Posted On Monday, June 28, 2021
Author: Philip Sampson (Account Director)
As I discussed in a previous article, marketing can be looked at in terms of inbound and outbound. Outbound being a more proactive and generally traditional way of doing this by actively seeking out and attempting to command the attention of prospective clients and candidates as opposed to the subject of this article, inbound marketing.
I will try to keep this brief as I have already discussed this in a previous article called ‘The Difference Between Inbound and Outbound Marketing for Recruiters’ but to put it simply, inbound marketing is all about organically and unforcedly building trust and authority with an audience that will hopefully become a client or candidate of yours. It is a gentler, almost passive approach based around brand building with a long term goal of converting a piece of your audience through goodwill.
Inbound marketing can be broken down loosely into the following, almost funnel-like stages…
First you want to attract the attention of your prospects. A good way to do this is with a strong blog section on your website that really focuses on pain points and answers the questions that are common in your industry. Not only will this build a perception within them that you are a valuable resource that they can turn to for honest advice and help, but it will reinforce your brand image. Starting with attraction will make you stand out among your competitors that are simply going in for the kill with the sharpened business end of their stick. You want to court your audience in a way that seems like you don’t even care if they use your service or not, just that you want to help them.
In this decade, engaging with your audience and prospect pool has never been easier. Offer them the opportunity to ask further questions or provide input by harnessing comments, whether that be at the bottom of your blog or on the social media posts that led them to you. Try to start conversations, leave things open ended and get involved in conversations while genuinely taking what they have to say earnestly and morphing your efforts around their feedback.
Now that you are forming a bond with them and becoming almost virtual friends, a chunk of them will no doubt turn to you for your services. Needless to say, it is absolutely critical at this point to, as the subheading suggests, delight them. Offering up anything sub par of near-perfection at this stage will undo all of your efforts leading up until this point and leave them feeling disappointed. While your image should be damn well solidified and superb in their eyes by now, you don’t want to dirty that up with a terrible service when the crunch comes.
Remember, these guys have been actively involved in your online presence and know where to go to make a bad mark on your name. Likewise, having been wooed by you up until this point, delivering equally excellent service is no doubt going to get your good reviews, testimonials and hopefully a bit of referral business as they feel like they have a relationship with you. And everyone knows that social proof and being personally vouched for is the best marketing you can ever get.