Why We Became an Inbound Marketing Agency
That one word describes why I do what I do. It’s what motivated me to completely switch gears and change the whole direction of our company. It’s why we became an Inbound Marketing Agency. It’s what will drive us to become change agents within the marketing industry and become a value add for clients.
What created and fuels this passion in the first place? What happened to get us to where we are? Why did we transition our web design company into an Inbound Marketing Agency? Well, keep reading for the answer.
One event. One Frustration. One conversation.
A couple years ago a friend asked me a few questions that started a chain of events I never saw coming. The questions were, “why does your company exist? What is it about your company that makes you give up the security of a 9–5 and regular paycheck? If your company folded would it leave a void in the world? I thought I would be able to answer that question. I was wrong. I believe that there is a purpose for everything that happens in life. These questions came at just the right time. Let me explain. About 5 years into our business I starting feeling like something was missing. We had been doing well and our company was growing. The question was, were we any different than all the other web design companies we were competing against? I felt we were just another dot on the map of an already saturated market. Truth be told, I was getting tired, and my passion for what we were doing was beginning to dwindle. We would bring in work, do the work, push it out, and the client would ride off into the sunset never to be seen again. What value were we bringing to the market? I had no idea. As you will see later I was thankful for my friends questions.
Fortunately, my friend did not leave me hanging. He introduced me to a book by Simon Sinek entitled, Start With Why. Talk about timely. I think I read the book in only a couple of days. The premise the book is simple and yet can be life changing. Here it is boiled down for you. Individuals (and companies) that have the most passion are the ones who have a deep understanding of their “why.” They know why they exists and what difference they want to make in this world. Greatest book I have ever read. It helped get us to where we are today. But the story isn’t done yet.
Like any business we needed a solid marketing strategy. We rolled up our sleeves and developed one. We also came up with a whole year of ideas that we would implement. We were excited to get these marketing campaigns started and had high hopes. Just in case you were wondering what we did, here is a list:
- Pay-Per Click
- Yellow page ad (remember that bulky thing)
- Newspaper ads
- We even found horribly designed websites and did a screencast video pointing out how they could improve their website. We would then email them letting them know that we can help and gave them a link to the video (what in the world!)
- And yes, we even picked up the phone and cold called prospects
With all that investment of time and money we saw very little in return. To make matters worse, our clients were asking for our help with their marketing efforts. They had the same frustrations we had. We did not have the answer. We knew that the Internet was changing and that would be the future of marketing, but we didn’t fully know or understand how.
This drove us to spend the next several months researching consumer behavior, marketing trends, technology and marketing, social media, and web design, as it related to marketing. We learned everything we could on the topic of marketing. As a result, we had developed a new marketing strategy and philosophy, we started implementing it within our own company, and we set a course to change the direction of our company. Most of all we now had answers for our clients and prospects.
Last year I was speaking to a group of business owners on the topic of Inbound Marketing and how it was different from traditional forms of marketing. After my talk one of the business owners came up to me and asked if we could setup a meeting. We scheduled our meeting and few days later I was sitting in their office. What happened over that hour together changed everything. It brought everything back full circle. My friend’s questions, our frustrations with marketing, all the research and investment we made into Inbound Marketing. It all started coming together because of this one-hour conversation. Over the next hour this individual explained that their company was on the verge of having to close its doors. They had wasted so much cash on traditional forms of marketing that it left them dry. They had nothing to show for the tens of thousands of dollars they had spent. Because of outdated and ineffective marketing, their company was not growing. The truth is, this story is not unique to this business owner. We hear this story all the time in one fashion or another. I wish I could tell you that their business survived, it did not.
We come full circle
As I sat in that meeting and in the days that followed I could not help but to reflect. I thought about those three questions I was asked, I went back and skimmed Simon’s book, I took a long hard look over all the research we did, and I thought about my conversation with the business owner. Something started to take shape. I began to see our “why” clearer than ever. I wanted our company to help others who were in the same boat as my business owner friend. I knew that by helping people transform the way they do marketing, we could help grow businesses. I knew that we could make a difference. Now we know our “why.” We exist to make marketing relevant again, the kind of marketing that’s remarkable, and marketing that delivers proven results. I would like to think that if our company had to close its’ doors, there would be more stories being told of companies having to close their doors because of ineffective marketing. We want to tell a different kind of story. This is our passion. This is why we became an Inbound Marketing agency.
Originally published at www.syncthree.com on January 14, 2016.