Inbound Marketing: the 8 golden rules for the digital development of SMEs

Digitization is struggling to take off among small and medium-sized enterprises. The snapshot taken by the Lombard university attests that, in 2019, 88% of entrepreneurs consider digital innovations as necessary for the development of their business, but only 26% demonstrate that they have an adequate digital maturity to compete on global markets . 

Data that require local businesses not to do well on traditional models, but to adopt new digital strategies to give value and effectiveness to their online presence. Here are 8 rulse for digital development.

1. Building goals starting from data analysis

Collecting data, today, is not a problem: every site, tool and platform keeps track of everything that happens within it. Visitors, sessions, conversions, paths, opening rates and bounce-rates: the data we have at our disposal is almost infinite. 

The experience of years alongside companies has shown us that one of the most common problems is related to data monitoring, analysis and their correct interpretation. Our vision of the future of marketing is Data-Driven oriented and a truly effective Inbound project can only be built by basing the choice of objectives on real data. 

We need to shift the focus from data acquisition to their management.

2. Building goals starting from data analysis

Knowing your customers is the first step in designing an effective inbound strategy. Every business, be it B2C or B2B, has a target audience that needs to be clearly identified and defined. 

To do this in the best way we have tested a specific method, based on interviews and meetings inside and outside the company, which, involving each company department, defines the Buyer Persona of the brand: we map detailed profiles of typical customers that contain information on needs, motivations , expectations, wishes, issues and other details. Only in this way is it possible to understand what potential customers really need and approach them speaking the same language.

3. Go online: website, social media and paid search

Even the pages of the institutional site must speak the same language as the Buyers, using the same terms. This means making an in-depth study of the most sought after issues and the terms used by users to find solutions to their problems.

To ensure complete visibility of the online brand, all our projects are based on a 360-degree performance marketing activity: a central digital entity such as the website, SEO and paid search activities on Google, a scheduling of contents, possibly pushed with advertising on the main social media and a targeted attention to the funnel with precise remarketing actions, they guarantee high visibility and an effective generation of target contacts.

4. Lead Generation: Content is the heart of marketing

Very often, in our experience, the ultimate goal of the website is to convert visitors into leads and, subsequently, into customers. 

A good Lead Generation activity is closely linked to the production of valuable content to attract a qualified audience. Each Buyer Persona needs content in line with the various information needs and the company’s goal is to oversee all key touchpoints, making content available in the right points of the customer journey (in the form of white papers, blog posts, case histories,. .) and supporting them with an accurate delivery strategy.

5. Building a company-client relationship with Lead Nurturing

Collecting contacts to populate a database with Lead Generation activities has a reduced effectiveness if these are not cultivated. And this is precisely the difficulty that we encounter most frequently in the projects and companies we provide advice to.

The goal of Lead Nurturing is precisely to build a relationship of trust with potential customers, providing useful information to accompany them in all phases of the process  that characterizes the interaction between consumer and company (awareness, consideration and decision). The blog plays a main role in this strategy: offering quality content, which deals with interesting topics in depth, will increase the chances of being found by an audience genuinely interested in their products or services.

6. Integrate marketing, sales and customer care processes

Integrate marketing and sales processes, using CRM to profile customers and offer them a tailor-made service, improving Lead Generation and sales processes, and creating targeted customer loyalty experiences: this is our future digital vision.

HubSpot is one of the many platforms that allow you to monitor and develop all the activities that contribute to an Inbound Marketing strategy. The adoption of a tool of this magnitude by brands has repeatedly been decisive for the success of a project: by integrating all business processes from a marketing perspective, valuable support is offered to the marketing, sales and customer care teams. .

7. Choose a Marketing Automation software 

Implementing a Marketing Automation system is in our opinion fundamental within an Inbound strategy. 

The technological platforms on the market allow us to simplify, speed up and automate a series of marketing actions that would otherwise have to be done manually. They allow you to manage, monitor and cultivate relationships with each Lead in the database. By setting up automated email flows, which are activated in the presence of pre-established criteria (clicks on certain links, pages visited, users returning to the site, etc …), it is possible to send marketing messages and profile advertising clusters designed to accompany prospects from awareness phase, up to the consideration and decision phase.

8. Invest in resource training 

Over the years, we have tested and validated how crucial it is to invest in the training of internal company resources to make a marketing project effective. 

Conclusion

Indeed, an inbound strategy involves different levels and areas of each brand and therefore requires in-depth and horizontal preparation. Only by connecting different departments within the company, and aligning them with the planned marketing activities, it is possible to obtain excellent and above all long-lasting results.

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