When it comes to human anatomy, every organ and system is essential for optimal function. The same rings true when it comes to your inbound marketing campaign. There are a lot of moving pieces and parts, and each one is vital to discovering and capturing maximum results. We’ve broken down the anatomy of an inbound marketing campaign below. So, grab your lab coats and highlighters and let’s dive in!
The Brain – Your Inbound Strategy
Your inbound strategy is as important to your overall marketing campaign as your brain is to your body’s ability to function. Your strategy directs all systems. It’s the driver of collaboration on all parts toward a collective purpose.
Like the brain, a solid strategy requires both input and output from the rest of the body. Other pieces must be functional to support the brain in a cyclical fashion.
The Heart: Your Target Persona(s)
The heart is the strongest muscle in the human body- it pumps life into every vital organ with a rhythmic beat. For this reason, your personas are the heart of your inbound campaign. Everything you do should be with careful consideration of your persona because even the best thought out strategies will fail if they don’t meet the persona’s needs or pique their interest.
You should most likely have between 2-5 Buyer Personas within your strategy. For each persona, define job title, decision-making power, and typical objectives and challenges they encounter.
The Veins: Your Buyer’s Journey
The buyer’s journey is the potential steps that each persona might take in order to become a customer of your company. In anatomy, the veins are how the heart pumps blood through the body. So naturally, the buyer’s journey is the veins of your campaign- how your persona flows.
This journey typically happens in three stages: awareness, consideration, and decision.
- Awareness Stage: This is when one of your persona’s starts to become aware that they have an issue or need. They may begin searching at this point for information about the actual issue itself, whether others are experiencing a similar issue, and how to address it.
- Consideration Stage: This stage is when the persona fully understands their need and begins to search for potential solutions to the issue at hand.
- Decision Stage: At this stage, your persona has done a good amount of research and is narrowing down the possible options, which hopefully involve considering your offering.
Your marketing funnel is how you set up different stages of the buyer’s journey. Picture a good, old-fashioned household funnel which is larger at the top and gets smaller toward the bottom so you can siphon whatever you need to through the funnel into a container. In the case of your customers and your marketing funnel, you’ll be siphoning your prospects through your marketing funnel into your sales team’s bucket.
The awareness stage will be at the top, the largest part of the funnel, with abundant traffic but not necessarily the most qualified people. The consideration stage is in the middle; fewer enter this stage than the awareness stage, but the ones who do have higher potential than those who exited at awareness. The decision stage is the smallest point of the funnel where leads are making choices and converting to customers.
These stages are also referred to as the TOFU (Top of the Funnel), MOFU (Middle of the Funnel), and BOFU (Bottom of the Funnel). You may have additional stages within these depending on the complexity of your particular buyer journeys.
The Spine – Your Content
Content is the backbone of your inbound marketing campaign- it supports everything. With direct communication from the brain and infusions from the heart, the spine upholds your message. Your content is how your campaign comes to life.
Your content is extremely important to your campaign because it is how you will get prospects to enter and make their way through your marketing funnel. It’s how eager solution-seeking users come to you to name, understand, and fix their problem.
Great content helps your company gain attention, but even more importantly it allows you to build trust with prospective customers because it offers value without directly seeking anything more from them.
Nervous System: The Buyer’s Journey
The messaging pathways. How your strategy connects to your content. Your content should map to the different stages within your marketing funnel and be targeted at getting a prospect to the next stage.
Let’s take the example of somebody with the problem of generating website leads. Here are some questions/content examples that somebody would be looking for at each stage:
Awareness: Why is my website traffic awful? Why am I not getting any web leads?
Consideration: Tips for generating more traffic to your site. How digital marketing agencies can help increase traffic.
Decision: How Lake One generates traffic for our clients. Lake One Services: increasing traffic through SEO strategy.
Consider your persona’s pains and needs and what questions they need answered at every stage of the journey. Strategically design your content plan to answer those questions and pose yourself as the right solution at the bottom of the funnel.
The Extremities – Execution and Distribution
You can have the greatest strategy and the most amazing content, but without execution, no one will ever know. That’s why execution and distribution are the arms and legs of your inbound marketing campaign.
The Arms – Social Media
Your social media strategy is one of the primary drivers keeping you visible and top of mind for your prospects and customers. It’s important to understand the differences and subtle nuances between the platforms and respect them by using each for what it was designed to do best. For example, LinkedIn tends to have a more professional tone, so you might use it for short product demo videos or to share your blog posts, and save your funny memes or GIFs for Twitter.
It’s also important to know which platforms your prospects utilize. Find out where they hang out and exist in those same spaces with them. Just because this is inbound marketing doesn’t mean you need to make it hard work to find you. Being active in the spaces your prospects spend time in will allow them to see your company as an authority on topics that interest or concern them.
The Legs – Email
If a prospect or customer has entrusted you with their email address by signing up as a subscriber, you better be sure to provide them with regular, valuable, targeted content. Make use of the information you collect from your subscribers and their placement in your marketing funnel to ensure you are sending timely helpful messages. Try to avoid sending blanket emails out to everyone on your list unless the message is actually relevant to all.
Another good practice is to make it easy for subscribers to edit their subscription settings and preferences. This is a great way to build trust and continue to ensure your messages are adding value to the people receiving them.