There are two types of people in the world. Givers and takers. Both are needed.
Imagine what the world would be like if people only took. The strong would have surplus and the weak would die off. And if everyone gave? People would neglect their own well being and perish. We need that balance between givers and takers. And up until recently marketers and advertisers have been perpetual takers.
They take your time, wasting it ruthlessly by forcing you to watch mind numbing commercials, listen to irritating radio spots, and stare at smiling doofuses plastered on billboards*. But fear not, thought-leaders in marketing are proving that a balance between giving and taking is not only good for consumers, but it’s good for business.
Instead of forcing consumers to interact with brands, marketers figured out how to make consumers WANT to spend time interacting with your brand: by GIVING. This is what Massachusetts Institute of Technology Entrepreneur in Residence, Brian Halligan, calls Inbound Marketing. And his company HubSpot is changing the way marketing managers and small business owners communicate with their customers.
What is HubSpot?
Halligan co-founded HubSpot with MIT student Dharmesh Shah six years ago. This was right around the time user-generated content and social connectivity started to take off. Marketers realized that they could join in on conversations with their customers without totally being annoying.
Frictionless sharing and obsessive media consumption paved the way for new marketing strategies. And it turned out that the combination of blogging, social media, and search engine optimization (SEO) yielded impressive results and did so for less cost than traditional advertising.
HubSpot is an all-in-one inbound marketing software designed to support and execute the above mentioned three technique combo. And the reason you’d need software like HubSpot is because it’s not enough to write a blog and throw it up on your website. Or tweet and post on Facebook a couple times a day. It’s a lot more calculated than that.
- Content/Blogs – Content creation is the core of any Inbound Marketing campaign. It is the information or tool that attracts potential customers to your site or your business.
- Search Engine Optimization – Search engine optimization makes it easier for potential customers to find your content. It is the practice of building your site and inbound links to your site to maximize your ranking in search engines, where most of your customers begin their buying process.
- Social Media – Social media amplifies the impact of your content. When your content is distributed across and discussed on networks of personal relationships, it becomes more authentic and nuanced, and is more likely to draw qualified customers to your site. —Hubspot
The HubSpot arsenal
One advantage to HubSpot is that it aggregates a handful of awesome tools into one interface (vs. jumping between different platforms that offers individual tools). The following HubSpot tools are used in unison to support blogging, social media and SEO:
- Keyword Grader: Find search engine keywords that are trending, relevant, and not being over-used by your direct competition. These keywords are used in unison with compelling blog posts to attract readers and potential customers.
- Link Grader: Blogging won’t be effective in lead generation if you can’t get high ranks in search engines. This is dependent upon the number of high quality domains that are linking to your website. Link Grader tracks the effectiveness of link building and helps you capitalized on new opportunities and strategically reform your inbound linking.
- Page Grader: Helps you make sure your on-page SEO is optimized in regard to length of the title, description in the head of HTML pages, alt tags on images, etc.
- Marketing Grader: Compares marketing effectiveness, and offers suggestions for improvement.
Why HubSpot works
Understanding the fundamentals of each tool HubSpot offers will give you an edge up when making decisions about what social conversations you intend to initiate and what types of content you should be giving away.
The more compelling and engaging content you create, the more likely readers will want to link to and share that content. This can be done via: creating quality blog posts, posting e-books germane to your industry, interactive webcasts and live video, and free interactive tools.
HubSpot only works as hard as you work it and is by no means the only way to run a successful inbound marketing campaign. Check out the second part of our series, and we’ll tell you what tools you can use to operate an inbound campaign for free.
In the meantime: take a look below at the compelling growth figures of inbound marketing in the past year.