Choose your Strategy: How to Decide Between Inbound and Outbound Marketing
December 20, 2013
Once you understand the relevant differences, selecting between inbound marketing and outbound marketing is about as simple as choosing what to have for lunch. Although the decision is far more important than that and may indeed be one of the most significant business decisions you’ll ever have to face, making the right call should come naturally to anyone who understands their own business.
Inbound vs. Outbound Marketing
In the traditional sense, outbound marketing is about finding new customers with the aid of unsolicited media. This includes television and newspaper advertisements, flyers, mailed brochures, and so on. We’re all exposed to outbound marketing virtually any time we’re exposed to the mainstream media, and outbound marketing is typically what people think of when they think about advertising.
On the other hand, inbound marketing is about having customers reach out to you. Rather than paying someone to inform consumers that you exist, consumers actively seek you out to solve a problem they’re having. Consequently, inbound marketing sites work hard to develop a presence online in order to become visible to consumers. This includes developing SEO-optimized content in order to perform well in search engines.
The Crucial Difference
There are two important distinctions between inbound and outbound marketing. The first is the more crucial difference, the fact that people who seek out information from an inbound marketer have already demonstrated an interest in what that marketer has to offer. By contrast, those in outbound marketing are essentially stumbling across your pitch. In the simplest terms, this makes inbound marketing a much cheaper way to develop leads than outbound marketing.
The second important distinction between inbound and outbound marketing can be found in their ability to reach consumers by targeting particular demographics. Where an inbound marketer running a newsletter can send e-mails targeted according to the personal information about the recipient, like region, age, or even interests, outbound marketers are unable to achieve nearly the same degree of demographic targeting. Consequently, if your business has a target demographic that disproportionately outweighs the importance of the other demographics you may have, inbound marketing may be the way to go on that fact alone.
The Big Picture
It’s important to not underestimate the value of both inbound and outbound marketing when used alongside each other. Although inbound marketing has a significant advantage on the Internet, outbound marketing is far from replaced, and you would never see professional firms like HiveMind Marketing entirely ignore one in favor of the other. San Jose online marketing, or for that matter any other specific locality, will always have important regional elements that make the value of outbound marketing impossible to ignore in good conscience.