A lot of people say they do “Inbound Marketing,” but how many marketers actually approach their campaigns with a defined strategy? A good way to get started is to first understand the anatomy of an inbound marketing campaign, what your sales funnel looks like, and where different kinds of content fit into that funnel.

Inbound Marketing Funnel

A complete and robust inbound marketing campaign consists of high-quality content marketing, CRO, marketing automation, a CRM and re-marketing. When your content is tailored to prospects in different stages of the funnel, you can move them through to conversion quickly and effortlessly!


Allison Steele
Allison Steele was formerly Senior Graphic Designer at Slingshot SEO. Allison has spent her career developing brands with effective messaging and great design. With a passion in photography, Allison is always pursing her creative side.
Allison Steele

Inbound Marketing, Infographic, Strategy | 11 Comments

11 thoughts on “[INFOGRAPHIC] An In-Depth Look at the Inbound Marketing Funnel

  1. Pingback: An Inbound Marketing Infographic for Your Marketing Planning — NewIncite

  2. Great inforgraphic Allison. One of the best overall depictions of inbound marketing that I have seen to date. I am interested in your view of why PPC should be considered outbound marketing? I recognize that many inbound marketing purists classify it that way and defend it because “each click costs money”, but then again, so does most organic traffic. In fact, one could view SEO as pre paying for potential traffic. In both paid and organic, the user initiates a search (non-interruption based) and then chooses which result is most relevant to their need. What difference from an inbound standpoint does it make if they click a paid vs natural/organic listing? Why do Internet marketers continue to assume PPC is outbound? With SEO, cost per click is uncertain, especially with constant algo changes and competition. At least with PPC, there is some predictability of cost per visitor. Thanks for sharing.

    • Rick:

      Thanks for the kudos on Allison’s design work. We worked together on this piece. The reason I include PPC in the outbound category is because it’s rented time and space. I view inbound as analogous to a mutual fund – the gift that keeps on giving. Once someone stops paying to play on PPC the benefit is gone.

      There is indeed an argument to be made that SEO is rented space, too (as you did above). In some cases it is. For those SEOs who built careers around gaming the algorithm their results do represent rented space.

      However, SEOs who holistically achieve results through a robust content marketing effort and true digital PR have nothing to worry about. Google’s algorithm updates will never target them. It’s a bold statement to make, but I’d stake my professional reputation on it – that’s how confident I am after years of SEO work.

      Even though the searcher initiates engagement with the search engine I still believe PPC is outbound because it’s pay to play. Its content quality and ability to solve the problems represented by the query have little to no impact on whether or not the ad shows up. Yes, Google has a quality score, but that is easily overcome by bidding higher and inserting a few keywords.

      That’s my how my brain positions these tactics. However, at the end of the day it doesn’t matter what they’re called, because if they bring a meaningful return it’s just called winning.


      • Thanks for the detailed and thoughtful response Chad. In terms of inbound or not, paid search is a grey area for me but I get where you are coming from and you are right, at the end of the day, if PPC brings in a positive ROI, then who cares whether it’s considered an inbound tactic or not. To discount paid search altogether in an overall Internet marketing plan is a mistake.

  3. Great infographic Allison and Chad

    This is the clearest example yet of how to explain a content marketing funnel.

    I’m printing it out so I can use it as a poster like Russell :-)

    Keep up the good work!


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