Proof Inbound and Content Marketing Works
In our last articles, I discussed how content and inbound marketing are the foundational tools for successful marketing today. Whether or not we like it, the facts are clear. The vast majority of people are using search tools to find information and educate themselves before they ever reach out to a sales person. If you aren't in the digital arena, you stand to lose out on leads and sales. This can amount to a lot of revenue.
You should be saying to yourself "but these are just words from a content marketing evangelist", right? You shouldn't take my word for it, you should want some real proof. As Tom Cruises' character famously said in the movie "Jerry McGuire" ... "Show me the money!!!!!!"
CASE STUDY: RIVER POOLS AND SPAS
Imagine where you were in October 27, 2007. If you're not a business owner or leader, that particular time date might not mean much to you. But if you were in those shoes, you know this was a bad time for businesses in the US as we experienced the bursting of the housing bubble and the credit crisis went into full swing.
My friend and mentor, Marcus Sheridan, was running his pool company, River Pools and Spas at the time. The business was doing ok, but when the bubble burst on that date, they went from doing ok to really, really struggling. Not many people are looking to purchase a "luxury" item like a pool when they are in financial dire straights. As a matter of fact, 5 customers of River Pools and Spas pulled their deposits on pools that week. Their sales calls and leads were drying up.
To put in mildly, River Pools and Spas was in a bad spot. Marcus still had employees and bills to pay and he had just taken a serious shot in the stomach (financially speaking). But, Marcus is cut from a different cloth and knew there had to be a way to turn around his struggling business.
BOUNCING BACK WITH INBOUND AND CONTENT MARKETING
Marcus wasn't about to give up on his business, but he knew he had to change his tactics if his business was going to survive. He couldn't afford expensive outbound marketing techniques any more. So, with virtually no knowledge of content marketing, inbound marketing or web design/marketing he started his journey into experiencing the power of marketing done right.
As Marcus learned how to use inbound and content marketing, he started to see his business turn around and grow. By becoming a great listener, he started hearing and answering every customer question he could think of on his companies new blog. His site grew from 20 pages to over 850. And he started to track his impacts. He started capturing leads by using downloadable ebooks, guides and papers. And, he answered customer questions on his blog that others refused to answer such as "how much does a fiberglass pool cost", "what's the difference between a fiberglass pool vs. vinyl pool vs. concrete pool?"
WHAT WERE THE RESULTS?
The results were stunning to most.
- His site became the most trafficked swimming pool site in the WORLD.
- More importantly, he was able to track, using HubSpot software, which leads became customers. From one blog post alone, he was able to track $1,200,000 dollars in sales.
- From 3 key blog posts he was able to track almost $2,500,000 in sales.
- And, he was spending less on his marketing than he had in the past.
As I like to say, the proof is in the pudding. And this is only one of many, many examples these concepts work!
WARNING: THIS TAKES WORK
I want to be clear here. The results Marcus (and many others) have experienced are motivating, exciting and undeniable. However, those who succeed with digital market understand they need to be consistent and persistent. This isn't a magic pill or a silver bullet. It won't turn your business around overnight. It takes work, dedication and patience. However, if you embrace the culture of content marketing and inbound marketing for the long-term you will see results that are more effective (and cost effective) and help your business to grow.