Inbound Interaction Management (IIM)

It’s no surprise that Direct Marketing response rates have dropped to a historic low with success rates in the low single digits. And further – that marketing organizations are becoming increasingly focused on Inbound Marketing (credit HubSpot for creating this term) which are a source of much higher response rates.

Given the pervasive nature of the Internet I think the balance of power has shifted toward the customer or prospect indefinitely – which means we will be in a period of Inbound Marketing for a very long time.

But with all this Inbound Marketing happening – who is looking at the higher order of Inbound Interactions across many different channels – call it Inbound Interaction Management (IIM).

Inbound Interaction Management could mean many things. First it can encompass how you respond to all that Inbound Marketing across your website and social outposts for your content – typically with a system for capturing all the touches that have happened and nurturing those in sales leads has a lot of promise. Next it could also take you into a more traditional space such as the contact center and field service teams – where CMOs already have tons of activity trying to provide superior customer service. So then the question becomes how to bridge the two so you can deliver the Right Offer in the Right Channel at the Right Time.

All this interaction is going to need to be managed and optimized – since some of the touch points have very low customer acquisition costs such as field service teams – who could easily be an extended arm of your Inbound Marketing efforts if they knew how to deliver the Right Offer at the Right Time. Same goes for your contact center – historically a cost center could now become a revenue producing center if you could get them the Right Offer at the Right Time to deliver to the customer.

I am becoming fascinated with the opportunity to meld Inbound Marketing with Inbound Contact Management especially for CMOs of B2B firms. There is a huge revenue producing role that marketers can play by taking all that highly trackable inbound marketing and combining it with existing contact management to create an Inbound Interaction Management system that learns to deliver the Right Offer in the Right Channel at the Right Time.

5 comments to Inbound Interaction Management (IIM)

  • Jeff Ogden

    Could not agree more on the opportunity for inbound marketing. We have lived this at Find New Customers. By continually publishing high quality content, I continually am amazed at the quality and flow of inbound interest. HubSpot may have coined the term "inbound marketing" but all B2B businesses have an opportunity to embrace it.

    Jeff Ogden, President
    Find New Customers
    "Lead Generation Made Simple"

  • Paul Dunay

    @ Jeff – YES great point its a great opportunity for B2B marketers! there has never been a better time to be in B2B!

  • Dan McDade

    Thank you, Paul, for a great post and for recognizing the value of marrying inbound and outbound marketing. I have a saying that "most executives don't want to be treated like the human equivalent of a pinball – receiving attention only after they have hit the right bumpers… Use marketing automation to complement and enhance other media – not instead of… Thanks again!

  • Wendy

    Excellent point about inbound marketing, Paul. However, I have to stand up for the shot down direct marketers. Direct marketing is alive and well as practiced by direct marketing companies like Media Horizons (, and in many cases is being rejuvenated as a web tool by non-direct marketing companies, as well as good old fashioned catalogers. Here's a link to a WSJ story about the webbified role of catlogers:

    Wendy Marx
    President, Marx Communications

  • Paul Dunay

    @ Wendy – thanks for commenting – I appreciate you standing up for the Direct Marketers here 😉

    Good to see you at todays event!

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