Inbound marketing is all about bringing your potential customers to you, rather than you fighting for their attention. This is why good inbound marketing centers around quality original content shared the right way.
Two questions emerge here:
- How do I come up with good content that is useful to my prospects? (READ: a few tips on how to write good blog posts)
- How do I promote it effectively and attract website traffic?
We have compiled a list of 6 guerrilla tactics that can be high impact and low (or no) investment and can help you leverage the exciting world of inbound marketing if used correctly and in an innovative way:
Quora – Share the Knowledge
Quora is a goldmine for your content strategy. As a community-fueled question-and-answer site, it is a great source of content ideas where you can also build authority and expertise in your field and gain exposure to the site’s 700,000+ monthly visitors.
Here are some of the best ways to leverage Quora for your inbound marketing purposes:
• Create a great personal profile and a page for your business, featuring a link to your website so people can click through and find out more about you and your company.
• Find out the questions people are asking about your industry or product – this is a great way to get ideas for blog posts that will cater to unanswered questions and gaps in online content.
• Answer questions, particularly in threads with lots of upvotes, as your exposure will be high here, resulting in thousands of views and potentially clicks to your website.
A useful hack when answering questions is to pull answers from blog posts you’ve already published, linking readers back to your blog.
BuzzSumo – Feel the Pulse of Social Media
BuzzSumo is an awesome tool that all content marketers are bound to adore. When you type a keyword or phrase into BuzzSumo’s search engine, it shows you the content that is most shared on top social media sites – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ and Pinterest, including the number of shares. You can also filter the search results by content type and see which types of content work best for your topic, target audience and the social network of your choice. It also lets you see all the backlinks, and you can share content directly from within the platform.
You can perform searches by topic, author or domain, set up alerts, and search for the key influencers in any topic or location. You can also analyze influencers by authority, reach, influence and engagement.
BuzzSumo can generate extensive content analysis reports, allowing you to analyze content by topic, network, content type, content length, headlines, publishing days and most shared domains.
While, unlike Google Alerts and Quora, it is not free (they offer a 14 day free trial), BuzzSumo is definitely worth looking into as there are many ways you can leverage it to optimize your inbound marketing strategy.
Google Alerts – Stay in the Loop
Google Alerts is a great free tool you can use to monitor relevant content that is being published, get content inspiration and track yours or other companies’ online presence.
You can set up as many alerts as you like for the keywords or phrases of your choosing and Google will send the links to all the relevant content to your email or RSS feed. The alerts are customizable: you can set the timing (as-it-happens, daily or weekly), the sources (news, blogs, web, etc.), the language and region, and whether you want to receive all results or only the best ones (quality determined by Google).
You can get notified when someone mentions you, your company or product, when new content related to your industry or topic is published, while it is also easy to keep up with what your peers and competitors are doing online. This is a great and easy way to stay in the loop and get ideas for new content, if you target the right and relevant keywords in your alerts.
Sniply – Attract Traffic When Curating Content
Even with the wealth of content ideas to be found using Google Alerts, Quora and BuzzSumo, there will likely be days when you just can’t come up with anything. In any case, any content strategy should include curating third party content that is high quality and relevant to your prospective customers.
Sniply is a cool and simple way to drive more traffic and brand awareness back to your website when sharing third party links. How it works is you paste the link you want to share into Sniply and it creates a customizable footer featuring a call-to-action and a link back to your site on the third party page you are sharing. This way, you attract and get traffic on your page even when redirecting your readers to other pages.
Sniply offers a free plan that allows 1000 clicks per month, while you can also upgrade to different paid versions to get more clicks and additional features.
Facebook Targeting – Reach the Right Audience
Once you’ve created your content, you need to share it with the right audience. Facebook allows you to target users according to demographics, interests, behaviors and connections, while these categories have a myriad of sub-criteria that let you get very granular if you want to.
The Custom Audience feature allows you to import lists of your existing customers or website visitors and include or exclude them from your targeting. You can import lists of email addresses, phone numbers, Facebook user IDs or app user IDs.
Another awesome feature is Lookalike Audience, which allows you to target a group of users similar to your Custom Audience.
You do need to pay to use Facebook ad targeting, but you can test different options and see what works best for you with a budget as small as US$ 500 – and it pays off if you develop the right targeting strategy.
Hack: Even if you have a very small business, target your ads from Facebook Business Manager. Many beginners start targeting from Ads Manager, which is fine, but Business Manager is more efficient and effective.
LinkedIn Sponsored Content – Target the Right B2B Audience
LinkedIn is the other platform you should definitely use to promote your content and your business. You can boost your posts by using the Sponsored Content format, or create text and image ads. LinkedIn allows precision B2B targeting – you can target users by job title and function, by industry and company size and by seniority.
LinkedIn recently launched its own answer to Facebook’s Custom Audience, called Account Targeting, which means you can now import lists of companies you do business with or want to do business with, and LinkedIn will show ads to users who work for those companies. This is not entirely new, as businesses could already target specific companies’ employees with ads, but this was a manual process limited to 100 companies. The Account Targeting feature raises this limit to 30,000 companies.
Like Facebook, LinkedIn boosting requires some investment, but you can set your own small budget to begin with. Again, like with Facebook, it is likely that your investment will pay off if you devise the right plan of action.
If you devote some time to creating the right strategy, you can get creative with these guerrilla tactics and optimize your inbound marketing strategy without the need for a hefty budget. In one of our recent blog posts, find out a few hacks to revive and enrich inblound leads.