Social media marketing has forever changed the world of digital advertising. However, as a service deliverable, I felt that it was falling short of my desire to deliver material results for my clients on its own. In fact, I found that MANY aspects of marketing fell short of my personal expectations when executed independently of one another.
So, after many months of exhaustive researching, networking, strategy development, program piloting, and experimentation, I decided that it was time for a change. A BIG change at that... And that's when I went all-in with inbound marketing.
If you are like I was, at a crossroads and in search of the perfect marketing solution for your business, then this is a journey that you and I should take together.
And, we have liftoff!
Today, I launched my business' first inbound campaign, crystalized by publishing my brand-new website. Therefore, the main focus of today's article is to discuss website development in context with inbound marketing.
To start, it's not just an ordinary website. It's brimming with free content offers, calls-to-action, and smart forms. It is the catalyst to dozens of automated email campaigns, and is at the very center of my entire strategy.
Here's how it breaks down:
Step 1: Site Pages
There are certain expectations we all have when entering a new website. We expect to be able to navigate to the main points of interest with a menu at the top. Footers with site maps and other navigational tools should also be included.
There should be a home page, a contact us page, about us, and places where you describe your services offerings.
These are some of the basic components to any good website. www.orangepegs.com now has 13 site pages (up from 8). Not a big difference from that point of view, but aesthetically and functionally, the difference is huge. Inbound is all about the joining of multiple digital marketing disciplines, which amplifies the effectiveness of each. So, this is just the framework. Keep going for what makes it extraordinary.
Step 2: Landing Pages
Why create landing pages? Why not just use your regular site pages for directing traffic? What's the point of having pages that don't show up on your menu? In short, it's going to improve your odds of success because you create portals for individualization. For more on landing pages, check out our free ebook on Fluid Marketing.
The key is to have different landing pages to match different ads and links to offers within your website. We now have 29 landing pages, including landing points from search ads as well as links to "more information" throughout my website and (future) blogs. It also includes thank-you pages to match each of my offer pages.
Step 3: Content
Inbound Marketing works because you develop interesting content. Why would people give you information or attention without something in return? This is why it's important to have vision if you intend on engaging in marketing of any kind, regardless of the medium.
As a social media agency, I found myself sharing a lot of other people's content, but developing my own seemed like a lot of work with very little use outside of posting here and there. But when you develop content for an inbound campaign, it applies to everything you do, so develop this early, and put some real effort into it.
We put together 6 ebooks and 1 checklist to get started.
Step 4: Emails
I know this may seem like a separate topic on its own, and I'd actually agree, but it's important to note here as well because inbound marketing is all about seamless marketing integration. If somebody downloads content, you should follow up with an appropriate email. It's that simple.
You want to interact with your prospective clients, and triggering communication tools based on somebody's behavior on your website is one way to do that.
We developed hundreds of emails and upon deployment, had it narrowed down to 203. There were emails geared toward business owners, sales & marketting professionals, and corporate recruiters.
Step 5: Execution
This is where you and I met. I was exhaling as I depressed the left button on my mouse, watching my browser think.
It's off to the races!
What followed was a tireless weekend of testing, debugging, and watching. And now that my first full day of deploying the website is coming to an end, I could not be more excited. Traffic has already increased by 1,000%, and I even have multiple contact requests. Within 24 hours I went from having zero interest to a future unbound and completely inbound.
As the months progress, I will continue to report to you the results of my campaign. I will include charts and figures using factual data. As a former social media consultant, website development is only the tip of the iceberg in regards to the growth of our digital marketing agency, and I cannot wait to share all of the juicy details.
Interested in an inbound marketing assessment for your company? Let's set up a call!