When you think about inbound marketing, your mind probably goes straight to the internet. The standard methods of drawing leads into a company’s sales and marketing funnel (or onto its flywheel) work by attracting consumers and pushing them toward conversion. Typically, such inbound marketing strategies rely almost exclusively on digital tactics.
However, smart marketers know there is more than one way to do inbound. Here, 10 members of Forbes Agency Council share some of the best non-digital tactics a brand can use for inbound marketing to complement and accelerate their digital marketing efforts to turn consumers into prospects and prospects into loyal customers.
1. Publish A Book
Companies that have been using an inbound marketing strategy often have a treasure trove of content, which can be compiled into a manuscript. Book authors (and the companies they represent) are seen as thought leaders and credible authorities and are more likely to land important speaking engagements at industry events. – Wendy Covey, TREW Marketing
2. Offer Special Access And Free Advice
It all comes down to relationships and whether your consumers connect with you and with what you are trying to convert them to do. PR works wonders for this, and non-digital ideas such as hosting events and inviting people to attend for free can also go a long way in building relationships. Or, just offer free advice and other free services or items to get them coming to you and needing you, then convert them. – Zack Teperman, ZTPR
3. Conduct An Offline Event Or Sponsor A Cause
Inbound is all about showing your customers that you have the best solution to their problems and that solution being valuable enough that they come to you on their own. You can try anything that serves this purpose and increases brand awareness—any form of traditional marketing that does not presume you will be the one reaching out to them. Some examples would be conducting an offline event or sponsoring a cause. – Solomon Thimothy, OneIMS
4. Keep Your Existing Customer Base Happy
The most effective, important and least expensive way to attract new customers is to do a great job with the customers you already have. Word-of-mouth is the oldest and most important form of marketing. – Nathan Miller, Miller Ink, Inc.
5. Run A National TV Campaign
With any type of inbound marketing, one of the most powerful ways to reach a big audience in the largest fashion is still with a national TV campaign. These campaigns allow you to reach hundreds of millions of consumers and convert them into customers. – Jessica Hawthorne-Castro, Hawthorne LLC
6. Adopt A Hybrid Mix Of Tactics
I predict inbound marketing will become a hybrid mix of digital and non-digital tactics. For example, a company sends a postcard inviting people to download an e-book. Two weeks later, that company will follow up with a phone call to remind prospects to download the e-book. I expect to see a rise in campaign-connected digital and non-digital tactics. Why choose between them when they both work? – Randy Shattuck, The Shattuck Group
7. Engage With Convention Attendees
A great non-digital inbound marketing tactic is engaging with attendees at conventions. It’s an analog method that focuses on face-to-face peer interactions. This is valuable because it’s centered around purposeful listening in a face-to-face environment to better process pain points, and it leverages inbound marketing content that suits and addresses those concerns. – Albert Moufarrij, MACH9
8. Never Stop Building Strong Relationships
Relationships and referrals are hard to beat. The relationships we build with our clients and the trust it fosters can pay dividends over time when it comes to closing new business. We turn to friends and family for personal recommendations; the same is true for business leaders who network with other leaders to find a business solution. Never stop building strong relationships. – Bernard May, National Positions
9. Be A Part Of The Experience At In-Person Events
As in-person events slowly rebound, many people are looking forward to attending them, and smart brands are finding ways to be a part of those experiences, not just sponsor them. Consider offering your customers and leads a special perk or upgraded access as a way to connect your brand with value and exclusivity. – Hannah Trivette, NUVEW Web Solutions
10. Deliver Valuable Freebies In High-Traffic Physical Locations
The inbound philosophy emphasizes the need to provide value to prospects that attracts them to your brand. Such value is easy to surface online, but it can be achieved—and stands out more—when delivered in a physical setting. In its simplest form, offering samples, advice or free services in high-traffic locations is both a precursor to and a modern example of inbound marketing. – Chris Martin, FlexMR