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inbound marketingNo doubt, inbound marketing is the trending marketing term of late. Many small businesses know that they need and want to implement it, but often without a true understanding of what inbound marketing really is. The focus of inbound marketing is to bring customers in by providing information that they are looking for when they are looking for it.

Because PPC, by definition, is paid advertising, many marketers choose to view it as part of a different family than inbound. By definition PPC also draws potential customers in by providing engaging and relevant content to viewers when they are looking for it (a.k.a. inbound marketing).

Did you know:
A) The top 3 paid listings on Google get 41% of the search clicks?
B) That over 45% of users can’t identify paid ads from organic listings?

There are certainly many trendy ways to inject inbound marketing strategies into your business, but there are also several good reasons to consider pay-per-click (PPC) as a core part of your inbound marketing strategy.

Here are 5 important ways to boost your inbound with PPC:

1. Instant Visitors

One of the most popular benefits of using PPC is that the results are immediate. Once a consumer clicks on your button, they are instantly transferred to your site. With a PPC ad, once it goes live, people will start landing on your site. Not only will you get the benefit of instant traffic, you’ll also get instant data, which you could use to measure the overall success of your marketing strategy.

It’s one thing to get traffic, but many people struggle with establishing PPC ads that actually convert.
Obviously this is a pretty big problem… What is your experience with AdWords? Comment Below.

2. Visitor and Landing Page Insight

Your efforts from pay per click advertising will produce instant traffic but it will also provide important insight into what keywords, ad copy and landing page copy might be best to drive conversions. Many of my Ecommerce clients find that what is working in their PPC campaigns can also be applied to their organic landing pages to improve conversions.

Jenn Lisak, of DKNewMedia provided this great infographic illustrating the importance of PPC in your inbound marketing strategy for MarketingTechBlog.

PPC-for-inbound-marketing-ispionage

3. Direct Your Efforts Towards Your Prospects

You might argue that all marketing techniques are targeted to specific customers and you would be right. However, with PPC you will have advanced demographic targeting tools at your disposal. This will allow you to narrow your marketing search in much finer detail. You can focus only on people who live in a specific area, or target only a certain gender, or you may want to zero in on a specific age group. The ability to concentrate your efforts to your target group will yield much better results than a blanket-marketing program.

4. An Extremely Powerful Way to Connect

Most consumers are constantly looking for things online. They are either looking for information, some sort of product, or a means of communication. When you have pay per click advertising on the pages they land on, it’s like redirecting their interest towards something else related to their original need. For example, you go to the supermarket to get a gallon of milk. It is highly unlikely that you’ll leave the market with just the milk because right next to the milk you’ll find eggs, and then bacon, and then bread, and then… Pay per click works much in the same way. The consumer lands on the site in search of one thing but your PPC is designed to attract his attention with a related topic that could also resolve his problem. It has proven to be a very powerful method that has worked in other platforms for many years.

5. A Great Way to Test the Market

PPC is also a very effective way to test the market to see if a larger campaign would work. As you developed your marketing strategy, you most likely came up with a list of potential headlines, keywords, website designs, and other assumptions about what you believe would be effective. Because PPC works so fast, it is an easy way to determine if your marketing strategy has any teeth. By running a test campaign of your plans you can get immediate results that will help you to improve your marketing skills before you launch a full scale campaign.

While there may be some dispute among marketers as to whether or not pay per click actually belongs to inbound marketing one thing we can all agree on is that the key to an effective marketing plan is to diversify. If you only work with one particular marketing strategy, you’ll find that you have limited your options significantly.

At the very least, pay per click is a good way to diversify your marketing program. When you use it to it’s full potential it’s the perfect way to gain insight into how effective your overall plan is with added insight into the best ways to connect with the consumer, and potential improvements to increase conversions across the board.

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