In other words, do you prefer inbound marketing or outbound marketing? The spider could be considered an inbound marketer, building the web and waiting for the optimal prey to come along. The praying mantis, more like the outbound marketer, is out hunting and scouring the terrain for its prey. Inbound marketing pulls prospects in with interesting content, while outbound marketing pushes content out to “cold” or unsuspecting prospects.
Inbound marketing has gained ground over the past ten years as marketers have attempted to lure prospects to their “webs” with targeted website content including SEO and likewise – social media with relevant content. Inbound marketing is less targeted but nonetheless effective in building awareness organically without tapping too heavily into the budget.
However, for more direct and targeted messaging to identified prospects, outbound marketing is effective as well. Many sales and marketing professionals prefer to be proactive with a measurable return. They want to define their ideal prospects and reach out to them with targeted e-mail campaigns, outbound calling or more traditional sales efforts. If done correctly, outbound marketing does not have to be invasive or disruptive and can be very affordable, especially when the investment is offset by the results.
In my opinion the best approach is a balanced attack. Incorporate the best of the spider and the praying mantis. Build an effective (web)site with the right content for your target audience. Get the attention of your audience with compelling, industry-related messaging in your SEO and social media campaigns. But don’t feel like you have to sit back and wait. Identify your target prospects and reach out to them with quality content via e-mail, outbound calling or traditional sales efforts.
Combining the best of inbound and outbound strategies to market your products or services will maximize your marketing effectiveness. Inbound may introduce your company to new opportunities you never knew existed, while outbound will give you the control to choose who you want pursue.