Inbound vs. Outbound Sales: How Do They Differ


August 19, 2022

Written by

New Media Services

In the corporate world, deciding on the best marketing plan can be a significant challenge. Several firms can affirm that the concept of inbound vs outbound sales is a literal tug of war. Some have to choose between inbound vs. outbound, while others can afford to employ both.

Are you considering developing an inbound sales generator? Alternatively, are you interested in hiring a team of seasoned outbound sales representatives? Or are you hoping to incorporate elements of both business models into your strategies?

Regardless, this blog could be useful! In this read, we will explore the concept of inbound and outbound sales differences, their distinctiveness, as well as their benefits and drawbacks.

Before we delve into all that juicy information, let us first discover what an inbound and outbound sale is.

What is an Inbound Sale

Inbound sales, as the name implies, are sales that come to you. It occurs when a potential customer contacts your brand's communication channels to inquire about the items and services that you offer.

Say, a prospect saw your advertisement on Instagram. They discovered that the services you're providing suit and benefit their demands after browsing your page and checking your Instagram feed. As a result, the prospect inquired about your services via Instagram chat.

The preceding example demonstrates how an actual inbound sale is realized. On the other hand, getting inbound sales is not limited to social media posts. This particular type of warm lead generation can also be obtained with the help of SEO and virality factor, organic word-of-mouth, out of home (OOH) & digital out of home (DOOH) advertising, Pay-per-click (PPC), and even brand mentions or hashtags from a credible publication.


Flexible — Inbound sales generation is far more adaptable than its counterpart. It can be used in nearly any industry. Also, inbound marketing is a versatile strategic strategy for your firm, whether it involves delivering B2B services, catering to B2C transactions solely, or both.

Cost-Effective — As opposed to mass marketing, inbound is far less expensive when utilized. Inbound marketing is a leaner, more accurate, and more focused form of advertising, paving the way for an effective method of generating more leads and eventually, paying clients without breaking the bank.

Better Engagement — Gain the ability to tailor your approach to your target demographic. It gives you the ability to deliver more humanized interactions with your customers when interacting with them, thereby eliminating the barriers between you and your potential customers and driving higher levels of engagement in the process.

Enhanced Visibility — With inbound sales allowing you to give laser-focused answers to clients' pain points, it is possible that your customers will be satisfied with your service. Happy customers tend to be more willing to spread the word about your business by posting something about their experience with your products online. In return, you get the opportunity to make your brand more visible.

Secures Long-Term Customer Ties — Modern customers tend to shift their view of a brand based on their experience. Inconsistencies in their preferences can occur in a relatively short amount of time. Inbound sales enable you to adjust to these ever-changing market demands by keeping them updated with your custom-tailored solutions. Doing so allows you to leave your business footprint and ensure a higher number of repeat customers.


Time-consuming — Campaigns in inbound sales may require a significant amount of time before you begin to see tangible results. It also includes the time your marketing team will devote to ensure that all of your marketing content is of the highest quality.

Requires Intensive Expertise — Your inbound sales team must have the correct set of skills if you want to run a successful inbound sales campaign. SEO, content writing, graphic design, and social media management are just a few examples of these essential sales skills.

Indeed, it might seem as though expecting your team to wear many hats when dealing with various corporate dilemmas. At the same time, it is worth noting that they are not a one-size-fits-all machine. They all have limitations, and demanding activities outside of their areas of expertise can stifle their overall efficiency.

Tracking Results Can Be Tricky — Determining the efficacy of inbound sales might be difficult if you lack the necessary skills and tools. Your team must be well-equipped to accurately analyze ROI, be familiarized with web analytics software, and know how to determine the performance of your campaigns.

What is an Outbound Sale

Outbound sales are the outcome of a company's lead generating efforts in persuading a potential customer who is yet to demonstrate interest in your brand. As opposed to inbound sales, outbound sales generation requires firms to pitch their promotions to prospective clients via cold promotions. It includes cold calling and email marketing. Outbound sales entail reaching out to potential customers to generate leads, instead of waiting for the actual lead to initiate contact with the company or brand.

Have you ever answered a phone call on a random day from a representative selling a certain product or service? Sometimes they go straight to educating you on how useful their products are in order to persuade you to use their services. That is an example of outbound sales generation.

Besides cold emails and phone calls, some key outbound sales channels include trade expos, outdoor advertisements, and mass media.


Broader Brand Reach — Since traditional sales approaches are frequently used in outbound sales, your sales staff can simply introduce your brand to potential leads who lack awareness of your business. However, when conducting outbound campaigns, your personnel should be capable of leveraging all of their efforts to convert that potential user into a paying customer, otherwise your chances of making a sale decrease.

Enhances Awareness — Outbound sales generation raises brand exposure when done on a large scale. Being more visible to potential clients results in more leads, and more leads result in more fruitful interactions with target buyers. 

A potential customer who has seen your advertisement and earned information about your services will eventually feel propelled to dig deeper into the scope of your business. It is a stark contrast to people who have not yet seen a single promotion or detail about your business.

Easier to Track Performance — Outbound sales allow you to check that your sales staff follows the appropriate sales procedure for customer acquisition along with consistently expanding brand recognition. 

There are numerous important KPIs and metrics you can use to properly gauge how well your team and strategies perform. These KPIs help you reassess the areas of your workflow that fall short of reaching your operating standards and consequently sets clearer standards for effective and quality sales efforts.

Supports Your Inbound Efforts — Sure, investing in inbound methods may yield numerous advantages, but outbound initiatives are the icing on the cake. Fundamentally, outbound sales methods supply whatever you do in your inbound marketing efforts. If a potential buyer watches your television commercial, they will most likely try to find you on social media or search your website. If you manage their questions correctly, there's a good chance you'll develop a greater bond with them and increase conversions.


High Chances of Unqualified Leads — When individuals stumble across an intriguing ad on social media or other platforms, they frequently sign up without knowing what the brand is all about. You must be thinking, "Still, it's a lead." 

Yes, that is right. Nevertheless, because they are somewhat interested in what you have to offer, there is a chance they will demand more details about your business, especially if they have no full concept of what it is. As a result, it will take some time for them to decide whether to commit to your brand or not.

It Can Irritate Prospects — Admit it—you are agitated when a random person cold calls you. It becomes especially disruptive if you are busy or do not require the product offered by the caller. These are probably the same thoughts that prospects have whenever they receive cold calls. The chances are they'll ignore your calls or worse, block your number entirely.

Success is Not Guaranteed — Outbound efforts may be simple to implement, but this does not imply that success is inevitable. It may be difficult to accept, but simply strolling past one of your advertisements does not give full assurance that they will interact with it. It is true that outbound approaches can be quite bothersome at times, and it is this hurdle that you need to overcome if you don’t want potential clients to ignore you.

It Impacts Your Reputation — You are putting your valuable reputation in danger by constantly aggravating your prospects with cold calls and cold emails. They'll see you as a distraction rather than a solution. In other instances, leads may act aggressively in hopes of pushing you away for good. The worst case scenario is people will complain about your strategies on social media or review sites if you continue to get under their skin.

Inbound Sales vs Outbound Sales: Key Difference

Amid learning the fundamentals of inbound and outbound calls, it is unavoidable that some agents may get confused and mix up the definitions of the two forms of sales. It is vital to outline and explain the main distinctions between the two. 

Here’s a closer look at the distinctions between inbound and outbound sales in greater detail.


The mechanism by which it operates is as straightforward as it gets.

Outbound sales are essentially the method used by a brand to contact a target customer to introduce itself. Numerous firms acknowledged that, while outbound marketing has a number of advantages over traditional sales approaches, it falls short of efficacy and efficiency.

On the flip side, inbound sales are always a warm approach. It means that a prospective customer made contact with the brand or even submitted their contact information via chat. In essence, an inbound lead (or sale) occurs when a user establishes some sort of relationship with the brand prior to making a call.

Lead Generation

How do you tell inbound leads vs outbound leads apart? Inbound leads are typically potential customers that initiate contact with a firm, either because they want more information about the services or because they are ready to make a purchase. While outbound leads are gained through traditional sales tactics such as cold calling, mass media, and physical ads like billboards, they are basically individuals that have no prior idea or any amount of familiarity about the brand.


When it comes to gathering potential leads, sales teams who use outbound tactics tend to be more assertive. They have a habit of closing in an erratic manner, regardless of whether the client requires the service or not. At times, the services offered and the brand's niche are not necessarily something that the lead initially has interest in. 

There is a need for the sales personnel to explain further what the lead can gain should they agree to try the product or service. In this case, outbound sales have an advantage over bulk advertising, although they fall short on accuracy and ensuring that campaigns are delivered effectively. 

Ensuring that you have access to a pool of qualified sales personnel who will help you take on a more dynamic cohort of potential clients is one of the most notable benefits of outsourcing call center services.

It is even more applicable if your goal is to expand your business reach on a global scale. In this manner, you ensure that your sales personnel use language tailored to the specific culture and lifestyle of the demographic you wish to reach. If you can find remote-based agents with multilingual expertise, you gain higher flexibility in your operations.

Meanwhile, inbound sales allow careful identification of each customer's pain points. With customized services at your disposal, addressing the prospect's demands is possible throughout the entire proposition. It is also easier for the sales personnel to access marketing content that is timely, relevant, and appropriate to the lead.

Outbound and Inbound Combined: A Winning Combination

It is not necessary to choose between the two options. Combining outbound and inbound sales strategies is essential for success! The combined power of inbound sales and outbound sales methods provide the foundations of a successful marketing effort. Without the other, neither will work as well.

To ensure the success of an inbound sale, you must employ an outbound plan to persuade potential clients to visit your social media pages or website. They work together to form a funnel that allows you to get to know your target demographic better. All information about your prospects will be relayed thoroughly to leverage your sales pitch and provide more personalized, correct offers that help close more deals.

Help Your Brand Close More Deals With Good Customer Service

Now that you understand the difference between inbound and outbound sales, it is your responsibility to take action and see to it that after closing a deal, it should be supplemented with an outstanding team of after-sales agents to ensure that you get a long-lasting bond with your customers. At the end of the day, excellent customer service lays the groundwork for a successful transaction.

We must also acknowledge that finding an impressive pool of talent can be difficult at times. When hiring remote-based sales staff, these individuals could either be freelancing or working for your competition. 

Fret not, because the rise of various companies offering business outsourcing solutions has significantly reduced the effort it takes to find skilled and professional customer care agents.

New Media Services specializes in customizing business solutions to meet your specific customer service requirements. Our call center support services, backed by cutting-edge help desk software and professional agents, let your customer support capabilities reach new heights. We guarantee that you become a step ahead of your competitors in no time!

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