Getting Found – the difference between inbound and outbound marketing

Since the 1950s big brands got big by bombarding us with adverts. Most advertising was, and still is, a form of interruption. They interrupt the film you are watching or the article you are reading and try and divert your attention to their product. The point being to create a desire in you that grabs your interest and, they hope, a purchase.

It can get quite annoying can’t it? There you are watching a great film or drama. Just as you get to a tense part of the story the bloody Go Compare Opera Singer interrupts the kiss or the battle. Or you are reading a great article in a magazine and when you turn the page it is a double page spread for a product you don’t want rather the rest of what you wanted to read.

Email marketing is similarly intrusive especially of you haven’t subscribed to a list. It is electronic cold calling. I get about 15 emails a day from companies telling me I can claim compensation for being ripped off by PPI insurance. I’ve never had it and yet I am pestered by companies that are surely just as despicable as the sellers of PPI. In case you don’t know, if you were sold PPI you can get a refund for free. You don’t need one of these horrible claims companies. And you definitely don’t have to pay them a fee.

Difference between inbound and outbound marketing

The world has changed for the marketer. Thanks to the digital world outbound (interruption) marketing is much tougher. People can use a remote control to fast forward through the Go Compare Opera singer or whichever brand is making a play for this year’s most annoying advert award. Spam filters can snare and discard a whole heap of PPI claims companies, manhood enlarging devices and links to illicit dating sites. The customer is more in control then ever. They can shut the marketers out.

Does this brave new world worry me? No because it means that finally we marketers have to produce stuff that people actually want to consume. Articles, videos, podcasts, ebooks, info-graphics that answer their questions. This is inbound marketing. Instead of interrupting and annoying our customers we need stuff they come looking for. Stuff that answers their questions. If your stuff answers the questions that your customers are asking, and you make sure it ranks in the search engines then people will come and find you. Because 90% of all transactions start with a Google search these days.

difference between inbound and outbound marketing

Now Grandnat’s blog is mainly about my passion for fitness, Yoga and travel. But it also let’s me explore my fascination with new marketing techniques. Some of which I have taken back into my day job.

Inbound marketing works. I get found. Here’s an example. I did a bit of research that suggested that one of the most common questions people ask about Yoga is, “How long will it take to get flexible by doing yoga?” I wrote a blog post answering this question and optimised it for search.

And do you know what? My daily site stats tell me that people do indeed type in this question and now they come to my blog to get the answer. It works. And I didn’t spend millions on an annoying fat guy pretending to sing opera to get found.

Over to you: I’d love to hear your experiences of promoting your business with inbound or content marketing. There are many people I admire already doing it – I love their videos and blogs and podcasts. Others are finding their way. Get in touch or leave a comment and tell me more.

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