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What We Learned At INBOUND 2017

The Good, The Bad And The Ugly From The Conference

After four full days in Boston interacting with 20,000 attendees at HubSpot’s annual INBOUND event, the team at Square 2 Marketing had some insightful takeaways that I thought I’d share with all of you. There’s a lot more good news than bad news, and honestly the bad news isn’t really that bad, but challenges do exist within the inbound community.

The key to a successful INBOUND experience is to grab ideas and takeaways that help you make your marketing and sales produce better results. While learning how to make a landing page with a template is nice, getting that landing page to produce more leads, more sales opportunities and more new customers is more important.



Why Packaged Pricing Is A Signal You're Considering The Wrong Inbound Marketing Agency

Do You Feel Like You Fit Into A Pre-Configured Box? Why Should Your Inbound Marketing Program?

Is your business unique? Is your industry special? Are aspects of your company different than your competitors? Do you have an individual perspective on your business that needs to come out in your marketing? Of course!

If I’ve learned anything over the past 14 years running Square 2 Marketing, its that no client fits into any specific package or program.

Then why do inbound marketing agencies insist on publishing packaged pricing? Why do they think you should fit into their fast, faster, fastest or silver, gold, platinum packages? How can they predict results associated with different levels before even talking to you? The short answer is they can’t predict anything and these packages are poor attempts to make the sales process easier for them.



Hiring An Inbound Marketing Agency? 7 Signs You're On The Right Track

Many Inbound Marketing Agencies Look And Sound Similar; Here’s How To Identify The Winners

Ask HubSpot how many agencies are in its partner program and the answer is going to be somewhere around 3,400. That means you have at least that many inbound agencies to choose from. If you’ve made the decision to work with an agency and inbound marketing is at the core of your marketing strategy, this is the pool you’ll be fishing in.

The big challenge is how to find the best of the best in this sea of digital agencies that all look and sound very similar. There’s a lid for every pot, and in this case, there’s an agency for every company looking for one.

Here are seven important signs to look for to help you find the right agency for your company and one aligned with your business goals.



It's Always The Agency's Fault If Your Inbound Marketing Isn't Working

Does It Matter Whose Fault It Is Or Does It Matter Why It’s Not Working?

The headline was meant to get your attention. It’s very rarely the agency’s fault even though that’s usually where the blame gets placed. When you think about it, how could it be the agency’s fault? If the people at the agency didn’t know what they were doing, they wouldn’t have any clients. So, they must know something.

But what I don’t understand is why it matters whose fault it is and why blaming anyone is productive. Instead, let’s put our energy into identifying why your inbound marketing isn’t working and what we need to do to fix it, and then get it back on track delivering leads and new customers for your business.



Clutch Report Recognizes Square 2 Marketing As Leading Inbound Marketing Agency

Clutch, a B2B research firm based in Washington, D.C., published a report this week that recognized Square 2 Marketing as a leading inbound marketing agency, based on the agency’s proven ability to meet its clients’ expectations as well as its inbound marketing focus and expertise.



4 Secrets Your Inbound Marketing Agency ISN’T Telling You

First, it should be said that there are many highly qualified, highly successful inbound agencies.

With the explosion of inbound marketing, however, more firms are calling themselves inbound agencies when, in fact, they actually do what they’ve always done. In other words, if they used to build websites, they still build websites – but they say they do inbound marketing. If SEO was their focus, they still do SEO  but they say they do inbound.

This means that the responsibility of completely evaluating an agency before you hire one falls squarely on you  the CEO, business owner or marketing executive bringing on the new agency.

Most of what you need to look for can easily be found by asking the right questions. But, you also have to be able to interpret the answers you get.



Email Marketing Metrics: What To Check And What To Skip

When executed properly as part of a comprehensive inbound marketing strategy, email marketing provides value to businesses looking to attract and convert leads. Too many businesses, however, carry out their email marketing campaigns haphazardly, leading to declining ROI and poor results.

To achieve optimal results with your email marketing efforts, start with strategy. Too many marketers simply send emails to their lists when they have time, with little thought to what tactics perform best.

The other major way that companies botch their email marketing endeavors is not paying attention to their results. If you don’t know how your emails are performing, you won’t know what changes to make to your email strategy.



4 Obstacles A Social Media Content Calendar Crushes

Ever feel like there’s no rhyme, reason or uniformity to your social media marketing process?



Inbound Marketing Friday Forecasts For 2015

Being able to see into the future is often reserved for science fiction movies.

Yet, Wayne Gretzky once said that a good hockey player skates “to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been.”

This always resonated with me. For us to be successful, we have to see where the market is going and make sure our companies are there in time to take advantage of it.



Inbound Marketing: How Do You Know If You're Doing It Right?

Isn’t this the $64,000 question when it comes to inbound marketing? Isn’t this the doubt that seeps into your mind when you’re up in the middle of the night?

What if we’re doing this wrong?

How do you know if this is your first inbound marketing campaign? If you’re an agency, you might be working with your first inbound client.

Relax. Today I’m going to give you the dashboard to see if your inbound marketing results are tracking correctly.