Have you heard of Inbound Marketing? Most likely you have, and that explains the type of year Inbound Marketing has had.
Inbound Marketing has gone from obscurity to being adopted by many companies across almost all industries. INBOUND, the conference put on by HubSpot, had 5,500 attendees in 2013. In 2014 it had more than 10,000. This jump sums up the growth of Inbound Marketing as a whole.
Charting Inbound Marketing on the Innovation Adoption Lifecycle, it’s moved from Innovators to Early Adopters. Early Majority won’t be far away, and that’s when Inbound Marketing will go mainstream.
While we’ve seen widespread adoption of Inbound Marketing in 2014, we haven’t seen anything yet. 2015 will see a mass expansion of companies using Inbound Marketing to more effectively attract, convert, close, and delight.
With this expansion I envision three primary changes happening in 2015:
1. More Comprehensive Use
Inbound Marketing is not a synonym for permission marketing and it’s not just the opposite of outbound marketing.
Inbound Marketing is a very specific methodology that includes the phases of: Attract, Convert, Close, Delight.
SEO is not Inbound Marketing. Blogging is not Inbound Marketing. These and many others are key components of Inbound Marketing but they are not Inbound Marketing itself
In 2015 more companies will adopt the true process of Inbound Marketing to create a finely tuned marketing machine.
2. More Attention on Attraction
When it comes to Inbound Marketing, attraction is the most difficult part. If you already have a website with a flood of qualified traffic, Inbound Marketing can be fairly quick to implement and begin seeing a return.
Most companies don’t have this luxury. They have drips of traffic when they need a flood.
Attraction takes hard and focused work, but once you start to attract a steady stream of qualified traffic, the payoff can be big.
3. Inbound Selling
With HubSpot’s release of their new CRM, the opportunity for Inbound Selling is greater than ever before.
2015 will see much more alignment between Inbound Marketing and sales and it will begin to change the way sales departments look at the sales process.
How Do You Prepare?
This is fairly simple. You need to decide whether Inbound Marketing is for you. If it is, hire an in-house Inbound Marketing team or partner with the right Inbound Marketing agency to create a finely tuned Inbound Marketing machine.
If you’re going to hire a team in-house, prepare to hire a director, writer, designer, and SEO specialist to start. You can expand out from there.
For most companies I recommend partnering with an agency and getting moving from day 1.
How Do You Measure?
If you’re running an Inbound Marketing program, you need to use HubSpot’s software – otherwise you’ll make every aspect more difficult than it needs to be.
With HubSpot’s reporting features you should be tracking visits (by source), new contacts, and new customers. You can get more in-depth than this, but this is where you should start.
Now that you’ve heard our predictions for Inbound Marketing, check out our other predictions for more aspects of Internet Marketing.