Despite the looming threat of recession, 92% of marketers expect their budgets to increase or stay the same this year (at least for now). 86% say that data privacy regulations have impacted their marketing strategy over the past year. And most agree there’s one tactic that’s the biggest trend, has the highest ROI, and tops the to-do list for this year.
Those are just a few of the takeaways from HubSpot’s recently released The State of Marketing: Marketing Trends in 2023 from AI to Z report. This 46-page report is packed with stats and insights on all aspects of marketing from HubSpot and partners including Wistia and Litmus.
While the entire study is worth a read, here are three key takeaways plus a few other points of interest from the State of Marketing report.
SEO: Surprisingly Enticing Opportunity
Given that organic search is one of the top two sources of traffic for business websites (at least on the B2B side), and has high conversion rates, it’s surprising that this research reports, “Twenty-nine percent of marketers use a search-optimized website and blog to attract and convert leads.”
Only 29%?! That doesn’t sound right. It’s also inconsistent with findings elsewhere in this study, such as blogs (a prime driver of organic search traffic) are identified as one of the top three marketing channels in terms of ROI, and that “88% of marketers who already do SEO work plan to increase or maintain their investment this year.”
Strange. But in any case, SEO should definitely be part of your marketing strategy, and if you need outside help, it’s valuable to know what questions to ask.
Video Marketing: Hotter Than Ever
Video marketing is huge and somehow keeps getting huger. It’s been “the year of video” every year since 2017. Per the new HubSpot report, “Video is the most popular and effective media format for the fourth year in a row.” More findings:
- In 2023, 24% of marketers planning to invest more in video than any other media format.
- One in three marketers who’ve not used video in the past plan to use it this year.
- 50% of marketers say video is one of their top six media formats.
- 90% of marketers who use short-form video will spend the same or more on video this year.
- Videos under one minute in length get the highest engagement, but viewership doesn’t drop off much for videos up to five minutes long. Beyond five minutes, engagement falls off sharply.
If you’re planning to invest more in video marketing this year, it’s helpful to understand the different types of marketing videos and how they can fit into your strategy.
Influencer Marketing: It’s Social (But Pick Your Platforms Carefully)
Influencer marketing continues to grow in importance across industries, though priorities, platforms, and practices are much different between B2B and B2C influencer marketing. Among the key findings from the HubSpot report:
- 89% of marketers who already use influencer marketing plan to maintain or increase their investments in 2023.
- 17% of marketers plan to implement influencer marketing for the first time this year (second only to video marketing as a new tactic).
- The most popular slice to partner with is micro-influencers, those with a social media following of 10,000-99,999 followers or subscribers; 64% of marketers plan to work with these individuals.
- The top social media marketing platforms (whether for influencer or brand content) are:
- Facebook (64%)
- Instagram (58%)
- YouTube (57%)
- Twitter (43%)
- LinkedIn is tops with only 33% of marketers, though it’s by far the top social network for B2B marketing. It’s hard to say what impact Facebook’s Threads platform will have, though there are signs that Threads could be a valuable tool for B2B marketers.
TikTok is for idiots. Okay, the report doesn’t actually say that, but it does note that “there are growing data privacy concerns surrounding the use of TikTok in the U.S..” It’s already been banned in India.
TikTok today is what cigarettes were in the 1970s; a dangerous product positioned as “cool” to attract and addict adolescent and teen users. And TikTok is definitely a risky platform.
The Last Word (Acronym, Actually) on Marketing Trends for 2023
Likely because of the timing of the study, the research doesn’t say a lot about the impact artificial intelligence (AI) will have on marketing this year and beyond. It does note that AI marketing tools are now everywhere; they will help marketers with the perennial demand to “do more with less”; and that “Content creators and marketers now have a new skill to learn — getting good at using AI.”
There’s much in the full report, The State of Marketing: Marketing Trends in 2023 from AI to Z, from HubSpot and its partners, from the value of marketing automation tools and the impact of data privacy regulations to which marketing trends have the highest ROI and the trend in email open rates. Download the report to get all the details.
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