As a mother, I am constantly reflecting on how I can help my children grow to become happy, healthy, good human beings. If I can help them with these three things, then I say I did my job well! Making that human connection with others, and listening to people is the epitomy of being a good person.
When my 4-year-old daughter stamps her foot and demands for the holiday colored goldfish instead of the original flavor, I'm taken aback and feel frustrated with how she approaches me, especially since my husband and I consistently teach our children (like every parent) how to ask politely. I have to remind her once again, "Em, how do we ask for something in this family?" Then all of a sudden a light bulb goes on in her little head and she (for the most part) sweetly asks, "may I please have the colored goldfish?"...ahhhh, a feeling of calm serenity moves through me...now I'm more apt to help and listen to her.
The feeling of being heard is so great and fulfilling and just as I want my children to listen to and care for others, business owners should treat their customers in this same manner. It's about treating people as they want to be treated. When it comes to marketing a business' product or service, traditional, outbound marketing is interruptive and business-owner-centric, never truly hearing customers' needs and pain points. Inbound Marketing is about being part of the conversation, and buyer-centric, allowing the customer to be heard and listened to.
We hear a lot of people ask the question, "how is inbound different from traditional marketing?" See the chart below and note the difference between Inbound Marketing and Outbound Marketing. Decide which one is the best marketing method for your customers this new year!
|Inbound Marketing||Outbound Marketing|
|Empowers your customers||Underestimates customers|
|Educates and informs the customer||Force-feeding of your product or service|
|Engaging and accessible||Pushes products/service on customers|
|Large reach potential via social media||Limited reach|
|Two-way communication||One-way communication|
As Hubspot puts it, “inbound marketing focuses on creating quality content that pulls people toward your company and product, where they naturally want to be. By aligning the content you publish with your customer’s interests, you naturally attract inbound traffic that you can then convert, close, and delight over time.”
Earn your customers' interest with inbound marketing-don't buy it with outbound marketing!