Can anything about Internet marketing really be 1,000 years old? That might seem like an impossibility, but we certainly think so.
After all, one of the things we have learned time and time again isn't exactly new – it's something that we suspect the first vendors in open air markets probably figured out pretty quickly: that it's better to have people coming to you for business than the other way around.
Of course, modern sales and marketing departments realize this, as well. Although "direct sales" type of efforts – like telemarketing, catalogs, advertisements, and so on – work quickly and don't require a lot of finesse, they also tend to be far less profitable then campaigns that draw buyers in at the right moment.
That's why we are such big fans of inbound marketing, and especially automated web marketing. The less time and energy you spend finding new customers, the easier it is to work with the ones who actually show up at your virtual doorstep.
Consider these seven advantages you get from having a consistent plan that brings you new leads from your website every month:
1. Prospects are more trusting of you.
People are just naturally more suspicious of others who seem like they are trying to sell them something, especially if the offer was unsolicited. But, when they seek out an expert for help, an opinion, or even a product, they tend to be less skeptical.
2. The relationship is based on problem-solving, not selling.
When clients seek you out, they come to you because they have an unmet need or challenging problem that needs attention. As a result, the relationship starts off on the right foot, and with the right focus on solutions instead of products and prices.
3. You can charge higher prices and fees.
As a natural result of clients thinking about answers to their problems, instead of what they are being sold, they are less sensitive to higher fees. After all, if you look for the best expert opinion you can find, cost isn't usually your first consideration.
4. You face a shorter sales cycle with each prospect.
Potential customers who aren't as skeptical or fearful of being sold don't withhold information the way other prospects do. That means you can find solutions faster, and a completed sale can be finished in much less time, and without objections.
5. You waste less time and money on sales and marketing.
One underrated aspect of inbound marketing campaigns is that they aren’t just more efficient than direct selling techniques, but tend to be cheaper on the whole, as well. Additionally, they require much less time and attention after an initial "setup" phase.
6. You follow up with fewer unqualified prospects.
When you are targeting customers through direct mail, telemarketing, etc., anyone who shows interest can enter the sales process, and get the attention of you or your staff. With inbound marketing, however, customers who aren't that interested or can't afford what you're offering normally won't contact you or your team to take the next step.
7. It’s easier for your business to grow over time.
Perhaps the best thing about having a system to attract leads is that it's scalable – you aren’t constrained by your schedule, or a monthly advertising budget.
If your entire marketing plan is built on the process of finding new customers, selling them products or services, and then doing the "rinse and repeat" routine, then you have no idea how badly you need a program that brings buyers to you. It isn't just a more efficient way to make sales, it's an entirely different philosophy that makes you more profitable and decreases your workload at the same time.
At Kayak, we have a trusted reputation – and an unmatched track record – when it comes to building inbound lead-generation websites.