Today was primarily a day of meetings for me, but I did get here super early so that I could spend some time on the floor of Club INBOUND, which is where all the third party HubSpot integrators set up. I’m not going to go through everyone that I met—some really, really great ones, but one specific one stood out to me. It’s this platform called Voicify. Voicify enables you to produce content and publish it . on voice engagement platforms like Amazon Alexa and Google Home. This is interesting for us, for our clients, because we’re always trying to stay in front of people no matter where they’re digesting content. So I’m really looking forward to exploring the service more. My first session after I was done there on the floor was at 10:45. I only had two sessions today, both of them excellent. The first one was with Aja Frost from HubSpot called Deep Dive: The Step-by-Step Process to Creating the Ultimate Content Strategy. This was a longer—it was a deep dive so it was a longer session than most. Most sessions are about 45 minutes long. This was a two hour long session. Actually, this is an unconventional format for them, but I think it went really well. For me, it was a little bit top-level. But for other people that maybe aren’t as familiar with building a content plan, it went through step-by-step the purpose of building out content in a cluster format, having a pillar page that ranks or attempts to rank for one big, broad head term, supporting blog posts that we refer to as 10% pieces that speak to a little bit longer tail keywords, but do demonstrate a general deep and broad scope of expertise in a certain space. Like I said, it was a little bit fundamental and rudimentary for me, but I really enjoyed it, I enjoyed Aja’s presentation. She’s just very talented and charismatic on stage. She did point out something that was new to me. The concept that there are are three different types of content you can produce when it comes to blog posts. Content that is geared to generate traffic, content that is geared to communicate opinions, and content that is geared at generating leads. Now, you should have a good mix of all of these. Generating traffic is writing about things that should be ranking. Generating opinions are writing about things that people are going to engage with and share, and I don’t want to say go viral, but are more likely to be pushed out and shared socially. And then content that’s generated with the intention of bringing in leads, so you have to actually close the loop. If you’re building out a cluster and it has a pillar page in the middle, well, the 10% pieces that are supporting it should do a mix of these things: generate traffic, share opinions, and generate leads. The next session that I sat it on was the last session for me, and I’ve got to say it was the most incredible way for me to end my time here at INBOUND. This was by Marcus Sheridan. If you don’t know Marcus Sheridan, he is the Sales Lion, or formerly the Sales Lion. He’s joined IMPACT, a big agency up there in Connecticut. The presentation that Marcus did was based on his book. He wrote a book recently, or a couple of years ago and just recently updated it called, ‘They Ask You Answer.’ Well his presentation was really about the fundamentals that he lays out in that book. It was called Magical Content: 7 Secrets to Content That Generates the Greatest Results, ROI, and Lasting Impact. Marcus’s official title is President and Partner of Marcus Sheridan International and of IMPACT. He’s also, if you’ve ever seen him, one of the most incredible on-stage presences that you can experience. Marcus got on stage, went through a typical question, you know, ‘why is it that content does’t seem to have the ROI that you might expect?’ And a lot of people said, well, it’s lower quality. That’s not what Marcus thinks the issue is. Marcus thinks that the number one reason that content fails is because there’s a lack of buy-in from leadership. And the lack of buy in is that leadership doesn’t fully understand what types of subjects we should be producing content around. You want to produce content that can instill a sense a sense of trust, and answer questions—hard questions—that are being asked. That means you might have to say, let’s talk about pricing and you have to talk about your pricing model. Let’s compare us to competitors and maybe potentially direct people to competitors. Our product might not be right for you, this other product—let’s honestly compare our product and their product, and if their product sounds better, then go get ’em. But that’s that’s instilling that trust that’s crucial for content to rank. If you haven’t read the book, I really encourage you to find it. He speaks about the Big 5 in there. The Big 5 are the questions that people have, and they’re always around these 5 things: Cost, they want to know how much something costs. When someone comes to your website, almost always are they looking for that pricing page. And if they can’t find that pricing page, they’re not gonna hang around and just keep looking. They close out, they move onto the next one, they search for answers somewhere else. The second thing is around problems. What issues am I going to have? If I rebuild a website with Morey Creative, what are the potential problems that there could be? You have to answer those things honestly. The next thing is comparison blogs. So I’m considering this or that. Give an honest assessment of two different types of products. Next is reviews. They want to see that social proof, they want to see what are other people’s experiences. Lastly, best of lists. They want to know rankings. What are the best performing, what are the worst performing? Those are 5 pieces of content that you should focus on, and like I said, please find that book. It’s broken up I believe into 3 parts. At the very least, read part 1. It’s gonna change your life. Really, really blew my mind and so did this session. It was a great way to end on a super high note. There was one piece of advice that I wrote from the session that was really engaging. What is the fear that people have when they’re sitting there on a landing page in front of a form? You know, before I give you my information.. what are you going to do with it? Are you going to spam me or email me 1,000 times, or you know, call me. What’s going to happen? What IMPACT did was, on a landing page, right above a form, right next to a form, make a video and title that, “what will happen if you fill out this form.” Set the expectation. Let them know you don’t have to be afraid, this is what we promise we’re going to do. We’re not going to email you, we’re not gonna call you or whatever their fear of commitment might be. So that was a great piece of advice. And that was it. The reason why I only had those two sessions was I had a couple of meetings. There is one meeting that I am going to speak to here. I got to meet with Michael Redbord, who is the GM of the Service Hub. Every Hub—Marketing Hub, Sales Hub, Service Hub—in HubSpot, has a General Manager, a person who’s really tasked with making sure that the ship is heading in the right direction. Well, Michael and I spoke about the Service Hub. We’re trying to equip our clients with the most tools to make them as successful as possible. But the Service Hub, there’s a lot of stuff that’s in there that I could simply replicate on the Sales Hub or on the Marketing Hub. I challenged him with why would I leverage the Service Hub if I can build out in the Sales Hub a pipeline just like the tickets pipeline? Or, why would I use the Knowledge Base when I could just make a second blog and make that a Knowledge Base? He really did communicate a couple things, features that I wasn’t really giving enough credit to. The first being the NPS score, or the NPS emails. You have the ability to set up reoccurring emails that go to clients or go to select people on a monthly, quarterly, annual basis—whatever it might be—simply checking in. Are you satisfied? How are things? What’s your rating for us? And with those, if you have a client who’s starting out an engagement with a new agency, sending out those NPS scores, getting 1 piece of feedback. You know, ‘let me know your experience.’ I give you a 6/10 and this was my challenge. That challenge might be the sales process wasn’t great or someone didn’t follow up with me fast enough. That gives us some intel that we need to help them on their sales side. Or maybe the complaint is a specific product issue. That’s giving us intel into maybe content that we could be producing. You know, ways that we can answer questions or help guide people through their experience a little bit better. So that was a really great idea. We’re actually now contemplating rolling this out in a capacity for all new onboardings where we use that NPS email, we use an email where we collect this one piece of data, at least for a one year period, or for a six month period, to see what direction it points us in and how we can improve as a company and as a product. And then if after that one year you’re not impressed by the type of data you’re collecting then you can get rid of it. But I think that’s a really good start, and there’s a really good use case for why to start with the Service Hub. As to the question about why not just replicate the Knowledge Base over there in a separate blog, the Knowledge Base integrates directly with chat, and you can have a chat where somebody asked a question and it searches through the Knowledge Base. That can’t happen with blogs. In addition, the Knowledge Base articles are built in a way that are supposed to surface good questions and potentially let people open up a ticket. You have a thumbs up or thumbs down if it’s something that helped you out. You can find something—if you’re getting consistently thumbs downs on articles/specific posts, you know that needs to be improved. Or, directly on that article, there’s a button to automatically open a ticket. You know if they’re looking at your knowledge base there’s a potential they’re having a problem. Want to open a ticket? Open a ticket right now. So there’s a couple of really cool, dynamic things that the Service Hub is doing. Some of that we could replicate, but why go through the effort of manually trying to rebuild it when it’s not going to work as well as the tool they built out of the box. As far as just duplicating a tickets pipeline over there in with Sales Pro—with Sales Pro you can have multiple pipelines— rather than doing that, the benefit of having tickets is, you have a system where when an email gets sent to a specific email address, when a chat comes in, when a Facebook Messenger message comes in, when a specific support form gets filled out, all of those things can create a ticket. That doesn’t necessarily happen on the sales side. You can’t just create a deal if somebody has a chat with you. It just doesn’t happen properly. There are potentially some workarounds there as well, but you’re really trying to rebuild what already exists, and it’s very challenging and you’re opening up yourself to some issues there.