How HubSpot Attracts More Leads (with Kyle Denhoff, Head of Global Acquisition Campaigns at HubSpot)
How HubSpot Attracts More Leads (with Kyle Denhoff, Head of Global Acquisition Campaigns at HubSpot)
Do you wish you could sit down with a seasoned video content expert and pick their brain? That’s exactly what you’ll get from this episode of Lights, Camera, Grow as we chat with Kyle Denoff, head of global acquisition campaigns at HubSpot.
Denoff provides invaluable expertise on a variety of topics related to rich media campaigns:
- The difference between viewers/listeners and QUALIFIED leads
- When to create new content for a campaign, and when you can repurpose existing content
- How to decide between long-form and short-form content for your audience
- Which tools are in Denoff’s tech stack, and why they are useful
- How to get viewers to engage with a CTA via YouTube
- What pre-production, production and post-production look like for Denoff’s team
- How to build content that’s valuable for both marketing AND sales
- Denoff’s process for turning long-form videos into smaller clips, audio content, and written content
Where to find Kyle Denoff:
- LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/kyledenhoff/
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/denhoff_?lang=en
- LIGHTS, CAMERA, GROW PODCAST -
Kyle DenhoffHead of Global Acquisition Campaigns at HubSpot
Speaker 1: What's up, guys, and welcome to the Tobe Agency Podcast Network. We just launched our third show called Entrepreneurship Sucks hosted by Andrew Hong, CEO of Tobe Agency. If you've ever wondered what the not so obvious personal challenges of being an entrepreneur are, you should definitely check out this insightful podcast. You can also listen to new episodes every other Tuesday, wherever you get your podcasts. For more information and content like this, head over to tobeagency. co/ podcast.
Kyle denHoff: You need to make sure that the content you create not only is helping your audience but how can you go talk to your sales team? How can you talk to your sales enablement team and say, " What content do you need so that the individuals experience with HubSpot, pre purchase, purchase and post purchase actually matches?" Video performs extremely well for gaining the attention of the audience. Making it the acquisition offer has been difficult for us. So people like that transactional model where, I fill out a form and I get something in return. With video, you're asking them to spend a lot more time. It's not something that can take away with them.
Jared: That's Kyle denHoff, Head of Global Acquisitions Campaigns at HubSpot. On this episode, we talk about how you should think about your campaign strategies, how to build the right content for your sales and marketing teams. And we take a sneak peek behind the curtain of what HubSpot customer acquisition process looks like. This is Lights, Camera, Grow. What's going on guys, welcome back to the Lights, Camera, Grow podcast. My name is Jared. I'm sitting here with Andrew, and today we are joined by Kyle denHoff. What's going on? Kyle, welcome to the show.
Kyle denHoff: Thanks for having me.
Jared: Kyle is the Head of Global Acquisition Campaigns at HubSpot. I'll let you go ahead and break that down a little bit. But just give us and the audience a little insight on what you do.
Kyle denHoff: Absolutely. So at HubSpot, our marketing departments broken down to the different phases of the flywheel, right? So our model is to attract an audience, engage that audience and ultimately delight that audience. So I sit in the attract phase, I'm focused on acquisition efforts trying to drive leads and users for the business. And my team focuses on campaigns. So we're looking at plays that have a start and an end date. So the campaign may last 30 days, 90 days. And these can be content campaigns where we're offering people net new content for downloads or some tools. So a lot of times, we'll build some free tools to help people in their day- to- day business. So focus primarily on the campaign's play where we're getting something out the door, and we're trying to promote it there in a set period of time.
Jared: Cool. I have one question for you. You got a pretty cool title there, Head of Global Acquisition Campaigns at HubSpot. Obviously, HubSpot is a pretty global company, covers a lot of different markets, and that's really good that you kind of said, " Hey, my job is going to define by campaigns that have a very specific start and end date." What kind of metrics are you looking at? Number of MQLs generated, number of closed deals, and number of SQLs passed to the sales team? How do you typically start to think about metrics for each of your campaigns?
Kyle denHoff: That's a great question. So I think we're primarily going on leads, right? So we want to be able to bring people into the business, new contacts and companies that would be interested in our products. My team does want to look at metrics, both on effectiveness and efficiency. So not only are we driving leads, are those leads actually [QL-ing 00:03:37]? Are they taking an action and trying to connect them with our sales team? And then we're also looking at more channel- specific metrics. So which channels are driving the most efficient leads for...? Sometimes our campaigns can drive a ton of leads, but it's not necessarily the right audience, so they're not QL- ing, and we need to make some optimizations on who we're bringing in. And sometimes, the lead volumes are low, but we see those folks QL- ing and ultimately becoming customers and seeing our revenue and average sale price go up from there. So we do look at the full funnel metrics. But we're primarily focused on generating those leads.
Jared: And what would you say your primary channels are that you're running your campaigns through?
Kyle denHoff: So I think when you're looking at setting up a campaign, you want to do your research first. So we'll tend to look at keyword research and monthly search volume. So we're looking at what are some of the opportunities that we have? The HubSpot blog itself has generated a ton of traffic over the years and we have some content gaps that we'll try to fill with our campaigns. And then, we'll also do some audience research and understand what they're looking for. And then from there, we'll build out that asset for the campaign and when it comes to channels for effectiveness, if we can move into a piece of content that generates leads through search, we'll focus there. We know that there's existing demand and we'll try to capitalize on that demand. If we need to generate interest in that short period of time on our own, we'll turn to paid. And we do some co- marketing partnerships. So we're looking for opportunities to generate spikes during that set period of time. And the way that we're able to do that is through Facebook advertising and co- marketing partnerships.
Jared: And so you kind of talk about the structure of a campaign, and the channels you are using to distribute the content. But I think one thing we always look at is, you can't have a great campaign without great content, right?
Kyle denHoff: inaudible. That's right.
Jared: And obviously, inaudible is kind of the 800 pound gorilla when it comes to content marketing in the digital marketing world. And so I guess, when you start thinking about a content strategy that's specific to that campaign that you're running, are you trying to look at existing content to figure out how to spin it another angle? Are you're trying to repurpose content? Are you literally creating content from scratch?
Kyle denHoff: That's a great question. I think it depends on the business objective. So we are always on plays, right? Our search team, our blog teams are creating that content to bring in traffic on a consistent basis, our team's trying to create that spike or that lift during that set period of time. So what we look at is what is the business objective that we're trying to hit during that period of time? And then from there, who's the audience that we're going to target? HubSpot has its foundation with the marketing audience. But now we've moved into creating content for sales teams, for customer service teams, and devs and IT teams who support your website. So for us, we actually understand who the audience and objective is first. And then we'll take a look at what content exists, and if we already have strong existing offers and content in our ecosystem. How can we repackage it and promote it? If there are gaps, let's try to create something that new. So I think first and foremost, we want to understand the objective. And then we take a look at the content in our ecosystem and do an audit analysis of do we want to fill a gap? Or do we want to simply enhance what's been built?
Jared: You mentioned a little bit about sales and customer success, or kind of thinking about the different HubSpot hubs, right? Marketing, sales and service? Does your team work across those three hubs and building campaigns around them?
Kyle denHoff: We do, yes. So I will say we... Again, it comes back to that objective. So if we know that the product team is launching something new, or we want to drive demand for a specific hub, our team kind of sits between that product marketing and the demand Gen space. And we take a look at both. So what is the search behavior that's out there? And then what is the business actually trying to accomplish? And then we try to come up with a campaign strategy that can meet both those objectives.
Jared: That's kind of cool. You're like a SWAT team kind of, right? For product marketing and just general content. That's kind of cool. How long is this position? Has this position always been at HubSpot? Have you kind of transitioned into it? Or what's the evolution of this position? Because it's actually a very, I think, unique position that sits in between a bunch of different areas within marketing?
Kyle denHoff: Yes, so I think the team is about two years old, close to two years old.
Jared: Okay. Oh, nice.
Kyle denHoff: But we are trying to kind of fill that or fill that gap or build that bridge, I guess, is probably a better way to explain it because we have that existing demand that's coming. We have those business objectives. And we want to be able to build a campaign that can help us go to market and drive demand. And what we're seeing is, when we lead with education, and lead with content, those leads that come in actually do QL on the product. So it's finding that balance of, how can we create a content offer or a campaign that speaks to our target audience to bring them in? And then ultimately, getting them to QL instead of necessarily leading with the product. So we tried to find that balance. And ultimately, these campaigns do bridge that gap. So once that lead comes in, we'll build out custom nurturing, to introduce them to our products.
Andrew Hong: We, as a HubSpot agency, one thing that we've really tried to focus on is how do you use rich media along the marketing funnel, right? And we all know the written content, strategy, blogging, pillar pages, content offers. And one thing that our agency has really started to focus on is, how do we apply that concept of the buyers during the flywheel, right? To rich media, so video and audio, and Jared had mentioned that there was one quote that he had in a communication with you, which basically said, the barrier creating audio and video has been significantly reduced. And that audience isn't necessarily looking for the HBO or the ringer quality content, and maybe even especially these days with COVID and everything kind of going on, how has your team started to adapt to this and use audio and video and what we kind of refer to as rich media to enable acquisition marketing?
Kyle denHoff: It comes down to who our audience is. Generally, we'll ask ourselves, if this is a campaign for sales, we know that sales teams are spending a lot of time during the day selling, right? So they're doing email outreach, they're setting up their calls, doing their demos, and so a long form pillar page with a lot of content for that sales rep is probably the wrong content type...
Andrew Hong: Totally.
Kyle denHoff: ...to communicate with them, right? So we'll say to ourselves, " Okay, if we know the rep needs to get a bit of information in a short amount of time, let's look at video, how can we do short form video? How long should it be? And how can we create segments for them to gain information and take actionable information with them?" So we've started to think through that specifically, on the sales audience. One of our recent campaigns, sell from anywhere, was built to help people who are transitioning from the field sales model to inside sales, because now, they're selling from behind their computer, and they used to be having lunches and shaking hands. And so we said, " Okay, let's create a video series where we're able to communicate to that sales rep, that sales manager, we'll bring on an expert. And we'll have short two to three- minute segments." And the length of the whole video was only 10 to 12 minutes. So it was a way to get them the content and information that they were looking for, in the format that they prefer to consume their information through.
Andrew Hong: I'm always curious about when you're using video in these types of campaigns. What is your tech stack look like? Are you working with Vidyard, or Wistia, or any of those platforms that connect into HubSpot, so that you can get some intelligence at the contact level about how they've engaged with that video content? And for some context, that's something that we're recommending to a lot of our clients who are doing outbound sales using tools like Vidyard, and using that integration to something like lead scoring, for example, where, they played through 80 percents, maybe the person that contract designed to get an alert or something like that, if it's a more middle to bottom of funnel video. Is that kind of tech stack, something that you're starting to utilize in your own marketing, as you're using rich media?
Kyle denHoff: Yeah, we've certainly leaned into partnerships with Vidyard in the past, they've been a great partner for us. And we've put together campaigns where we're using their player embedded on the, thank you page itself. And then built some custom video players for our audience so that we're able to track that viewer retention and ultimately, follow up with them. And then I think if we're trying to reach a new audience, and we're trying to increase the discoverability of the content, and it's undated, we've leaned into YouTube recently. So spending some more time there to try to increase the viewership of that content and introduce them to the acquisition offers within the content itself on YouTube.
Andrew Hong: Cool.
Kyle denHoff: Again, I think it depends, the objective of that video itself. And I think you can pick the right tools based on what you're trying to do.
Andrew Hong: It's interesting. One thing our agency is really focused on is using interview style series, video content, a podcast, or a five to seven minute interview, right? And Jared, kind of thought through like, " How do we build a process that allows us to kind of use a 30- minute video or an interview as a piece of pillar content?" Right. And then you take that pillar content, and you break that down into 10 to 15, two to four- minute micro- sized pieces of video that you can now upload to YouTube. And we've actually brought on a YouTube strategist whose entire job is to just focus on SEO for YouTube, right? How do you build your titles on the videos you're uploading? Your playlists, the descriptions and how we're using those. And the funnel that we generally use with our clients is a more top of funnel kind of marketing strategy. So it's, " Hey, let's put a ton of content on YouTube that's linking it into something that people are searching for, so that we can grab that awareness." Right. And then from there, like we'll put a call to action in the description that might go to like a lead gen landing page with a lead magnet so that we can get that sort of middle of funnel conversion. And that's sort of how we see YouTube as a marketing strategy for us and a lot of our B2B clients. It sounds like you're starting to use YouTube more and more and more, how has YouTube fit into HubSpot overall, or for your particular team within HubSpot overall marketing strategy?
Kyle denHoff: Many teams at HubSpot use YouTube. And the HubSpot Academy team has done a fantastic job with their YouTube channel and building out that education and ultimately, introducing audiences to that application. The way my team has thought about it is very similar to yours where it is more top of the funnel. We're trying to get exposure of our content to the audience that we're targeting. So we have a YouTube producer in our search team, who we're working with on the specific topic area that we want to cover, though, filling us in on what that keyword volume looks like. And then we're creating content for that audience. From there, we do include the acquisition content in the video itself. So we actually have the host, or the person who's talking, say, " Check out the latest template, it's in our description, and you can go download it and take what we just learned in this video, and go apply it." So we've included it in the video content as well as the description itself. So kind of trying to pair those two together.
Andrew Hong: I think that for us has probably been the hardest part of the funnel, is getting them to get into that description, click that call to action, jump over to the learning page, and then obviously, fill out that form. For us, I think that's the leakiest part of the funnel that we're just trying to optimize a little bit more. Where have you sort of seen that funnel leak, if you would, with that strategy that you've implemented?
Kyle denHoff: I would agree, it's definitely a lower volume than other channels when it comes to lead gen. And I think the purpose of YouTube is to just expand on some of your channel promotion. So we do have our primary place where we know, we're able to get those submissions. So we invest in those on each campaign, and then from there, we'll try some experiments. And we go back to where the audience is spending their time. So for YouTube, we've been able to invest there for the sales audience. I think at this point, it's been more of a brand play, just getting our brand and content in front of that audience. And then going forward, we will continue to run experiments to figure out how can we actually make that more of a lead acquisition channel than just a traffic acquisition channel?
Andrew Hong: Got it? I think a lot of the value that we see sometimes in YouTube, too. Is just the social aspect of it as well. There's like kind of a newsfeed, right? And you're going to get some impression share with your clip showing up in there. They may not click on the video, they may not play it through, right? But again, your brand, HubSpot, shows back up in front of them. And if you did all the best practices, like putting the right thumbnails in and thinking about those kind of details, I think, there's also some value there as well, maybe not as measurable, right? But I think there's some value there.
Kyle denHoff: Oh, absolutely. And I think if you look at some of the top performing YouTube channels, whether that's individuals or brands, it operates more like a media company or media property. Where they're producing editorial content, they're looking to build an audience. So they're trying to build that subscriber base, so that when you do launch a new video, they're notified, they're sent an email, and you're increasing your distribution. So I'd say that's where we're probably leaning into it more, is how can we actually create this media property, to build out an audience that then HubSpot can start to communicate with, listen more of our lead acquisition content?
Andrew Hong: Could you tell me a little bit about your production process? When you're thinking up a video... And this is always kind of the fascinating part to me, because there's a process to it, right? There's a pipeline, and Jared very well knows this because Jared handles all of our creative production. But I'm kind of curious, going back to the kind of quote you gave us, which is the whole barrier to create an audio and videos being lowered? How do you take your approach to producing video or audio content?
Kyle denHoff: It does come down to, I think, frequency, and budget, a lot of times, right? So if you are producing a shorter series, and you have the budget to be able to have the production crew, the lighting, the mics, you can do that higher quality piece. But hopefully, there's a promotional strategy behind that, because it's a representation of your brand. And you're pushing that on to the market. For something that's built more as like immediate cadence, especially now when people are operating from home, you produced a whole series over Zoom. And when I when we produce that whole series, you have the pre production, the production and the post production. And that's how we break that down. So for pre production, we're looking at who the hosts are, who the guests are, breaking down the topics, and questions that we're going to ask, making sure that we're going to get those sound bites, and then from there, we head into production. And within production, we had the hosts the guest, and then we actually had a videographer who was on the call to play director. And when someone was long winded, and you wanted to get that answer, you'd have on roll it back, and give it to you in a short snipet, and making sure you're getting those cuts that you're looking for. And then from there, we went into post production and that's where our marketer sat next to our video team and we were able to create the segments and the flow of the video episode we were hoping to do. But I thought our team did a fantastic job just doing it all over Zoom. And I think people are more receptive to that, because they're on these calls all day.
Andrew Hong: Totally. I'm curious for that project, you just talked about, how long did it take you from pre production all the way to finishing post?
Kyle denHoff: We had shot four episodes. And so, I would say we probably spent a week or two in pre production. And that was just because of the number of people we were involving. So we were involving multiple hosts, we actually decided to change the host of each episode and multiple guests. And then from there, we were able to build out our questions and topics fairly quickly and get those over to the members. And then when it came to production, it was more around when folks had time to meet with us. The video interviews themselves lasted anywhere from 30 to 45 minutes. And then from there, we cut them down to 10- minute YouTube clips.
Andrew Hong: So, Jared, how does that process that Kyle just talked about a little bit, similar or different to the way that we do things?
Jared: It's almost identical and parallel. We think about it the same way, pre production, production, post production. We lay it out in that exact order. We try to treat it like a real TV series or a show. So we concept everything ahead of time, so that we kind of know our blind spots, then we'll go into, obviously, the harder core parts of pre production, which is formatting, questions, lining up the guests, who's going to be asking the questions at what time... And then, again, just like we're doing right now, this is going to be, whatever X amount of time, and then we're going to trim it down in post production, and squeeze as much juice out of it as we can, in the end. I think the only differentiator is we add to a podcast feed. That may be somewhere where we kind of break off from what your team is doing. But I'm sure this is a similar concept and production that your podcast feeds are doing, if they're including video, but yes, it's a very, very similar process. So it's nice to know that we're thinking in the right capacity. We're not alone.
Kyle denHoff: Absolutely. I appreciated the pre production. That was extremely helpful, getting ready for it. So I think if you do that pre production work, the production and post production actually become that much easier...
Andrew Hong: Yeah, totally.
Kyle denHoff: ...because you know what you're trying to build.
Andrew Hong: You might have just answered this, but what do you think is the most important part of the overall process?
Kyle denHoff: It depends if you ask the marketer or the video crosstalk.
Andrew Hong: I asked a marketer.
Kyle denHoff: As the marketer, I'd say, really, it's pre production and post. So when it comes to pre production, there's a goal, right? There's a business objective for our campaign. We want to make sure that there's a narrative that we're tapping into, and that our audience is actually getting this tangible takeaway, and you want to make sure those clips are covered and posted. So we spend time with the videographer and make sure that we've identified the clips that we really want to highlight. But certainly, we value the creative process and making sure things are well lit and that the audio is strong. Because no matter how much pre production or post production you do, if it's shot poorly, your audience isn't going to have a great experience.
Andrew Hong: Totally. And something that we actually hammer home is, if you have to skip out on one or the other, bad audio always will lose. If you have bad audio, people aren't going to watch or listen. If you have bad video, and it sounds good. They'll still, at least, try to listen to it. So we try to hammer that home when we're in that process as well.
Kyle denHoff: Absolutely. And the lighting is the big piece, right?
Andrew Hong: Yes.
Kyle denHoff: Don't sit in front of a window, don't have a shadow on your face. Just make sure that it's well lit and it's eye level, and you're able to capture what you need.
Andrew Hong: Did you guys send out kits to any of your remote production guests or hosts?
Kyle denHoff: Yes, that's a great question. So we did not for the campaign specifically. HubSpot has been doing that. So our academy professors all have remote filming setups, ring light with a stand capture their iPhone, video, and then they're working with their video team to create those lessons and courses within the academy.
Andrew Hong: Awesome.
Kyle denHoff: And then inbound team. So our big event is doing some pre production work and building some, almost like trailers, for some of the speakers. And they were able to get some of the kits to be able to shoot something from their home. So it's been incredibly impressive. And they also use a remote video software that allows the director and producer to actually manage the shoot while it's going on live with the professor themselves.
Andrew Hong: Awesome. We'll have to find out what that is.
Kyle denHoff: I could look it up and send it to you inaudible.
Andrew Hong: Yes, I'll ask you.
Kyle denHoff: It's been pretty cool how the academy team has done it.
Andrew Hong: I know it takes a long time to get just the regular inbound together, I can't even imagine what people have to do right now to do a virtual inbound. And that's coming up pretty soon, right?
Kyle denHoff: We got a sneak peek today. It looks fantastic.
Andrew Hong: Oh, yes. Cool. Follow up question, the last one which is, what would you say is the hardest part of producing video?
Kyle denHoff: I think it depends the type of video, right? I would say that, if you're doing interviews, the hardest part would be working with the guests and making sure that you're catching those sound bites. I mentioned it before, when they're long winded, a lot of times, they have great things to say, but you don't have that much time in your video, and you want to be able to capture it in a single statement. And so asking them to say that back and in almost managing the conversation itself, I think is really important. When it comes to some of the other explainer videos, we've done the animations that our team does, I think just as incredibly difficult. It's a different type of video, and there are some really talented folks that we have. So I would say in this style, it's got to be the pre production and then making sure you're hitting home on the points you're looking for with the guests.
Andrew Hong: Yeah, I think we find exactly the same struggles. One part in pre production that always kind of gets us and this may be different from production to production, but guest alignment, and just scheduling, and logistics is always like a hold up. And especially if we're doing it for clients. It can be even a struggle in the review sessions, when things kind of fall through, deadlines get skipped or missed, so that's usually where we kind of find a little bit of pain.
Kyle denHoff: I mean, as marketers and videographers, you have kind of a vision of what you want to create. I think that producers role is incredibly important.
Andrew Hong: Totally.
Kyle denHoff: Making sure that folks are on time, they have what they need, that we're capturing what we need. And to your point, who's looking at the first cut, who's looking at the second cut, and signing off on it? Did legal take a look at it? Are we on brand? Are we on message? So I think the operation speaks is certainly a challenge as well.
Andrew Hong: When HubSpot set out putting the budget together for marketing, or content, or whatever. Did you have money earmarked specifically for video content for these acquisition campaigns? Or did you sort of think, " We need to transition into video? And the reason I asked this question is because a lot of clients never earmarked any money to do video content, we talk to them, we show them this idea, and then they'll go looking, " We need this, this year. We're not going to wait for 2021 to do it." And they need to go looking for a budget. So is this something that you specifically try to budget for and get in your P& L as you plan yearly or quarterly or whatever?
Kyle denHoff: I can probably answer that at the marketing level and then probably my team level. So at the marketing level, there is budget set aside to invest in video production. So a lot of times, that falls more within our brand marketing efforts. So we're working on creating editorial content, and we're trying to create it on a consistent cadence and build that audience over time on YouTube. The academy team is doing the same thing. So they have investments in the video production, not only for the lessons and courses inside the app, but what's the promotional video that is paired with that lesson once it launches, and we need to communicate that it's live. For my team, we have a set budget per campaign. And then based on the objective of the campaign and the audience, we choose the format that we want to create the campaign in. So we'll lean into audio or video at times. But other times we've seen reports and original data do very well. And we'll lean heavily into surveys and industry benchmark report. So I think it depends on the team and what their objective is. But HubSpot does set aside money to be able to invest in video.
Andrew Hong: Got it. And I think, the way I try to tell our clients sometimes is, you got to think about video and kind of two ways, right? There's what I call ROI driven video, which is" Hey, we can attribute you know, a closed customer back to this campaign that had this particular video. Or kind of like you mentioned at the marketing level within HubSpot, there's investments that needs to be made. So maybe you're not driving ROI out of that thing, day one, right? But there's a brand lift to it potentially, right? And that's I think that aligns a lot with what you said around a lot of those videos are sometimes coming out like brand marketing, for example. And I asked that question because I think a lot of clients are challenged to think about, " Do I need a separate line item in my content budget and things specifically about video?" We always say yes, right? Because it is a very different format of content. It has a completely different pipeline than producing a blog post, for example, right? And again, it can be used just like any other content to drive ROI or to kind of be there more as a longer term investment.
Kyle denHoff: And I would say, we do look at it from an acquisition team standpoint. It's just traffic acquisition.
Andrew Hong: Right. Exactly.
Kyle denHoff: It's a little different than the lead gen piece. So how can we grow that subscriber base, just like folks do with the blog, right? You want to build up your organic traffic, and then ultimately, drive people to subscribe to your blog and build that audience, and then from there, how do I monetize that audience? So I think for YouTube, there is this opportunity to build an audience over time through this video content, more in a series format, and just a hosting platform. And then from there, how do we communicate with that audience and bring them into our lead pool?
Andrew Hong: Maybe taking a more macro look at this, in the position that you sit in with all the campaigns that you've run, what kind of trends have you sort of seen in campaigns that have been successful versus unsuccessful? And I know, you guys experiment, you guys test a lot, right? And you start to see other channels like conversational marketing, and all those sorts of things really starting to take hold. What kind of trends are you seeing and what's kind of working and what's not working, or what's kind of gone stale?
Kyle denHoff: I think a lot of the plays that have worked in the past that continue to work. And the two that my team focus on what we're calling micro apps, essential tools, free tools for folks, email signature generator, website creator, blog ideas...
Andrew Hong: That signature generator has got to be the ultimate lead gen piece, the end all lead gen, right?
Kyle denHoff: Yes, we were definitely proud of the... We re did the UXUI that last year and offered some new templates for folks. So those tools do extremely well because they're capitalizing on organic traffic. And you've seen brands like Shopify, they've invested in free tools to be able to support their audiences. So free tools have been a place we've focused. And then the other place is research, original research does extremely well for us. So putting out surveys, taking that survey data and breaking it down into actionable analysis for your audience. We did another state of marketing campaign earlier this year, we have benchmarks from marketers globally. And so we've tried to repeat those plays, we've done some partner marketing as well, with the reports, we did a Instagram engagement reporter we've mentioned. And we've done some social media trend reports with Talkwalker. And again, just that original data broken down and helping people understand what the trends are and where they're headed, is something that it performs well for us. Things that haven't performed well, I think video performs extremely well for gaining the attention of the audience. Making it the acquisition offer has been difficult for us. Because there's a commitment there. Once you complete the form, we're asking you to sit down and spend even more time on the site and consuming that video. I think there's this... I call it the iTunes model where once I click the button, and I get something in return, I used to click and then I would simply get my song. And so people like that transactional model where I fill out a form and I get something in return, where video, you're asking them to spend a lot more time it's not something they can take away with them. So video has been a place where we're going to focus on promotion and traffic acquisition. I would say it's something we've stayed away from when it came to lead gen behind the form that inaudible.
Andrew Hong: Going back to your comment about the data. So that adapt 2020 report, that HubSpot puts out leveraging and I think that was a brilliant play on all the data that you obviously have, like almost 85, 000 marketers or how many customers you have, right? So I took that data. I thought it was fascinating. So I always read the last two quarterly reports that came out. And then I realized, like holy cow, our clients probably care about this stuff too. And so I just actually, I typed up an email was just like a plain text email, from my own inbox. Just highlighting some of the points that I thought were really interesting in marketing, sales and website traffic, lead gen all that stuff and didn't put a lot of thought into it just kind of like read it and regurgitated what I thought was interesting. And I got so much engagement from previous clients, but also our current clients being like, " Hey, this is really valuable information. And more importantly, thanks for summarizing it for us." And so I think that's the example of a really powerful piece of data driven content where you're not only getting the primary person to look at it, but now to make myself look smart, right? I'm summarizing and putting back in front of other people, right? And I think that's a really powerful piece, because you literally just got two or three degrees of separation and a referral and all that kind of stuff. So you mentioned going back to what works like salary reports, like benchmark guides data has always worked. And I don't think that form of content is really going away anytime soon, right?
Kyle denHoff: Right. And I think it's how its positioned. I think our state of marketing and adapt series did very well, because they were timely. At the beginning of the year, people are getting their budgets assigned to them, they're starting to plan their strategies for the first half of the year. And we launched a state of marketing report. And so here are the benchmarks across the industry, here's what experts are saying. So as you're building out your report for the year, you have a reference point. And same thing with Adapt and the COVID benchmark data. We're all going through a very disruptive time, and you want to understand what's going on in the industry, so that you can make adjustments going forward. And I do think cultural context and timeliness play a big role in campaigns specifically on is bringing those campaigns to market to help people at that point in time.
Andrew Hong: And I think we fail to realize sometimes as business owners, or people who are running businesses that we sit on some really valuable data that if we dug into it just a little bit, slice it and dice it a couple different ways like it actually be very valuable as a piece of content. And I think that strategy of surveying people, gathering the data, summarizing it, that's something that just I don't think changes. So that's cool to see that's continuing to be converting or a good piece of content that's working for you guys. Cool.
Jared: I actually had a couple of questions regarding like, Do you guys ever... I know we talked about building content specifically for the campaigns that you guys are running. And you have very clear objectives. But do you guys ever take content from other teams or other areas, maybe the other podcasts that are available at your disposal?
Kyle denHoff: I would say we're certainly talking about this idea of alignment. Because there's so much content being created. And there's a lot of value there. How do we actually package it, so that the audience can interpret it and take away with what they'd like? And so it's actually something we're going to be leaning into later this year, is bringing together the brand acquisition product marketing teams and saying, " How can we build a campaign or experience that provides the audience with a story of who we are educational information?" And then if they're ready, introduce them to our products. Because you build each one of those plays generally, for your goal and your team. And so we're starting to create that bundle. We did it in this sale from anywhere campaign I mentioned earlier, it's the one we launched this summer to help people transition to inside sales. If you go into that campaign, there's content from HubSpot Academy, there's content from our blog, there's content marketing, and app ecosystem partners. And we just said, " How can we pull everything together that talks about remote selling in the one place our audience can access what they need?" And that's been very successful for us just because you're building your campaign around the audience, not your company goals.
Andrew Hong: It seems like it'd be really powerful since each area is kind of focusing on their specific. There's got to be some kind of crossover that's happening hence I imagine that just kind of like you were saying, pulling everybody together and creating more of a global strategy to build and use that content just makes a lot of sense.
Kyle denHoff: And there's also things you can do, like the tangible example I can give is pre production, right? So if we're starting out a campaign, and it's all around the same narrative, but there's multiple teams that can benefit from this campaign, our podcasting team, our blogging team, our acquisition team. If we bring a guest who's an expert for an hour long interview, can we do our due diligence and pre production and make sure we're asking questions and getting answers each individual team would find valuable? So then that interview becomes a 10- minute video but you shot 60 minutes. So what is the other 15 minutes being used for? Well, it's being used for a longer form blog post that builds off of that YouTube video. It's being used for different clips, whether that be social posts to promote the series itself. And then we're talking about how do we actually bridge the video and podcast teams, so that we can ask the questions during the interview, and they can be turned into more of those short audio clips for the podcast team. So I think you actually have to do it in pre production and bring people together early, so they can create it later on.
Andrew Hong: That just described our entire process. As we're building even this series, we were like, " Okay, what pieces do we need for sales? What do we need for marketing? What do we want to specifically use in YouTube, or LinkedIn or what do we want on the audio platform?" So we do the same thing. Obviously a smaller scale but same concept.
Kyle denHoff: No, I think it makes a ton of you mentioned the sales team. That's a huge piece. We talked about this, like you can drive all the demand in the world, but you could also lose the deal in the room.
Andrew Hong: Exactly.
Kyle denHoff: So you need to make sure that the content you create not only is helping your audience, but how can you go talk to your sales team? How can you talk to your sales enablement team and say, " What content do you need so that the individuals experience with HubSpot, pre purchase, purchase and post purchase actually matches." They're hearing the same message, they're seeing the same content, we're helping them along that journey with us. That's one place we've been investing a lot in.
Andrew Hong: All right. Final question. We always ask this to all of our guests. What podcast are you into right now? It doesn't have to be HubSpot related just personal.
Kyle denHoff: Personal. I do listen to Pivot. I know a lot of folks in tech listen to Pivot, Kara Swisher and Scott Galloway. That's kind of my weekly listen. On a daily basis, I'm an NPR listener for my news. Those are the two I focus on. I listen to a lot of podcasts to get my news kind of on the go. Whether I'm working out or getting ready for bed. Those are the two I go to.
Andrew Hong: Where can everybody find you and anything related to HubSpot?
Kyle denHoff: So you can find me on Twitter. I'm a big Twitter user @ denHoff_ and anything HubSpot just go to hubspot. com. There's plenty of content there. I'd started with our blog. Our team does a great job there to educate you on any of your business processes.
Andrew Hong: Awesome. Thanks for joining us today Kyle, was a pleasure to talk to you.
Kyle denHoff: Thanks for having me.
Andrew Hong: Thanks for joining us on this episode. Thanks to Kyle, for being our guest. And thanks to our team who helped put this together. If you'd like what you heard, make sure you rate subscribe and tell a friend about the Lights Camera girl podcast. And for more information about Toby agency, head on over to tobyagency. co. Thanks for listening.