The first stage of the Inbound Methodology is the ATTRACT stage. In this stage of inbound marketing, we're focused on attracting strangers and turning them into visitors on your site. This is the process of attracting someone that may have never heard of your business, service, product, or solution to your website.
What do you do when you have a problem that you don't know how to solve? You Google it! Like my colleague, Amber Klein (@amberdklein), says, "We don't have to wonder things anymore!"
It's true! There is so much information out there and we can find the answer or solution to any problem that we may have through Google. That is what your customers are doing as well. Blogging is a great way to answer those questions that you're asked frequently, share knowledge and expertise, and be helpful to your customers, potential customers, and even strangers that don't know you exist.
Your blog should be HELPFUL not PROMOTIONAL! Don't use your blog as a way to promote buying from your company or as a way to talk up how great your company is. Instead, use it to help solve problems, answer questions, and even uncover issues that your visitors may not even know exist. No one is reading your blog to find out how awesome your business is, they're reading it for information.
EXPERT TIP: Blogging can be a huge time suck and we've all had writer's block. Talk with your team about the questions that you receive on a daily basis and blog about the answer to those questions (without being promotional). Create an extensive list of these questions/topics so you'll never have to stare at your blank computer screen again. :)
So when you don't know how to solve a problem that you're facing, you Google it. We've established that. But how do you find the answer? Google provides the best results based on the information on each website, blog, social media, etc.
Aimlessly posting blog posts and content on your website without taking into account the keywords that you want to be found for does you no good. You need to understand what your customers (or what good potential customers) would be searching for and optimize your content around those keywords. ALWAYS take this into account when writing a new blog post. We've even gone as far as to research keywords and write our blog posts around those keywords. It may seem backwards, but it's effective.
EXPERT TIP: Use tools such as Google Keyword Planner, Google Trends, HubSpot's Keyword Tool or any other programs to determine which keywords have the LOWEST difficulty with the HIGHEST traffic. Those keywords are your low hanging fruit. Go after those FIRST.
EXPERT TIP #2: Use longtail keywords and get specific. A keyword like, "auto mechanic" is going to have a TON of traffic, but it's also going to be insanely competitive. Speak to your specialties. Something like, "ASE Certified Mitsubishi auto mechanic denver" is going to have far fewer searches, but also far less competition. It will also bring TARGETED traffic to your site. The people that are searching for this keyword understand what they're looking for and are more likely to be ready to make a purchase.
3. Social Media
One of the best ways to introduce your brand to new people is through Social Media. It's also true that Social Media is a great way to turn people off from your brand. Popular mistakes that businesses make include:
- Being too promotional
It's the same thing as your blog. NO ONE is searching you out to hear how great you are. There are plenty of review sites out there that can tell them that. They also don't want to see your sales pitch in their timeline every day. It's annoying and a great way to get unfollowed.
- Speaking to the wrong crowd
Understand who you are targeting on each network. Many posts will probably resonate with all your target personas, but it's important to understand who your followers are on each network and customize your content to reach them.
- A disconnect between your social media and your website
Are your website and your social media pages communicating the same message? Is the branding consistent? If not, you're probably confusing your potential customers. Everything should be consistent.
EXPERT TIP: Try to stick to an 80/20 rule when posting - 80% of your posts are engagement posts (fun, funny, events, news, etc.) & 20% of your posts are promotional. This will engage your following and because of that, they'll be more interested when you post promotional posts.
There are obviously more tactics that can be used to attract strangers to your site including Pay-Per-Click campaigns, full Search Engine Optimization campaigns, and even offline marketing, but these tactics that I've outlined are a great way to get started and each can be extremely effective if you commit to them.
Stay tuned for our next blog post where we'll talk about how to convert those visitors into leads. Make sure to subscribe to our blog so you never miss a thing!
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