Social media has evolved into a key marketing channel for small businesses wanting to gain visibility, drive traffic to your website and generate new leads. The next step in your inbound marketing effort is to: Identify which social networking sites will work best for your business, and Create optimized social media outposts to ensure your brand can be found.
Search engine optimization plays a critical part in the success of your inbound marketing efforts by increasing the effectiveness of the other three pillars – content marketing, social media marketing and public relations – to drive targeted traffic to your website.
Now that you have the who, what, where and when of your content marketing strategy, you now need to generate a regular stream of quality information across all of your content channels (blog, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, etc). The challenge – what is quality content? Like many things in life, beauty (or in this case quality) is in the eye of the beholder. Many posts are quick to point out that you need to deliver quality content, but few provide what it takes to actually do so.
Content marketing is creating, publishing and promoting value-based content to attract your target audience, position you as a trusted expert and advisor in your industry, help build your online brand presence and drive more traffic to your site. Your value-based content can be blog posts, articles, videos, white papers, eBooks, presentations or other information products that focus on the problems your customers and clients face and you can help them resolve. The challenge for most small businesses is to provide engaging content on a consistent basis.
Now that you understand what inbound marketing is and how it can help your small business, it’s time to figure out your inbound marketing strategy. I know, you hate writing marketing plans. So do I actually, but they are necessary to keep us on track. However, once you put it in writing, you will only need to update it when you measure your results and determine what changes need to be made. And we can make it a quick and painless exercise that will get you out there doing something to start your lead generation activities.
Inbound marketing is something that most small business owners have heard of but few have implemented consistently. But for those who do take the plunge, many are experiencing a more cost effective and in many ways a more successful form of marketing, than traditional outbound marketing such as direct mail, trade shows and print, radio and TV advertising.