We keep thinking what we explain in this post has become common knowledge as a B2B marketing best practice. A recent sales 2.0 workshop with a very open minded group of CEOs reminded us it is a message worth repeating!
No longer can you hope your prospects find you on-line simply because you have a kickass, search-optimized website. You must create a path for your best prospects to find you and a strong inbound marketing program is a good first step. The central premise of inbound marketing is to create and distribute content that is so valuable that prospects are drawn to your website to learn more. Providing information or resources that help them solve problems or make better business decisions will increase the likelihood that your prospects will be loyal, repeat visitors to your site. Also consider deploying the right lead management technology so as those prospects visit your site you can track and monitor their online interactions with you and gain keen insight as to when they become sales ready.
The rapidly expanding social media channel also plays a crucial role on inbound marketing activities. Social media and networks allow us to share information more quickly and allows people to find your firm when the knowledge you are providing spreads from connection to connection. It's critical that the content be relevant and valuable; general broadcasting of a sales message will be painful to the recipient and have a negative effect.
Looking for guidance on developing your inbound strategy? Leaders in this new marketing model include Chris Brogan, David Meerman Scott and Ardath Albee. Take time to visit their sites for the latest best practices. 3forward also has many resources and information on our New Tools site featuring best practices from leaders throughout the marketing industry.