Christmas is here once again and it’s always a great opportunity to take a break, spend time with family and friends and reflect on the year gone by.
For the Inbound Marketing industry, it’s been another year of rapid growth as companies embrace the idea of customer-driven marketing.
As we wind down for 2015 and look to the year ahead, here’s four things we learned about Inbound Marketing in 2015:
Inbound Marketing Is Here To StayThis year’s premier Inbound Marketing conference should be all the evidence we need to know that the future of Inbound Marketing is very bright indeed. Actually, there’s a strong case to say that Inbound Marketing is the future of marketing.
This year more than 14,000 delegates packed into the Boston Convention Centre to take part in a four day program bursting with keynote speakers, discussions and events dedicated to Inbound Marketing.
To put that figure in perspective, (only!) 10,000 people attended in 2014. This single event has seen a 40% increase in just 12 months. What is even more jaw dropping is the number of people using the Inbound.org community has almost tripled from 35,000 in 2014 to more than 100,000 in 2015.
It speaks to the momentum that is gathering in the industry about Inbound Marketing and how it’s driving change and innovation in the industry.
Successful Inbound Marketing Starts With The Right CultureInbound is not a marketing tactic, it is a whole philosophy. The Inbound 2015 event is just further evidence of the extraordinary success of Inbound when it is embraced as an organisational culture, and core way of doing business.
Traditional marketing methods were interruptive and ROI was questionable. Consider advertising, email blasts and direct mail. They all forced a company’s message onto an audience, regardless of whether that audience was actually looking for it or not.
Inbound marketing flips this idea around. It focuses on creating quality content that naturally draws people into your company and directs them to your products.
It achieves this by producing content that appeals directly to your ideal customer – a person who is actively looking for your product anyway. It generates leads, converts leads to customers and has the ability to create long-term ambassadors for your brand.
Businesses that don’t adapt to this new movement are at risk of falling behind.
Sales Is Set For A Revolution‘The old sales book is dead,’ declared HubSpot CEO Brian Halligan at Inbound 2015. And he’s certainly onto something.
I’ve been a part of the inbound journey since 2007 because I loved how HubSpot were making marketers better. They were doing more than providing tools and software, but advocating an entire philosophy around marketing that focused on the customer and their needs.
Now they’ve expanded that to sales. This year, HubSpot introduced a collection of great updates that uncover new sources of warm prospects, reveals connections between your network and the companies you sell to and revolutionises the following-up process.
This approach allows sales people to optimise their time with prospecting and identify people who are interested in their product – better for the sales person and the buyer. Ultimately, HubSpot is improving the way sales people interact with people to improve the buyer experience. Something I’m passionate about.
Your Website Should Be Your Star MarketerMarketers are still making the mistake of spending too much time on their content management, not their content marketing. There are a number of reasons for this, but for many, it’s simply due to the Content Management System they are using and its limited capabilities. And it’s to their disadvantage.
A website should be your star marketer. It needs to draw people in, and convert leads to customers through appealing and engaging content. But it also needs to look great, load quickly, be responsive to mobile and tablet technology and optimise content for search results. Does your website CMS achieve all those things?
And Before We Go…
On behalf of the TIMCo team I’d like to wish you and your families a very Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year. It’s been a wonderful year and we’ve had the chance to work with some incredible clients on a vast array of projects. To everyone who’s been a part of the TIMCo journey in 2015 I’d like to say thank you, and we’re looking forward to working with you again in 2016.