The Key Differences Between Inbound and Outbound Marketing

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If you’re struggling to decide which marketing approach will drive the best results for your business, you’re not alone. Given that there are so many methods to choose from, it can be difficult to know which one will deliver the best results. To help you decide the best strategy, we’ve compiled this article to highlight the key differences between outbound and inbound marketing, and which of the two is gaining favour at a phenomenal rate.

What is outbound marketing?

An outbound marketing strategy is a traditional approach to marketing where companies focus on actively pushing their message out to reach as many people as possible, in the hopes of generating potential customers and increasing brand awareness.

This is typically done through paid advertising, such as TV and radio ads, direct mail, cold calling and other forms of communication. Even though these traditional methods have the potential to reach a lot of people in a short period of time, they usually require a major financial investment and a large team to manage the tasks.

One of the most significant downsides to outbound marketing is that it does not allow for specific targeting and segmentation of your audience. Subsequently, businesses spend a lot of money to reach a broader audience. Unfortunately many of those people may not be the desired audience, meaning that the return on investment is poor.

Inbound: An organic approach to marketing

Over the last few years, inbound has gained popularity as a more organic, and potentially effective approach to marketing. In Inbound marketing, the focus is on understanding the needs of your prospects in order to provide them with valuable information, and propel them to make an informed purchase decision.

Where outbound interrupts audiences with messages that may not always be relevant to them, inbound works by attracting ideal customers through quality content related to your product or service. These strategies can include web content, social media, email marketing, blog posts, ebooks, SEO optimisation and other tactics.

Inbound delivers long-term results

Building a strong inbound marketing strategy doesn’t happen overnight, but all the time and effort invested will be worth it in the long run. Remember the goal is to create valuable content to attract your audience. This means that everything you publish across your digital channels will continue to work in drawing in new prospects over time.

Using the inbound approach enables you to deliver customised experiences to your potential and existing customers. This may include sending email marketing campaigns with tailored messaging, or developing content offers to capture leads. By providing solutions that are relevant to their needs, brands can build trust and forge stronger connections with customers. In fact, customers begin to rely on these brands and, because of that, become customers for life.

Best of all, inbound marketing is more cost-effective, as you don’t need a big ad budget to get started. In addition, it relies mostly on organic growth through web traffic, SEO, social engagement and email campaigns. More importantly, it delivers the capability to track, adjust and measure the success of your campaigns with actionable data.

HuBSpot’s Inbound methodology

As experts in the marketing industry, Pixeld strongly embraces the HubSpot philosophy of Inbound Marketing to help our clients grow. In their own words, HubSpot describes the Inbound methodology as “the method of growing your organisation by building meaningful, lasting relationships with consumers, prospects, and customers”.

How can businesses apply Inbound marketing? 

HubSpot identifies these 3 different stages, which become opportunities to engage with an audience, they are: Attract, Engage, and Delight.

  • Attract the right people by creating helpful content that directly addresses the needs of your customer to rationalise their purchase.
  • Engage by offering helpful insights and providing expertise to empower them to make informed decisions and easily navigate the different solutions that are available.
  • Delight them by exceeding their expectations at every stage of the customer journey and ensure a positive customer experience before, during and after the purchase.

Once customers have a successful experience with your business, they are likely to spread the word to their peers, which can attract new prospects. This creates a positive feedback loop, which is the foundation of the flywheel concept.

While both outbound and inbound marketing have their place, customers are more likely to build long term relationships with brands that address their needs over ones that simply advertise products. Get in touch with a member of the Pixeld team to find out more about how Inbound marketing can help your business grow smarter in every way.


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