Prior to the tragic events of 9/11, several FBI agents saw suspicious behavior from individuals on watch lists. Each agent witnessed different events, but there was no central source to look up or collaborate on this. Analysts and FBI field agents couldn't get the information they needed. As it was stated in the 9/11 Commission Report later: "The FBI's information systems were woefully inadequate. The FBI lacked the ability to know what it knew: there was no effective mechanism for capturing or sharing its institutional knowledge." Reports were printed out three times and files as paper records. Databases were siloed. "We had the information that could have stopped 9/11. It was sitting there and was not acted upon..." Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont told the Washington Post.
Today, HubSpot published its "State of Inbound 2016" Report (you can download the full report at the end of this blog post), and we got to take a sneak peek! In previous years, this annual study has served to take the pulse of the current marketing and sales priorities all over the world by surveying thousands of marketers in various industries.
We took a closer look at the data and, over the next few days, we will share with you some incredible insight that we have gleaned. One of the biggest "Aha!" discoveries for us was in content marketing. The report confirmed observations we have made over the past 12 months: The way people CONSUME content changed in three very important ways that will have consequences affecting how we marketers approach and create content from now on.
One of my absolute favorite Inbound Marketing success stories comes from my friend, Marcus Sheridan, who saved his pool company from bankruptcy by answering all the burning questions that prospective pool owners had on his blog. He poured all his knowledge, lots of time and devotion into this blog.
Today his pool company is not only outranking other vendors for their brand names but he is so in demand, he has his inbound marketing consulting agency where he and his team teach other people to do the same. Why was he so successful? Because he did something that no one else did. He went the extra mile!
Can you do the same? Absolutely. You have to do all that Marcus did — but that won't be enough anymore. The problem is, everyone is catching on now. Almost everyone is blogging now, and 76% of B2B marketers planning to produce more content than ever in 2016. So, you have to stand out among the rest. Go than go the extra mile.
Today, we will give you a head start with these 58 things you should already be doing, but you probably aren't.
At the beginning of the year, we switched payroll systems.
We wanted to use a cloud-based Software-as-a-Service solution that would enable us to quickly pay contractors and employees, while painlessly managing all of our small business HR needs, such as vacation and overtime.
We did a lot of research, we talked to a bunch of sales reps and started a few trials.
Moreover, while the solutions were almost identical — how many times can you reinvent the same HR wheel, right? — the sales approaches could not have been more different.
Some sales reps were rude and provided no additional information beyond what we had already found on the website, while others were extremely helpful throughout the entire process. They sent us helpful follow-up emails, made sure the trial was set up correctly, and that we knew our way around the product. Needless to say, we went with the helpful company.
The average Monday morning is surreal enough as you sit down and struggle to settle back into work, all before the caffeine has even fully kicked in.
But Monday, July 11th, was even more surreal than usual. My Twitter feed was invaded by Pokémons. I checked Facebook and LinkedIn and got the same results. I remember calling my husband and feeling a little confused about what the heck Pokémon Go was.
By now, there probably isn't anyone who does not know what it is, so let's skip that whole song and dance.
For the first few weeks, watching hundreds of people walking all over the city like brainless lemmings staring at their screens and hunting little virtual beings in an augmented reality was fascinating. It was all fun and games — like having a front-row seat at a mass sports event.
However, smart business owners quickly figured out that there is money to be made.
Lots of money.
With virtually no investment and a skyrocketing return on investment.
When I was seven years old, we went to the Monza racing track. A friend of my parents had some connections, and we got to watch the Formula 1 race cars do practice rounds.
It was amazing. We marveled at the amount of noise the cars made as they roared by.
When they finally had finished, we got to sit in one of the racing cars. It was a red Ferrari with huge tires and its body almost laying on the ground.
Sitting in this car, even as a 7-year old, I could feel the enormous power pulsing through it.
Lats week I was reminded of this precious childhood memory when I was talking with a potential client about a possible inbound marketing retainer.
You know what happened every single time when I suggest putting the pricing information on the website with a client? I more or less always get adamant pushback! Usually it falls into one of these buckets:
- I don't want my competition to know what my pricing looks like.
- We don't do this in our industry!
- We don't want people to be scared off by our high prices.
- We have never done this before!
- Our CEO is against that!
- We customize our pricing based on the client's needs,
- We try to get away with as much as we can.
So let me ask you a question. Do you have pricing on your website? No? Why not?
Did you ever do one of those fun quizzes to find out which country you should move to, which Disney princess you are, or what farm animal you would be?
A few days ago, we talked about why your new website is likely to fail: Traditionally built websites are incredibly hard to scope, they are developed in a bubble separate from the user, and they won't be improved upon until the next redesign project in 2-3 years. Since this website is the best guess of what will perform best, without any actual user feedback or input, it is bound to result in sub-par performance.
Ouch, that probably hurt! I know, the last sort of news you want to hear right now is that your brand spanking new website is going to fail. Unfortunately, I am not over-dramatic here. You are probably thinking at this point that I am out of my mind - but bear with me, I promise, it will all make sense.
I've developed enough websites to know that if they are only built around the business, rather than the user, they will fall short regarding performance and user experience. This, in turn, will stunt your website's contribution to lead generation and its potential as a business development asset which will lead to negative repercussions on your bottom line!
And there is a simple reason for it! To illustrate, let me tell you a story about Mary.