For nearly a decade, HubSpot’s State of Inbound report has been a go-to resource for information about marketing and sales priorities, challenges, and trends. Take a peek at highlights from State of Inbound 2017.
The results in the 2017 survey reflect the perspectives of more than 6,000 marketing professionals who represent countries around the world. Here’s what they had to say about the current state of marketing, as well as their predictions for the future:
Marketers continue to agree that inbound marketing yields the greatest results.
On a global scale, 61% of marketers surveyed feel like their marketing strategies are effective. Nearly 7 in 10 (68%) primarily use an inbound strategy, while only 32% primarily use an outbound strategy.
In terms of ROI, 46% of marketers believe inbound marketing boosts ROI, compared to just 12% who think outbound strategies contribute to higher ROI. The report notes, however, that 23% of marketers surveyed don’t routinely calculate ROI for their marketing strategies.
From year to year, priorities haven’t changed much.
The top four marketing priorities have remained the same from 2016 to 2017. What’s the No. 1 focus for marketers? Converting leads to customers ranked highest in both surveys. In 2016, 74% of marketers listed it in the top spot while it occupied 70% of marketers’ minds in 2017. Growing website traffic, increasing revenue from existing customers, and proving ROI round out the top four areas of focus for marketers.
Within inbound marketing specifically, search engine optimization/growing a site’s organic web presence, blog creation, and content distribution remained top priorities over the last year.
Generating Web traffic/leads and proving ROI to the C-suite remain challenges.
Of marketers surveyed, 63% have a difficult time driving traffic to their sites, while 40 percent struggle with proving their strategies’ ROI and 28% cite lack of budget to execute their strategies.
Marketers and sales professionals are more in tune to current events than ever before.
For the first time since HubSpot began conducting the survey nine years ago, participants from around the globe cited the political landscape and current events as anticipated trouble spots that could impact their jobs and businesses.
Video is having a moment.
Survey respondents ranked video as one of the main disruptors in 2017, and many believe video will be crucial to fostering and maintaining relationships with target audiences moving forward. In fact, the top content distribution channels that marketers plan to incorporate into their strategies in the next year are YouTube (48%) and Facebook video (46%).
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