Renowned Lebanese-American poet Kahlil Gibran popularized the aphorism, “Should we all confess our sins to one another we would all laugh at one another for our lack of originality.”
Gibran's words are certainly true in marketing. The costliest marketing mistakes are surprisingly common.
In fact, most can be summarized in these seven deadly sins of Inbound Marketing:
Sin 1: Sloth – Don't be slothful about content creation! One of the foremost tenets of inbound marketing is to constantly create fresh, remarkable content that is helpful to your customers, prospects and community and attract them to your business.
Sin 2: Lust - Don't lust after short-term results. It takes a while to build a successful blog. Be patient and focus on creating good content rather than becoming a mechanical publishing machine. The desire for short term results hurts long term gains.
Sin 3: Gluttony - Don't be gluttonous and stuff your content with information about your company products. Focus on solving problems and helping your customers and community first and not jamming your product pitch down their throats.
Sin 4: Greed – Don't be greedy for people's attention! Interrupting their daily lives with cold calls and other non-permission based outbound marketing can turn them off. Inbound marketing is about attracting people to your site like a magnet using remarkable, keyword-rich, optimized content.
Sin 5: Wrath – Don't respond to your nay sayers with wrath! It's easy to delete a non-flattering comment on your blog or site, but remember transparency is key as is open dialog! Foster constructive criticism so everyone can learn from the differing view points.
Sin 6: Envy – Don't copy your competition out of envy! Watch your competitors, but don't mimic them. Inbound Marketing is about playing a different game on the same field as your competitors who are using the age-old interruption outbound marketing tactics.
Sin 7: Pride – Don't be too proud to put yourself out there. Take a risk! Blogging and social media are not about works of art. They are about sharing raw information, videos and opening ourselves up. Sometimes we are too proud to put ourselves out there or linger too long trying to perfect our creative.
Are you guilty of any of the above sins? I know I am and try to correct course on a regular basis. Please share your thoughts in the comments!
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Originally published Jun 18, 2009 8:20:00 AM, updated June 10 2021