The Rise of Inbound Marketing in Professional Services

Adoption of digital strategies and tactics will vary between organisations dependent on many factors. Inbound Marketing delivers  results for Professional Service firms by solving problems for consumers in their search for information by delivering solutions to consumers who are active in seeking information about specific products and services. 

In the time prior to having a short break from full time work, I very much worked as what's now referred to as a  'legacy-style' marketer. This included the more traditional aspects of general marketing, brand management and tender response functions.  It did not mean that we did not have an online presence. Our website was more of a digital corporate brochure.

With revenue growing, new strategic partnerships forming, customers being referred and customers staying, there'd not been a real need to go beyond traditional marketing efforts to meet and exceed our strategic imperatives.  But will it be enough?

Legacy vs Inbound Marketing

There's been enormous changes in the technology landscape in the past years. Aside from vast developments in what's actually possible today, technology adoption by consumers is faster than ever, consumers are no doubt in control of what they consume, how they consume technology and when they consume what they want! 

Up until very recently, marketing efforts were very much "outbound" - marketing that interrupts the consumer by talking at them as opposed to with them!  Effective marketing beyond this, is all about information sharing, user-centric design, collaboration and creating value for customers. 

Marketing History.png

As marketers, it's up to us to keep pace of strategies and techniques that get our message heard without interrupting consumers. 

Unlike legacy style of marketing where consumers are interrupted via marketing messages, the goal of inbound marketing is for potential clients to find you.  It allows companies to publish valuable content online with a view to target consumers subsequently finding it online.  A successful inbound marketing campaign brings in sales leads via the internet.

Here’s a great infographic that highlights why Professional Service firms should be considering Inbound Marketing:

Professional Services Marketing

Embracing current digital marketing practices, using the right systems and expert partners, will deliver improved business and marketing outcomes.   

Consumer Behaviour is Changing

Consumers now expect to be able to research and purchase products whenever and however they want on channels of their choice! They move seamlessly between online and offline, paid and unpaid channels and expect a consistent brand and quality user experience across all platforms.

 In 2015, the time consumers spent on mobile grew 31%, with time on desktop continuing to fall.

Mobile Usage Growth.png

Source: comScore

Changed consumer behaviour, together with modern technology, is transforming how businesses operate across all industries.  Among a plethora of digital marketing activities that can be embraced by an organisation, inbound marketing, has the potential to reach out to highly qualified customers and generate leads on a small budget. 

Social Media Consumption is Increasing

Social media is having a significant impact on the way businesses engage with consumers.

The Sensis Social Media 2017 Report says it all,  "59% of people access social media every day or most days and over a third checking social media over times a day".

Professional Services Marketing

The Sensis Social Media Marketing 2017 report finds the most popular times to consume social media is in the evening  (up from 49% to 57%) and first thing in the morning (up from 49% to 57%).   Almost half of the respondents stated that they now accessing social media on a break (up from 33% to 47%) or during  lunchtime (up from 36% to 47%).

The more individuals see online content, the more familiar they become with brands.

Online content is allowing consumers to develop trust, rapport, confidence and greater product understanding in their journey to purchase products and services to meet their needs and solve their problems.

Join Us For Breakfast

In addition to learning loads about the world of Inbound Marketing and where it and digital marketing in general headed,  I met with a number of financial, legal and accounting services business owners.  In discussing my own recent learning and wanting to understand why they were attending Inbound 2017,  these business owners acknowledged that they'd been slow to embrace digital marketing and realise the potential benefits that inbound marketing can add to their overall marketing effort.  

Join Connect Labs for breakfast on November 15th 2017 and find out how you can embrace digital technology and Inbound Marketing strategies as part of your solution.

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