Can a company today survive on inbound marketing? Why or why not? What is the role of outbound marketing?
It depends…inbound marketing is a good fit for businesses that have small marketing budgets and/or target segments that are well versed in technology, the internet and social media. Inbound marketing can be especially effective if there is endorsement in the social media realm. Endorsements tend to have more influence than an ad. For example, consider the Amazon reviews on products and the impact they have on the buyer.
Inbound marketing is used to connect people that are looking for products/services find a good match for their needs. This makes this form of marketing efficient because when contact is made between the customer and the business the customer is often looking to make a purchase. Another reason inbound marketing is efficient is the investment funds are typically significantly less than outbound marketing.
Another upside to inbound marketing is the opportunity it presents to engage the client more than traditional outbound marketing, because inbound marketing is dynamic and can be interactive. It gives the business a chance to show the potential client the power of their product in a way that outbound marketing cannot do.
This isn’t to say that it is optimal for companies that have small marketing budgets or tech savvy customers to rely exclusively with inbound marketing, but it may be enough to survive until there is a larger budget to support a balance of inbound and outbound marketing.
The role of outbound marketing is to: 1) reach customers that haven’t considered buying your product/service (get their attention, plant a seed), 2) access potential customers that do not use technology much,3) send a physical sample to a potential client, 4) send a useful item (like a calendar) that the consumer might use and be reminded of your product/service and 5) possibly to establish a presence with businesses that uses outbound marketing extensively in order to compete. Communication via outbound marketing takes more resources to execute and would therefore likely be used in industries that can support a large marketing budget.
For our team project, because it is technology based we will probably rely on inbound marketing exclusively to begin with. As we grow we would like to use outbound marketing to reach customers that are visitors (airports, car rental facilities) to the cities we are established in.