The Innovator’s Guide to Inbound Content Marketing

In today’s fast-paced digital marketing landscape, inbound content marketing is your brand’s lifeline to high conversion rates and audiences that love what you’re putting out there. Here’s a look at how to put together strategies that work.

inbound content marketing

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Your inbound content marketing strategy is a bigger part of your brand’s audience-facing image than you may realize. Its primary goal is to drive traffic to your website, attract customers interested in your products, and support robust conversion rates. However, that’s not where its purpose ends.

Amazing inbound marketing campaigns also foster lasting, powerful brand-customer connections. Fantastic marketing content answers important questions for your existing and potential customers. It empowers them to make wiser marketing decisions.

Here, we’ll go over what you need to know to create an amazing inbound marketing strategy. It will hit all the right notes and keep your audience coming back for more. You’ll be reaping the benefits in no time.

    The Core Principles of Inbound Content Marketing

    “Inbound content marketing just might be the magic touch you need. And that’s not hyperbole: It truly does feel like magic when you put it in place and watch it fly.” — Julia McCoy, entrepreneur and content marketing expert

    Inbound marketing leverages various digital experiences to raise brand awareness and encourage consumers to check out what a business has to offer. Many of these experiences will involve top-tier written, visual, or graphic content.

    Inbound content marketing helps you realize important business and advertising goals by:

    • Attracting: Leveraging helpful, useful content to help draw in members of a target audience and get them interested in a brand or its products

    • Engaging: Using quality content creation and compelling insights to encourage audiences to read, share, comment on, and otherwise engage with your content

    • Entertaining: Taking a consumer’s content experience to the next level by not only assisting them and introducing them to your brand but also by delivering a great user experience

    Inbound marketing channels, including your website and your various social media profiles, are indispensable parts of your overall digital marketing strategy for one very important reason. When your existing and potential customers find what they’re looking for, they feel empowered as consumers. They also feel compelled to share that success with others.

    Deliver that experience to enough of your website visitors and audience members. Soon, your brand will gain serious momentum.

    Comparing Inbound and Outbound Content Strategies

    If your company is like most, your marketing team likely leverages a combination of outbound and inbound content strategies to meet business goals. Here’s a brief rundown of the key differences between the two:

    • Outbound marketing is generally initiated by the marketer rather than the customer. Examples of popular outbound content marketing techniques include cold emailing, direct mail, brochures, and social media advertising.

    • Inbound marketing is initiated by the customer instead, as when a consumer finds your marketing content via a Google search. Supporting techniques can include SEO, lead nurturing, buyer personas, and social media engagement.

    Both outbound and inbound strategies have their benefits, and both have their place in any well-rounded marketing strategy.

    Inbound content marketing is naturally a mainstay in an era when most people are tired of aggressive advertising. They prefer to do business with brands that focus on helping and connecting with their customers, rather than just selling to them.

    Your most effective inbound content lets you do this by answering your customers’ questions, understanding their pain points, and catering to their needs, allowing you to introduce your brand as a possible solution.

    You can also tie outbound marketing into the equation by using it to bolster and strengthen your inbound efforts. For example, paid advertising via search engines or social media is a solid way to promote your best content. It helps you reach different audiences effectively.

    Best Practices for Incredible Inbound Marketing Strategies That Work

    Ready to dive into some best practices and winning strategies for getting the results you want out of your inbound content marketing efforts? Here are some expert tips to keep in mind.

    Know your audience

    This is the golden rule for any type of digital marketing. The better you know the people you’re marketing to, the more effective your content will be.

    Who are your products for, and what does your ideal customer care about most? What problems and concerns does your target audience have, and how can your brand address them? If you’re unsure of the answers to these questions, leverage tools like market research and buyer’s personas. These can help you zero in on answers that inform your content efforts.

    Plan your marketing funnel

    The bigger the purchase and the more important the product, the less likely a consumer is to complete a purchase on a whim. Most undergo an entire buyer’s journey that starts with discovery and only closes with a purchase. This is especially the case in B2B marketing, where decision-makers often buy on behalf of an entire company.

    That’s where your inbound marketing funnel comes in. That’s where your inbound marketing funnel comes in. Customers have varying content needs depending on their stage in the buyer’s journey and your marketing funnel.

    • Top-of-funnel (TOFU) content: Consumers at the top of the funnel have just discovered your brand or recently become aware that they have a problem that needs solving. Appropriate content helps inform them on these matters and answer questions they’re likely to have.

    • Middle-of-funnel (MOFU) content: Once customers reach the middle of the marketing funnel, they know they’re looking for a specific solution and are in the process of evaluating their options. Serve these customers content that helps them make smart choices while positioning your brand as the best solution.

    • Bottom-of-funnel (BOFU) content: Once leads reach the bottom of your funnel, they’re primed and ready to buy. They just need that extra little push in the right direction, and the right content can help provide that. Try fortifying informative content with powerful social proof or special offers to make it extra appealing.

    Some marketers also add a fourth level to their marketing funnels to address the needs of post-funnel customers. Appropriate post-funnel content can focus on objectives like helping customers get more out of past purchases, suggesting complementary purchases, and so forth.

    Invest in solid search engine optimization (SEO)

    Even the most incredibly crafted content won’t get the brand behind it very far if no one can find it. That’s where inbound marketing SEO comes in:

    • Thorough SEO calls for ongoing keyword research. Learn what current terms, long-tail key phrases, and natural language your audience is using to locate products like yours and plan incredible content around them.

    • Set up your website so that it’s organized, navigable, user-friendly, and addresses the needs of your target audience. The better the user experience you can offer, the more attractive your site will look to search engines.

    • Create incredible content that’s well-optimized for SEO. Think headings and subheadings, engaging graphics, and keywords used naturally throughout your text.

    • Audit existing content regularly to identify information gaps, select top-performing pieces to update, etc.

    Use social media to your advantage

    Social media is so much more than just a way to kill a few minutes of free time here and there or stay in touch with old friends. It’s critical to how today’s audiences become aware of new product options and make important purchasing decisions.

    Modern consumers also favor brands they feel personally connected to, and social media is a big part of that. Your customers not only want to see your brand on social media but they expect it, so make sure you’re making the most of that.

    Social media channels are great places to showcase original content, as well as promote inbound marketing content from your website, sponsored blog catalog, video catalog, etc.

    Build a team of professionals to help

    Building and maintaining an effective flow of inbound marketing content takes time, effort, and expertise. It’s not a one-person job, especially if your company is large, complex, or rapidly growing. Assembling a team of SEO experts, experienced content creators, and detail-oriented editors helps take the guesswork out of producing content at scale as your brand grows.

    If you don’t have in-house help, hiring freelancers can be a great solution. Just make sure you use a top-tier, trusted platform like WriterAccess to connect with the right people and ensure results you’ll be happy with.

    Monitor and finetune your results

    Planning and establishing a successful inbound content marketing approach isn’t something you do just once. Your audience’s tastes and expectations are constantly evolving, as is the digital marketing landscape, so your content strategies need to do the same.

    Collect and carefully analyze data attached to each piece of content and individual campaign. Determine what’s working and what isn’t. Make changes and tweaks accordingly to ensure each new addition to your strategy is even more effective than the last.

    Ready to take your next inbound marketing campaign to the next level? Start building an incredible team of expert writers, content creators, and SEO specialists when you sign up for your free 14-day WriterAccess trial today! You’ll love the difference the right help makes.


    Human Crafted Content

    Find top content freelancers on WriterAccess.

    Human Crafted Content

    Find top content freelancers on WriterAccess.

    Shannon Hilson Rock author vector
    Rock Content Writer

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