Ben Franklin once said: “When you’re finished changing, you’re finished.”
Little did our favorite kite enthusiast and volunteer firefighter know, the phrase could be applied to businesses in the field of marketing.
As a marketer, you have to be a trendspotter — a modern-day frontiersman. You have to identify all the new places where people are spending their time, explore them, and think of fresh, creative ways to engage people. You adapt to survive.
But, back in the 1990’s when people around the world were flocking to this cool new virtual network called “the Internet,” marketers hesitated to jump in with both feet.
- “Is this just a passing fad?”
- “Why stray from traditional media when it’s the cornerstone of our business?”
- “Can this really be scaled to the point that it’s worth investing in?”
We’ve come a long way since then. Today, digital dominates the marketing landscape, and to those in the industry, it comes as no shock.
Now people around the world are spending more time on the Internet, they’re spending more money on it, and they’re using it more often than ever before.
According to research:
- We’re online an average of almost one full day per week
- We spend more time on our devices than we do sleeping
- Nearly half of the world has access to the Internet
These reasons, among others, are why 38% of marketers say they intend to shift more of their spend to digital channels in the coming year, and why Chief Marketing Officers believe that digital marketing will account for 75% or more of their spending by 2020.
As a result, online marketing services have become a staple offering of every agency, regardless of their specialty.
By the numbers, Smart Insights claims that the majority of marketers’ time across the board is spent on digital marketing activities.
That means copywriters are writing more for blogs than for billboards, designers are creating more Facebook banner ads than magazine spreads, and services that were little-needed ten years ago are crucial to marketing success today.
That need has spawned agencies that flourish with each new Internet connection — ones that specialize in services like web design, online content creation, and inbound marketing.
In the past we’ve talked about how landing pages can help content creators and web designers exceed their marketing goals going forward. Today, we’re going to focus on how they fit into inbound marketing agencies’ future plans.
What is inbound marketing?
According to HubSpot, arguably the world’s foremost authority on inbound marketing, the difference between inbound and outbound methods is this:
“Instead of the old outbound marketing methods of buying ads, buying email lists, and praying for leads, inbound marketing focuses on creating quality content that pulls people toward your company and product, where they naturally want to be. By aligning the content you publish with your customer’s interests, you naturally attract inbound traffic that you can then convert, close, and delight over time.”
Organic techniques like SEO, content creation, and social media marketing are favorites of inbound marketers.
Today 3 out of 4 marketers across the globe prioritize an inbound approach to marketing, and the reason is simple:
The State Of Inbound Report 2015
On October 13, 2015, HubSpot released its 7th “State Of Inbound” report, which surveyed nearly 4,000 marketers from around the world on their use of inbound marketing techniques. Respondents shed light on new trends, company challenges, and methods that continue to produce high ROI.
Here are a few important takeaways from the report:
1. Inbound marketing is the preferred method of small businesses
Inbound is the preferred marketing method for all companies that spend under $5 million annually and have under 200 employees.
2. The top priorities for inbound marketers
Boosting leads and converting them continue to be top priorities for all inbound marketers, regardless of company size or type:
Trailing behind those two frontrunners is, for most companies, “Proving the ROI of our marketing activities.”
Remember that. It’s very important.
As we’ll touch on later, ROI has a direct impact on your marketing budget — specifically whether it’s boosted or cut in the future.
3. The biggest challenges for inbound marketers
By company size, demonstrating ROI and securing enough budget are the number one and two challenges, respectively, that inbound marketers face today. Coming in at number three is “Managing our website:”
When divided by company type, we see that proving ROI is still the biggest challenge for inbound marketers, but here “Managing our website” and “Securing enough budget” swap places. And in both cases, “Identifying the right technologies for my needs” comes in at number four:
The same can be said of inbound marketers in North America, who not only emphasize the same top challenges but also indicate that hiring talent is a bigger concern:
So what does all this mean for inbound marketing agencies?
In a nutshell, inbound marketing agencies are likely going to be called upon a lot more to help businesses…
- Boost lead generation
- Convert leads into customers
- Prove return on investment
- Identify emerging technologies
- Conserve budget
- Hire top talent
So if you’re a member of an inbound marketing agency that’s facing the same challenges, or you’re struggling to keep up with the increasing amount of clients who need help solving theirs, you’ll want to consider using landing page software like Instapage. And this is why:
1. Generate more leads, and convert them into customers
Salesforce conducted a worldwide survey and learned that 90% of marketers believe landing pages are an effective online marketing channel. What they’re most effective at is generating leads and converting them.
In fact, that’s their only purpose.
Persuasive elements like compelling headlines, testimonials, authority badges, and strong calls-to-action are what make landing pages so great at achieving their goal.
They’ve been used by Uber to build a user base that dwarfs its competitors, and many other well-known businesses have increasingly leveraged them to generate leads and conversions, like Salesforce, Microsoft, Zillow, and Yellow Pages.
Whether you want to bring in more clients for your own agency, or boost leads and conversions for other businesses, Instapage can help you create a persuasive landing page in under fifteen minutes with a simple and straightforward design-friendly builder:
2. Prove ROI with powerful analytics, get a budget increase
Did you remember what we told you?
If not, here’s a refresher: The number one challenge and third priority of inbound marketers is proving ROI.
With the impact it has on their budget, it’s no wonder it’s ranked so highly.
According to the report, 67% of those who proved their high ROI got a budget increase:
That makes it all the more important that you take advantage of powerful analytics tools like the one we just released, and use it to:
- Set display rate percentages
- View conversion rates over time
- Select date ranges
- Compare conversion rates vs. unique visitors
- Track mobile and desktop traffic
- Protect your data with a two-step deletion process
- View graphs that allow viewing variants
Data shows that marketers who check analytics often and keep track of key data are more successful:
So monitor analytics regularly, track key performance indicators, and compile your data to prove you’re generating a higher ROI if you want to secure enough budget for the coming year.
3. Identify emerging technologies
New marketing technologies are popping up every day, and chances are, both you and your clients are going to experiment with more than a few before you find the best fit.
Maybe your clients prefer MailChimp for email marketing while you’d rather use Constant Contact.
Perhaps you believe Salesforce’s CRM to be a better solution for your business while customers think ZOHO works best for their campaigns.
And maybe your clients have built their website on WordPress while you built yours using Drupal.
Regardless, with Instapage, it doesn’t matter. All of the new marketing technologies we just mentioned integrate with Instapage’s software.
And they’re not the only ones.
Other industry favorites like Google Analytics, GoToWebinar, and Kissmetrics all seamlessly work together to help you and your clients track and nurture leads all the way to the bottom of your marketing funnel and beyond.
4. Save money, hire fewer employees
We also learned from HubSpot’s report that three of the biggest challenges inbound marketers face:
- Hiring top talent
- Securing enough budget
- Training their team
The 48% of inbound marketers who work at companies with less than 10 employees aren’t likely to have a dedicated web designer on staff to build landing pages from scratch. And securing the tens of thousands of dollars it can take to hire top talent to do so can be near impossible:
We recognize that challenge, too, which is why we made Instapage affordable and easy to use.
Instead of paying top dollar for new hires or training materials, with Instapage you and your staff can confidently create landing pages in as little as fifteen minutes the first time you use the software (that’s how long it took me my first time).
Because in-house staff is writing most of inbound companies' content, it makes sense to remove the need for IT and web development by teaching your content creator how to build landing pages using fully customizable software:
By doing so, you eliminate the need to pay for web design and IT, and can therefore offer prospective clients an even more affordable rate for landing page creation and management.
Do more with less for your inbound marketing agency in 2016
Landing page software can have a significant impact on every one of inbound marketing agencies’ priorities and challenges going forward.
Use Instapage to begin generating more leads, converting more visitors, and proving ROI to secure a bigger budget for your agency in 2016.