What a successful inbound marketing campaign looks like

April 6th, 2010 No Comments

HubSpot is one of my favorite online marketing and web analytics companies frequently blogs about inbound marketing. In one of their recent posts, they answer a question that we are often asked by clients: What does success look like? How do you measure success? While analytics, traffic, and sales are an important end result of success, this does not happen by magic. One of my favorite quotes is from wine guru and business guru Gary Vaynerchuk: “Viral is not strategy. Viral is an outcome.”

But what needs to be done in order to get to that outcome? How does a company need to transform itself in order to achieve inbound marketing success? It’s actually a fairly intense process that requires organizational buy in and a different organizational structure than previously needed. Hubspot’s blog post “What does an Inbound Marketing transformation look like?” does a good job in addressing this issue.

Content Creation

You already know you need to create content to be a successful inbound marketer, but if you’ve transformed your company, it might look a little different than you expect.

  • Marketing team is managing the blog – Maybe they’re writing a few blog posts or producing some videos, but primary responsibility for content creation isn’t in their laps any more.  Instead…
  • Bloggers come from other departments –  If you’re a software company, your product managers and engineers are blogging.  If you’re a consulting company, your consultants are producing all kinds of content.
  • The executive team is watching your blog analytics – Why?  Well, your blog is allowing you to get found, so they care.  They also want to make sure that you’re getting good ROI from the time folks are spending producing content.

Sales

Maybe it was tough to get the sales team’s buy-in at first (especially since you might be making them blog!), but now they’re complete inbound marketing converts.  Why?

  • They don’t cold-call any more – Every lead they get has already been to your website or interacted with your company.
  • They know what leads want – They’ve checked all the available reports and know exactly which pages of your website their lead has visited.
  • They know when leads are thinking about you – It’s not magic, it’s an email alert they get when a lead comes back to your site.

Public Relations

Maybe you’ve gotten rid of your traditional PR department by now, but, at minimum, its functions look wildly different.

  • The PR folks are all about social media – Their Twitter Grade is 99+, and they’re completely aware of every single time your brand is mentioned.
  • Everyone in the company does some PR – The gist of your social media policy is “use common sense”, and everyone is encouraged to Tweet, Facebook, & blog responsibly.
  • Press releases fit into SEO strategy – Press releases are written to specifically align with link-building and keyword-targeting strategies.  The era of vomiting how cool you are all over the place is over.

The Executive Suite

This is probably the best measure of how tranformed your company is.  Your executives buy into inbound marketing and pay attention.

  • ROI ROI ROI – And have we mentioned ROI?  They care about how you’re spending your time and energy, and appreciate that they understand the ROI they get from inbound marketing.
  • Transparency – They’re aware of (and care about) your social media presence and your blog.  They’ve even been known to write a post or three themselves.
  • They’re true believers – Sure, they were skeptical at first, but now your executives have become obsessed with seeing where your leads come from on a high level.  They love inbound marketing and give you active suggestions on your next content creation effort.

Does your company look like this yet?  What might you have to do to get there?

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