The short answer is a resounding yes.
But as with anything sales or marketing related, the inbound methodology needs to adapt if it’s to generate meaningful business growth. Let’s look at a few ways inbound marketing strategies must evolve in 2020:
Content must be authoritative to make an impact
With so much content out there, it’s increasingly difficult for people to find what they’re looking for without having to sift through a mountain of irrelevant information first. In answer to this, last year Google updated its algorithm to ‘reward’ high quality content by pushing it further up the search rankings.
For marketers wishing to align with Google and position their brands as thought leaders, this means crafting authoritative content that’s impeccably researched and expertly written.
Pillar pages are uprooting traditional keyword-focused content
Last year, Google reported 3,234 updates to their algorithm, with 10 of them being major enough to affect how websites rank. A key reason is that 50% of all searches could soon be voice-activated. Customers are becoming more conversational when they search, and businesses must adapt their SEO strategies to accommodate that.
For instance, instead of using one keyword to rank in search engines for a particular product or service, businesses need to understand how users are searching for them online. This means researching relevant long-tail keywords, phrases and terms, and then anchoring them to root keywords that are connected to a topic cluster, or pillar page.
A pillar page is a comprehensive landing-page-meets-knowledge-hub that’s dedicated to a strategic theme, product or service, with branching, SEO-enriched content directly related to it. Pillars pages are optimised for how customers search for information, be it voice-activated or typing out phrases and terms.
AI to oil the cogs of the marketing Flywheel
According to research by Forbes Insights and Quantcast, artificial intelligence for marketing can help businesses experience a 52% boost in sales and a 51% increase in customer retention.
Enter the Flywheel, a marketing model that accounts for how customers help drive growth in businesses, through acquisition and retention. In the context of the inbound marketing flywheel, AI presents invaluable opportunities. For instance, we’re already seeing it produce results in:
- Segmentation: By leveraging customer data, AI enables both smart and predictive audience segmentation.
- Multivariate testing: With multivariate testing, an AI can break down a campaign into hundreds of smaller offshoots and deliver them to different audiences. Once the campaign has run its course, AI can then analyze the results on a granular level to determine where it succeeded or failed, and why.
- Adaptive testing: By splitting traffic evenly across a number of page variations, marketers can use AI to analyse which streams are performing the best and then funnel more traffic to them. HubSpot has a great article on the subject matter.
Not only is inbound marketing relevant in 2020, it's necessary
Inbound marketing is as relevant today as it’s ever been. And with a few considered tweaks here, and some well-deployed optimisation there, businesses should have little trouble getting to grips with the new trends.
We say ‘little’, because a little help in marketing and sales goes a long way. MPULL is a digital CRM & CX agency that specialises in the full-suite of inbound marketing and business consultation — covering MarTech, data, strategy, creative, and development — to generate customer confidence for lasting business growth.
Get in touch with us to discuss how you can start bringing your customers to you with inbound marketing’s evolved strategies for 2020.