For the past five years, the people at Hubspot – who coined the term “inbound marketing” – have been releasing their comprehensive report “The State of Inbound,” which identifies new emerging trends, along with marketers’ ongoing popular strategies. Over 3,500 professionals were surveyed to discover how their inbound marketing strategy was utilized to convert website visitors into leads.
There are some terrific takeaways from the 6th report, including one which indicates that companies who blog are 13 times more likely to generate a positive marketing ROI. Here are five survey conclusions we feel are worth highlighting.
- Budgets are Growing
The most significant revelation is that budgets are up, with the greatest influence being the previous year’s success with this type of marketing. Five times as many marketers report increased budgets as those who report reduced ones, and more than 80% of the reporting companies whose annual marketing budgets falls below $25,000 are putting inbound into practice. Respondents also confirmed that the presence of a service level agreement between marketing and sales directly and positively correlate to marketing success.
- Measuring ROI Is Crucial
While the survey found only 53% of respondents measure analytics, those who do are 17 times more likely to see the same or greater return on investment from the previous year. Additionally, those who make blogging a top priority are 13 times more likely to enjoy positive ROI. Impressive numbers that indicate tracking your ROI remains essential. Establish a campaign, consistently track its performance and then revise your marketing strategy accordingly. Marketers who don’t take the time to track analytics are squandering time and money, and that jeopardizes success.
- Marketing & Sales
In previous years, there was a clear and distinct gap between marketing and sales. It still plays the major role, but is not the sole component, as 25% of sales professionals and 10% of customer service reps have also begun to utilize these practices. Hubspot acknowledges this shift in the report, dropping the term “marketing” from their titles and simply using the word “inbound.”
- Harnessed Data Drives Strategy
When it comes to data, companies should focus on a just a few specific metrics at a time to avoid becoming overwhelmed with the sheer quantity available to them. Respondents listed these top three metrics they focus on:
- Increasing the number of leads and contacts
- Converting those contacts and leads into customers
- Reaching the right audience
- Make Getting Found a High Priority
Getting found was the number one priority reported across all respondents. For those who have an effective strategy, getting found online remains their core focus, and blogging, SEO and content promotion are the tactics they consistently employ. Blogging continues to have the highest impact and the strongest association with positive ROI, so make blogging your priority starting now.