Inbound marketing is attracting more and more companies both big and small for two main reasons. The first, it is in line with the expectations and the new purchasing behaviors of consumers. The second, inbound marketing is less expensive than outbound techniques. To better understand this second point, we are offering a focus on the budget of an inbound marketing strategy.
1. The 3 inevitable line items on an inbound marketing budget
To take your first steps in the wonderful world of inbound marketing, you will need the following 3 elements at a minimum:
– Content production : your web content must be based on relevance, varied in format, and published with regular frequency. Whether you produce content internally or externally, this must be a major line item in your inbound marketing budget.
– Making your website SEO-friendly: you surely don’t want to land on the third page of Google search results, right? In addition to producing content, you must also rely on SEO techniques. You can either take care of this internally, or call on an external provider.
– Outreach on social media networks: you invest in social networks in order to promote your content and construct a community you hope to engage. Again, using a community manager and/or other paid service can prove to be useful.
2. The human resources needed for an inbound marketing strategy
Based on the three main line items identified above, here is what an inbound marketing “dream team” would look like :
– A web editor : a person capable of understanding your personas and the challenges they are confronted with, and who can put this into writing with clear and precise words, based on a complete analysis of SEO keywords.
– A web designer : a person who can create visuals and format your content, your calls-to-action, and your landing pages to foster engagement.
– A web developer : he (or she) creates your web pages and optimizes your site for inbound marketing from a technical standpoint.
– An SEO specialist : in practice, you will find web editors and developers who have sufficiently mastered SEO for launching purposes. But to have the best chances, a specialist in the field will be an undeniable plus.
– A community manager : your social media expert who will build, grow, and engage your communities.
– An inbound marketing coordinator : basically, the leader who will bring this all together.
3. Implement an inbound marketing strategy without breaking the bank
Obviously, the budget you will allocate to your inbound marketing strategy will depend on several variables:
– Your market: if you are in an emerging market with low competition, your efforts, especially regarding SEO, will be reduced.
– Your priorities: you won’t be concentrating on all your priorities at the same time. Before putting all your energy into converting, you will need to first generate traffic. Then, you can spread out your budget over time.
Here is a systematic plan to launch your inbound marketing strategy:
– Readjust your website according to current SEO criteria
– Begin to methodically and regularly produce content
– Implement a social media strategy, choose your social networks, and expand your content
If you have the necessary internal resources, you will only need a few dozen hours of work to get started, followed by regularly weekly work. If you call on freelancers or an agency, you can count on between €1,000 and €10,000 per month, according to your needs and objectives.
By using a marketing automation solution, you will not be rid of the need to produce content, but you can benefit from automating its distribution and the conversion logic for a more favorable ROI.
Implementing an inbound marketing strategy requires specific skills and therefore demands an investment. However, in addition to legitimate questions on the cost of an inbound marketing strategy, it’s important to globally consider the ROI of such a strategy. What marketing budget are you currently spending? For what results? Ask yourself the right questions.