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7 Steps on How to Run an Inbound Marketing Campaign

Tyler Pigott on February 26, 2019
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how to run an inbound marketing campaign

The purpose of a landing page is to attract new customers. Any good landing page can act as a lead magnet for new sales and opportunities. This shouldn’t be a hard task. There are plenty of internet users to target each day. According to Forbes, 3.7 billion humans use the internet. Over 40,000 Google searches come from these users every SECOND! That’s 2.5 billion Google searches a day! Many of these searches lead to marketing opportunities if you just understand how to run an inbound marketing campaign for your website.

It all amounts to producing content that your prospects, potential clients and target market wants and can find. In this article, we’re going to go over what inbound and outbound marketing is as well as how to create and use an inbound marketing strategy to the best of your abilities.

The Basics of Inbound Marketing

Inbound marketing is a relatively new term and a way to differentiate from the competition. Coined by Hubspot, inbound marketing lets your relevant content pull in potential customers rather than having you go to them. It relies on creating a relationship between you and the reader before he or she ever become a client.

To do this, you must have a content strategy. Within this strategy, you should have posts, graphics, videos, eBooks, and virtually any other form of educational content. This content will go on social networks blogs and websites. If your content is interesting, people will begin to follow you and read what you have to say. Over time, this relationship can turn into a lead with the exchange of an email and basic information.

Inbound marketing allows for your content to always exist. Though you might have published the post several months ago, that does not stop it from being shared and read now. Inbound marketing often gets overlooked because the rewards may not show right away, opposed to outbound marketing which can often produce leads much quicker than inbound marketing initiatives. However, overtime inbound marketing is guaranteed to be more cost-effective than outbound marketing.

In the long run, these inbound campaigns can not only show long-term results but new leads right away as your following grows. Long term marketing strategies such as blog plans can find you, new clients, improve ROI, and even improve your organic search results! All you need to do is learn the basics of inbound marketing.

Avoid common mistakes with this free checklist for how to run an inbound marketing campaign  <https://www.lonefircreative.com/how-to-run-an-inbound-marketing-campaign-checklist>

The 7 Steps for How to Run an Inbound Marketing Campaign

Now it’s time to investigate exactly how to reap all these rewards for yourself by looking at how to run an inbound marketing campaign. Our seven-step guide will help you to understand the purpose of a landing page and create the best inbound marketing campaign possible. As you read through each step, make sure to take time to think on your customer and what they desire.

1. Craft Messaging that Solves Your Customer's Problem

Step one is knowing and understanding why you are creating the campaign in the first place. It’s important to think about what your customer wants. This step in many cases is a research step that will involve going out and asking relevant questions to the consumers themselves.

Interviews with your ideal customers can tell you not only what they think of your brand but also what they look for in their perfect brand. Below are some sample questions we ask clients as well as ourselves when setting up new campaigns, put yourself in your potential customers shoes and make sure you messaging aligns with what they are trying to find a solution for.

Here are a few examples of questions to get you started:

  • What are our customer's external, internal, and philosophical problems?
  • Have we positioned our brand as the guide to the hero?
  • Have we created a clear plan for the hero to win?
  • Have we helped our hero imagine success?
  • Have we identified the consequences we are supporting the hero to avoid?

2. Set Goals You Can Track

When you understand what your client is looking for and how that relates to you, the next step is to create goals. These goals will be the basis of your inbound marketing campaign. They are essential because without goals, you are unable to know what have accomplished and if it was worth it.

Dan Tyre from HubSpot refers to this as “Smarketing.” “...the process of aligning marketing and sales to work towards a common goal, drive revenue, growth, and better serve prospects by enhancing the buyer’s journey from first touch to customer decision…” (definition from Dan’s book Inbound Organization)

Notice what Dan says above, aligning marketing AND sales. That means both teams working together to create goals they each play a part in and are accountable for. When setting goals with your team, use the S.M.A.R.T goal framework.

S.M.A.R.T goals enable you to track where you are and how much farther you must go. S.M.A.R.T stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely. If each goal you set has all these factors, you’ll have a much higher chance of completing it.

  • Specific – Each goal needs to talk about the desired outcome in detail. Improve “grow my business” by adding “I want to grow my business by obtaining new clients.”
  • Measurable – Each goal needs to have a measurable number attached. Improve “I want to grow my business by obtaining new clients” by saying “I want to grow my business by obtaining three new clients.”
  • Attainable – Though you may have lofty ideas, each goal you set needs to be rooted in realism. If you’re new and in a competitive market obtaining 100 clients in a week might not be reasonable.
  • Relevant – Make sure that each goal you set is connected to the business you are running as well as its environment. An example, if you are looking to increase sales of summer clothes, make sure you’re not trying to sell them in the dead of winter.
  • Timely – Each goal needs to have a measurable deadline. Improve “I want to grow my business by obtaining three new clients” by saying “I want to grow my business by obtaining three new clients by the end of the quarter.”

3. Develop a Lead Generating Offer

When you consider how to run an inbound marketing campaign you need to know what you’re offering in value to the readers. Creating a lead generating offer means looking for the proposal that is going to attract the customers to give over their email or phone number. This should be what many call the lead magnet, it gets people to come to you. In the early days of the internet, this was an easy task.

If an email popup showed up onto an internet page, then people filled it out. However, times have changed. With the increase in advertising, people are protective of their personal information. They need a good reason to give someone their email or phone number.

The best way to ensure that you can get their information is by giving them something they want. What they want is the lead magnet. In general, it is a resource or other item of value that you will offer in exchange for their contact information. It could be access to an eBook or a discount to what you are providing. The specifics of what you propose will tie back into the first step and what you learned from your target market.

landing page wireframe

4. Create a Landing Page that Converts

When you are at a craft fair, you may see the same style of necklaces or shirts at ten different booths. However, you may only stop at one of them. In many cases, this is due to the presentation. This is the purpose of a landing page. When you look to grab someone’s attention you need a clear offer and nice setup both at a booth and online. Make sure they can tell right away what it is you are offering, or they might leave your page as fast as they arrived.

Next, on a landing page (or any page for that matter), you need clear calls to action (CTAs). There’s no such thing as a successful marketing effort unless there’s a successful CTA.That means you are very clear of what your want your website visitor to do, buy now, get started, download your free…, start your trial, book a demo, and the list goes on. Make sure to be clear and direct.

Lastly, don’t forget testimonials on your landing page. Testimonials create a trust between you and your client, but you should never make them up. Using fake testimonials will be obvious and will destroy any confidence or interest the rest of your landing page has created. Ending, create a thank you page or popup screen. If anyone takes your offer and gives you’re their personal information, it’s a kind gesture to tell them thank you.

5. Create Great Content

When you have your client understanding, your goals, your landing page, and your emails set up and ready to go, it’s time to create content, which is the core of how to run an inbound marketing campaign. Inbound marketing depends on getting your message out to the world. Remember, high volume doesn’t matter unless the content is compelling, relevant, and well-done. Your message will be broadcasted in many ways. However, there are some that work better than others.

Blogging and long-form content is a great way to get your inbound marketing campaign off on the right foot. Creating content on your website ensures that you give your potential client something that are looking and simultaneously boost your organic rankings and attract potential leads right to your site!

Tip: not sure what to write about? Start with your most frequently asked questions from prospects during past sales conversations.

It’s important to link the topics and themes of your content to relevant offers you’ve created. Make it natural to promote your Lead Generating Offer from above with content that you write. Make your readers want to learn more and downloading your content offer can be a great way to do that.

6. Nurture Leads into Sales Opportunities

When you get a lead, the real work starts. Setting up an email follow-up that contains the free offer is the best way to start the conversation. It shows your new lead that you follow through on what you promise right from the first conversation. Also, take this time to talk to them about your brand and what else you can offer. Make sure that your email is strategic and timed. Following and researching the best practices translates into dollar payoff after you learn how to run an inbound marketing campaign effectively.

Next, having a set of emails sent via email automation. Email automation is a great way to keep you top of mind for your lead. These should be emails that you told them that you would send. Meaning, you should make sure you inform them of what they will be getting when they convert on your website and then follow through.

“For all of my blogs, search has been my #1 source of lead generation, but email has provided me with a lead nurturing tactic to target those groups.” (Neil Patel from How to Nurture Organic Leads)

No matter what value your offer in the emails, make sure the recipient gets to know a bit more about your company and the solution you provide for your customers with each email. This initial set of emails should work the same way an email funnel does, pulling them into your business with each installment.

7. Measurement & Reporting

Even though you have a plan, that does not guarantee success. The only way to know for sure if what you are doing is working is to track and measure your results. Looking at your findings both in the long run and real time will make sure you get the full spectrum of your results.

Creating a standard procedure, such as daily, weekly and monthly reporting of analytics will ensure that you notice any changes both good and bad to your landing pages and campaigns. Monitoring should include the all the metrics that connect back to your S.M.A.R.T. goals from above, remember “measurable.” Things like organic search rankings, website traffic growth, marketing qualified lead (MQL) conversion percentages, best performing post and pages, email engagement, form submissions and a host of other analytics to help you know if you are on pace to miss, meet or exceed your goals.

All of the above strategies should have helped build your understand of how to run an inbound marketing campaign and should set you up to win as you integrate these best practices over time. If you have any questions how to run an inbound marketing campaign, ways to improve what you are doing, or just where should you start. Book a free strategy session with one of our digital strategists.


Topics: Inbound Marketing, content marketing, Digital Marketing