Marketing has been reinventing itself for years, especially since the age of the internet and new technologies, and opposing concepts have emerged, such as inbound marketing and outbound marketing, both of which seek a common goal but the way in which they do it is completely opposite.
what is inbound marketing?
We call inbound marketing a methodology that uses a series of marketing and advertising techniques that are called non-intrusive, which means that it contacts the user at the beginning of the entire purchasing process and accompanies them until the end, even after the purchase, in order to build loyalty.
This methodology places the user at the base of the strategy, rather than the product, which is a great advance for marketing because it gives the customer the importance they deserve, as without them there would be no sales. What inbound marketing consists of is contacting those people who are in the purchasing process, providing them with the appropriate content depending on the stage they are at in their purchasing process and their profile.
what is outbound marketing?
Outbound marketing is a set of marketing actions that aim to attract consumers, just like inbound marketing, but the methods are direct and unidirectional. Here we can include all traditional advertising, but there are also digital advertising formats such as banners on social networks, pop-ups or ads before a video, which can be included in outbound marketing as there is no bidirectionality.
What most defines outbound marketing is that its main objective in all its strategies is always the sale, so all actions carried out by outbound marketing are intended to attract customer attention based on a product and this is done through simple, very direct and little elaboration messages. In short, the actions used in outbound marketing are much more direct than in inbound marketing and focus on spontaneity, without nurturing leads or maintaining a conversation with them.
Keydifferences between inbound and outbound marketing
- Inbound marketing is a non-intrusive methodology, as it focuses on capturing leads with the aim of providing them with valuable content at each stage of the sales funnel with the intention of nurturing them so that they end up buying. On the other hand, outbound marketing is a methodology that is intrusive and is based on launching very direct messages that reach as many people as possible so that they buy the products they advertise.
- In inbound marketing what is sought is communication and bidirectionality, the intention is to have a communication with our customers in order to know what they need and want and be able to offer it to them. On the other hand, in outbound marketing there is no such communication and only want to send a mass message to as many people as possible, no matter the feedback, only the scope.
- Within a good inbound marketing strategy, users will voluntarily come to your website because thanks to the valuable content you have provided them with, they will have detected a need and will know that you as a brand can satisfy it. You may also have appeared in the first results of Google when the user has made a search or they have read an article of yours and liked your content. On the other hand, in outbound marketing, users reach the ad involuntarily, it appears before them whether or not they have the need to consume it.
- A characteristic of inbound marketing is the fact that you know your potential customers, you are very clear about who your buyer persona is, what platforms they are on, what they are looking for and how to satisfy their needs. In outbound marketing, however, we do not know who we are targeting, i.e. we launch the message to everyone, we do not focus the strategy on a segmented audience.
- In inbound marketing, the message is focused on the customer, on providing them with the valuable content they need and gradually nurturing them, very different from outbound marketing, where the message is focused on the product, the aim is to have a direct impact with an advertising message that talks about the company or the product.
- We can also see a big difference between the two when we talk about the media in which they are found, on the one hand, inbound marketing will be well positioned through SEO in search engines as it is based on providing valuable content to users, on the other hand we have the outbound marketing, which is found in banners, advertising on social networks and traditional advertising.
- The cost of both depends on the traffic, which is different, the traffic obtained by inbound marketing is organic, users find you on search engines, so you do not have to pay for their visits as happens in outbound marketing, in which you pay for the visits you receive. But this does not mean that inbound marketing does not cost money, positioning involves certain costs that are implicit in the strategy.
- There is another big difference within the timeframe, with inbound marketing we will get positioned in search engines and earn a web reputation, but in the long term, that is, we will not get immediate results as it happens in outbound marketing, where we will have a worse reputation but we will get leads immediately.
- The ROI or return on investment, is a very important element in any business, and measuring it is essential to know if your strategy is giving results or not, in inbound marketing measuring ROI is somewhat more complicated, since you do not know how many of the sales you are having come from your blog, how many from social networks, etc. Instead, the platforms used in outbound marketing offer you themselves measure that return on investment in each of your campaigns immediately.
After all this you may be thinking, so which strategy is better for my business? Very easy, both! You do not have to choose only one, you can rely on both methodologies and you will get all the advantages of both. So get to work and start betting on inbound and outbound marketing.