Inbound marketing isn't a collection of independent tactics. Generating inbound leads relies upon you taking an integrated approach that caters to your buyer's entire decision making process.
In essence, with each inbound campaign, you need to create the entire inbound methodology, from start to finish. So what are the essential elements of a successful inbound campaign that has your entire funnel covered?
The topic of your campaign will probably be inspired by a key piece of content that you have in mind. From this piece of content you should select the target audience (the buyer persona) and derive the search keywords that campaign should be aligned to. With this information to hand you are ready to create the right supporting material to promote your key content piece.
Your next step is to create the content offers up and down the funnel (or the decision making process) from the piece that inspired the campaign. Typical campaigns consist of three or four pieces of content aligned to the different stages of the decision making process - as already implied, your key piece could belong at any stage. As you already know, the information prospects desire is different at each stage, so different content is called for to keep them engaged.
Your campaign also requires what we call an 'end-game' offer, for the very bottom of the funnel. Conversion on this offer indicates that the prospect is highly interested in what you do. Rather than more information, this offer would typically be for a higher value asset such as a product trial, a consultation or a taster of your service. Not everybody reaching the bottom of the funnel will complete this step, so your sales people should still be proactive, but any that do are very attractive prospects.
Each content piece in your campaign, including your end-game offer, now requires a landing page, to capture details, and a thank you page, to deliver the content and promote the next piece in the chain. Each also needs a promotion email and a thank you email, delivery of which should automated in your marketing automation software.
To attract prospects to your content you are going to need blog posts related to the theme of the campaign. Blogs enable the self-discovery of your content via search and social media, and the more blog posts you have pointing to your campaign, the better.
Every single blog post you right should also have a clear call to action within it leading to the relevant campaign.
Search engine optimisation
When your blog posts and landing pages are ready, all need to be search engine optimised to attract as much organic search traffic as possible. Use the keywords you defined in the beginning and follow basic SEO best practice and you should be ok.
Driving additional traffic
If you have the budget and/or the resources, there are additional ways you can drive more traffic to your blog posts and content...
If you have invested already and generated a sizeable audience on social media, it can be an effective source of additional traffic to your campaign. It's ok to share good content repeatedly and frequently, just make sure you are adjusting the tone and pace of your posts for each specific social platform you are using.
If you haven't got a social audience yet, it isn't too late to start, just don’t expect droves of followers or traffic overnight. Start by sharing a mixture of your own content and others' that interests you. Always be original and relevant with your posts and your audience should start to build.
If you still have an advertising budget, consider shifting some or all of it to promoting your content. B2B buyers are looking for the relevant content to solve their problems and don’t mind clicking an advert if this is clearly what it offers. Test a variety of different advertising mediums, including PPC, remarketing and sponsored social posts, to see what performs best for your business.
A complete inbound campaign
Create all of these assets and you have a complete inbound campaign that has the best chance of generating quality leads for your business. As you can see, the amount of work involved in creating an inbound campaign is not insignificant, so plan for your campaign to run for months rather than days or weeks. In fact your campaign can run indefinitely as long as you update the contents of your offers and the topics of your blog posts to keep pace with changes in the subject.
To help you produce great campaigns, every time, we’ve produced this handy inbound campaign checklist. It includes all of the elements mentioned above along with helpful reminders of what you should be looking to achieve within each one. Download yours now.