A step-by-step guide to producing a plan that will attract, engage and delight customers

Building a strong brand, attracting new prospects and retaining customers requires a strong integrated marketing strategy. This will use a combination of both outbound (push) and inbound (pull) marketing. For some businesses, such as start-ups, small local companies and even larger B2B companies with limited ad spend, outbound marketing can be expensive and risky. However, inbound marketing can be more accessible and focuses on building demand by giving people compelling reasons to come to you. The term 'inbound marketing' originated in 2006, coined by Hubspot to explain how marketers can attract interested prospects using content marketing, social media and SEO. According to Hubspot: "Inbound marketing is about creating valuable experiences that have a positive impact on people and your business." Hubspot’s framework distills inbound marketing into three components. [caption id="attachment_132822" align="alignnone" width="775"]…

The anatomy of a perfect case study varies from business to business, but looking at the bare-bones structure of what goes into an effective B2B case study that converts website visitors or leads, there is a formulaic structure in the delivery of every success story. We’ve compiled a list of action points for you to consider, tailor and apply to your business

Case studies should be part of every B2B inbound marketing strategy. Not only is it a great way to validate your product or service, but it also has SEO value, the ability to generate backlinks, and is a great tool to aid conversion. [si_guide_block id="47577" title="Download our Business Resource – B2B Inbound Marketing Workbook" description="Follow the templates for the 7 key inbound marketing tasks in this workbook to create your inbound B2B marketing plan"/]

Getting started

Whether your organisation provides a product or…

B2B content marketing strategy for traditional and inbound marketing

The B2B buying cycle is a long, arduous process. It includes multiple stakeholders with different agendas and an aversion to risk lingering from the last decade’s financial difficulties. Couple the aversion to risk with the new trend of buyers researching extensively before contacting the seller and you get today’s B2B selling environment. It demands a change in strategy from your marketing and sales teams. Inbound marketing, a method of “pull” marketing, replaces traditional marketing's practice of appealing to the broadest possible audience in the hopes of capturing a single sale. Inbound marketing is more effective and substantially less costly than traditional marketing, and it meshes with new buying trends.

Inbound Marketing: The Definition

Inbound marketing leverages content marketing, email marketing, and marketing automation to build rapport and trust. Sellers nurture a relationship with prospects by offering valuable content that answers the most pressing questions from…

Create an inbound marketing strategy that facilitates lead generation and sales

Marketers who have learned the inbound methodology are already familiar with the complexities that are involved in formulating a holistic inbound marketing strategy. The starters in inbound marketing may know the concept and the components; however it becomes inevitable to get a pathway that leads to smooth execution of the campaign. The list of The list of questions goes on when you decide to build a marketing plan – what to do, how to prioritize, what will work for your business model and how to implement the proper infrastructure, tools, and technology to facilitate lead generation via inbound. A robust plan could only help in differentiating between an amateur and master campaign. Only 68% of marketers believe their marketing strategy is effective.

[si_guide_block id="47577" title="Download Business Member Resource – B2B Inbound Marketing Workbook" description="The aim of this workbook is to provide B2B…

Chart of the Day: Only 2% of respondents will invest more than $5 million in the next 12 months - Part 7 of 10

So far in this 10 part series, breaking down Hubspot's State of Inbound 2017 report, we have looked at: Top business priorities Inbound marketing - what are your priorities and challenges? Telesales remains a successful channel for sales representatives  Are marketing models and strategies even effective? Is your marketing and sales SLA alignment positive? Is marketing a top source of leads for sales? For the 7th installment, it's time to see how much money respondents are willing to invest into their marketing efforts in the next 12 months. Only 2% of respondents said they are willing/ or are going to invest a whopping $5 Million into their marketing efforts. Although a low percentage, this will be reflective…

Chart of the Day: Growing SEO and organic presence are higher priorities than product videos and webinars - part 2 of 10

For my next instalment in my Marketing and Sales 2017 statistics breakdown series, I am focusing on inbound marketing priorities and its challenges. Over 70% of respondents worldwide stated that they primarily conduct inbound marketing. This shows a strong focus on inbound marketing across the globe, yet Asia showing the lowest percentage of inbound marketing priorities at 64%.

Thinking specifically about inbound marketing projects, what are your company's top priorities?

SEO and organic search presence are a higher priority, across all 5 geo-demographics surveyed, for inbound marketing projects (61%). Secondly, importance was placed on blog content creation (53%) and content distribution (47%). It seems that companies are prioritizing SEO and content marketing in their inbound marketing projects and pushing freemium trails (6%), webinars (19%) and…

Some easy inbound marketing strategies to make you rethink your content

Just as the printing press opened the mind to the imagination of the world’s greatest literary story tellers, so the early days of Hollywood introduced the world to some of the world’s most ingenious visual storytellers. Amongst the greatest was Buster Keaton. Every Keaton gesture and scene explained all an audience needed to know. Whereas the average silent movie featured over 240 captions (or subtitles) Keaton never used more than 56. Appealing to both logic and emotions, Keaton’s perfect balance of understated and conspicuous actions caught the eye and then enthralled audiences through empathy… pathos…heroism… as well as every shade of human attachment in between. Whilst other screen icons went through just the mechanics of a well-rehearsed process, Keaton treated each tumble, grimace, smile, climb, leap, forlorn gaze, and even collision as a unique opportunity to explore creativity. Beyond a great screen actor, he…

How to know your audience and create the right content for them

We've all heard the phrase ‘the client is king’. In practice, this means that an important part of marketing is an exercise of empathy, which consists of finding out who our audience is, so we can give them what they want in a better way than our competition. This simple idea should also be the center of your efforts when it comes to increasing your leads. You should adjust to them, and to their buying process. You should give your prospects the answers they are looking for, when they’re looking for them, in an appropriate way to address the subject of their interest.

The Inbound Approach

But let’s start from the beginning. You may have heard the term “inbound marketing” before. If you haven't, it mainly consists of making leads…

How we got to #2 most popular inbound marketing blog in the UK. Sharing what works for our blog, the mistakes we've made and what could work for yours

Hubspot have just launched a new Inbound marketing ranking tool: InboundRank . It enables you to submit the URL of your marketing blog, and generate a ranking for your blog based on several parameters including inbound traffic, domain authority and average social shares. As you'd expect, Hubspot are doing the content marketing thing and have compiled a post sharing some of the secrets of the Top 10. This is based on my response to them. I wanted to go into a bit more detail on our blog on what seems to have worked for us, the pitfalls we tried to avoid and what could work for you. We're chuffed that SmartInsights.com is currently number 2 on the…

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