Is inbound marketing an approach you’ve considered taking – but aren’t sure if it makes sense for your business or your industry? There are a lot of convincing statistics that demonstrate the power of inbound to fuel remarkable growth, yet some organizations are still doubtful, suggesting that their businesses are somehow different and therefore “inbound just wouldn’t work for us.”
When evaluating a prospect’s potential to benefit from an inbound marketing approach, we ask some very basic questions about the nature of the business to help us understand if and how well the two are aligned. And you can ask those questions of yourself now, because I’ve shared them with you in this short video!
VIDEO TRANSCRIPT: Is Inbound Marketing Right for My Business?
Hi, I’m Greg Linnemanstons, president of Weidert Group. I’m here today to answer one of the more common questions we get about inbound marketing, and that’s, “Is inbound right for my business?”
We have a pretty simple way to identify the appropriateness of inbound marketing for a company’s business, and that’s to ask our prospects these four questions:
Number One: Are your traditional new business efforts generating the quantity or quality of leads needed to reach your growth goals?
If you’re not getting what you need, just working harder isn’t going to change your results. Analyzing the current state of your business development efforts and then comparing it to what’s possible with inbound is usually the trigger that compels prospects to start thinking about inbound.
Number Two: Do your customers make highly considered purchases – the kind of purchases that require them to do due diligence and evaluate solutions and vendors?
If so, providing content that answers the questions they’re asking at different stages in their journeys makes you valuable to them early in the process. It also makes you visible as a relevant vendor/partner, and helps you start to build trust.
Number Three: Is your customer lifetime value significant enough to justify a major investment in attracting new customers?
In order to understand whether or not you want to spend what it’s going to cost you to implement an inbound program, you first have to understand customer lifetime value, or CLV. CLV is the amount of gross margin the average customer represents over the course of their lifetime as your customer. So while your average customer may represent $75,000 a year in gross margin, if the average duration as a customer is 6 years, your average CLV is $450,000.
Having a deep understanding of your CLV will help answer the question, “How many customers do I need to attract via inbound to make the investment worth it?” You can learn more about it by clicking this link: Using CLV to Calculate Lead Value [Video].
Number Four: Does your business enjoy some competitive advantages that can be highlighted by showing and sharing with more people through relevant content?
When you offer prospects valuable content that openly details how they can improve profitability or reduce downtime or boost productivity, you’re giving them the insights they need to confidently move toward a decision. When prospects are searching for solutions and have narrowed it down to you and a few competitors, the company that has been the most helpful, relevant, and transparent will have the inside track. The rest is up to you, but inbound marketing gives you the opportunity to get a leg up on your competition.
So, to recap, your business will undoubtedly benefit from inbound marketing if:
traditional marketing methods are failing you;
if your prospects need to do deep due diligence about solution possibilities and the potential vendors before making a buying decision;
if your average customer lifetime value justifies the investment;
and if you’ve got a competitive advantage that’s meaningful to prospects.
If you’d like to chat about any of this, or if you’d like us to walk you through the CLV calculation, don’t hesitate to reach out to the email on your screen!
You probably have additional questions about inbound marketing besides those posed here. If so, be sure to check out our short eBook, Answers to the Top 15 Questions About Inbound Marketing. Just click the link below.
Posted by Greg Linnemanstons With 18+ years in senior management roles at Fortune 500® and medium-sized companies, Greg has deep marketing and sales experience with CPGs and manufacturing. He leads strategic initiatives with clients and is involved in developing client inbound marketing plans. Greg holds an M.B.A. from Northwestern's Kellogg School of Management and a B.A. in Economics from Lawrence University.