Anyone who knows marketing is familiar with Hubspot. They’re tops when it comes to helping brands understand how inbound works. Every year they compile a comprehensive list of stats on the “state of inbound”. These are the 14 you should really be paying attention to.
1. For every $92 spent acquiring customers, only $1 is spent converting them. (Econsultancy, 2016)
What the what?! This is honestly shocking. How come businesses are spending so much on acquisition, but not taking the final steps to close the deal?
Too many marketers responded to Hubspot’s survey saying their marketing isn’t effective…. And this is why.
It all comes down to having a funnel in place. You can get your brand in front of interested buyers in lots and lots of ways, but none of that matters if they aren’t converting.
Pro-tip: We use the A.C.E. sales funnel, which stands for “acquire, convert, and engage”. Check it out to learn how best to get prospects into your funnel and successfully convert them.
2. 30% of mobile searches are related to a location. (Google, 2016)
Google algorithms have changed over the years to really benefit local searches, but this can sometimes make things tough for businesses that sell online without a brick and mortar location.
What really sets these types of brands apart is going to be their content. The way they appeal to customers. The value they can offer.
The way these brands are going to get all that content in front of the right people is undoubtedly through social media.
“Concentrate on building a dedicated following made up of your ideal customer, and you won’t have to stress about where you show up in a Google search.”
3. The average Google first page result contains 1,890 words. (Backlinko, 2016)
Everyone has their own idea about what makes good content. According to Google, it’s long form posts.
Time and time again, I’ve delivered blog posts to clients, only to see that they’ve cut out huge chunks of content.
“It’s just too much” they say.
“No one is going to read all that” they argue.
But truth be told, if all 2,000 words on that page are valuable, the prospects WILL read it.
The bottom line here is that you can’t expect to rank with short posts unless you’ve got high domain authority and killer backlinks. Google is only interested in putting the absolute best result at the top. The more words you have, the easier it is for them to determine the value of your piece by picking up on long-tail keywords.
It’s not easy to write long posts. Write the way you usually write and then mesh your best, most relevant work together to create epic, long posts.
4. 66% of marketers say improving SEO and growing their organic presence is their top inbound marketing priority. (HubSpot, 2016)
No doubt that this is a good priority to have! I hope this trend is here to stay.
Years and years of client work has shown me that content is usually NEVER a priority, and it’s sad to see. Content creation is often an afterthought instead of straightforward marketing strategy.
Brand after brand post two blogs a month and then quit after three months when they don’t see any return on investment.
Pro-tip: Ask yourself, where do you see the blog posts in your sales funnel? How are they working to further the relationship you have with your prospects? If you can’t answer these questions, then your content creation efforts may be misguided.
Get back on track by making content part of your strategy, not just a motion you go through.
5. 40% of marketers say the most challenging obstacle to search engine optimization success is changing search algorithms. (Ascend2, 2015)
This always has been and always will be the hardest part of SEO for marketers. There’s no guarantee! Just as you begin to adapt to algorithm updates, they change. This is because Google wants to give their searches the best of the best, but it makes search engine optimization a constant struggle for marketers who are trying to get their brand the exposure it deserves.
6. 55% of B2B marketers say they are unclear on what content marketing success or effectiveness looks like. (Content Marketing Institute, 2015)
There could be lots of reasons for this…. Creating content without intent, not tracking properly, or even not setting up clear goals. The list goes on and on.
“At the end of the day, you HAVE to know what success in content marketing looks like. Otherwise, why do it?”
Success will look differently for each and every business, and that’s ok. Also, content will look different for every business as well. While an e-commerce site spends more time making how-to videos showing fun ways to use their products, a business that offers services may want to utilize long-form blog posts to offer their prospects a in-depth understanding of what is needed.
7. Podcast listening grew 23% between 2015 and 2016. (Edison Research, 2016)
This is a big deal. Podcasts are growing in popularity, and businesses can bank on this trend by a) having something valuable to say; b) finding the right podcast to be featured on to amplify their knowledge in front of an eager audience; c) start a podcast and speak in front of a loyal following.
Believe it or not, people are eager for knowledge. You, as a business person, need to realize that you are the expert in your niche. There are people out there who want to hear what you have to say. Find them.
8. Facebook continues to have the most engaged users — 70% log on daily, including 43% who do so several times a day. (Pew Research Center, 2015)
There are several social media platforms to use these days, but I think I can say with confidence that no matter what your niche or industry, you need to be on Facebook.
From the time a human being is old enough to have a device, from the time they are too old to understand how to use a device, the first thing they do is open a Facebook account.
Between having an epic social media manager on your team and running spectacular Facebook ads, you have a myriad of opportunities to touch base with your prospects and make an impact.
9. In the past two years, content consumption on LinkedIn has increased 21%. (HubSpot, 2016)
Whoa. LinkedIn is an often ignored, and therefore underused, platform. For the B2B brands especially, however, it’s invaluable.
If you have connections who aren’t following your blog or social media accounts, they’ll get value from you when you publish on LinkedIn. In addition to that, if they think you’re stuff is rad, they can then turn around and share it with their audience, making your reach grow exponentially.
If your article is featured on LinkedIn Pulse, well then that’s just fire right there.
What should you take away from this fun little tidbit? Publish on LinkedIn and make it epic.
10. Pinners are just as likely to purchase as users from other social channels, but spend 50% more on average compared to other social channels. They also spend 20% more than users referred from non-social channels, including search. (Pinterest, 2016)
In recent years, bloggers have found some serious success on Pinterest, but if you have products—I’m talking accessories, clothing, kitchen gadgets, even car parts—get some pretty pictures and get them on Pinterest.
No doubt Pinterest isn’t for everyone, but for many of you, it could be an untapped revenue source that you just haven’t taken the time to master yet.
11. Content consumption on Facebook has increased 57% in the past two years.
Facebook is evolving. So, too, should we.
As more and more people and brands are sharing content on Facebook, the amount of content being consumed is on the rise.
Does this really surprise you? I’m sure you, like me, consume your own fair share of content via Facebook, so you get it.
So for you, my friend in business, this means that a) there’s a lot of people on Facebook you can connect with and b) there’s a lot of noise.
“Make your content impossible to look away from. Break through the noise.”
12. 23% of adult internet users use Twitter. 3 in 10 online urban residents use Twitter, compared with 21% of suburbanites and 15% of those living in rural areas. 30% of online adults under 50 use Twitter, compared with 11% of online adults ages 50 and older. (Pew Research Center, 2015)
This stat means something different to everyone, but I’m not super impressed. Not to say Twitter is a dying platform, but as a marketer, you’re going to be severely limited in how you can use this network to your benefit.
It all comes down to one thing: who is your buyer? Do they live in a city or not? What age range do they fall into?
Lots and lots of influencers spend their time blasting out content via Twitter, but I’m not convinced that you can find your average Joe there.
13. Infographics are liked and shared on social media 3X more than any other type of content. (Mass Planner, 2015)
Takeaway? People like pictures. If you can use data and images and quotes to get your point across, do it. Prospects are much more likely to pay attention.
Infographics are definitely an underused medium. Prioritize them this year and use them to amplify and upcycle content. Track your results. I bet you it will be worth the $2.50 it costs to have a graphic designer put it together for you.
14. 4X as many customers would rather watch a video about a product than read about it. 4 in 5 consumers believe that demo videos are helpful. Shoppers who view video are 1.81X more likely to purchase than non-viewers. (Animoto, 2015)
Ok, so if you didn’t know that videos are uber important in the world of digital marketing, you’ve been living under a rock.
The best part of this is that videos don’t have to be super fancy to make an impact.
Think seriously about what you bring to the table. Can you do a cool how-to video? Can you show some cool ways to style your line of products or unique ways to use them? Would your prospects benefit from hearing you talk on a particular topic?
Whip out the iPhone 7 and make it happen.
So folks, what stat is the most meaningful to you as you venture forth in business in 2017? Did any shock you? Did any make you reconsider your marketing goals/plans for this year?