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  • Jumpstart Your Inbound Marketing Machine

    Ahh, inbound marketing.

    That cold Kool-Aid sounds SO good you as sit sweating under the blistering hot rays of shrinking budgets and increasing expectations.

    But you want it NOW, not in the 18 to 24 months it might take normally.

    Well, there is some good news: you don’t have to wait nearly that long. But you still can’t have it quite yet.

    Here is what you need to know so you can grab that glass of Kool-Aid a whole lot quicker.

    What You Need: Time, Content and a Good Kick

    Before we dive in, let’s quickly revisit the definition I use for inbound marketing.

    Be found through the recommendation of others and delight everyone that finds you.
    (Source)

    Time: You Aren’t Starting From Zero

    Yes, inbound takes time. But you actually started long ago without even knowing it.

    You have some level of search traffic, social traffic and press or analyst mentions that will drive people to visit your site today. These are all recommendations from others.

    Now you need to get more value from the inbound traffic you already have.

    • Do you have contact information or a signup opportunity on every page? If not, find an appropriate way to integrate this.
    • Do you have additional content available in your sidebar? If not, add it now.
    • Do you link within your page content to additional resources or point people to deeper related content on each page? If not, start adding this step to your web copywriting and your content development.

    Unbounce does a great job of the first two points right here on their blog, just check the sidebar for examples.

    Content: Make it Social

    Are you distributing press releases? Writing articles for trade publications? Speaking at industry events? Make the content you already create easy to consume and easy to share.

    When you increase the social value of the content you are already creating, it will contribute more to your inbound marketing.

    Emarketer is excellent at this. Instead of promoting their reports directly, they use the data in the report to create a short article. The result: visitors that are delighted enough by the content to share it, recommending it to others. Here is an example of an article drawing on a report.

    A Swift Kick To Jumpstart Your Program

    Ok, so you’ve started seeing opportunities to get more value out of your existing content and realize you are not starting from a standstill. But that isn’t enough, you need faster results. You need your content to be discovered more quickly.

    Pay to place your content in the places your audience already goes to discover content.

    Beyond search, your audience may use Reddit, Twitter, Facebook or others. By focusing on places where your content may be recommended, as opposed to advertising, you will learn more about the kind of content that performs well while your organic inbound efforts continue to ramp up.

    Here are 6 additional ways to kickstart your inbound marketing program.


    In Summary

    Now you have a running start, you have breathed new inbound marketing life into the content you’ve already been creating and you’ve kickstarted your inbound programs with some paid opportunities. You will quickly have some initial results to show, now comes the ongoing work to continue building your program organically.

    — Eric Wittlake

    About Eric Wittlake
    Eric Wittlake is a B2B marketer with more than a dozen years of experience in digital marketing. You can find Eric on Twitter @wittlake or on his blog, B2B Digital Marketing, when he isn’t working with clients on media and integrated marketing programs at Babcock & Jenkins.
    » More blog posts by Eric Wittlake