What is the Difference between Inbound and Outbound Marketing and Which Should You Be Implementing?

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  • April 22, 2016
Salient Fox: Inbound vs. Outbound Marketing

Inbound and outbound marketing have been around since businesses started marketing themselves. We just recently applied the fancy name of “inbound” and “outbound” to it. Essentially, these two types of marketing each have a separate focus and involve different techniques and strategies.

What is Inbound Marketing?

Inbound marketing is the practice of bringing in your target customers by producing interesting and valuable content. As opposed to outbound marketing, it isn’t aggressive by interrupting people during their daily lives. It provides the invitation to engage in subtle ways, drawing people to the business’ website for the final “call to action,” which creates a buying experience that is driven by the consumer. It most frequently includes:

  • Content production,
  • Social media,
  • Email marketing,
  • Search engine optimization, and other content-driven techniques.

Inbound marketing typically has a higher rate of conversion from visitor to sale and results in a stronger relationship with customers, creating brand loyalists. However, engaging your target market takes time, as it is completely up to the customer to decide whether or not they want to continually engage with the business.

What is Outbound Marketing?

Outbound marketing, also known as interruption marketing due to the interruptive nature of reaching out to potential customers, is the opposite of inbound marketing. Outbound marketing involves getting your message to the largest amount of people possible. It most frequently includes:

  • Direct mail,
  • Cold calling,
  • Advertising, and other aggressive techniques.

Because it is very sales-oriented, outbound marketing involves pushing your message out in as many ways as possible in hopes that it will reach the right customer who will convert into a buyer. Not only is it time-consuming, but it can also be expensive.

Which Marketing Type to Use:

Whether you are B2B, B2C or in the nonprofit sector, inbound marketing has continuously proven to be the best lead generator. Reasons for this include:

  1. The fees associated with inbound marketing are far less than those of outbound marketing. The costs associated with outbound marketing include third party fees, such as printing and mailing fees. Meanwhile, inbound marketing involves the creation of valuable and interesting content that can be shared across all of your digital platforms.
  2. You can communicate with your target marketing in a two-way conversation. With social media and email marketing, you are giving your target market several ways of communicating with you. Furthermore, when your customers participate, they are more likely to become invested.
  3. Since it isn’t intrusive and annoying, inbound marketing is a simple and modest invitation to your target market to engage with your business. If you employ the right content marketing strategy, your customers will be compelled to see what you have to offer on their own terms.

Businesses of all kinds can benefit from inbound marketing. While outbound marketing has its place in some businesses, inbound marketing can either be at the forefront or a counterpart to any marketing strategy.

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