How to explain Inbound Marketing to a Kid

Aman, my cousin who is all of 12 years is very different from the other kids. These days the kids can be very easily hypnotized by smartphones and tablets whereas Aman is still conventional in his hobbies. He finds interest in reading books and watching detective stories/serials. Aman joined me the other day when I was watching the famous detective TV series “Sherlock”. The episode “A Study in Pink” had just ended. During our conversation he expressed his interest in becoming a consulting detective like Sherlock Holmes.

Aman: Can I be like him? A detective?

Me: Yes why not. You are sharp and intelligent. You love to play with problems.

Aman: You know that. But how will others get to know? Why would anyone bring their case to a 12 year old?

Me: Ummm…you will have to get your skills across. Go to your friend’s home and start a conversation about how you analyzed the burglary at Mehta uncle’s place and concluded that the thief is still hiding in the bathroom. Basically, tell other people that you can solve their problems too.

Aman: That would be boasting about my own skills. That is not my style. I would want to do it more implicitly.

Me: That’s interesting! I think Inbound Marketing can help you.

Aman: Inbound Marketing? What is that?

I had recently discovered the term “Inbound marketing” and I just flaunted it very naturally in front of him. I suddenly realized that I had taken up an uphill task of explaining this to him.

Me: It is the kind of marketing in which you remain feeble in making noise but be loud in your actions.

Me: Suppose you are a detective. Now you need to attract people to your work and come to you with a case. How does Sherlock’s work gets across people?

Aman: Through news articles and radio.

Me: Correct! But since nobody would immediately write articles about you in newspapers, you will have to write about your own work by implicitly stating how you thought about the case and how you reached to the solution.

Aman: And get them published in newspapers?

Me: No newspaper would be a little less feasible option now. Instead, publish those articles on a blog.

And the questions kept coming one after the other. But when a curious child who is half your age asks you questions, your reputation is really at stake and you have to be on your toes. But by relating it all to the Sherlock episode, I made it easier for him to follow everything.

Me: A blog is a personal website which contains information about a theme that people may like to read. So if I am a poet, I would like to write poems on my blog and people who may search for poems on Google may find my poem.

Aman: So there may be so many blogs on poetry. How will your blog show up?

Me: Yes. For that I would use words in my poem title and in the content which I believe people would most likely search for. There are many such ways by which you can ensure that if somebody searches for “Love poems”, your blog would appear in the first three searches. This technique has another name but I don’t know whether I am throwing up too many complex terms too early.

Aman: No it is fine. Tell me. I anyways have to learn this technique. What is it called?

Me: Search Engine Optimization 
How Sherlock does it

And there, another new term. And these terms are like bread and butter for me since I have started blogging but this required using the right words to make him understand, and making sure that he relates it with the bigger picture of Inbound marketing. As far as the term SEO is concerned, I got a bit lucky

Aman: Let me guess. It would optimize the way Google sees my website and places me in the top results. Is that right?

Me: Bingo! You are smart.

Aman: Thanks. So coming back to the detective blog. You discovered my blog and read an article. And then you would exit. What next?

Me: If I visit your blog, don’t let me exit so easily. Put on your detective hat and consider me as a suspicious guy. Try to capture my name and contact details so that if you see me again, you would know who I am.

I explained the concept of a landing page without introducing another new term. I had to move on to introduce more terms. A Lead was the next thing I wished to introduce. He was picking up some of the things on his own by then.

Me : ...there are more important terms that I would like you to remember. In terms of Inbound Marketing if the reader fills your form, then you would say that you have got a lead.

Aman: Lead to evidence for a detective

Me: You can relate it that way. But a lead is defined as the visitor which has expressed interest in your offering and can become a potential customer in the future.

Aman: Why is it important to have information about the leads? Can you tell me more?

Me: I can give you many examples but I would like to stick to the detective blog that we are considering. Is that fine?

Aman: Yes…that would be fair!

Me: Thanks. So, as more and more people enroll/subscribe to the school of your blog,
you would have to contact the people who have shown interest. You need to ask them 
if they would like to hire your services or they are just interested in reading about
 such things. Based on that you can categorize your leads. The leads which will 
provide you with cases which are logical and genuine, you will get in touch with 
them, have a few meetings to understand the case and they may ultimately hire you for the case.

I briefed upon how customers would advocate for your work and it would work well for more assignments/business in the future. In the end, I summarized the whole process once again.

Moral of the story : You need to relate a complex terminology with the child’s day to day activities. So suppose he watches a cartoon where he might have seen a story, join links into the same story and life would be a piece of cake. But how about predictive lead scoring? Would you be able to explain that to a kid? Take cues from the complete conversation and give it a shot.

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