Inbound and outbound marketing are two opposites strategies – their logic and methodology are totally different.
The goal of inbound marketing is to attract your audience to you, by providing educational content that solves your readers’ pain points in a given moment.
It’s about driving them to your website. But you also want to engage with them through relevant CTAs which collect their information. For example, make them download an ebook or subscribe to a newsletter. These actions bring leads to the sales team – who will be able to contact qualified leads directly afterwards. CTAs also integrate leads into your nurturing flows to encourage them to purchase your product or service later on.
Unlike inbound marketing, outbound marketing’s approach is more traditional and aggressive. The goal is to push a message out to your audience, to interrupt their actions via paid advertising, emails etc. so they can eventually end up on your website.
At first glance these two marketing strategies are complete opposites, and I think we all agree on that. But what are the similarities between inbound and outbound?
Lessons learned from our outbound marketing campaign
In terms of strategy, we usually do content marketing via our blog – this brings us decent lead generation results.
In order to boost these results, we launched an outbound marketing campaign 6 months ago to both French and British markets. The goal was to spotlight our platform, Scoop.it Content Director, by sending emails to targeted individuals based on their job roles and the existing technology on their website.
We realized that the results were significantly different between these countries, in terms of open rate as well as response rate.
Results from the French campaign
Results from the UK campaign
How to explain such a difference in results?
We’ve leveraged our content marketing strategy in France for more than a year now. We’ve produced and promoted every type of content – blog posts, eBooks, webinars, social media posts – very frequently.
That strategy allowed us to stand out in the content marketing industry, and set ourselves as true experts in the market. Therefore, we were delighted to see the open/response rates of our french outbound campaigns. In this case, our target market was already familiar with Scoop.it (from social media, newsletters etc.) which made our message even more powerful and attracted clients to initiate a one-on-one conversation.
The campaign was very similar for the UK – yet it achieved poorer results (34% open rate in the UK vs 84% in France). We haven’t made these inbound efforts in the UK, therefore we are less famous in the industry… and it clearly had an impact in our return rate.
In a nutshell – you need content, and you should use it. This will help you generate leads and maximize the performance of your other marketing actions, especially when it comes to outbound marketing.
If you want a whole set of tips to generate leads with content marketing such as ways to repurpose your content into other forms, insights on which format you should focus on, techniques to measure the results and other data points, download the eBook “How to generate leads through Content Marketing“.
Image by Michael Wacker