Understanding the Components of an Inbound Marketing “Conversion Machine”

By Scott Anderson Miller

Inbound marketing is about attracting strangers and converting them into customers. Planning, designing, and building an efficient online mechanism — a conversion machine — is an important part of this process. A conversion machine is comprised of three major components:

  • Your website — the “engine”: Your website is the hub of the majority of your online engagement and activity. As such, it is the engine that drives your online success. Powering up a turbo-charged website, one designed to attract and convert, means following a few basic rules:

    • Using your website as the hub of attraction requires a customer-centric approach rather than a product-centric approach.

    • Designing your website to be found by people searching online requires adherence to search-engine optimization (SEO) best practices.

    • Creating a positive, intuitive website user experience increases conversion.

  • Your content — the “fuel”: Inbound marketing is all about creating connections between people and products. Your content is the connective tissue between the two. Conveying the benefits of your products in an interesting, engaging manner is the inbound way. Rather than shouting about your product features with interruptive messaging, create a connective path to your products, making it easier for people to buy. You do so by inviting customers to be a part of the process and by providing meaningful solutions via valuable content. To do this, you should

    • Generate educational content to visitors who are researching.

    • Create valuable downloadable content for visitors who are shopping, to better convert that visitor into a lead.

    • Deliver content like coupons, free product demos, or promotional incentives to reward leads nearing a purchase action.

    • Create content that attracts prospects who have not yet bought back to your site.

    • Generate easily accessible content to reengage former customers over and over again.

    Premium content has more power for your engine. Premium content is timely, relevant, and framed in the correct context for your customers. So, create more premium content to see higher website visitor attraction.

  • Your conversion-based call-to-action (CTA) map — the “lubricant”: From initial attraction to engagement and, ultimately, to product purchase, each of your customers found you and completed a journey. A CTA map is your website’s blueprint, designed to create a frictionless user experience from first contact through first contract. Knowing where a customer is in the purchase path helps you create more meaningful, connective content for that customer. Mapping your customer journey before building your website creates a better user experience and increases your conversion rates. To do this, you should

    • Connect your blog to downloadable, middle-of-the funnel engagement content.

    • Create simple, clear CTA buttons and forms to collect prospective customer data.

    • Organize that content by analyzing your website user flow, looking for roadblocks, especially on those pages that have high “bounce” or exit rates.