The 10 Habits of Highly Effective Inbound Marketers

Corey Wainwright
Corey Wainwright



fingers-smiles-speech-bubblesIf you've ever felt like you could use a kick in the pants to lift yourself out of a professional rut, you know going to a respected, successful peer or mentor for some advice can do just the trick.

I thought that'd be a nice thing to do for inbound marketers out there -- compile a list of advice from a few coworkers of mine that I think really rock at some of the core components of inbound.

I asked them to share just one thing that they think makes for a "highly successful" inbound marketer. Here's what they had to say. I hope at least one piece of advice offers inspiration to help propel you further in your career.

10 Habits of Highly Successful Inbound Marketers

1) They're okay with "done."

Never let perfection impede performance. A good blog article published today is better than a perfect blog article published next week.

- Sam Mallikarjunan

2) They have their ego in check.

I think in all industries, but perhaps especially in the world of marketing, an overabundance of arrogance (and an under-abundance of humility) can lead to decreases in productivity, creativity, and collaboration.

The best inbound marketers I know aren't the ones writing books, going on world tours, and -- to put it more bluntly -- letting the world know how damn awesome they are every single day. Instead, truly effective inbound marketers are the folks who readily admit that they need help, who regularly get input and advice from their peers and coworkers, and who put the quality of their work ahead of their personal branding.

- Erik Devaney

3) They don't try to boil the ocean.

Solve one goal at a time, and think holistically and strategically about how your tactics will come together to solve that goal. It's very easy to get lost in the list of items you need to get through to execute on inbound marketing -- blog posts, offers, social posts, emails, etc., but focus is critical.

For example, if your pain point is TOFU in X region or Y vertical, every inbound marketing campaign you create and run should be to fix that goal, specifically.

- Kimberley Darling

4) They focus on improving the metrics that have the most impact.

Modern marketers are surrounded by data that provides plenty of insight into the performance of our marketing campaigns and channels. But not all metrics are created equal.

Successful marketers will be able to view their funnel from a high level, identify where the pain is, and isolate the metric that needs attention. Then they will focus the lion's share of their energy on improving this metric, and align the goals of upcoming campaigns to solve this pain.

- Ian Stanley

5) They embrace agility.

Highly successful inbound marketers monitor their goal progress daily, and pivot quickly if it looks like something won't lead to the results they planned.

- Rebecca Corliss

6) They set measurable short- and long-term goals.

It's important to establish goals -- and metrics to help you measure those goals -- so you know what success looks like. You might find it helpful to set a yearly goal, and then backtrack short-term goals from that larger vision to ensure you keep making progress.

- Jessica Meher

7) They can turn insights into action.

The best inbound marketers I know can extract valuable data from the fluff and use it to make great decisions for the business. Just getting your hands on the data isn't enough -- you need to be able to use those numbers to fuel actionable plans so you can turn around dismal performance (or turn good performance into stellar performance).

- Ginny Soskey

8) They bring new skills to the table.

One of the most important qualities of an effective marketer is that they have deep knowledge and expertise in one or two areas, but they're also able to see the full picture and think critically in other areas, as well.

For example, you should be able to come to a team meeting with the folks who are working on the other parts of your marketing, and help them think through their efforts and strategy. Being able to understand how all of the aspects of your marketing work will help you make a much broader and more meaningful contribution to the team and the team's goals.

- Sarah Goliger

9) They wonder why.

For everything you do, constantly ask yourself: Why are you doing it? How will you know if you were successful? Your time is a precious commodity, so you need to constantly question what you're doing so you can optimize how you use your time.

- Ellie Mirman

10) They're not afraid of failure.

I think a highly effective inbound marketer is someone who is willing to experiment and occasionally fail. It's important to constantly think of new ways to approach problems -- especially if the same problem keeps cropping up again and again. As long as you're learning why something worked and why it didn't, failure should be embraced.

- Rachel Sprung

Alright, now we're turning the tables on you. Share your one "habit" that makes for a highly effective inbound marketer in the comments. (Or tweet it at @HubSpot.)

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