Your customers will find you!

Particularly on the internet, brands want potential customers to be made aware of them. What seems to be a matter of course today is actually a reversal in traditional (offline) marketing methods, and was nothing short of revolutionary just years ago. While classic outbound marketing approaches customers and attempts to convince them of the qualities of the brand itself, modern companies rely on being found by the customer online. However, this "inbound marketing" strategy can only be successful when a brand knows how to position itself properly online and to present itself well.

Let yourself be found instead of having to search for customers!

Instead of actively seeking out customers, for example by sending out newsletters, inbound marketing revolves around presenting oneself where potential clients are already present, and to attract their attention. Such virtual places include blogs and other websites, but also video channels, online games, app stores, forums, question-and-answer portals, social networks, and even results pages of search machines.

Apart from texts in blog posts, white papers, e-books, informative newsletters, advertisements and so on, multimedia content may also be used for inbound marketing, for example videos (in particular tutorials, as these offer a great deal of added value), infographics, images (image galleries), apps, and tools.

Focusing on excellent content

In this regard, inbound marketing is closely related to content marketing — because the interest of potential customers can only be won over through excellent content. But what makes content "excellent"? First of all, where visual and content-related aspects are concerned, it needs to be tailored as specifically as possible to the target audience so that it is well-received by them. This requires an analysis of the target audience! Furthermore, the content should also be visually and editorially integrated into the environment in which it is to be placed. The prime example of this is advertorials: Such content has practical value for the potential customer, and is ideally integrated into its environment with regard to visual, design and stylistic aspects, but also in the way it addresses the user — however, its true purpose is to present a brand or a product.

Advertorials: A prime example of successful inbound marketing

The most popular medium for inbound marketing is blogs and other websites, on which brands place their advertorials. An advertorial, from the words "advertisement" + "editorial", and as its name suggests, is a promotional advertisement, but one which has obvious added value for the user, and which is integrated so inconspicuously into the surrounding website that there is no break between it and the rest of the content. This preserves the purpose of the advertisement, but it is the added practical value for the user which is at the foreground. Moreover, it should also be mentioned that advertorials have the benefit of being entirely compliant with Google webmaster guidelines, as long as they are identified as ads and that the nofollow attribute is used for all outgoing links.

This combination achieves presence, an increase in brand awareness and reach, and in ideal cases even the number of conversions. Furthermore, the use of advertorials also builds up a community of interested users that can be converted to customers much more easily than with other marketing methods — after all, it is proven that advertorials are significantly more effective than banner ads. But the greatest advantage is that advertorials are much more cost-effective when compared to outbound marketing methods despite their greater effectiveness. This not only makes advertorials the prime example of effective inbound marketing, but also makes them the online advertising format with the best prospects at the current time.

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