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Inbound Marketing Vs Outbound Marketing – What’s The Most Effective Marketing Technique?

If you’re a digital marketer of the 21st century, you’ll inevitably find yourself in a dilemma when choosing the best marketing strategy – inbound marketing or outbound marketing. While both these techniques have their fair shares of pros and cons, it entirely depends on skilled marketers to assess the situation based on numerous metrics and make an informed decision. So, this blog will cover the question of the hour – Inbound Marketing vs Outbound Marketing? Which is the most effective for your organization?


A Quick overview

Before jumping into the analysis part, let’s initially what the terms inbound and outbound actually mean. With better clarity, the effort that goes into choosing the best-suited marketing strategy gets reduced substantially.

Outbound marketing is a strategy where organizations aim at pushing their products/services to a large set of audiences in the form of TV/Print commercials, cold calls, mass mails, etc.

Contrastingly, inbound marketing is a strategy where organizations attract the audience towards their products/services rather than selling them directly in the first place. Some of the common inbound tactics include content marketing, webinars, video series, etc.

Inbound marketing Vs Outbound marketing

And now comes the big picture. Let’s differentiate these two highly-popular marketing tactics based on certain key metrics.

#1 One-way vs Two-way traffic

In outbound marketing, the ultimate aim of the organization is to advertise the product/services to a wide set of audiences. Due to this aspect, outbound marketing falls under the one-way engagement medium, wherein customers cannot interact with commercials or mails among each other.

Parallelly, inbound marketing leads to two-way traffic, wherein organizations get to strike up and build real-time engagement with clients. By delivering content throughout the buyer journey, organizations get to establish brand authority and enhance customer engagement rates significantly.

#2 The fundamental aspect – Push vs Pull

Both these strategies differ significantly in the way it is perceived by the end-users.

In outbound marketing, organizations push their services/products to potential customers in view of closing sales. While conversion rates are narrow, reaching out to the right set of customers can significantly come in handy in this technique.

Whereas in inbound marketing, organizations pull or attract customers towards their website or product/services rather than selling them directly. Inbound marketing leads to a win-win situation where customers get informative content and organizations get to grow their audience base in return.

#3 The end-user satisfaction – Interruption vs Permission

Due to its push strategy, outbound marketing interrupts end-users, notifies them of the organizations’ products/services, and expects favorable outcomes in the end. In this modern era where privacy remains the core of end-users, interruption has led to the decline of outbound marketing strategies among organizations.

However, in inbound marketing, it is the end-user who reads content or watches an informative video and gets to about the product/services of organizations. This way, end-users have the final say in opting in or out of the ecosystem. This permission-based approach is gradually gaining the spotlight in today’s world.

#4 The Stats

Let’s run through some numbers to identify which marketing strategy is clearly working for marketers.

  • Permission-based (inbound) marketing experiences 750% higher conversion rates than interruption-based marketing (Source: Vital Design)
  • An average user experiences 1700 banner ads per month but views only half of them (Source: MarketingInsiderGroup)
  • According to recent research, only 29% of people will want to talk to a salesperson regarding a product while 62% preferred a search engine (Source: Weidert)

Wrapping up

Now that you know the ultimate winner of inbound marketing vs outbound marketing, it is time to set foot into action. If you cannot streamline your services to a specific set of audiences, outbound marketing can be your best bet, else prefer inbound marketing right away!

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