Since the dawn of inbound marketing, marketers have been hatin’ on outbound marketing tactics.
And really, we get it. No one wants to see that McDonald’s commercial for the 100th time, and no one wants their Pandora workout station interrupted to hear once again how Geico could save you 15% or more on your car insurance.
Outbound marketing is disruptive. But it’s also kind of effective — if you know how to use it for 21st-century consumers. Before we get into this whole thing though, it’s important to know what inbound and outbound marketing are, and why maybe, just maybe, they can work together.
Like we mentioned earlier, outbound marketing is inherently disruptive. It gets in front of a consumer with a goal of distracting them from whatever they were already doing. In the past, you’d have seen this most in radio and TV ads, as well as billboards and honestly, the Girl Scouts selling cookies at the grocery store. (Seriously, they get us every time.) Outbound marketing is any form of marketing or advertising that pushes your message out to consumers, rather than drawing them in. Click To Tweet Outbound marketing is also usually paid (Check out our complete guide to outbound marketing for more in-depth info). You have to pay for ad spots on radio and tv, just as you now have to pay for ad spots on Google, Facebook, and other partnered websites.
Inbound marketing, on the other hand, is any form of marketing that draws consumers into your company, your website, or your building. It’s also usually free (ish). Inbound marketing relies on tactics like content development, blogging, and sending targeted emails to your existing email list. These are tactics that take time and brainpower, but don’t cost much money. Inbound marketing has proven exceptionally successful in the 21st century. We’ve explained this more than once, so we won’t go too far into it, but generally, the idea is that people hate being interrupted, and inbound marketing gets the word out about your company in a way that feels natural, organic, and not pushy.
Pretty nice, right? It’s cheap, it gets you quality customers, and you don’t have to pound the pavement to find them.
Inbound marketing methods are proven to be cost-efficient and effective, costing you 61% less per lead than outbound marketing tactics. The only problem is that it does take a bit of time. When you write and publish content to the web, you have to wait for search engines to crawl and index your site. Once they do, they’ll evaluate your content and rank it relative to other sites writing about similar topics. Then, you have to see where you rank, so you can keep optimizing your site for better placement on SERPs, and better conversion rates on-site. When fully deployed and implemented, inbound marketing draws in serious traffic and has the ability to convert like no other marketing tactic out there today. But sometimes you need a little boost when you’re getting started. This is where we start to get a little controversial:
It’s Not Inbound Marketing vs. Outbound Marketing
Outbound marketing can solve this problem of driving the right traffic to your inbound-optimized website immediately. The key is doing it properly. Unlike Geico, you don’t want to blast your message out to the general populace. Instead, you should use targeted, inbound-centric paid advertising and social media advertising campaigns to let the right people know about your product or service. Choose digital advertising platforms that let you control who your message is going to, and how it’s delivered. With in-depth metrics, you can see which segment of your audience is responding best, and you can continue to optimize your paid ads to deliver the best results, for the least spend. (Check out this blog about optimizing PPC, and this blog about optimizing Facebook Ads, for more information on improving outbound marketing ROI.) When you’re developing targeted digital ads that are designed to meet your ideal audience, you’ll see better, more effective results, and more importantly, you’ll see immediate results. It’s good to know that outbound marketing tactics aren’t just for new websites, either. When used properly, outbound marketing is a great way to supplement an already robust inbound marketing platform. The fact is, there’s a point where you might feel like you’ve saturated your existing market. Outbound marketing can help get your message out to a new group of people who can benefit from your products and quality customer service.
Inbound Marketing + Effective Outbound Marketing = Company Growth
If you take anything away from this blog post, it should be this: inbound marketing and outbound marketing can work together effectively. It’s easy to pit the two methodologies against each other because they do come from fundamentally different perspectives. But, if you apply an inbound mentality to your outbound marketing methods, and direct ads and promoted content to the audience most likely to care about what you have to say, you might just find that the two methodologies can work together to help grow your company. Outbound marketing tactics are a great supplement to any inbound marketing strategy. Click To Tweet When implemented properly, optimized for maximum ROI, and paired well with your inbound marketing strategy, they work to deliver qualified leads that can help stimulate overall company growth. Not sure where to start? Let’s chat! As a digital marketing and growth agency, HA Digital Marketing doesn’t choose between inbound our outbound. We help our clients leverage the best of both inbound and outbound marketing strategies for overall company growth. Interested in seeing how we do it?