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As marketers, when we are pressed for meeting our lead generation goals, we get all worked up.
I need more leads.
I need to start blogging and posting on social media.
I need to get this going right away.
Click. Click. “Hey, look, I’m blogging!”
Whoa, whoa, whoa. Hold your horses there pal!
Before you even think of getting started, you need to assess your available resources and consider avenues that will generate the most bang for your buck. Consider asking yourself the following:
- Do I know my customers? Have I defined different buyer personas?
- Do my customers usually have a lot of questions which I can address through my blogs?
- Where do my customers hang-out? Any particular social media platform that I should focus on?
- Are my customers ready to purchase when they contact me? Or do they need nurturing?
- How much can I spend on these efforts – both in terms of time and money? Do I need to hire some help?
- What ROI do I expect out of these efforts? And when?
And many more.. Asking these questions will help you identify your weaknesses and prepare better for the war against your enemy.
Thou Shalt not be Intimidated by Competition
Surprise, Surprise! Your biggest enemy is not your competitor.
“Know your enemy. It’s not Google or your competitors – it’s a disinterested buyer.” says Randy Milanovic in his new book Findability.
But there are competitors and you want to stay ahead of competition. To add to the challenge, who you’re competing with keeps changing as new players enter the market. Besides, chances are, your competitors are also considering inbound marketing. Maybe they already have a head start. In such a dynamic marketplace, how can you ensure success? By knowing what you’re getting into.
Inbound marketing is not about who starts first, or who gets there first. It is about delighting customers, again and again and again. No matter when you start your inbound marketing efforts, if you’re consistently delighting your customers with valuable and relevant content, your customers will choose you over competition, every single time. The key word here is consistently.
Half-hearted aimless efforts are a big NO NO!
Before you jump into Inbound Marketing, know what it is and how you can use it to your advantage. Inbound Marketing is not a campaign, it’s a strategy and as every other strategy, it needs to be planned, executed, measured and improved. It’s a continuous process that cannot be seen as a “launch one and done” campaign. Otherwise you will fail.
In order to succeed with inbound marketing, you need to commit to it. Half-hearted aimless efforts will not get you anywhere. You need to consistently delight your customers. You need to make them the focus of your marketing.
Bye Bye 4Ps. Welcome 4Cs of Modern Marketing
The old way of marketing was focused on the product, where as new way of marketing is focused on the customer. Market with the 4Cs vs. 4Ps for best results – Customer wants and needs (vs. Product), Convenience to buy (vs. Place), Communication (vs. Promotion) and Cost to satisfy (vs. Price). Start thinking about customer centric marketing – make your customer the center of your inbound marketing efforts.
Are you ready to jumpstart your marketing efforts in 2014? Are you ready to take on the world Inbound Marketer Style? Then prepare yourselves with these tips. We’re just getting started.