Old media like newspapers and magazines are declining as we do more and more online as evidenced by a recent New York Times headline Print is Down, and Now Out. DVR’s help us timeshift our favorite TV shows and skip commercials. Caller ID enables us to screen our phone calls and we use voicemail to avoid talking with people we don’t know or don’t want to talk too (think “cold callers”).
Simply put, traditional marketing no longer works very well because we’ve created ways to block the noise and interruptions.
Now think about the way you shop or make big purchasing decisions today. It’s very different because so much information is available on the Internet with just a few key strokes or finger swipes.
I’ll also bet that you depend on friends, co-workers, social media, and Google to provide information, research, recommendations, shared experiences and guidance when making buying choices.
Here’s an example of using social media recommendations - one of my facebook friends recently asked for recommendations on a new vacuum cleaner. She got over 20 responses from her friends. She did not look for ads or commercials. Instead she looked for feedback and wise words from friends and what they used. Names are blurred to protect their privacy.
So, the question is, regardless of what you sell or who you sell too (i.e. B2B or B2C) how can you cut through the blocking mechanisms, noise and clutter to reach potential customers? How do you become a part of someone’s conversation?
The answer is, “you focus on attracting” your ideal prospect to your website, not interrupting them. The best way to do that is by using Inbound marketing principles to help you become attractive to the people that should be using your products or services.
The key is to attract targeted prospects to your website first. The most basic inbound strategy is to focus on your ideal prospect’s problems and publish content that answers their most frequently asked questions. Why focus here? Because that’s what they are searching for...answers to questions and solutions to problems.
In the early stages of today's buying process our prospects are trying to decide if they have a problem that needs to be solved. Once they confirm that they move on to gathering more specific information about their problem and potential vendors that might be able to help them. After that they narrow down their choices and make a decision.
Are you focused on answering your prospects questions or touting your products features? Have you noticed a drop off in leads and want a solution to turn this around? Want to learn more about how to attract your best prospects to your website?