will help you develop a relationship and shows them that you’re the expert that can help them overcome their challenges.
After a few dates, you know it for sure: He is the one! It’s time to make it official. You’re in a relationship.
This is the step where you turn your lead into a customer. After multiple meetings and defining what you’re both looking for, your organization and the customer are a match made in heaven. The customer has built enough trust in you that they are ready to sign the deal. You’re going to work together. Now, it’s time for the real deal: developing the solution for your customer’s challenge.
Of course, you want your relationship to last as long as possible. And that’s hard work. That’s why it is necessary to spoil each other from time to time. And that’s where Valentine’s day comes in. You get home with a bouquet, go out for dinner, or cozy-up for movie night. And that’s when you know it: this relationship will last forever.
The delight step may be the most important of inbound. It doesn’t stop after signing the contract; this is the moment to put in a little extra effort. Keep on surprising your customers with your knowledge, so share all those relevant e-books and blog articles with them too. Or invite your customers to masterclasses, sit down together to discuss new challenges or ideas further, or send them a little present from time to time. Everything to let your customers feel special and let them know that you value them.
Only by getting to know your customers, you can be sure that you’re building a valuable long-term relationship with them. And those relationships might come with some exciting surprises.