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How often do you check your rear-view mirror? It’s impossible to safely drive a car while focusing on that view – and only seeing where you’ve been is a terrible way to figure out where to go.

But it’s unsafe to go forward with no idea of what came before. Somewhere in between is a useful set of tactics, right?

Give this especially poignant song from Pearl Jam a listen as we see what the experts are saying this week…

HubSpot Benchmark Data

Throughout the pandemic, HubSpot published some great data and trends from their user base of 70,000+ client companies. We may want to look back at some of this data – and perhaps see things so much clearer for B2B in 2023!

The last update published was in February 2022. Here are some of the trends:

  • Deals Closed had risen to 24% over benchmark vs. 20% in January
  • Sales Emails were continuing to increase – way up YOY
  • Sales Conversations were showing a healthy increase (53% over benchmark)
  • Contact Growth had dropped vs. January, but still 30% over benchmark

HubSpot may not be publishing these trends ongoing anymore, but they did recently share an overview of all of 2022.

So how have those trends changed?

  • 2022 web traffic struggled to outpace 2021. With the worst of the pandemic in the rear-view, people sought to disconnect more. But part of the dip was also affected by…
  • Marketing emails dropped by 4% and open rates by 12.89%! Both sales and marketing emails saw big increases over the pandemic, so email fatigue probably caught up with some prospects. But despite these drops…
  • Marketing leads and conversions went up year-over-year. Web conversions saw an 11% increase, with inbound leads up nearly 7%.

What does this all mean for the road ahead as we gather speed through Q2 and beyond? Marketing lead and conversion plays are more important than ever – and aligning with sales activities.

And what about you? Do your strategies for 2023 match these trends? Or maybe the trends have made you wise on where you’re missing out!

Streaming’s Generational Blind Spot

A really fascinating point in this article: as an industry, we need to focus on engaging with (and finding value in) any demographic being under-served by dominant platforms. It’s not enough to check our rear-view mirrors – we need to be checking our blind spots, too!

Knowing that 25-34s grew up amid the transition from physical music to streaming, we might expect them to be well-adapted to the new format. But in reality, these consumers seem reluctant to give up the listening methods of their upbringing. 25-34s in the US spend the least time streaming music of any segment under 45, and the most on other formats, such as CD, radio, and vinyl.

What about B2B? As this age group rises in the ranks of your customers, this might impact your sales and marketing strategies. Are there older technologies they’re not yet willing to let go of once and for all? And if so, how do we, as marketers, adapt?

As always, don’t hesitate to call me to brainstorm or just say hello!

Looking forward,

Rick Endrulat, President | ricke@v-causeway.com | www.linkedin.com/in/rickendrulat