Recently we noticed a Facebook ad from a company who shall remain nameless. After being served this ad several times, we decided to check it out. The ad was promoting an inbound marketing campaign utilizing many of the tactics we preach on our blog. However, they were doing it all wrong.
Since we've talked about what inbound marketing is and how to execute, it's time to talk about the 4 reasons marketers fail at inbound marketing.
Your BAD reputation preceeds you.
This particular company does not have a good reputation when it comes to customer service. So when they promoted themselves as a reliable solution for a certain problem, the reaction was swift. There were over 700 comments on the post from former customers sharing their negative experiences or calling them out on the validity of the information they were offering (more on that later).
If you're promoting your company as a solution, make sure you can back up your claims. Word of mouth has changed with the influence of apps like Yelp, but is still a big deal.
Your forms are too long.
Understanding the buyer's journey is key to a successful inbound campaign. As leads progress through the buyer's journey, they are generally willing to give out more information. If your campaign is targeted at someone in the awareness phase, your form should require minimal information (name and email). Likewise, if the campaign is targetting leads in the decision phase, it would be appropriate to require more information, like a range for the lead's advertising budget.
The value of your offer should also be taken into consideration. For example, if your offer is a simple infographic, the value is likely lower so the form should require minimal information. People HATE giving out their phone number so what you're offering needs to be REALLY valuable and your lead should be in the decision phase of the buyer's journey.
Your offers aren't valuable.
With this particular offer, the information wasn't particularly helpful and was a stretch of the truth. That would leave most leads disapointed with no desire to interact with the brand any further.
People hate clickbate. Don't publish clickbait. Your offers should aim to be helpful and contain valuable information, not something that tricks a lead into submitting their information. Not only does the annoy and disengage leads, it provides your smarketing team with lower quality leads.
Reference your buyer personas when deciding what offers to create. Doing so will help you understand what their needs are and what tools you can provide to move them closer to the decision phase.
It doesn't encourage action.
The end of each offer should encourage action in the form or reading additional (relevant) resources or contacting someone within your company. Not providing next steps for the lead is a missed opportunity to move them further through the buyer's journey.
There you have it. The 4 reasons marketers fail at inbound. If you have questions about how to execute an inbound marketing strategy, check out the resources below.
- The Ultimate Guide to Inbound Marketing
- Surviving the Future With Inbound Marketing
- Ask These Questions When Creating Buyer Personas
- Inbound ROI Calculator
- 3 Powerful Charts About Inbound Marketing
- Path to Purchase