Inbounding in Business and Life

Lately I’ve been learning about marketing and psychology. And one of the interesting thing that I have found during this journey is inbound. Basically it’s a marketing strategy called “Inbound Marketing” where you attract your customers towards you, you engage them and delight them with your service. Doesn’t this sound familiar?

Right this is how we humans socialize. We develop connections. And that’s why I am fascinated to hear this concept.

When we hear marketing the first that comes into our mind are those annoying adds we wait to skip while watching YouTube or those people who just want to sell their stuff and wouldn’t want to take no for an answer. Right?

But Inbound is all about developing relationships and maintaining it through out.

Isn’t this what we want too? We want to buy stuff not being sold stuff by others. We want ourselves to be heard not just listened. We want our own freedom of choice and control. Right?

The inbound approach is what guarantees it all.

There are 3 stages of Inbound Marketing:

Attract: This is where you attract prospects to yourself by providing relevant and helpful content. Helping them understanding their needs.

Engage: Now that a person recognises his needs and shows interest in taking desired action, it’s your turn to help them taking this decision. Showcase them the value you are providing.

[Your product might get sold in this stage. But should you stop here? Nope… Remember inbound is about being customer centric and a customer can never be truely satisfied with just buying the product, he needs an outstanding experience too with the product. And these is what will make him to comeback to you again and again.]

Delight: Delight is all about providing an outstanding experience to your customers everytime they interact with you.

Many marketing strategies are mostly based on funnel model. So marketers are more focused about catching more and more attentions, so that at the end of the funnel they could get a sizable lead converted into customers. Here the more the merrier is the logic. There is nothing wrong with this idea but it forgots to take into consideration the fact that if people filtered down the funnel dislikes your product/ service, they might disrupt the flow of the prospects up on the top of the funnel by leaving a bad review.

Not let’s look at Inbound strategy. The inbound methodology represents a flywheel. Marketing, Sales and Service are at the edge of the flywheel; customer being in the centre of the flywheel. [A flywheel is basically a mechanical device that stores energy] When you add energy to the flywheel it spins. When you add more energy it spins even faster. This energy/momentum is what your customers will provide. The growth of your company would be based upon how much faster the flywheel spin. Your delighted customer would not only come back to you but also bring new customers in with them.

Let’s have a look at one practical example:

Ravi opened up a clothing shop. He put out huge flexes and advertised his shop through various medium across the town. Initially people’s rush was pretty huge. And that filled him with ego. He became rude to customers especially someone coming to negotiate. He would never accept returns if a faulty piece of clothing was to be returned back. He would rather argue than to apologise for his mistake.

On the other side of the street Shyam also opened a clothing shop. He didn’t have much of money for advertisement so he decided to invest money in printing bags and Graffitising his store to make his store stand out from the rest of the store’s in the line. Naturally standing out from the rest of the store’s in the line came in handy, even without a billboard or news paper ads, people became aware of his store and started visiting it. He was good with his words and calm headed. He knew customers habit of asking discounts so he implemented schemes like extra 5% discounts on purchase of above ₹1000. After each sales he used to greet his customers and welcomes them to visit again.

So these are the two shops, which of the shop would you like to purchase clothes from?
Shyam’s right? As you could see shyam’s marketing strategy is very inbound, he is attracting his customers by standing out in public, he is engaging them with his sugar coated word’s and providing discounts and delights them by offering printed bags and with his greeting to come visit again.

Naturally people became more and more aware of his stores existence through word of mouth from his customers. And his store began to experience more and more rush.

There’s a book written by Gary Vaynerchuk named “Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook“. Sounds like some boxing lessons book….huh? But it’s about marketing. The “Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook” means give, give, give and when the right times comes ask.

Whether it’s in business or life this is how we humans build and grow relationship. We don’t like people who are always asking for something or who don’t give value for what they are asking for. And that’s why sooner or later such businesses and relationship are going to fail. The world is getting competitive out there. New businesses are emerging each day. To stand out and survive in this age inbounding is the key.

So that’s all for this week. Hope you understand the importance of inbounding and would apply it in your life. I would love to hear your views on the matter too in the comments.

Wish you happy week ahead. Will see you with another blog next week… Bye bye😊

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