How Much Does Inbound Marketing Cost Your Company?

Inbound marketing is one of the most popular ways to gain traffic, leads, and sales. Rather than knocking on doors, you are posting on social media, writing blogs, and targeting people in all stages of the purchase funnel.  The problem is that not everyone can make inbound marketing effective. While writing a post on Facebook is free, hiring someone to write an intention-grabbing message is not.

Companies often dedicate a large portion of their marketing budget to inbound marketing techniques. This number varies greatly depending on industry. For most companies, spending about 10-percent of the marketing budget on inbound marketing services is typical. If you are looking to save money on marketing costs or want to know where your money is going, keep reading to learn more.

Your Marketing Budget Broken Down

Before you can understand how much does inbound marketing cost, you need to understand what your budget is. Because inbound marketing services have a wide range of price points, it is better to break down costs on a percentage basis.

Typically, large corporations spend about 3-percent of their marketing budget on inbound marketing services. This can accumulate to about $20 million per year. This isn’t due to them having less of a need; it is often due to them having more money to work with. Small to medium business owners will typically spend about 10-percent on similar services, but this equates to a much smaller dollar amount.

Costs are broken down into two major categories: project management and content. Project management services usually include strategic planning, website services, account set up, and ongoing maintenance for special projects. Content includes writing social media posts, website content, eBooks, and other materials used to generate leads. The percentage of a marketing budget spent on these services will vary based on the company’s needs and client base.

While inbound marketing takes a small portion of the budget, it has some of the biggest return on investment. Inbound marketing techniques tend to cost 60-percent less than outbound counterparts but have the potential to bring in much more traffic. The right tweet or webpage can skyrocket a business overnight.

Should Your Budget Be Only for Digital Marketing?

When it comes to averaging inbound marketing costs, it is important to remember that many companies are relying completely on digital marketing techniques. Large corporations that spend 3-percent of their marketing budgets on inbound marketing services are likely running print advertisements, attending trade shows, or using other traditional marketing methods to rope in traffic. If these methods are not a practical solution for your company, you should invest a higher percentage in digital inbound marketing techniques.

Paying for Modern Marketing Techniques

One of the biggest reasons why there is a huge difference in what companies pay is that there are several different services available. Most of these services have industry standards and competition to keep costs affordable, but the sky is truly the limit. Some professionals with years of experience and success can charge hundreds of dollars to write your tweet, while skilled writers may charge as little as $1 per post.

Finding the correct services and price points means conducting research. If you aren’t sure about which marketing techniques will work for your company, you may need to outsource to a professional marketing company. Professional companies often charge a flat rate for their services and are willing to work with a wide range of budgets.

Keep in mind that most modern inbound marketing techniques don’t include additional promotion. For example, if you pay someone to design your blog, make it search engine friendly, and write a few posts, you will still have to make decisions on how to promote that blog. Paid online advertising services usually aren’t included in freelance work. Companies that include paid social media or search engine promotion will charge significantly more than others to cover costs.

Finding What Services You Can Do Yourself

One of the biggest benefits to using online inbound marketing techniques is that many of them can be learned over time. You don’t necessarily have to be a gifted artist or talented writer to start cutting costs.

Social media marketing, for example, is a great way to bring traffic to your website and perform customer service. If the posts you are making aren’t bringing you the results you want, having a company take over for you isn’t a bad idea; however, that doesn’t mean you can’t still use your account to perform customer service or answer questions. By performing your own customer service, you are cutting costs but keeping your account professional and effective.

Learning simple search engine optimization, blogging and social media skills is easy. There are many online resources that can help you discover small ways to save money on professional inbound marketing services.

Outsourcing Keeps Costs at a Minimum

For the tasks, you or your staff can’t do, you will need to outsource. One of the most common ways to outsource your marketing department is with a third-party service. While they are very comprehensive, they are also very expensive. If you know which techniques you want to use, a selective service or freelancer can do the work at a more affordable rate.

Darren Faber

About Darren Faber

Darren is one of the first employees Foxtail ever had. Aside from that he enjoys starring in low-budget rom-coms (true story, look it up).

Foxtail Marketing is a digital marketing firm that provides content marketing, digital marketing, and lead generation services for small and mid-market companies.

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