Inbound Marketing is hot and on the rise. For the last 8 years HubSpot releases its annual State of Inbound report where they survey 4,500 respondents (85% non-HubSpot customers!) hailing from marketing backgrounds in B2B, B2C, small, and mid-sized businesses.
This article gives a quick look on the Inbound Marketing trends of the HubSpot State of Inbound 2016 Report.
THE INBOUND MARKETING TRENDS
1. Increasing traffic and lead generation are biggest marketing and sales challenges
65% of respondents stated their top priority is to generate traffic and leads
43% said that proving ROI is their top priority
How Inbound Marketing can help to increase traffic and generate leads:
Constantly creating tailored content to the needs and search behaviour of your desired audience. By providing high value content offers, the conversion rates to generate leads are much higher than through traditional, outbound channels.
By lead nurturing activities the chances of more interactions with the potential customers and making the call at the right time are increasing to close the deal. All the various steps are measurable isolated and can be optimised, showing the real ROI of all the activities in between.
2. Higher importance of converting leads, closing more deals and driving traffic
- 74% said the company’s top marketing priority over the next 12 months is to convert contacts and leads to customers
- 70% prioritise closing more deals
- 57% say it is to generate traffic to their website, therefore 66% say they wanna grow the organic/SEO presence and 60% focus on creating blog content
Company's top priorities in 2017
3. Measurable goals that prove ROI increases effectiveness of marketing
72% of correspondents who measure ROI said, their marketing strategy is effective, compared to only 49% who don’t measure ROI.
Organisation's marketing strategy effectiveness
Further, organisations that can calculate ROI are 1.6X as likely to receive higher budgets.
4. Low response from prospect makes sales and marketing alignment more important
40% of salespeople state that getting a response from prospects is getting harder these days.
Sales difficulties compared to 2 to 3 years ago
The use of a CRM supports shorter sales cycles by being integrated in Digital Marketing activities, being useful and therefore used by the sales team. The relevant information on a prospects interests and behaviours should be accessible and be used by the sales team.
Further, a short time span between knowledge of transactional information and a direct conversation between the salesperson and the prospect increases the chances of a closing tremendously.
HubSpot State of Inbound Report – Free download
5. Confidence in the organisation’s marketing increases by aligning marketing and sales
1.82% of companies who say their marketing is effective have tightly aligned sales and marketing SLA (84% with Inbound)
Tightly aligned organisations think marketing strategy is more effective
6. Inbound helps with administrative challenges
17% say the biggest CRM challenge is the manual entry of data.
The automatic update of the visitor’s information consumption or marketing behaviour reduces this challenge.
17% also say it is the integration with other tools.
Marketing Automation is a hot topic in 2017 as we have found out in another survey among marketers and business owners. The integration with eMail Marketing or Salesforce software optimises the amount of resources needed to delight and retain customers.
16% say the sales team won’t use CRM data.
In addition to the manual data entry issue mentioned above, the biggest barrier for sales people using the data, is how useful it is to their needs. Inbound data gives a clear picture about the needs and behaviour of the lead or customer that may be very well used by sales people in preparation of their sales meetings.
Biggest challenges in using existing CRM
7. Traditional outbound channels are losing importance
33% of respondents said that paid traditional advertising is losing importance, even consider it overrated.
Most overrated marketing tactics (by company conducting predominantly Outbound vs. Inbound Marketing)
8. Video and multimedia are getting more and more importance
48% said they would add YouTube videos to their marketing efforts in the next 12 months, 39% say they would add Facebook videos, 33% on Instagram. Another trend that goes along with this is to document rather than create. It means showing what is going on behind the scenes, how achievements are being made, for instance by Instagram stories or Facebook live videos. This reduces the cost of production compared to shiny and glossy perfect videos as these documentations could be done by everyone with any device, even with a personal smartphone.
Content distribution channels planned in the next 12 months
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