What is Inbound?
Let’s start from the very beginning!
Back in the day, 10 to 20 years ago, our choices as a consumer were limited. We were expected to choose from what was available and be happy about it.
Now, things are different: consumers have a wide variety of choices, and it has fundamentally changed client service approaches.
In today’s reality, the client is more privileged than ever. The reason is very simple, today clients have access to all kinds of information and can distinguish between your and your competitors' products and services. In fact, by using technological advances, customers have become more capable of evaluating market conditions in general.
Since we have already accepted this reality, let's see what is inbound.
Inbound is a method based on helping people. The core of this approach is creating an informed face to face cooperation, which leads to providing added value and building trust with existing and potential clients.
Remember, if you want to get value from your potential and existing customers, you must first give them what is valuable to them. To create that value, you need to provide them with the right information at the right time.
What the inbound methodology is and how it works
Inbound involves three consecutive stages:
During the first stage when you aim at attracting people, you should be focused on providing relevant and useful content to potential and existing clients. During this phase, you try to answer the questions that your audience either already has or will have at some point in time.
In other words, the stage of attracting people involves using your business-specific experience to create content that will help them overcome some of the obstacles they face, and it will lead to reaching their goals. Content should provide answers to questions, solutions to problems, and sometimes entertain your audience along the way.
For example, if you represent a clothing store, you will have to provide people with similar content at this stage:
- "2020 Fashion Trends"
"How to take care of leather shoes?"
The Engage phase begins when a person performs any desired action, such as reading an article, booking a meeting, or "chatting" with the bot.
At this stage, you need to start a relationship and become a trusted advisor. To build that trust, you have to be ready to respond to people's concerns, provide solutions to the challenges that your potential and existing customers face.
By focusing on what motivates your audience and having the experience to solve their problems, you become a valuable resource for them.
So you sell your product by solving your customer's problem, rather than by harassing them with content that tells them about what makes you so special in the market. If we
go back to the example of a clothing store, now, you can become a consultant for a potential customer by providing content like:
- "5 trendy looks for this fall."
- "10 mistakes you should avoid while choosing your outfit."
The last stage of Inbound is about getting people delighted. At this stage, each time they interact with your company, aim at providing a great experience for your potential and existing clients.
At this stage, do everything to exceed their expectations. If you succeed, you can be sure that they will tell their friends, family, and colleagues about the extra efforts you put into satisfying their needs.
As a result, by exceeding your clients’ expectations, you will win them over, and they will become the most powerful advocates for your company. And you will get that all for free!