We are a specialist marketing consulting helping companies to generate inbound leads through aligning sales and marketing messaging around buyer needs. We create buyer relevant messaging and use this messaging in conjuction with communication, language and conversation skills training in our selling in the internet age blended learning program to improve individual sales performance.
We contacted HubSpot after receiving a strong recommendation from one of our clients, VICO Software in Boston, who had been using HubSpot for over a year and were achieiving outstanding results.
Our goals with HubSpot are to generate inbound leads and to grow awareness of our marketing and sales performance offerings in the markets we serve.
The situationprior to HubSpot was that we were doing poorly with Google Adwords; our old CMS had no social media integration, nor the ability for us to change any content. We had been placing articles in the Cambridge Network magazine and averaged about 100 unique visitors per month. We received only one inbound lead in the prior year.
What we learned
- If you actively use HubSpot as a blogging and social media integration platform, HubSpot works as advertised. See our visitor chart below, showing inbound visits, repeat visits and lead conversion events.
- The charts speak for themselves....you can't fudge the results.
- We began climbing organic search rankings almost immediately, purely through blogging on a weekly basis.
- We needed a conversion vehicle to capture interested visitors and added our professionally developed white-paper on 30th. September, (see spike on chart) and have been averaging about 12 inbound leads per month and will close our first new clients as a result of these leads in the next month.
- White-papers create conversion opportunities, but they take time to write and they have to be high quality.
- We engaged a professional, Stephanie Tilton from TenTon Marketing who did a fantastic job editing our white-paper, asking questions to help us focus our message and formatting it to produce a high quality product.
- We used an idea from David Meerman-Scott, which was to give part of the white-paper content away with no registration required. The theory is that after spending 10-15 minutes reading part 1, sufficient trust is developed which motivates the visitor to complete a form (and become a lead) in order to download part 2. The Guide to better sales performance is the part 2. of the the white-paper and requires name and email for download.
- When we started blogging we were a bit internally focused, but soon learned that people are interested in your ideas first and then make decisions about product/service, so focus blogging on ideas relevant to target buyer buyer-persona, not on your products or services.
- Blogging takes time and in the style of blog I write, requires intellectual effort and must be posted at least weekly; link blogging is quicker and also effective in getting inbound visitors initially, see chart blog subscribers.
What we like about Hubspot is the Integration of keywords, blogging, social media, analytics, SEO, landing pages, keyword grader, link grader and page optimization wizards and CMS on one easy to use platform which gives us tremendous productivity at low cost.
- HubSpot provides quality support and every time we have had a problem have gotten an answer within a couple of minutes.
- HubSpot forums are rich and useful and the 2000+ HubSpot customers provide a tremendous resource base of expertise very willing to help answer questions.
- Finally we love the fact that we can do it ourselves, see and analyze the results, make the changes and watch it grow.
What were going to do differently in 2010
- Set up lead nurturing within HubSpot....this requires thought and mutliple offerings to be effective.
- Set up multiple conversion events including regular Webinars and an eBook.
- Stronger and more obvious calls to action.
- Redesign of the front page and restructure of content around our business focus for 2010 to make it easier to for visitors to understand how we create value.
- Refine our focus on target markets and messaging, keywords and phrases for target markets
- Engage our target buyers more actively through social media.