So, Filament recently went to Boston to experience HubSpot Inbound 2018 and it was……unbelievable.
For starters – and we tend to point this out a lot when recapping our story – did you know that 24,000 living, breathing human beings attended this year’s conference? That population is bigger than our Director of Collaboration and Founder’s hometowns combined (Katy Corey, Little Chute, WI; 11,250 people); (Kelly Andrew, Evansville, WI; 5,265 people). That’s weird.
Before you start reading about our inspiring Inbound18 ah-ha’s, note that our findings are not just applicable to our industry, internet marketing. These revelations can help businesses grow all across the board.
Here are 6 Ah-Ha’s We Think You Need to Know…
Talk about Your People, Not about Your Numbers.
“How the hell did I think I was going to run a business and not have to do sales?” – Kelly Andrew
Well, as of late, Kelly is starting to fall in love with sales. Why? How?
She has good mentors.
She’s kicking-butt at HubSpot’s Sales Bootcamp.
And, Inbound’s presentation by Lisa McLeod, who believes that the businesses sitting around talking about the people they serve (and how to serve them better!) are beating those talking about the numbers. Check out her book “Leading with Noble Purpose” HERE.
“Shift your thinking to consider, ‘how do we improve the lives of our customers?’ Don’t just convince them to buy or be focused on making a buck, but really think about how you’ll impact their lives. The numbers alone will not move the human heart. You have to tell a story behind the numbers.” – Lisa McLeod
People Want Self-Serve, 24-Access.
Per HubSpot’s Founders Brian Halligan & Dharmesh Shah, customers of tomorrow want self-serve, 24-hour access, which means we have to think of unique ways to meet their important needs. We have to imagine ways to dive deeper into the “techy stuff”, like marketing automation, to make tasks like social media, emails, and website actions easier…faster…consistent.
We also need to become a resource bank and fill online platforms with go-to for information potential consumers and current customers.
It’s a lot, but the people have spoken. It’s time to get more innovative if you haven’t already.
While perusing the HubSpot vendors, Filament came across a Video Tool that people are praising for its interface usability, a catalog of imagery, and the speed it takes to create a professional video. We weren’t planning to be sold, but we were, and here’s why…
“Video has been all the rage for the past few years and it is here to stay. We believe this innovative software can help us create more engagement on social platforms and will up our marketing game – and our client’s,” shared Kelly Andrew.
Check out WaveVideo for more details. It might be perfect for your business.
Penguins Vs. Elephants.
Katy, a former member of Marquette’s improv team, had an exciting teaching moment from Second City’s, Kathy Klotz, on the topic of company culture. In the 90’s, Klotz was a big deal at a firm in Silicon Valley. She loved her job and the company she worked for. When the administration changed, however, so did their culture.
“Are we a tribe of penguins or elephants?” questioned the new CEO at all-staff meeting. His response, which you can learn about HERE, was so disappointing that Klotz, and many others, left. It wasn’t long before the company folded.
Curious to learn your tribe? Click HERE.
Are You Likeable? Does it Matter?
The short answer: Yes. Being likeable matters.
Stay tuned for an opportunity to download free insights on how to improve relationships in the workplace. You’ll be able to download some valuable tips and print them off for your next team meeting.
“People think that respect and influence come from the org chart, yet this is the weakest type of influence,” shared Karlyn Borysenko, who presented at HubSpot Inbound on Playing Politics: The Psychology of the Human Workplace.
Less Complexity is Not Better.
Part of what we do at Filament Communication is to create content, so if our writing is too obvious, we’re failing. Granted, there are basic rules bloggers should follow (click HERE to learn more).
All in all, per the brilliant advice of Carmen Simon, taken from her presentation The Neuroscience of Engagement, “Less complexity is not better. Less predictability is. What is surprise but a failure to predict?”
Give Ideas a Chance to Breathe.
As a team, if we want to inspire the best creativity, we need to give ideas a chance to breathe. One of the number one rules to improv is “Yes, And…”, which can be applied to any relationship.
When we stop ourselves from playing Devil’s Advocate, which is being that person at the party who has the tendency to say, “Yes, But…” (Klotz likes to describe these brainstormers/communicators as self-advocators!) we kill momentum. We kill ideas. We stop brilliant people from speaking up.
“It’s easier to tear down a wild idea than think up a new one,” Alex Osborn
Your Network Should Be Your Heroes.
Michaela Alexis, a LinkedIn personality (#letsgethonest) presented on ways to be relatable with your online network. Here are a few things that Kelly took note of:
- Audit your career. What can readers relate to? Not in a “poor you” way, but in a “yes, me too” way? And, make sure it’s not all about you.
- Build consistency in your personal brand with props (the same mug on your desk in each video), signature look, etc.
- Work on your delivery. How do you become a great storyteller? Can you create some exciting dram or nostalgia? Be natural, funny – be you.
- Make sure whatever you post, your content, is leading back to your business goals – what behavior do you want your followers to take? Tell people what to do.
- Let go of “supposed to” – stop impressing, using jargon, using your “phone voice” – connect and get real!
Everyone You’ve Ever Met is Part of Your Network
Anna-Viia McClain, owner of Build Your Damn Business, gave us one of the best tips at Inbound: Utilize others in your own industry and build strategic partnerships. Why not? “Everyone you’ve met, EVER, is part of your network,” she stated.
She also encouraged business owners to categorize contacts into prospects/direct buyers, a referral network, gatekeepers/introduction sources, etc., and to communicate with them all differently. In addition to, “Invite Every. Single. Person. you meet to enjoy coffee, drink, or lunch.”
“Your current customers are the greatest influencers of your future customers.” – Eva Klein, VP of Customer Service
Ask Yourself: How Do You Delight Your Customers?
According to HubSpot Founders Brian Halligan & Dharmesh Shah, focusing on delighting current customers is going to be one of the best ways to attract new leads in 2019 (think of a business like Patagonia – they’re killing it!).
Also, consider simplifying your user-experience all around to delight customers front to finish. Are your prices available to people checking out your website? Do you make it easy for someone to cancel services or return a product? Are you engaging your current customers online? If not, why not?
People take note of these details and it will encourage them to trust in your business ethics, services, product, etc. They will become your biggest promoters.
It’s sad, but true (especially as a team of online marketers who love what we do!) that “customers don’t trust businesses anymore. They trust their network – friends, family, colleagues – all the people you have a chance to take care of as existing customers!” shared Alison Elworthy of Hubspot. She goes on to say…
“Invest equally in sales, marketing, and customer service to surround your customer and keep them central to your business.”
What Didn’t We Like?
We recognize it’s a negative question, but we’re open to sharing the good, the bad, and the ugly…
“I really struggled with the lack of eye contact,” Katy Corey shared. “Everyone was walking from presentation to presentation locked onto their big phones. Technology has provided us so many ways to explore engagement and creativity, but it has also taken away from real connections.”
Katy isn’t saying anything new here; yet, this observation helped us recognize one of our possible differentiators in the digital world. What might that be?
Filament walks the fine line of online and real time. Connecting with our customers, face to face, collaborating on internet marketing strategies that work – we’re good at it. Is it silly to say we put the relationship back in marketing? Maybe. Yeah – that’s sort of cheesy. Nonetheless, we mean it.
The last day of HubSpot Inbound 2018 was surreal. We started the morning with a presentation from Scott Harrison, Founder of Charity:Water. As Kelly shared on Instagram, “we’re wiping away tears during this keynote (okay, let’s be honest…blowing our noses crying.”
Please consider checking out this charity. We are committed to “giving” to this organization.
To close out the conference, Chimamanda Adichie captivated everyone with her poise & life lessons. That was mind-blowing, to say the least.
Finally, we’d be amiss to share one of our greatest highlights of our Boston Adventure: Field and Vine. You know we love supporting businesses in the food industry that work with locally-grown products (shout out to our pals at Tall Guy and A Grill and The Focused Fork). It was a magical, delectable experience that we will talk about for years to come.
Want to talk about our resent conquest and learn more about using Hubspot or how to care for your existing clients 2019? We’d love to connect.
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