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10 Clever Inbound Marketing Strategies For Startups

10 Clever Inbound Marketing Strategies For Startups
June 2, 2018

10 Clever Inbound Marketing Strategies For Startups

Jun 02, 2018
Michelle is a researcher and freelance writer that works with Heroic Search, a Tulsa based SEO company. She writes content that educates businesses by helping them boost their revenue and build a powerful brand. Michelle has been featured in Entrepreneur and the Crazy Egg blog.

You’ve launched your startup - great! But now you need some customers. Traditionally, brands have reached out to customers via outbound marketing strategies - cold calling and the like. Whilst brands still do this, there’s another great way of getting your customers to come to you. It’s called inbound marketing. And in 2018, it’s time that you scale your business with 10 clever inbound marketing strategies. Let’s take a look at what these are, but first let’s quickly define what we mean by inbound marketing.

What Is Inbound Marketing?

It’s 2018 and millennials are dominating the economy. They form most of your core demographic, but the they don’t like being sold to. Instead, they want you to involve them in a proper marketing campaign. What does this mean? It means that millennials would rather come to you than the other way around. Perhaps this is what Hubspot foresaw in 2006 when they coined the term “inbound marketing.” But what does it mean? I’ll let Hubspot themselves explain: “Inbound marketing is focused on attracting customers through relevant and helpful content and adding value at every stage in your customer’s buying journey. With inbound marketing, potential customers find you through channels like blogs, search engines and social media.” In other words, you create and share content, build your brand online, and engage customers by adding value to their lives. You exploit social media and email and make a connection with people. The thing is that getting customers to come to us sounds a bit tricky, right? Here are 10 ways you do it:

1. Create a Buyer Profile

Who’s buying from you? Do you know who they are, what their interests, goals, motivations and behaviour patterns are? If you don’t, you won’t be putting out that content that interests and engages them, and which ultimately makes a connection. And that sucks. The easiest way to find out more about your customers is via analytics. You can use Google Analytics to learn more about your website visitors and the in-network analytics (such as Facebook Insights) to learn more about your social media followers.

2. Write Compelling Headlines

Frank Kern - a social media marketing master - typically uses two different types of headlines to attract the right buyers. One of these is called the “dog whistle” headline. It’s so-called because it calls out a specific reader whose problem it’s claiming to solve. It could be something like “If You Want More Consulting Clients Read This.” A compelling headline is key to attracting the right customers, with stats showing that 60% of people share content without even reading the copy. The headline was enough! It all starts with a headline.

3. Write a Blog

A blog is a fantastic way to educate your audience, build a relationship with them and position yourself as the expert in a particular niche. A blog also keeps people on the website, and it can act as a great lead magnet. Content marketing is a massively important subset of inbound marketing and blogs are your best weapon here. When you blog, always publish posts that are rich in value and always post consistently.

4. Produce In-Depth Content

As well as your blog - for which you should also produce long-form, in-depth content, as research has shown that this performs the best on Google - you should look to be creating other forms of content, such as video and even podcasts. Venngage do this well. They publish posts that are extremely in-depth, just like this one. It contains over 20 visuals, which includes infographics and downloadable templates for their readers. Video marketing is also huge. As a collective, we watch over 500,000,000 hours of YouTube videos each day, while 89% of online marketers are already using video content. Videos get shared a heap, too, and the more in-depth and helpful your videos are, the better they’ll perform for you.

5. Tell Stories

For your customers to feel properly immersed in a marketing campaign, and for them to trust you and want to actively seek you out, you need to be hitting those all-important emotional buttons. One of the best ways to this is by telling stories. Tell your story - where you came from and why you’re doing this. Tell stories that people will relate to. Aim for an emotional connection first and then toss in a few numbers and data. Be exciting! Don’t take too long to get to the good bits. Start in the middle.

6. Guest Blog

Don’t just post on your website - post on others, too! This is an excellent inbound marketing tactic that all the savvy marketers are already doing each week. When you guest blog, you expose yourself to a new audience, and you also boost your SEO efforts, thereby making it easier for people to find you on Google.

7. Double Down On Your SEO

You will have noticed that I’ve mentioned your performance on Google twice so far. This is because where you are in the search engine results is crucial to how well your inbound marketing strategies perform. Your website needs to be visible, otherwise people just won’t find you. The thing is that SEO takes time and it’s a lot of effort. The best thing to do is to work with an SEO firm or a freelancer who can take care of this for you.


Offer something of huge value on your website for FREE in exchange for a customer’s email address. Below you can see HubSpot offers a free content marketing book in return for the user's email address. A prospect isn’t just going to hand over their email address to you. They need a reason. Offer them, say, an eBook stuffed with value and once on your email list, you can use content to turn them into customers.

9. Implement an Email Marketing Campaign

Following on from above, once you’ve got people’s email addresses, you should then email them content which strengthens your relationship. Yes, sell to them now and then and offer promotions and discounts. But most of the time, send them valuable, educational and even topical content that builds relationships.

10. Convert your Leads

Lastly, inbound marketing is all about making the customer experience easier than ever. Install a POS card reader on your site so that making payment is a breeze. Tools like a POS system work especially great if your business also has a retail or physical store where you interact with your customers in person, and not just online.


These are 10 clever inbound marketing strategies for startups. Many of these are easy to implement, but for some - blogs and SEO campaigns - you’ll probably want to outsource.

Author Bio

Michelle is a researcher and freelance writer that works with Heroic Search, a Tulsa based SEO company. She writes content that educates businesses by helping them boost their revenue and build a powerful brand. Michelle has been featured in Entrepreneur and the Crazy Egg blog.

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