Why Inbound Marketing Benefits Are Not Enough

17 Sep 15

Inbound marketing benefits convinced us that sales would never have to cold call again. But has that been the case? The answer is no, and here's why.

Few salespeople enjoy prospecting, particularly cold calling. But what if your sales team never had to cold call again? Well, that was the promise of the early proponents of inbound marketing a few years ago. But have the inbound marketing benefits rally eliminated the need for cold calling? Let's take a closer look at why this might not be true.

What Is Inbound Marketing?

Inbound marketing is a customer-centric approach that focuses on attracting, engaging, and delighting potential customers by providing valuable and relevant content (e.g., blogs, white papers, e-books, and webinars).

Inbound marketing strategies aim to build trust, establish thought leadership, and create long-term customer relationships. It is based on the idea of earning the attention of prospects rather than interrupting them with intrusive advertising.

Why Inbound is Not Enough

While inbound marketing has gained significant popularity and proven effective in generating leads and attracting customers, relying solely on inbound strategies may not be enough to achieve long-term sales success. Here is why:

#1 Limited Control over Lead Generation

Inbound marketing primarily attracts leads through content creation, search engine optimization, and social media engagement. While these tactics can generate initial interest, they don’t guarantee a steady stream of high-quality leads. Relying solely on inbound strategies means you have limited control over the quantity and quality of leads coming into your sales pipeline.

#2 Not Reaching Decision Makers

In the world of complex sales with multiple decision makers, inbound marketing will help you develop a relationship with technical buyers, not key decision makers. By relying on inbound marketing alone, you will risk lengthening your sales cycle by engaging with people who may not have enough power in the organization.

#3 Timing and Urgency

Inbound marketing often relies on the prospect's self-directed research and decision-making process. This means prospects may not be actively looking for your product or service when you want to engage with them. In a competitive market, relying solely on inbound strategies might lead to missed opportunities due to the lack of immediate timing and urgency in reaching potential customers.

#4 Competitive Landscape

As inbound marketing continues to grow in popularity, more businesses are adopting this approach. This increased competition means that standing out from the crowd and capturing your target audience's attention becomes even more challenging. Relying solely on inbound marketing may not give you the competitive edge you need to outperform your rivals.

#5 Partial Sales Funnel Coverage

Inbound marketing primarily focuses on the early stages of the buyer's journey, such as awareness and consideration. While these stages are crucial, they are only part of the sales process. Relying solely on inbound strategies can neglect the later stages of the funnel and hinder your ability to close deals and retain customers effectively.

Is Allbound Marketing the Answer?

An inbound strategy helps get in front of prospects as they seek new opportunities. Yet relying solely on inbound could put your team at a competitive disadvantage if competitors use all channels available to generate new prospects and be the first to connect with decision-makers.

This is why your sales organization needs an allbound strategy – a combination of inbound, outbound, and nurturing programs to generate new qualified leads. Here are some of the benefits you can expect by implementing an allbound marketing strategy.

#1 Getting in Front of Technical Buyers

Inbound marketing is a powerful tool to capture the attention of technical buyers. Creating valuable content and optimizing it for search engines can attract prospects actively seeking solutions in your industry. Establishing thought leadership and demonstrating expertise through inbound marketing allows you to resonate with technical buyers' specific pain points and challenges.

#2 Reaching Decision Makers and Supplementing the Pipeline

Outbound tactics like targeted advertising, direct outreach, and personalized messaging allow your sales team to initiate conversations and connect with potential customers. By supplementing the sales pipeline with outbound efforts, you can ensure your team actively engages decision-makers and maximizes opportunities.

#3 Guiding Leads to the Point of Purchase

Not every lead generated through inbound or outbound efforts will be immediately ready to make a purchasing decision. Nurturing programs is crucial in an allbound strategy by building relationships with leads over time. Through consistent communication and personalized interactions, you can provide relevant and valuable information that guides leads through the buyer's journey. Nurturing allows you to address objections, cultivate trust, and position your company as the preferred solution provider when the prospect is ready to purchase.

Social Calling Using LinkedIn

A key component of an effective outbound program involves proactive, outbound calling. But we can all agree that cold calling is less effective for B2B sales than warm inbound leads.

The good news is that today, thanks to social media tools like LinkedIn, you no longer have to cold call. Social media is redefining sales by helping you convert a cold call into a warm call leveraging LinkedIn.

In the sophisticated world, we live in today, there is a role for all types of marketing. We know that inbound marketing appeals to technical buyers. But if we want to run a winning B2B sales organization, we can't rely on inbound leads alone. We also need effective prospecting as part of an allbound strategy to achieve our revenue goals.

At the end of the day, the power of LinkedIn allows you to have more effective sales calls. It is key to reach out to people proactively. The warmer you can do that (the more information you have and mutual connections), the better call to make. But you still have to do it.

Key Takeaways

While inbound marketing has its benefits, it is clear that relying solely on inbound strategies may not be enough to achieve sustainable sales success. The limitations of inbound marketing, such as limited control over the lead generation, the challenge of reaching decision-makers, timing and urgency concerns, increased competition, and partial sales funnel coverage, highlight the need for a comprehensive approach—an allbound strategy.

An allbound strategy combines the strengths of inbound, outbound, and nurturing programs to generate new qualified leads and maximize sales opportunities:

  • Inbound marketing is a powerful tool to capture the attention of technical buyers and establish thought leadership.
  • Outbound tactics such as targeted advertising, direct outreach, and personalized messaging help engage decision-makers and supplement the sales pipeline proactively.
  • Nurturing strategies guide prospects through the process by handling objections in sales, cultivating trust, and positioning your organization as the solution to their pain points.

Ultimately, a winning B2B sales organization recognizes that there is a role for all types of marketing. While inbound marketing appeals to technical buyers, an allbound strategy incorporating effective prospecting methods is crucial to achieving revenue goals. By embracing the power of LinkedIn and proactively reaching out to prospects, sales teams can enhance their calling efforts and increase their chances of success.



We are committed to helping more companies strive towards unforgettable growth by publishing insightful content regularly. Here are more blog posts we think you might be interested in.