I like to think of inbound marketing as the true charmer of digital marketing. But before you become horrified and start imagining broken promises and angry customers left disillusioned and disappointed, let me explain a little further…Inbound marketing delivers on its promises.
It helps businesses understand what people want, need and crave and helps them get to grips with the tactics that will ultimately keep their customers satisfied. But instead of whispering sweet nothings in their ears – it actually gives customers what they’ve asked for in the form of compelling content, relevant search terms and personalised and meaningful messages.
You see, inbound marketing is the most cost-effective and authentic way to win your customers’ hearts and minds. And that makes it a skill that you simply cannot afford not to master…
HubSpot, the kings of inbound marketing have developed a learning academy for budding inbound marketers to journey through and graduate from. The comprehensive course consists of a series of engaging training videos, in-depth user guides and how-to articles. The learning academy helps you get to grips with inbound marketing basics like blogging, social media, building landing pages and running email marketing campaigns.
Top Tip: You can earn your Inbound Certification for free – after you’ve studied the resources, take the exam so you can proudly display it on your LinkedIn profile.
Moz’s ‘Learn SEO and Search Marketing’ library contains a wealth of in-depth, how-to articles that every budding inbound marketer should investigate. You’ll learn everything you need to begin your SEO journey, including getting to grips with the basic terms and tactics that form a powerful inbound strategy. You’ll discover how to conduct effective keyword targeting along with the importance of on-page optimization, taking into account everything from meta descriptions and schema structured data to duplicate content and mobile optimized websites.
But the inbound fun doesn’t end there – you’ll also enjoy SEO quizzes, industry surveys, technical guides, educational video bundles and lots more. For additional lessons, Moz Academy is worth a flick through. Word of warning though – there are so many great resources available that you might be browsing for a while so make sure you curl up with a coffee first and pause that Netflix show.
You can sign up to the Moz Community for free. And we’d certainly recommend you do so as there are so plenty of unmissable inbound marketing resources to avail of. For example, you can register for their upcoming webinars (or Mozinars) which are fairly regular and cover a vast array of SEO topics and you can, of course, watch a series of previously recorded webinars also. You will be kept up to date with upcoming events, can avail of unlimited Open Site Explorer Reports and have the opportunity to ask and answer questions in the Q&A forum.
However, the best part is that you get to write and submit your own blog posts for review. The Moz Community only publishes in-depth, quality posts that add true value to the reader so make sure you read their guidelines in full before submitting a draft. Writing about a subject is often the best way to learn. And as an absolute bonus you’ll get your name out to a premium audience. There’s no better way to establish your own credibility in the inbound marketing industry.
Best Community For: Making a well-respected name for yourself in the industry and learning from influential sources.
Inbound.org is an exciting online forum that publishes daily articles, opinions and quotes from inbound professionals at all industry levels, from well-known influencers to complete newbies. Submissions can be voted up or down, allowing visitors to discover the best, newest and most-on-topic inbound articles around.
Discussions on the latest SEO updates can get fairly heated – this is a great hub for viewing both sides of the argument and allowing you to form your own opinions about new industry trends and news. Interaction is also very much encouraged, making this the ideal community to visit to ask questions, pose thoughts and make connections.
Best Blog For: Helping you discover the most popular and influential inbound blog posts of the moment.
Search Engine Land is a rather compelling daily publication that focuses on all aspects of the search marketing industry. You can look forward to breaking news stories and industry trends alongside new feature announcements and algorithm changes at the likes of Google and other search engine giants. This is the first place we recommend turning to for industry news – a must-read for your morning commute.
Best Blog For: Helping you get to grips with industry news, algorithm changes and SEO updates.
Learning how to create valuable content is one of the most important components of inbound marketing. And no-one knows their content marketing quite like the Content Marketing Institute. They provide a wealth of content marketing resources, including industry benchmarks and trends, original whitepapers, podcasts and webinars. Their White Paper and eBook Library is a must-visit – a true treasure trove of content marketing advice from industry experts.
The blog is home to a number of awesome articles written about blogging, content strategy and storytelling best practices that will help you dramatically enhance the power of your inbound marketing mission. Another big bonus is that it keeps you updated with the latest content marketing events that often have a heavy inbound marketing focus.
Best Blog For: Learning how to master content marketing and understanding what it takes to provide true value for customers.
Just like content marketing, social media is an essential component of any effective inbound marketing strategy. It is especially important to learn how to identify and connect with industry influencers with large social media followings who can significantly propel the reach of your content.
You’ll learn how to do this and lots more by reading Social Media Examiner regularly. The blog is packed full of quality articles about all things social media, including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google+, LinkedIn, Pinterest and more. It also often includes expert opinions, influencer interviews and best-practice case studies.
Best Blog For: Helping you learn how to use social media to attract customers towards your brand and build valuable communities in the process.