How Long Does it Take to Get Results from Inbound Marketing?
is the Head of Marketing at Lean Labs. His experience ranges from higher education to SMBs and tech startups. When not doing digital marketing, he's sure to be enjoying some kind of nerdy pastime.
Imagine a scorching, mid-summer day with the blistering sun hanging overhead. One of the most enjoyable commodities for such a day is a cold glass of ice water. Everyone loves water when it’s smoldering outside!
But no one wants to try and guzzle water from a fire hydrant, no matter how thirsty they are.
That’s how traditional marketing generally works. It’s pop-ups on your computer, ads that you’re forced to endure, and calls from someone you don’t care to talk to; these methods are interruptions.
All these reasons and more are the motivation behind inbound. There has been a fundamental shift in buyer behavior, and it's revolutionizing businesses.
How Long Does Inbound Marketing Take?
Inbound places knowledge into the hands of consumers and gives them the ability to make concise, educated decisions. Traditional marketing is geared towards the marketer, whereas inbound marketing focuses on the customer.
Consider this: wouldn’t you be more partial to a company that had your needs in mind and not their own. Inbound lets your prospective client realize this. It answers questions and concerns they understandably would be feeling and thinking before they purchase with your company.
Apart from setting the stage for customers to become brand advocates, inbound marketing accomplishes two things.
1. It compliments modern customer behavior.
If you’re a consumer for any product, the likelihood is you’ve already taken advantage of inbound marketing. Modern customers read and educate themselves on purchases they make BEFORE they make them.
Inbound compliments those behaviors. By creating stellar content and showing beyond doubt that you’re an authority on the subject and product you’re offering, you cater to the behaviors of modern buyers.
2. It empowers salespeople to concentrate on hot leads with deep information on each lead.
Inbound allows your sales team to concentrate on converting those you’ve attracted, into regular customers. In doing so, you’ll have a higher success rate than that of typical marketing.
So no more cold calling and spending your company’s hard earned money on traditional marketing that quite frankly doesn’t work that well. Research from Hubspot shows that inbound produces 54% more leads than traditional marketing and saves $20,000 on average per year by investing in inbound opposed to traditional marketing. For the full benefits of inbound, we have great content that you can check out here.
Now that you’ve seen some of the benefits of inbound, let’s get to the brass tacks.
The inquiry is often made as to what expectations to have regarding inbound marketing because it doesn’t produce automatic results. As if we’re trying to make instant oatmeal. Any great marketing strategy takes time and patience. Please notice, I said great, not good. All great things take time.
For inbound marketing, there’s a season of planting (which we’ll talk about). Then, you’ll start to see the fruit of your efforts as it begins to grow. Subsequently, you’ll notice the seeds you’ve planted have turned into a tremendous orchard that will produce residual success for your company.
So, how long is the planting season? The answer is, it depends.
3 factors that influence result timelines:
First, how frequently you post new content.
The more you post, the more traffic you’ll generate, resulting in a shorter time frame to see results.
Second, the quality of your content.
Just as important as how frequently you post is the quality of your posts. The goal in mind is to be viewed as a master craftsman, not a novice. Master craftsmen produce stunning works of art but don’t arrive there overnight. This too takes time. All the reason more to jump in and get started.
Third, your ability to promote your content.
Skillful and knowledgeable promotion of your quality content via social media and proper emailing will help you maximize your results. You may have the greatest content on the web but if no one knows about it, what good is that content?
Here's the timeline we share with clients on almost any scale:
- 6-8 months: You should see positive movement compounding each month.
- 12 months-24 months: You should see substantial growth of traffic, as well as MQL-SQL-Customer acquisition.
Remember inbound is a marathon, not a sprint. In fact, it's a way of life.
Depending on the amount of valuable, helpful content you can create, your timeline could be shorter, or it could be longer. You need an expert with experience that can analyze your output goals, skill gaps, give you recommendations on how long you should plan for, and how you can shorten your timelines if desired.
One thing is for sure, no matter the time it may take, you can not afford to not adopt inbound marketing.