Marketing Pilgrim's "Inbound Marketing" Channel

Marketing Pilgrim's Inbound Channel is sponsored by SDL. SDL Campaigns empowers marketers to create, deliver, monitor and measure dynamic, highly-targeted and personalized digital marketing campaigns across all channels and devices.

Fantasy Inbound Marketing



OK, we are getting close to football season. I know there is a threat of losing some precious NFL season as the millionaires v billionaires lameness carries on but let’s put that aside for now. Let’s imagine everything is right with the world.

If real football is around the corner then so is fantasy football. It’s the place where every NFL fan who ever said “I can do a better job putting together a team than that general manager!” gets to try to do just that on some level. Of course it’s limited but it’s fantasy so we just play along.

As the general manager of your own team you are faced with the dreaded salary cap that prevents you from grabbing every top player in the draft. You have to deal with competition. You have to learn how to talk some serious trash and to negotiate as if this stuff really matters. Of course, in some leagues the buy in and payout make it more real than you can imagine but we’ll stop there :-).

So here we go with the first Marketing Pilgrim fantasy inbound marketing, uhhh, let’s call it a draft.

The following list covers many important areas of inbound marketing. It is not being promoted as a beginning and end all list. What it will be though, is a starting point for conversation amongst our dedicated Internet marketing readers. Your job is to pick the most potent lineup for inbound marketing success while dealing with the thing that is the marketers’ equivalent to a salary cap: a budget.

OK, now imagine your budget only allows for you to do any combination of the elements below for $100k total annually. Now, I realize that many smaller guys are thinking “Geesh, if I only had that kind of budget I would be rockin’ it!”. Remember this is fantasy inbound marketing so just play along and fantasize what it would be like to have real money to spend. Here are your ‘players’ and their associated cost against your total budget number.

  1. Facebook – $40k
  2. SEO – $30k
  3. Twitter – $ 30k
  4. Content Marketing – $25k
  5. Community Building – $25k
  6. Customer Service – $20k
  7. LinkedIn – $20k
  8. Landing Pages – $15k
  9. Blogging – $15k
  10. Local (Google Places, Yelp etc) – $15k
  11. Google+ – $15k
  12. Mobile marketing – $ 15k
  13. Offline Marketing – $10k
  14. Social Media Monitoring – $10k
  15. Employee training – $5k

Now here’s where you come in. You get to play Marketing Director and decide just how you will divvy up this limited fantasy inbound marketing pie. Remember your $100k salary cap (budget). Imagine your company as being the framework for your choices.

In the comments, tell us what your lineup would look like and why. I’ll get it started with my team, The Inbounders.

  1. Community Building – $25k
  2. Blogging – $15k
  3. Mobile Marketing – $15k
  4. Local – $15k
  5. Social Media Monitoring – $10k
  6. Offline Marketing – $10k
  7. Employee training – $5k

Total – $95k

Why did I go the route that I did? It’s because I don’t want to put too many eggs in one huge basket (i.e. spending significant portions of resources on Facebook and Twitter where everyone is likely to be). I am also looking for bargains. I look for things that don’t cost much but could have huge benefits. Take social media monitoring for instance. Relative to other activities it’s low cost but it still touches all the other areas and gives insights into how I may even want to restructure the team later on in the season.

I like to get into areas that can create very real conversations because they are more targeted for niche audiences. When you dive into the deep end with all the sharks fighting for the same piece of the pie it can get ugly real fast.

So you get the drift. You’re probably wondering why I would even put the effort into something like this post. It’s pretty simple. All of the talk and chatter from experts sounds very much the same and very preachy. There is little room for true innovation in the online marketing realm when you are limited by the opinions of those who claim some kind of expertise.

The real world doesn’t work in a “10 Most Important Factors for (Fill In The Blank) Success” manner. There are restrictions and harsh realities of what can and cannot be done and it is very hard to sit back and wonder what it would be like if I could only actually do everything that the experts say.

Of course, this system is far from perfect and you can feel free to pick it apart or add to it in the comments. I just thought it might be a good idea to actually think about something and try to apply it rather than spending another day in the pew being preached to.

Game on!