What does "Outbound Marketing" mean?
Traditional marketing techniques now fall under the moniker of “Outbound Marketing” and is also sometimes also referred to as “direct marketing’ or “interruption marketing.” From the names, you may be able to guess what they mean. These past marketing techniques involved sending a message to the largest group of people possible through advertising, people making cold calls, direct mailings, and other avenues that disrupt the normal daily activities of your target audience. Under these techniques, marketing and advertising have created information overload and noise that fails to garner sufficient interest – instead of creating annoyance and spite on behalf of the recipient. People are tired of being “talked to.”
But now there is “Inbound Marketing.”
“Inbound Marketing” is much more powerful, as it positions the person or company as an expert (instead of strictly as a salesperson) in the eyes of the potential customer. Inbound Marketing is about creating a two-way communicative environment and experience. As an agent, you are the expert in your field! People come to you for advice, insight, and guidance regarding the security of their future in case something happens.
It may seem overwhelming and intimidating to harness the power of this technique at first, but anyone can do it!
Inbound Marketing is about providing information on a public platform so your customers and potential customer begin to think of you as a resource. You want to be the “go to” person when they have questions. You must provide consistent digital content through whitepapers, blog posts, and social media posts, so when it reaches your targeted audience it spikes their interest and curiosity. Inbound Marketing encourages interaction and participation by provoking customers or potential customers to comment and engage with each other (or you) on blogs, articles and social media posts. By creating a well thought-out website, creating content via blogs, vlogs, and social media, you will actually bring and attract prospects to you.
So, where do you get started with “Inbound Marketing?”
Do your research!
- Do you know your business? Do you know your industry?
- What goals do you have? (Revenue? Leads? New Customers?)
- How do you currently gain new customers? What is the process like?
- What are your competitors like? What are they doing?
- What are your customers like? What are the biggest complaints your customers express to you? What are the demographics of your customers?
Take a look at your website! (Specifically Search Engine Optimization or “SEO”)
- Are you using keywords within the content on your website and on your blog?
- Are you using keywords when using images on your website and on your blog?
- Are you linking other websites and other blog posts to your website and article?
Speaking of blogging…
- Are you blogging or posting articles on your professional page (LinkedIn)?
- Are you publishing the right kind of content to engage your customers’ interests?
- Are you posting content too irregularly? If so, make sure you are posting content consistently!
- What is your niche? Make sure you are creating content from the right angles.
Use a call-to-action!
What do you want your customers or potential customers to do? Give them choices that evoke a response. If you discuss a coverage option, follow it up with an invitation to “contact you today!”
Communicate all the time!
- Are you communicating with leads that may be on the fence and just aren’t ready to make the leap yet? Don’t forget about them!
- Are you communicating with your current customers so they do not feel forgotten or left behind?
- Are you keeping an eye on the types of things your customers and prospects are interested in?
Some other marketing tips and tricks for independent insurance agents:
- If you were on the other side of your communication, how would you receive it?
- If you were on the other side of your communication, is it a message you would like to hear/read/watch?
- Is the communication enticing to read?
- Will it make me want take action?
Give Inbound Marketing a try and you’ll see that a two-dynamic communication and relationship is a powerful experience for both sides.
Forget postcard mailings, costly advertisements, and all of the traditional methods of marketing you’ve used until now. You don’t need them anymore! Marketing your agency to attract new business has never been easier than it is in 2018. Why? Check out 2018 Issue 4 of Smart Choice Magazine for reasons why marketing your agency for growth is easier than ever — and how you can do it.