Inbound Vs Outbound Marketing


Howdy entrepreneurs...

...If you're developing your own marketing plan you will certainly want to consider both inbound and outbound marketing options. It's possible, you may not even realise there was a difference until now but virtually all marketing is usually one or the other.


Inbound marketing typically occurs when the customer is actively searching for a product or service. A great example of this is Google SEO. The customer types in to Google a phrase, or need, and Google produces the results page with businesses or solutions to that need. That's an inbound search. The marketing involved is generating visibility surrounding that search.


Outbound marketing is a push message. Radio is a great example. You're driving along in your car and you hear an ad on the radio. It may or may not have anything to do with you, or your needs, but you hear it anyway. Ad relevancy is an obvious concern but you can also reach a lot of people. For that reason, radio ads tend to be about products or services that lots of people need; insurance, jobs, childcare and food. 

Why do we make the distinction?

Inbound audiences tend to have a higher conversion %. For obvious reasons, they have a higher intent to purchase than outbound audiences. An effective marketing plan will analyse the size of the inbound audience and the best ways to create visibility. Knowing the size of this key audience is essential to understanding the market and business potential. 


  • SEO
  • Adwords
  • Content Marketing / Blogs
  • Referrals / Word of Mouth



  • Radio
  • Facebook Boosted Posts
  • TV / Print
  • Sponsored Content
  • EDMs / Direct Mail / Spam
  • Cold Calling

Can inbound outbound methods work together?

Most definitely. Facebook is a great example of inbound / outbound strategies working in harmony. 

  1. SEO creates inbound website traffic
  2. Using the Facebook tracking pixel, you create a Facebook audience from the visitors to your website
  3. You push outbound marketing messages to the created audience
  4. Some of the people in the Facebook messages tag their friends and they also visit the website
  5. Those people are then added to that audience - growing it further



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MarketingClive Morley