More than likely, you have heard the term “Inbound Marketing.”
Today, consumers want to be educated, not sold to. The traditional style of marketing is utilizing cold calling, cold emails, interruptive ads — these are all marketer-centric. Who really wants to be called in the middle of dinner, or have pop-up ads all over their website browser?No one.
Inbound marketing is all about:
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Social Media Engagement
- Websites and Videos
- White Papers
- Case Studies
- AT INNERACTION MEDIA - WE ALSO HIGHLY RECOMMEND VIDEO!
Inbound Marketing is customer-centric. The customer is the number one priority.
The buyers have all the power; therefore, we need to make sure that we are creating content that is appealing and the buyers want to consume. Make sure you are answering all the frequently asked questions your company has.
The Inbound Methodology is attract, convert, close and delight. We want to attract strangers into visitors, convert visitors into leads, close leads into customers and delight customers to be promoters of our company.
Make sure your content is following the Cocktail Party Rule: Don’t talk all about yourself! Eighty percent of your content should be customer related. Only 20 percent should be about you.
That is what we at InnerAction Media call “marketing that people love!”
Why is Inbound Marketing Important to Homebuilders?
We can only spend so many hours a day, talking to potential customers who want to build a new home, the media, referral sources and those we consider our target audiences. With Inbound Marketing, the educational content we create and distribute is working for us 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Consumers have a ton of information already at their fingertips because of the web. They are generally pretty well informed after they have pilfered through a lot of content. When they are ready to make a decision, you want to make sure you are seen as an EXPERT in your field so the consumer chooses you.
Here are some quick tips to help you get started in developing an Inbound Marketing Campaign:
- Develop “Target Personas.” Who is it that you are trying to reach?
You have to figure out what visitors are looking for that matches what you have to offer.
- Determine how you should describe what you have to offer in terms your visitors understand. What types of questions do they ask you? That’s what you should blog about.
- Think about all the different ways you can create content that support what clients need and what you have. At IAM - we love to utilize video to convey your message. People scan the web — but they will engage with compelling video.
- Know where your prospects spend time so you can try to place your content in those places.
- Create an Inbound Marketing plan that focuses on the constant, passionate delivery of relevant, timely content. Publish content frequently!
- Create ways to bring a prospective customer into your “Funnel” and into a segmented email list once they arrive at your site.
Vision Homes in Morgantown, W.Va., is an excellent example of a homebuilding company that is utilizing Inbound Marketing well. They have a great website that utilizes remarkable content that answer potential customers questions, compelling video, blog posts on hot topics, free e-Books, worksheets, evaluations and checklists, as well as testimonials from their clients. It also has great formatting and therefore is easy to crawl and navigate.
Vision Homes also has a strong social media presence. They engage customers not only through Facebook but also Pinterest. Check out their new Pinterest page that has been recently updated. Pinterest is a site that can show off all of your galleries of the homes you design as well as marketing your team, your neighborhoods, the areas you build in and what is offered in that area such as shopping, dining, recreational sites, etc.
Social Media presence is a great tool for search engine optimization. It also allows for one-on-one communication between you and the customer. Listen to what your customers are saying in your comments. Take the time to answer their questions! Make sure your social media pages are creative! Use images — Social media is very visual.
Blogging is also a very effective tool for Inbound Marketing. Each blog has its own index page, and if you utilize key words in the title of the posts, have a meta description under 140 characters, images with alt tags, links to websites and call to actions, you should definitely attract more qualified website traffic and therefore convert better leads and close them into customers. Forty three percent of companies have acquired customers through blogs!
Here are six suggestions to help you stay disciplined in your content marketing efforts:
- Write to answer questions you are asked by clients and potential patients
- Have a central blog administrator that reviews and optimizes every blog: Vision Homes does a great job at blogging!
- Use an editorial calendar and write around a central theme each month
- Write as you speak; don’t force it
- Don’t forget about human-interest blogs
- Share the impact and results
Overall, any marketing strategy is not a sprint — it’s a marathon. Make sure to stay motivated, strategic, thoughtful, constant and passionate. If you focus on the creation and distribution of remarkable content, you will see a vast improvement in sales with your company! Happy homebuilding!
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