In the past, marketing was easy: you buy a big yellow pages ad, maybe pay for a couple of radio or TV commercials, and you call it a day. After all, choices for consumers were extremely limited: you want to find a business or service? You check the yellow pages. The end. Want to wind down and watch some TV? You have three whole networks to choose from – have fun! So it behooved businesses to advertise in those two prime mediums, because they were the ones receiving all the eyeballs.
Well as you know, the world has changed dramatically. And our brave new world has really changed the attitudes of the modern consumer – which means our marketing efforts have to change as well.
Choices, choices and more choices
In present times, consumers are practically overwhelmed with choices. For example, let’s say you want to watch a TV show. You have multiple TV providers to choose from (Comcast, Dish, DirecTV) as well as multiple internet streaming services (Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video), all with their own benefits and features. Today’s consumer is faced with a smorgasbord of options for every product or service they want, and it has made them extra choosy.
They’ve heard it all before
The internet and connectivity has made our world smaller than ever, which is exciting and allows us to interact with friends and family all over the globe. However, that same connectivity has given businesses more mediums to use for marketing. All day long, consumers are bombarded with sales pitches on every platform: TV, internet, smartphones, even video games. Businesses have tried everything they can think of to drive sales, and consumers have heard every sales pitch you can imagine; and it’s made them very skeptical.
There’s only one constant in today’s world: the internet
As we discussed in the intro, there used to be two primary ways to market to consumers successfully: TV/Radio and yellow pages. But with so many TV/video options, how do you know which one to use for your marketing? Radio isn’t a sure bet either, because not everyone listens to the AM/FM radio anymore. Now there’s YouTube, Spotify, Pandora and private MP3 players for your listening pleasure. And as for the yellow pages – that is a very limited audience.
But the one medium that is still used by hundreds of millions of people every day is the internet. 86 percent of Americans have internet access, and with the prevalence of smartphones, a huge portion of the population now has the ability to access the internet at all times.
For these reasons, we are firm proponents of inbound marketing. Inbound marketing focuses on the idea of attracting customers to your business’ website. By creating content that features industry-specific keywords, potential customers locate your website through Google searches. And considering that more than 2.6 billion local searches are conducted every month, there’s a huge audience ripe for the taking. Once they get to your site, you then use more in-depth content to convert them into a lead.