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The Good, The Bad, The Creepy: State of Inbound 2016

September 12, 2016
By Team Hello



HubSpot’s digital marketing study, State of Inbound, outlines major shifts and developments in the industry. Here’s what we found to be the most interesting facts, and our interpretation of those findings.


Unwanted.jpg  #1 – Marketers aren’t creating content that people want.

…And it’s always been this way. Content creators are not usually marketers, and marketers are not, and never should be, content creators.

Sadly, a lot of people who mainly work with marketing tools and read numbers all day are forced to write blog posts and fill up Twitter with spam that no one cares about.

Data is great, but for the most part, content needs to appeal to real people, not numbers and stats. Content needs to be sincere and honest more than anything else (except maybe interesting).

People want video, news articles, and social posts, not longform writing.

The research also shows that, even though these formats are most likely to be thoroughly enjoyed, you should still have a variety of content.

Podcasts, blogs, and interactive content are still completely valid forms of content. But, when 49% of 18 to 24 year olds watch a few hours of YouTube per week, maybe focus more on video first.



Know the difference between a marketer and a content creator for best content results. Also, focus on video for social media. 

Search.jpg  #2 – Search is changing, and you need to keep up.

Most people want to be found on Google, which makes sense. But now, consumers are turning to social media and bots for quick answers.

Simply put, your website is no longer your content hub. Sure, it’ll probably always be your lead generation hub, but content needs to find its way onto social channels and other online resources.

Google does 3 billion daily searches—and Facebook does 2 billion.

On top of that, search must accommodate mobile users, so non-mobile-friendly content, including websites, will continue to be punished.

As for notifying consumers about new content, more than half of people are fine with email notification alerts.



Focus on creating mobile-friendly assets that appear on other web properties, not just your website. Optimization means being in more places than one.

SEE ALSO: Inbound Marketing: 4 Things You Need To Know


Ads.jpg  #3 – Ads are getting worse, and consumers are taking action.

Ad-blocking is on the rise with that oh-so-desired millennial audience. And guess what? We deserve it. Our industry produces so much boring, irrelevant, or otherwise terrible content, so who can blame people for getting frustrated?

Pop-ups are as bad as ever, autoplaying is only getting worse, and there are more ads that have no relevancy to the customers.

And the creep factor is on the rise, too—tracking and retargeting has an impact on people’s comfort online, and that feeling is increased when even ad blockers can’t shut out every ad.

Create better content, or your ads are going to go unseen.

Mobile ads are also among the most hated, along with pre-roll videos. Unsurprisingly, more people hate digital ads than traditional ones (TV, radio, magazine…).

Even worse, only 40% of ad clicks are deliberate—and 34% are accidental. Essentially, online ads are a coin toss.



Seriously, create smarter ads. Target people with relevant content. Know your platform, and stop guessing, or else risk wasting your money.

Salesperson.jpg  #4 – People hate talking to salespeople, and will avoid it if possible.

People want to learn about your product or service online, on their own. They want to know the essentials, and if there are any extra details that they can’t find elsewhere, they’ll reluctantly contact a salesperson.

Salespeople, on the other hand, claim it’s harder than ever to close deals. Part of that is because they have trouble establishing urgency, it’s harder to reach out to prospects, or prospects are struggling with the price.

Salespeople don’t want to discuss pricing—they want to talk about goals and why the purchase needs to happen.

Salespeople aren’t listening to consumers, and it’s costing time and money.



Give your prospects everything they need, and let them decide. You’ve earned their interest with inbound marketing, but don’t lose their trust with annoying sales tactics.

But here’s the truth: Nothing’s really changed.

Nothing’s changed, that is, for the honest marketers who produce good content. Everyone else, on the other hand, will need to start making changes.

People want the facts, people want a deal, and people want to take their time. It’s easy to steal attention for a second, but also, prepare to lose that attention in a second.

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The Good, The Bad, The Creepy: State Of Inbound 2016 1
Source: Hello BLOG