Inbound Marketing Proven to Cost Less than Outbound Marketing

May 23, 20111 Comment

Small businesses are devoting a lot more resources to inbound marketing for website lead generation, according to a recent survey of 644 businesses.

However, medium to large companies continue to spend more of their budgets on outbound marketing channels.

Care to guess who’s seeing the better results?

The details are spelled out by Hubspot in their 2011 report “The State of Inbound Marketing.”

Inbound marketing channels include blogging, content publishing, search engine optimization and social media.

Inbound strategies and techniques persuasively pull the customer toward your business or products and increase your website lead generation by offering useful online information to complement the buyer’s purchasing decisions.

Inbound marketing allows businesses to interact and develop relationships with prospects who are using the web to research products and services.

By contrast, outbound marketing channels push marketing messages at the customer. These include television and radio advertising, print ads, direct mail, telemarketing, trade shows, etc.

Outbound marketing has become less effective as buyers have embraced technological counters.

Spam filters, do-not-call lists, and DVR recordings have enabled potential customers to opt out of even receiving the marketing message. Inbound marketing leads them to you.

Among the more interesting findings of the “State of Inbound Marketing” report:

  • Organizations using inbound marketing are enjoying a 62% lower cost per lead than those who depend on outbound marketing.
  • The majority of businesses are increasing their inbound marketing budgets.
  • Blogs and social media channels are increasing website lead generation for companies at lower costs than outbound marketing.
  • The percentage of businesses with a blog made a 17 percent jump to 65% between 2009 and 2011. The lesson here is: If your company doesn’t have a blog, you’re in the minority.
  • Customer acquisition through blogs is directly related to frequency of posts. If you’re underutilizing your blog, you’re missing out on potential customers.
  • The true value of a company blog is becoming apparent as 85% of businesses rated their blogs as “useful,” “important,” or “critical” to their website lead generation.

The Hubspot survey’s big winner among inbound marketing channels was social media. 62% of respondents cited social media their most important source of website lead generation over the past 6 months.

Company blogs were rated as the most critical social media channel according to respondents.

The biggest loser among outbound marketing channels was direct mail. 50% of respondents said that has become their least important source of leads over the past 6 months.

But the biggest takeaway trend of the survey is where every business rated every outbound channel as LESS important than any inbound channel.

If outbound channels still dominate your lead generation strategy, you’re missing a great opportunity to generate increase your website lead generation for less cost through inbound marketing channels.

One Response to “Inbound Marketing Proven to Cost Less than Outbound Marketing”

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