Currently the marketing market is still into outbound marketing: machine gunning the supposedly target customers with emails or calls.
This means using call centers and email marketing campaigns in order to address as many potential customers as possible. As email marketing is possible for as low as 1cent per email it is now the most widely used method.
At the same time the more emails that are being send by all companies worldwide, the less chance of emails getting opened and read.
As apparently no company can do without all this email marketing is good for both:
- The providers of email marketing services
- Spam filters vendors
Companies buy ammunition (email lists) and at the same time bullet proof vests (spam filters).
Measuring outbound marketing
Not only the low price per contact addressed, but also the ease of measurement of outbound marketing makes it popular.
Feed in tens of thousands of email addresses, push the button and register the number of clicks afterwards. And in some cases the number of sales closed.
The same can apply to using telephone calls by a call center:
The number of people in companies called lead to a number of deals but it comes at a higher cost and takes much longer to process all the contacts.
One of the problems with email blasts that arises is obtaining the tens of thousands of email addresses. No company in B2B can sustain collecting so many contacts.
Additionally outbound marketing is interrupting the normal workflow of the addressee. Chances are the timing is wrong and the message not appropriate for the receiver at that moment.
Inbound marketing is more complex but priceless
Inbound marketing is much more difficult to measure, as the seeds planted that are effective generating traffic to your website can be anywhere and their effectiveness will change over time.
The metrics and the measurement systems required are much more complex or even impossible to set up and to operate.
People in business are already starting to use search engines, blogs, forums and social media sites to get product or services information and reviews.
Inbound marketing is priceless as the timing is always right: the potential customer is interested for one reason or another as he was searching for the problem or a solution.
Still in the long run, when outbound marketing is no longer effective, inbound marketing will have taken the lead for generating leads.
Inbound: long lasting – Outbound: one time only
Inbound marketing efforts can have a long lasting effect: once a link embedded in a website, a catalog, a directory, a blog, a review or a document: the source can remain in use over many years to come.
Whereas outbound marketing efforts are one off: the marketing action (email or call) generates immediately a click or never.
Once the email is out of sight in the Inbox, no chance that it ill get any attention.
Once the call has been finished, hardly any chance of the called person will call back.
This brings an additional factor: timing. The timing of sending an email needs to be appropriate: too early or too late regarding an event, the daytime, or during the week and the email campaign is much less effective.
Inbound marketing is durable: like a marathon.
Outbound marketing is a quick one time win: like a sprint.
Inbound marketing (seeds planted) can have long lasting wonders and also total failures.
Outbound marketing (emails send or calls made) has one hit wonders or total failures.
Inbound marketing can hit the jackpot if their message becomes viral.
Outbound marketing has less chance to go viral.
Going viral is the best inbound marketing that you can have: the message lives and propagates on itself by Word Of Mouth.
When will the market turn to inbound marketing?
When will the switch be made?
The recession will probably help a hand as currently the amounts of email marketing used by companies is increasing significantly.
How long will you be continue using outbound marketing?