Inbound Marketing is a little bit like courtship. The company makes a foray towards grabbing the eye of the consumer. The consumer responds by showing a little bit of interest. The company then tries to take things further by giving the consumer more information in another form. And the consumer shows a little more interest in buying what they’re selling.
This process continues until the consumer has actually bought what the company is selling. At which point, the company can decide whether to continue the courtship process and actually have a relationship with the consumer or to consider the process as finished and turn to someone else.
There are a lot of companies which are fickle in this way! They don’t care too much about retaining the customer; they just want to find other, new customers.
How Inbound Marketing Is Like Courtship
How does inbound marketing fit into this courtship process? Does it even fit into it at all? As per this article in Entrepreneur, “the way modern consumers shop and make purchases has changed dramatically, and as such, businesses must adapt in order to survive.”
In this new way of making purchases, the courtship begins at the other end—at the consumer’s end. It’s the consumer who somehow hears about the company or product and then proceeds to look them up.
However, this doesn’t mean that the company needs to be passive throughout the courtship process. In fact, there’s a lot of activity going on, on the part of the company. This is because when the customer looks the company up, they need to have an up-to-date, well-designed website in place to answer all the customer’s questions.
Once the customer gets all the basic information from the company’s website, they might feel a little more interested in what the company is selling. And this results in another foray on the part of the consumer to find out more about the company and product.
At this point, the company needs to be prepared once again, with a blog and social media pages. These give the consumer a little more information. And the process might continue until the consumer finally decides to buy the product.
There are many inbound marketing strategies which will bring you results. But for the purposes of this article, let’s stick to the strategies derived from the idea of courtship. As we have seen, it doesn’t matter whether marketing is outbound or inbound; it still resembles the courtship ritual. What tips can you get from this ritual that you can apply to inbound marketing?
Making Yourself Look Good
One of the most important elements of courtship happens at first sight. Romeo and Juliet fell in love with each other at first sight. And people still continue to check each other out to see how the other looks before they decide whether they want to take things further. Even if the other person isn’t always that good-looking, they need to at least be well-groomed or have something interesting about them.
So if you, as a company, want to court your client, you need to make yourself look good. Come up with an attractive website, blog and social media pages. Make sure that your content is easy to understand and has a welcoming feel. Don’t give your customer pages and pages of information but do give them the basics. Tell them what they want to know without going overboard. There is a fine line between these two options but you need to at least make an effort not to go over that line.
You also need to make sure that the layout of your website is attractive. Use striking images wherever possible. Use images that your customer will find relatable. In other words, if your customer is a teen, then use images of teenagers. If your customer is a plus-size woman, then use images of plus-size women.
Overall, just keep in mind that your website needs to look good. Just as people have a certain idea of what looks good in a potential partner, they also have a certain idea of what looks good in a website. So give them that.
Mastering the Art of Conversation
Another element of the courtship ritual is conversation. And this is a pretty important element at that. There are times when you might not really care for how the other person looks. However, they might win you over with their stimulating conversation.
What makes a person a good conversationalist? It’s the fact that they seem really interested in getting to know the other person. They listen well; their entire focus is on the person they’re talking to. And they also interject with interesting comments and anecdotes of their own. They modulate their voice well. They seem enthusiastic without being overbearing.
These are some of the elements you need to project through your online presence. First of all, when you set up your website, blog or social media pages, you need to keep your audience in mind. What have past clients told you about what they’re looking for in a company or product? You need to let them know, through your website, that you’re going to be able to give them those things. The aim, as this article on Forbes puts it, is to “get your message out in an insanely message-cluttered world.”
Plus, you should also pay attention to the comments that customers make on your blog and social media pages. If a lot of clients are saying that they’d like to see the same thing, then you need to give it to them.
Also think about the tone of your website and social media pages; is it warm, welcoming and pleasant? Is it designed to draw the customer in and keep them interested? Is your content written with the intention of informing and benefiting your customer? If your answer to these questions is “yes,” then you’re on the right track with regard to winning over your customer.
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