PPC Inbound Marketing Outbound marketing

Is PPC Outbound or Inbound Marketing?

Attracting customers through advertisements and marketing is an art. While marketing your product and service, the key thing is to show off your brand’s potential to gain potential customers.

Large businesses use two ways of marketing strategies to accomplish this task,

  • Inbound Marketing
  • Outbound Marketing

Both marketing strategies play a key role in business growth, Each has its own strengths and weakness but not all businesses can afford to engage in both.

Apparently, PPC or paid search comes as a life savior, it’s cost-effective, efficient, and a great marketing strategy. But as debated by many professionals, does it fall under inbound or outbound marketing?

What is Inbound Marketing?

Inbound Marketing Explained

Instead of interrupting potential customers with traditional advertising methods, inbound marketing focuses on creating valuable and relevant content that attracts them to your business.

The goal of inbound marketing is to gain your audience’s trust and credibility by providing them with useful information that answers their questions or solves their problems. You can attract more qualified leads to your business, raise brand awareness, and ultimately generate more revenue by creating content that aligns with the interests and needs of your target audience.

Inbound Marketing
What is Inbound Marketing?

Some of the strategies used for inbound marketing include the following:

Inbound Marketing
Strategies for Inbound Marketing

It’s an effective way of advertising and marketing. Statistics have shown that 79% of companies that have a blog have reported that they have positive ROI for inbound marketing. Aside from that, it also produces 54% more leads compared to traditional advertising. 

What is Outbound Marketing?

Outbound marketing is the more traditional form of marketing. This includes strategies like TV commercials, radio ads, and print advertisements like newspaper ads, brochures, flyers, catalogs, etc. 

Inbound Marketing
What is Outbound Marketing?

Outbound marketing, also known as traditional marketing or interruption marketing, refers to any marketing strategy that involves reaching out to potential customers with a message or advertisement, often in an inconvenient manner.

Television and radio commercials, print ads, direct mail, telemarketing, and email blasts are all examples of outbound marketing tactics. The goal of outbound marketing is to spread a message or product to a large audience in the hopes of capturing the attention and interest of potential customers.

Inbound Marketing Vs. Outbound Marketing

What is Paid Search?

Paid search, also known as pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, is a digital marketing strategy in which ads are placed on search engine results pages (SERPs) or other websites, and a fee is paid each time someone clicks on the ad. Advertisers bid on keywords or phrases relevant to their target audience, and when someone searches for those terms or visits the site, the search engine or website displays their ad in the relevant space. According to Google, these are search results that have a little green box with the word “ad” before the listing. 

What is PPC Marketing? Is PPC Marketing, Outbound, or Inbound Marketing?

The cost per click (CPC) varies according to the competitiveness of the keyword or phrase, and the ad’s duration is determined by the advertiser’s budget. Paid search can be an extremely effective way to reach potential customers who are actively looking for products or services similar to yours, and it allows you to target specific demographics, locations, and other factors to ensure your ads reach the right people.

Why PPC is Part of Inbound Marketing?

PPC (pay-per-click) advertising is frequently considered a component of inbound marketing because it can be used to attract potential customers who are actively searching for products or services similar to those offered by a business.

Instead of pushing advertisements at potential customers, inbound marketing focuses on creating content and strategies that attract them to your website or business. PPC advertising enables businesses to target specific keywords and search terms that potential customers use to find businesses like theirs, potentially increasing website traffic and conversions.

Businesses can reach potential customers who are already interested in what they have to offer by using PPC advertising as part of an inbound marketing strategy. This can help to raise brand awareness, generate leads, and drive sales while adhering to inbound marketing principles of attracting rather than interrupting potential customers.

Relevance to Potential Customers

Inbound marketing focuses on drawing in potential customers through great content that aligns with user intent. You’re there as a business owner when they’re searching for something relevant to what you can offer them.

Conversely, outbound marketing focuses on marketing and advertising to potential customers whether it’s relevant to them or not.

Paid search fits in better with inbound marketing because it only appears when users search for keywords that are relevant to your content. It doesn’t appear in user searches that have nothing to do with the content that users will be directed to once they click on the ads.


Another distinct difference between inbound marketing and outbound marketing is targeting. Inbound marketing has a very specific target. It determines the demographics and interests of its target audience. Aside from that, it even creates a buyer persona for a more streamlined strategy. 

In contrast, outbound marketing simply puts advertisements in places where people can see them, regardless of their demographics or interests. 

In this perspective, PPC still fits inbound marketing. It identifies the audience who are searching for keywords that are related to your content. This makes them potential customers that are more likely to show interest in what you have to offer. 

Organic vs Interruptive Marketing

Organic marketing and interruptive marketing are two methods for reaching out to and engaging potential customers.

Organic marketing entails creating valuable content that attracts and engages an audience on its own. This can include creating informative blog posts, social media content, and videos that address a target audience’s interests and needs. The goal is to build trust and a relationship with potential customers in the hopes that they will become loyal customers.

Interruptive marketing, on the other hand, involves a person’s attention being diverted by an advertisement or promotion. Pop-up ads, TV commercials, and cold-calling are examples of interruptive marketing. The goal is to pique a person’s interest and generate interest in a product or service even if they were not previously interested.

While both organic and interruptive marketing has their uses, organic marketing is generally thought to be more effective over time. Organic marketing is less intrusive and more focused on developing relationships and trust, which can lead to more loyal customers. Interruptive marketing can generate initial interest, but it can also turn people off and cause negative associations with a brand.

Google prioritizes user experience so it makes sure that the ads it shows are relevant to the searches of users. 

Tracking Customer Engagement

Inbound marketing is easy to measure as you can measure the metrics used to determine the success of inbound marketing can be measured easily with the right tools. 

In contrast, outbound marketing is tough to measure. It’s hard to measure how many of your target audience saw your ads and it’s hard to measure how many new customers were bought in because of your ads. If anything, you can only look at ROI as a measurement of success and you’re not sure if the results are solely because of your outbound marketing strategy.

This is another reason why paid search is part of inbound marketing. With the right tools, you can easily track the following:

Inbound Marketing
Tools Needed To Track Customer Enganement
  • Click-through rate – The ratio of users who click on a specific link to the total number of users who view a page, email, or advertisement is known as the click-through rate (CTR).
  • Conversion rate – The percentage of website or marketing campaign visitors who complete a desired action, such as making a purchase or filling out a form, is referred to as the conversion rate.
  • Impression share – The percentage of times your ad is displayed out of the total number of times it was eligible to be displayed is referred to as the impression share.
  • On-site engagement – The process of actively involving and interacting with individuals or teams at a physical location or workplace is referred to as on-site engagement.
  • Cost efficiency metrics – Cost efficiency is a metric that measures how effectively resources are used to achieve a desired result while keeping costs to a minimum.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Inbound Marketing?

Inbound marketing is the process of introducing your business to potential customers organically. It does not outwardly advertise what you can offer them. The goal is to introduce who you are early on so they're familiar with you and what you can do for them before they realize that they need it. 

What is Outbound Marketing?

Outbound marketing is the more traditional form of marketing. This includes strategies like TV commercials, radio ads, and print advertisements like newspaper ads, brochures, flyers, catalogs, etc

Is PPC part of Inbound Marketing?

Yes, PPC is a part of Inbound Marketing.

Wrapping Up

Paid search is a smart, effective, and cost-efficient strategy for marketing. There is a significant number of people in the marketing and advertising industry who claim that paid search is a part of outbound marketing. This is because paid search is paid and isn’t considered “free marketing.” 

But then again, if you consider all the factors that go into advertising and marketing, nothing is really done for free. 

Upon further consideration of the nature of the paid search, it fits in better with the definition of inbound marketing. It is relevant, targetted, organic, and easy to measure, all of which are characteristics of inbound marketing. 

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