For the past five years, Internet marketing software company HubSpot has published findings from its annual survey on marketers' challenges, priorities, tactics and results in its "State of Inbound Marketing" report.
The report tracks the practice of inbound marketing which it describes as "a methodology that focuses on creating quality content that pulls people toward your company and product. In other words, inbound is the superset of quality content and other 'magnetic' tactics."
The study was a voluntary sample of 3,570 respondents comprised primarily of marketers and sales peope from a variety of vertical industries, company sizes and countries around the world. About one half were HubSpot users.
Inbound continues to enjoy growing understanding and adoption. And it's not just marketing. The era of "inbound selling" has arrived. In fact, sales people are generally quicker to understand the benefits of inbound selling than their outbound marketing colleagues.
If you only read a few marketing research reports each year, read this one. The report is a snapshot of the seismic changes occurring in marketing as marketers change from interrupting peple with irritating messages to attracting them with helpful content.
Until you are able to read the full 54-page report, here are 21 tweetable pearls that you can shout from the rooftop (or tweet to your followers).
1.) Data is objective; immune to the feelings and instincts of the previous era of “arts & crafts” marketing. Tweet this!
2.) Data should be invited to every marketing meeting. After all, art may be subjective; science isn’t. Tweet this!
3.) If inbound marketing were a sports team, data would be the coach. Tweet this!
4.) The #1 factor impacting growing inbound marketing budgets is previous success with inbound. Tweet this!
5.) Inbound marketing budgets are up: 5x as many marketers report higher budgets than those with reduced budgets. Tweet this!
6.) As marketing budgets approach $100K/year, the priority begins to flip from outbound to inbound. Tweet this!
7.) More than 80% of companies with an annual marketing budget below $25K are practicing inbound. Tweet this!
9.) Getting found online is the #1 objective of the most successful, high-performing inbound marketers. Tweet this!
10.) Nearly six of ten marketing professionals consider content marketing to be a subset of inbound marketing. Tweet this!
11.) The #1 marketing challenge companies continue to have is proving the ROI of marketing activities. Tweet this!
12.) The top marketing priorities for companies are lead generation (24%) followed by lead conversion (21%). Tweet this!
13.) The number of marketers practicing inbound has risen from 60% to 85%. Tweet this!
14.) 61% of salespeople vs. 9% of outbound marketers value inbound leads from social media, blogs and SEO. Tweet this!
15.) 25% of sales people are now using inbound marketing tactics. Tweet this!
16.) Half of marketers rank inbound as their primary lead source, exceeding all other channels combined. Tweet this!
17.) More than twice as many marketers cite inbound (45%) as their primary source of leads versus outbound (22%). Tweet this!
18.) Leads sourced through inbound practices are consistently less expensive than outbound leads. Tweet this!
19.) Marketers who prioritize blogging are 13x more likely to enjoy positive ROI. Tweet this!
20.) Marketers who measure inbound ROI are 17x more likely to see the same or greater ROI over the previous year. Tweet this!
21.) Only slightly more than half (53%) of marketers are measuring ROI. Tweet this!