HubSpot’s annual INBOUND Conference at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center is an incredible opportunity to gain inspiration and hands-on knowledge for businesses of all sizes. With well-known and established keynote and spotlight speakers, and over 21,000 attendees from 100 countries, this year’s INBOUND17 is a must-attend event for marketers and salespeople alike. Whether you’re a marketer, HubSpot customer, or somewhere in between, you can’t help but leave the conference without feeling one major emotion: inspired.
More than a marketing tool, HubSpot has evolved immensely to make the sales process more efficient with features like their free CRM and their Sales Pro add-on. Today, as customers have increased direction over the sales process, marketing and sales teams need to work together in order to nurture prospects from visitor, to lead, to marketing qualified lead, to finally closing the sale. Read our blog post on ‘smarketing’, the alignment of sales and marketing, from INBOUND16.
INBOUND Partner Day
New for 2017, INBOUND Partner Day is a full day event dedicated to education and networking exclusively for HubSpot partners before the conference officially begins. We gained insights from industry experts on how to close more business using behavior styles and science.
Over the course of the day, we learned about over a dozen new HubSpot integrations, including a Facebook Ads integration that brings Facebook lead ad creation, tracking, and lead sync to HubSpot. There was also an interactive science fair set up by HubSpot’s Engineering and Product Marketing teams, where partners gained access to new enhancements, products in betas, and more. We got a preview of improvements to Messages and Meetings, two sales tools that our team members use on a daily basis.
One noteworthy product feature rolling out is HubSpot Content Strategy. The way we search has evolved, and search engines can now glean context about us as visitors. As such, focusing on just exact keywords is out, and addressing the topic visitors are searching for is in. Content Strategy is a new tool that will help you adapt to the way modern search works, offering easy-to-implement content and SEO help to set you up for long-term success. Learn more about the benefits of this feature here.
It is evident that HubSpot fully invests in R&D. The continuous product updates have helped our agency perform better as well as improve results for clients. There are always more improvements that our team would like to see, but I’ve been satisfied with the pace of the improvements over the past year. We also were able to eliminate a number of other third-party tools we use because HubSpot has so many of them, and they are all integrated into the platform.
The Speakers and Sessions
One of the best aspects of INBOUND is its diverse lineup of speakers. The conference recruits keynotes from various disciplines. This is not only to help attendees enhance their marketing knowledge but also to be inspired by topics outside of their primary field. Personally, I’m most excited to hear from former First Lady Michelle Obama; Stewart Butterfield, CEO of Slack; Rand Fishkin, founder of Moz; Bozoma Saint John, Chief Brand Officer at Uber; and Brené Brown, best-selling author.
We always look forward to when HubSpot reveals who the major keynote speakers will be, but what I am equally excited about is reading through the 200+ breakout session descriptions and putting together my agenda of sessions that match areas I am interested in learning more about. Certainly, each will offer value, whether you’re a beginner, a content marketing guru, or an agency leader. Regardless of which keynote speeches you attend, you’re sure to find someone who leaves you feeling inspired.
An area that I’m particularly passionate about is how we can, in our industry, offer leadership and growth opportunities for women. While women in upper management positions have increased over the past decade, we are still under-represented in the C-suite. In the U.S., women hold just over 5% of CEO positions at Fortune 500 companies. I’m interested in attending the INBOUND sessions that discuss careers in tech and how to pursue them; and networking opportunities with other women in various aspects and careers in technology.
Each year, I leave INBOUND full of new ideas and action-based notes to bring back to 6S for future planning. The inspirational sessions are designed to get the wheels turning, and we look forward to implementing new strategies at our own agency and for our clients. Plus, our agency has the ability to offer more services to our clients focused on their inbound marketing needs.
INBOUND is a fantastic opportunity for attendees to discuss business growth and collaboration. If you’re at INBOUND17 this week, tweet me @6s_marketing and let’s meet up!
Stay tuned next week for a follow-up post on key takeaways.