Article Highlights

  1. To segment an email lists and personalize the content will result in more qualified leads.
  2. “Integrated inbound marketing” will continue to be the key to success combining content, SEO, social, email, and marketing analytics.
  3. The ultimate recognition that the consumers have all the power — over their time, their attention, their decision-making and buyer path, and, increasingly, what a company offers to sell.
  4. Consumers (“with all the power”) will research and buy across many channels and screens. Thus, all marketing channels need to work together to match that behavior.
  5. IT must connect with Marketing to assess ROI so adjustments can be made.


Predictions for 2014

1. Marketing Departments Will Become More Like Engineering Departments.

We predict the maxim; marketing departments will become more like engineering departments. These two aspects of business strategy can no longer afford to remain distant relatives. Years ago I visited Stanford Universities and hear the terms Techy and Fuzzy. These described the two realms of thinking. They were the left-brain vs. the right-brain folks. In 2014, it’s time that the techies and the fuzzies come together.

The first wave of this fusion will involve engineers sitting with marketing to help the company “hardwire” growth into the product, but in time the ability to code will become as core to marketers’ skills as the ability to write or design.

2. 2014 Will Be the Year of Self-Doubt for Marketers.

Will what worked in the past still work this next year? Should we turn to the right or the left to make things work? Will more video do the trick? Surely Google won’t change their algorithms again? While mobile, social, and content will remain at the top of the list for marketers, you will see a bigger push across the industry for better data and analytics. It is likely that 2014 will be a year of self-doubt for marketers. Marketers are over-worked and spread in too many directions. 2014 will be the year that everything breaks. To regain their sanity, marketers will question their past tactics, examine which of them were actually driving business results, then focus their efforts accordingly.

Integrated inbound marketing will continue to be the key to success, as marketers who combine content, SEO, social, email, and marketing analytics will be the ones who see success and are able to iterate and improve quarter over quarter.

3. Social Listening Tools Will Gain Context, Get Smarter.

While most of us grew up in a one-size-fits-all world, the future is all about personalization. We can look forward to personalization and predictive technologies infiltrating the social listening space.

These social listening systems will predict how to best reach your customer and automatically notify the sales team or take action on its own to move them further down the sales funnel.

We can’t wait to see social transform into a real-time tool for moving leads down the funnel. Today, marketers often focus on the extremes: The top of the funnel, (broadcasting) and the bottom of the funnel (customer support). In the future, context and context- enabling technologies will put the pieces of meaningless data points together and make suggestions in real-time.

4. The Economy Will Become Highly Collaborative.

Companies that want to embrace this movement toward a “collaborative economy.” They will need to interact with people like people … human to human. Interactions will need to feel more natural and less transactional in order for the collaborative economy to succeed.

It is, in short, the ultimate recognition that the consumers have all the power — over their time, their attention, their decision-making and buyer path, and, increasingly, what a company offers to sell. The best products are informed by the consumer using data, feedback, and reviews. The logical next (if bold) step is folding consumers even closer into production of product offerings.

5. Marketers Will Become More Holistic, Less Channel-Focused.

According to Google Trends, by the end of 2011, inbound passed “direct mail marketing.” By the end of 2012, inbound passed “display advertising,” and in 2013, “inbound marketing” closed the gap with a huge term, “search marketing.” Over the next 12 months, we should see inbound pass even search marketing as a dominant search term.

Our prediction is in 2014, companies everywhere will embrace that a holistic approach to marketing trumps channel- or tactic-specific approaches every time. Consumers have all the power, and they research and buy across many channels and screens. All your marketing channels need to work together to match that behavior.

Tactics like search, email, blogging, social, and so on, can and should be connected using technology, and it should be tracked and measured right down to bottom-line revenue.

The inbound methodology focuses on how humans research and buy and not on specific marketing channels or technologies, and 2014 will be the year this finally clicks across the board and at every level of the organization.

It’s a Wrap

  1. Most will not be prepared for the uniqueness of 2014.
  2. Those who will positions themselves will stand above the rest.
  3. The wisest use of marketing investment requires forming a team of the shrewdest men of talent.
  4. Adapting quickly and embracing change is one of the secrets for finding new cheese.
  5. While many may be “good” it is few who become “great” in business. These are those who pick their team well.

One of the finest military/business books says information is your biggest weapon in war–not literal weapons or large army size.

Envertex strives to combine knowledge and the expertise needed in 2014 for companies who plan to win.

Call 877.872.6469 if you want to be one of the companies that want to capitalize on the opportunity present this year. We will employ our “Sun Tsu’s strategy” within your marketplace to demolish your competition.

Your free consultation appointment can be easily set – 877.872.6469.