Marketing Pilgrim's "Inbound Marketing" Channel

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The Trouble With Marketing Automation

In its purest sense the idea of marketing automation is a good thing. The more you can automate a process to help achieve a desired result the better. Boiling marketing and sales down to repeatable and scalable events is the dream of all marketers because we all know the pressure to get more from less these days. Automation is supposed to help people do more with less so marketers are flocking to it.

As with most theories, however, the reality of the situation soon comes to life and the chinks in the marketing automation armor can be exposed as quickly as they can be celebrated. The trouble is that while it’s easy to sit back and say “if person X does Y then we give them Z to complete the sales process” those pesky people aren’t as similar as is required for a process to be repeatable AND successful over and over again.

Top Ten Takeaways From the Inbound Marketing Summit

The best marketing conferences combine education, inspiration and entertainment with plenty of face time and networking. At the recent Inbound Marketing Summit 2011, the consensus of the nearly 800 attendees scored it highly on all counts.

Drawn from conversations with fellow attendees, plus a few days to mull over the flood of ideas, this list of the Top 10 takeaways reflects the mix of strategic concepts and actionable ideas featured at the summit.

1. Jump off the competitive treadmill – If your company disappeared today, would your customers truly be lost, or could they just switch? Harvard Business School’s Youngme Moon explored how being meaningfully different cultivates irreplaceability and brand loyalty. To get there, we need to go beyond analyzing competitors and markets, blaze new paths and take risks. This is a scary proposition – but it’s a vital factor in some of the biggest successes in business.

Of Unicorns and Inbound Marketing

HubSpot is the Sponsor of Marketing Pilgrim’s Inbound Marketing Channel.

I often use references to unicorns to represent the fantasy side of some subject that people like to debate. Apparently I am not alone. HubSpot is using the unicorn theme to point out some of the misconceptions that B2B marketers in particular have regarding the techniques of an inbound marketing program vs. those of traditional marketing efforts. To make their point, HubSpot has produced some videos that make their point and also point out that some unicorns have bad attitudes.

These videos are being used in conjunction with HubSpot’s participation in Salesforce’s Dreamforce event this week in SF. Maybe that is a fantasyland as well since Metallica played the event which is another thing in itself. Here are those videos. What’s your take?

Be sure to get HubSpot’s latest e-book, Marketing Fact vs. Marketing Fantasy.

Science, Not Guesswork, Will Bring Social Media Out of the Dark Ages

For a full hour of ground-breaking social media science, data and myth busting, be sure to register for HubSpot’s Science of Social Media webinar. HubSpot is the sponsor of Marketing Pilgrim’s Inbound Marketing channel.

It’s easy to get sucked into soft-focus, touchy-feely social media advice. Stuff like “engage in the conversation,” “hug your followers,” and “have a personality.” And it’s often not easy to disagree with myths like these, since they “seem right” and nobody wants to be the guy that says “punch your customers in the face.”

The same thing was happening with medical advice centuries ago. “Common sense” approaches to health care led to things like magical tonics and bleeding. Not only did these things often not work, but much of the time they actually did more harm than good.

The 140 Character At A Time Press Release

Yesterday, HubSpot announced their acquisition of social media marketing company oneforty. A big move for the SaaS inbound marketing provider indeed. What they did to announce it was pretty interesting as well.

In a blog post simply titled #Hub140 – @HubSpot Acquires Social Media Marketing Company @oneforty – which is simply a pre-packaged tweet they went on to provide the story in 11 separate 140 character or less bites that had a “Tweet This” link at the end of each. In essence you could get the word out about any number of points of the acquisition quickly and easily while being able to pick and choose which point you wanted to highlight. Here’s a sample

Today @HubSpot acquired @oneforty, a social media marketing company based in Cambridge, MA. #Hub140 – Tweet This

Inbound Marketing Helps Agencies Grow Their Business

Over the past several years there has been a movement in the marketing world that represents a paradigm shift from traditional marketing tactics and techniques to the adoption of inbound marketing strategies.

One of the pioneers that has helped popularize the discipline of inbound marketing is HubSpot. The company has created and grown a technology platform which allows companies of all sizes to take full advantage of the most effective tools and techniques in the online space and has helped over 5,000 businesses transition their marketing efforts from the ways of the past to the promise of the future.

Sounds like marketing fluff, right? Well, it’s not and here’s why. Along with the individual businesses that have recognized the power of inbound marketing and the importance of having a technology platform to run and manage all the various elements (blogging, SEO, social media etc), agencies of all sizes have jumped onboard as well.

Pew Study Shows Email and Search Still Top Internet Activities

Our favorite source of information, the Pew Internet & American Life Project, has released its annual findings of what are the most popular activities on the Internet. As a reminder, we like Pew the most because by all appearances it seems that this research isn’t just a veiled PR stunt like most of the “research” that is passed around these days.

First, the simple fact that all marketers should be paying attention to the basics despite the daily temptation to rabbit trail after the latest and great online toys that promise the world but barely deliver a neighborhood at times. Those basics are email and search and they are still the dominant activities online by far.

Social is rising and that shouldn’t be ignored but good marketing is like anything else in that mastery of the basics should come before getting ahead of the game with the current online fad or flavor of the day. In other words, market accordingly!