Inbound Marketing for the Outdoor Industry
It’s no secret. No matter how great your product or service is, if you don’t have quality marketing then you won’t have a successful business. For years this meant having a hefty budget. However, with nearly everyone having the internet at the tip of their fingers with smartphones and tablets, the times are changing.
For the outdoor industry, marketing is often the difference between the top products and businesses and those that struggle to break even. For the longest time, only the deepest pockets reached the mass numbers of hunters and fishermen. That time has ended. The traditional marketing techniques of direct mail, TV ads, telemarketing, and other traditional advertisements are weakening every day. Think about it, how much does the average outdoorsman watch targeted TV stations each day? With a typical 8-hour work day, that’s maybe 3-4 hours. But how long are they around an internet device? For most it’s nearly every hour awake!
Inbound marketing uses avenues such as search engine optimization (SEO), social media, blogs, and content optimization to draw potential customers IN to the website, as opposed to reaching out to them. The best part is, this nearly puts all businesses on same level since it doesn’t take money to make it to the top…it just takes knowledge and effort. Know who your customer is and what they want. For instance, if you are selling high-end, fly fishing rods then you wouldn’t necessarily be targeting those who customers who have an interest in catfishing. The best part about inbound marketing is the ability to finely tune your target audience. Do you get that with a TV commercial? Not so much. Although you may be able to pay the extra premium to air during a white-tailed deer hunting show for 30 seconds, how many people got up to get a drink on commercial break? Online marketing using tactics like SEO and search engine marketing (SEM), allows you to out the bait (content) to attract the fish (target consumer).
Though social media, SEO, and SEM are the methods, the true power for inbound marketing is content. Without content there is nothing to use to drive consumers to your site or products. Original outdoor industry content is not that hard to find, but content that is compelling to the target customer can be, and very time consuming at that.
So as you plan your new company, or strategy to reinvigorate your existing company, avoid the pit-falls of standard marketing. Inbound marketing is the future of the outdoor industry; those companies that think outside the box are destined for great things.