How Marketing and Sales Challenges and Priorities Shift Over Time, and Differ Between Inbound and Outbound Teams

Posted by Roman Bodnarchuk on Sat, Oct 29, 2016 @ 17:10 PM

What are your company’s top marketing priorities over the next 12 months?

Priorities have stayed relatively static through the years. Since leads tends to be the
major metric marketers are measured by, they continue to be a top priority.



Thinking specifically about inbound marketing projects, what are your company’s top priorities?

When we look at inbound-specific priorities, growing SEO has replaced blog content
creation in the top spot. There’s also movement further down the list. Webinars
ranked high in 2014 but dropped off in 2016.



We see some minor shifts in sales priorities year over year – with the biggest gain under the social selling category (+6%)

What are your company’s top sales priorities for the next year?


Challenges: Proving ROI has been a consistent challenge for marketing. In previous State of Inbound reports, we’ve found measuring and proving ROI impacts the success of a marketing organization and their future budget.



What is more difficult to do in sales compared to 2 to 3 years ago?

On the sales side, getting a response is the biggest challenge compared to a few
years ago. A quarter of sales respondents also face more complex purchases
with multiple decision-makers involved in the sale. 14% also say using their sales
technologies has gotten more difficult--this may reflect the complexity of sales tools
available today or the sheer number of tools some sales representatives have to use
in their day to day.


What are your company’s top marketing priorities over the next 12 months?

If we dissect the responses of inbound and outbound marketing teams, we see a few differences in how these respective teams approach marketing.
Overall, outbound organizations have slightly less focus on leads and traffic growth compared to inbound marketing teams. They also tend to have a slightly stronger focus on sales enablement.


What are your company’s top inbound marketing priorities over the next 12 months?

With respect to inbound projects, there’s a clear break between inbound and outbound marketing teams. 24% more inbound teams will focus on content creation and 11% more inbound organizations prioritize growing organic reach.


What are your company’s top marketing challenges?

Companies that described themselves as outbound shops also seem to have slightly more trouble with proving ROI (49% versus 42%), securing budget (33% vs 26%), and training their team (23% versus 18%) compared to their inbound marketing peers.



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