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Your content is more profitable than your telephone
For years I thought outbound sales was the best way to grow a business.
Then I discovered inbound marketing 6 or 7 years ago through Hubspot.
After attaining a tenuous grasp of the concept and achieving mediocre results, I tabled it for a while to review at a later date.
Fast forward to today and I no longer do any outbound sales.
By this I mean, 100% of my new business efforts are focused on authority marketing and inbound marketing.
I want new customers to find me.
I don’t want to have to do lots of outreach or try and chase up new business every month.
And neither should you.
Your content is a lot more profitable than your telephone.
If you spend an hour writing a good, short piece of content and it generates you 2–3 customers over the year, your return on investment is huge and this happens on autopilot without further time investment from you (apart from order taking).
All it takes is decent knowledge of SEO and the subject matter you are discussing.
How many hours on the phone does it take to drum up a cold piece of business from scratch?
How many man hours are spent prospecting, calling, qualifying, demoing and so on?
How profitable is this customer once it’s closed?
For enterprise sales with huge deal worth’s, I can see the logic in this. If you aren’t making huge deals with huge lifetime value though, it’s not worth it.
If you’re a small business, I can’t see how it’s profitable or a good way of scaling up, after factoring in the salaries, working hours, software, office space and every other cost involved in the calling process.
How much would it cost to hire a blazing hot growth marketer who can write killer content, SEO optimise it and manage your inbound process to ensure a steady flow of leads?
It seems to be what all the high growth technology companies are doing, why is it any different for a small business?
Sure tech companies are much more scalable (generally) and the margins they make are probably bigger, but maybe your margins as a small business would be a lot bigger if you adopted inbound and didn’t have to shell out hundreds of thousands for sales guys to hard sell your product.
Telling isn’t selling.
Something Brian Tracy said, one of the godfather’s of modern sales, has stuck with me.
“Telling isn’t selling.”
What he means by this is, talking at your customers or trying to sell to them, isn’t selling.
A sale is a transfer of enthusiasm. It’s understand your prospects needs and providing a solution that solves them.
The best sales people can rapport build, requirement gather and benefit match, all while challenging their prospects assumptions and presenting alternative courses of option when necessary.
Like The Challenger Sale talks about.
Evidence of this in action is the fact that Brian Tracy has adopted inbound better than most I have seen. Check out his blog.
He also has a hugely useful YouTube channel where he creates fresh video content all the time.
This is because video content is one on one sales on steroids.
If you know your product and your market, why aren’t you making video content?
With a video you have the potential to sell hundreds, thousands or even millions of people in one go.
Video content especially is a visual transfer of enthusiasm that can draw in and convince a universal audience.
Which is why all of the biggest motivational speakers and business coaches hammer video content, like Tony Robbins.
Use content to sell your customers en masse
Content marketing is about answering your customers questions or making them aware of problems and opportunities they didn’t know existed.
The three stages of the Inbound Funnel are:
- Awareness. Your prospect doesn’t know they have a problem, or opportunity.
- Consideration. Your prospect knows something is wrong (or they aren’t taking advantage of something) and is investigating solutions.
- Decision. Your prospect has narrowed down the solution and needs to find a vendor to provide it. Will it be you?
You can learn Inbound for free from Hubspot Marketing Academy.
If you’re a good sales person you’re also probably a good content marketer.
Content marketing isn’t just about writing blog posts or the written word. There’s tons of different ways of getting your message across. And if you are confident and good at speaking, video is your platform.
Remember those sales calls you have with tricky customers talking about why they need your product in the first place?
Make them into videos — Awareness
How about those sales calls where you had to match what your product does to your customers specific requirements?
More videos — Consideration
And do you remember trying to close that customer who wanted to know who you’ve worked with and have you got experience in their industry?
Make them into killer video success stories showcasing the end result. — Decision
If you adopt an Inbound Approach and put some strategy in place behind your content and how you distribute it, you will be able to generate, nurture and close leads on autopilot.
Each great piece of content you produce becomes an asset that can attract new customers and aid your sales teams in the process.
Outbound becomes easier and easier, then as your inbound pipeline grows, unnecessary.
Do you feel otherwise? Let me know in the comments why.
To anyone who has been following my 30 Days Of Medium so far thanks so much for reading up to this point and for your claps and feedback. Don’t worry, this isn’t the end. There will plenty more content to come!