My First 90 Days of Learning and Implementing Inbound Marketing

41 Orange Marketing Coordinator Sarah Laoyan takes you through her experience of learning inbound marketing and HubSpot, and what she’s learned to help you get up and running faster.

As a recent college graduate, I was aware of basic marketing strategies and terminologies before starting my job as a marketing coordinator here at 41 Orange. During my training, I was introduced to HubSpot and inbound marketing, a technique that I only knew on the surface.

Everything I learned from school and my previous internships were useful, but were only a tiny part of inbound marketing. Inbound is much more about combining multiple pieces together to drive qualified leads to your business.

I’m sharing my insights with you today so you can get a glimpse at what it’s like to learn inbound marketing and begin to implement it for the first time.

Training

41 Orange is a Silver Agency Partner with HubSpot, so I started learning about inbound marketing through the HubSpot academy. They provide extremely useful videos that explain the inbound methodology in full detail, with easy to understand charts and examples. After watching the training videos, I was assigned to create a customer persona, brainstorm offers, and establish a sales process workflow.

I’m currently in the process of studying for my inbound certification through HubSpot and reviewing many of their techniques for implementing an inbound marketing campaign. Here are a few things I’ve learned:

Customer Persona

Researching for customer personas was one of the harder processes of laying down the foundation for this inbound campaign. Customer personas take a lot of research to understand what exactly your target audience is looking for. I was lucky enough to have some previous customer surveys to work with, so I could get actual insight to what real people were concerned about when working with our client. But in most cases we will actually conduct surveys to gather information.

While extremely time consuming and very difficult, creating the customer personas was one of the most fun parts of this process. Taking time to step out of the shoes as a marketer and into the shoes of real people and what they want and how they would like to be treated by a company. This step is crucial for establishing the rest of the campaign. Every single piece of material links back to this target persona, and whether they want this piece of information.

Creating CTA’s, Content, and Offers

After establishing the customer personas, the next task was to create offer ideas. This was one of the easier parts of the strategy, seeing as after discussing what our customer personas are looking for and what they want, we came up with four very solid offers for different customers in different stage of the inbound methodology.

Brainstorming content ideas was also a difficult task to encounter. Diving in and thinking about how your customer persona makes decisions is one of the harder parts in creating content. We established that our customer personas are looking to be educated in a specific topic, so we came up with the idea to establish a database of educational articles.

After brainstorming ideas for future content, the next step is to create a workflow.

Workflows & Drip Campaigns

Thinking about how a customer would naturally go through the buyer’s journey is difficult. As a marketer, it’s difficult to separate yourself from your intent. However, the whole goal of inbound is to have customers come to you when you are needed, not just sending people unnecessary messages until they stick.

Going back into stepping into the shoes of your customer persona, the easiest place to start is the buyer’s journey. What call to action did your customer persona download first? Is it a top of the funnel piece of content or closer towards the middle? Judging from which CTA your lead downloaded, you can send them more content that guides them later into the sales process. 

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The Next Steps

This month was all about implementing the ground work for this campaign and we’re looking to push forward next month. I know that inbound doesn’t produce instantaneous changes, but I do know that the growth that it can produce is worth the wait. I’m excited to see the outcome of all the research and strategizing we have done and how it benefited our clients.

Key Takeaways 

Inbound marketing is not a “set it and forget it” deal. It takes a lot of research, time, and effort to keep it maintained.

I think of inbound marketing like a car. Cars require regular maintenance, care, and when one part stops working, it can cause major damage to the rest of the car and perform slower, or not at all.

Inbound marketing is the same way. Analyzing the efforts of your campaign is the easiest way to tell if your marketing machine is functioning how you want it to. Each part of the inbound process has a function and it’s essential to the bigger picture. 

My first 90 days with inbound marketing was one of the more difficult things I’ve had to learn, but after really understanding and implementing a campaign, I’m much more confident that I can help other clients create and establish a campaign of their own.

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About the Author: Sarah Laoyan

Sarah Laoyan

Sarah is the Marketing Coordinator at 41 Orange. She recently graduated from San Diego State University with a degree in Journalism, with an emphasis in advertising.