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As the Director of Operations, Jennifer Alesse always has a hand in client projects from scheduling photo shoots to communicating with our...
The INBOUND conference is a much-anticipated event in marketing and sales. In 2023, it drew an impressive crowd of 12,000 in-person participants who converged in Boston and 100,000 online viewers. As first-time attendees from LCP Media, we were excited to dive into the wealth of knowledge and insights shared at this conference. We attended various sessions and spoke with vendors to gather valuable information.
Attending from LCP Media are (L-R): Nick Sheetz, Director of Business Processes and Analytics; Diana Vera, Business Process Specialist; Caitlin Golden and Klaudia Marzec, Senior Marketing Managers; and Izzy Carunungan, Chief Marketing Officer.
I loved this conference. While it’s technically the HubSpot user conference, most of the educational sessions I attended were on marketing and sales topics that aren’t necessarily about HubSpot. I loved that there are so many takeaways we can immediately use in our daily jobs. I covered many topics from my sessions: SEO, Paid Search, Email Marketing, Sales, Customer Service, Branding, Events, Marketing Case Studies, HubSpot Reporting, and business and life lessons from Derek Jeter and Reese Witherspoon. Despite the size of the event, I didn’t have any issues attending the sessions I wanted to participate in, including the ones I went on standby.
I also thought the SmartBadge™ powered by Klik Experiential was an excellent and easy way to connect with others through badge-to-badge contact exchange. It was also a way to get into the sessions that you reserved.
It was a good experience, and much knowledge was shared in sessions and outside at the booths. It was overwhelming with so many sessions running at the same time and having to choose which ones to attend. I heavily relied on the session’s title, which did not always align with what the session was about. Planning and choosing which session to attend was the right choice as 1) the best ones filled up ahead of time, and 2) having to choose sessions while already there would have been too overwhelming. I found the educational session on the 3rd floor, which was full the majority of the time, tended to be the best, in my opinion. It’s an excellent conference to attend at least once to hear what is happening in the marketing world and be reminded of all the tools and ideas.
I thought the conference was good overall, and there were so many good sessions, but some didn’t match their titles/descriptions, were a bit misleading, and ended up not valuable. I felt like there were some excellent sessions. Still, the main issue was that many of the sessions I wanted to attend overlapped with ones I also wanted to participate in, so I just had to pick and choose which ones to go to, hoping that they would be valuable. It was convenient that all the sponsors were companies that integrate with HubSpot, and I talked to a few of them, but that part wasn’t geared toward me, so some of it went right over my head.
Overall, the conference was good, and I came away with some additional knowledge I could implement immediately. The majority of the sessions that I attended were informative and related directly to the work I do in the Business Process Department. That being said, it was frustrating that some of the sessions were essentially glorified sales pitches, and there was some overlap in sessions that I wanted to attend.
Considering the high number of attendees, I was very impressed with the venue and how organized everything was. A lot of the discussions were fluffy, and sometimes, the titles of the lectures did not match the subject matter. I wish there were more technical lectures for me to attend since marketing and sales are not my arena, but I tried to get as much as I could out of the lectures I did hear. It was fantastic to see the new features HubSpot is rolling out, and I am excited to implement this in the business process department.
Yamini Rangan, CEO, HubSpot
Dharmesh Shah, Co-Founder and CTO of HubSpot
Andy Pitre, Executive VP, Product, HubSpot
HubSpot’s CEO, Yamini Rangan, set the stage at INBOUND23 with an electrifying speech. She dove right into the AI revolution, focusing on Generative AI. This isn’t your ordinary AI; it’s a creator, crafting everything from blogs to symphonies. We’re moving from the Age of Information to the Age of Intelligence.
Yamini stressed the importance of connecting profoundly with customers, using a personal story about a kitchen renovation to illustrate this point. Connection, she proclaimed, drives growth, and data from HubSpot backs this up.
AI, she emphasized, is transforming every step of the customer journey:
Yamini also gave four practical steps to embrace AI:
In closing, she promised that HubSpot is committed to helping organizations “grow better” through the power of intelligence.
Following her, Andrew Pitre, EVP of Product at HubSpot, discussed working smarter, not harder, with the HubSpot Customer Platform.
He highlighted HubSpot AI, which understands content, contextualizes data, and grasps customer needs. This AI supercharges efficiency and offers predictive insights.
Andrew also showcased product updates, including Content Assistant, Campaign Assistant, Website Assistant, and a revamped Sales Hub. These updates empower businesses to adapt, grow, and thrive in a changing marketplace.
Dharmesh Shah’s session was a love story with AI. He shared the potential of Generative AI to connect better with customers and introduced Agent AI, which could revolutionize business tasks.
Despite AI’s challenges, Dharmesh advised embracing it as a tool to enhance, empower, and open new doors in various professions. He brought the house down with a catchy tribute to the Age of AI, set to Don McLean’s American Pie to finish the keynote. And so what a start to INBOUND23 it was!
In summary, INBOUND23 brought insights into the AI-driven future, emphasizing the power of connection, working more thoughtfully, and embracing AI to unlock new possibilities. Get ready to fall in love with your AI-powered future self!
Derek Jeter, Entrepreneur, Philanthropist, and National Baseball Hall of Fame Inductee
Katie Burke, Chief People Officer, HubSpot
Derek Jeter’s session at INBOUND23 was a remarkable experience.
Listening to the legendary Baseball Hall of Famer from the New York Yankees and former general manager of the Florida Marlins, we were captivated by his insights into leadership, calculated risk-taking, and the importance of a shared purpose in team-building and entrepreneurship.
One key takeaway was Jeter’s method of assessing risk, a skill honed on the baseball field and seamlessly applied to his entrepreneurial ventures. He stressed the significance of passion, motivating teams and experiences towards a higher collective purpose, and transcending individual ambitions.
Being in the audience for Derek Jeter’s session was like attending a masterclass in leadership, driven by unwavering dedication and a vision that extends beyond oneself. His philanthropic work inspired us with the Turn 2 Foundation and Weplay, a website encouraging children to participate in sports.
AJ Wilcox, CEO of B2Linked.com
Parker Williams, Head LinkedIn Ads Consultant, B2Linked.com
Regarding advertising on LinkedIn, it’s like stepping into a candy store with 11 delicious ad types. However, not all candies are created equal, and in the world of LinkedIn Ads, making the right choices can significantly impact your campaign’s success. Let’s consider which ad types you should embrace and which might require a second thought.
Remember, simplicity and clarity can be your best friends regarding ad visuals. Compelling graphics should grab attention and be manageable for your audience. And last, don’t forget to address common objections in your marketing campaigns. Being proactive in this regard builds trust and credibility with your audience.
AJ and Parker elaborated that LinkedIn Ads offer numerous opportunities to connect with your audience, but not all ad types suit every occasion. By selecting the right ad type, designing compelling visuals, and addressing objections, you can effectively make the most of your LinkedIn advertising endeavors and achieve your campaign goals.
Brooke B. Sellas, Founder, CEO - B Squared Media
In today’s digital age, social media has become an invaluable tool for businesses to connect with their audience. During a recent session, we learned some compelling strategies to enhance the customer experience (CX) using social media. One key takeaway is that it’s essential not to pigeonhole your brand into a single niche; instead, maintain a primary focus while exploring side interests. This multifaceted approach can make your brand more relatable to a diverse audience.
The power of social media lies in its ability to entertain and educate. You can foster genuine connections with your followers by building trust through valuable content. While AI can boost productivity, it should complement the human touch, not replace it. We discovered that marketing is deeply rooted in psychology, demanding a profound understanding of people’s needs and desires. You are staying authentic to your brand values and intentions for each piece of content, whether polished or unpolished, is vital. Remember, in social media, it’s all about making your audience feel something – whether it’s laughter, inspiration, or empathy.
Furthermore, customer care on social media is more critical than ever. In an age where consumers seek instant gratification and trust in brands is fragile, responsiveness is vital. Responding to inquiries within an hour can make or break your brand’s reputation. People buy based on emotions, so your content should focus on eliciting feelings and opinions, not just conveying facts. Building a customer base that engages in meaningful conversations can lead to lasting brand loyalty. Lastly, social listening, including monitoring keywords and competitors, is a proactive approach to ensuring you don’t miss out on valuable conversations and insights. In today’s digital landscape, conversations that connect are the linchpin to success.
Pierce Ujjainwalla, Co-founder and CEO - Knak
In email marketing, there’s a fine art to crafting messages that truly resonate with your audience. First and foremost, simplicity reigns supreme – aim to write at a 6th-grade level. People are visual creatures, so don’t hesitate to include images and gifs to add flair to your emails. When it comes to subject lines, make sure they align seamlessly with your call to action (CTA), and personalization goes beyond just using a name; dive into details like industry, job title, or interests for that extra personal touch. And here’s a surprising tip – avoid numbers with zeros and fives; apparently, non-round numbers get better open rates.
A/B testing is your trusty sidekick, especially when experimenting with the name of your content. Using first-person language in your CTA can supercharge your click-through rate (CTR) by a whopping 28%. Don’t shy away from longer submit button text that describes your offer; it’s all in the details. Lastly, give your audience a sneak peek into the future – mention what’s coming next month. And for LinkedIn enthusiasts, repurpose your email content as a newsletter on the platform; LinkedIn will even handle the email distribution for you. These email tactics have unlocked a world of possibilities, and we can’t wait to see their impact on our LCP Media campaigns.
AJ Beltis, Senior Marketing Manager, Content Strategy - HubSpot
In the dynamic world of digital marketing, a diverse approach is critical to reaching and engaging your audience effectively. HubSpot understands the importance of utilizing multiple platforms to captivate potential leads. They recognize that prospects encounter their brand across various channels like social media, email newsletters, and blogs before deciding. To make the most of this, HubSpot employs a multimedia approach.
The journey begins with creating idea clusters and identifying core topics that align with the brand. From there, they craft content to sync seamlessly with their blogs and social media posts. They also understand that Calls to Action (CTAs) are vital in guiding leads. These CTAs can be strategically placed, depending on the user’s immediate need. If it’s urgent, the CTA goes right below the title; if the user needs more information, it’s positioned below the fold after exploring the content.
HubSpot doesn’t stop there; they employ tools to test titles and images to optimize engagement. And when it comes to platforms like YouTube, they embrace trial and error, recognizing that experimentation is crucial in discovering what truly resonates with their audience. HubSpot’s multifaceted approach to lead generation proves that a well-thought-out multimedia strategy can make all the difference in today’s competitive digital landscape.
Nancy Harhut, Chief Executive Officer, HBT Marketing
Troy Sandidge, Founder and Principal Growth Strategist, Strategy Hacker
Email communication is crucial to modern business, but not all emails are equal. During an entertaining debate session, we learned valuable tips from Jay and Nancy that can significantly enhance your email game. The key takeaway is that it’s all about relevancy: people will read emails they find valuable and relevant.
Ensure that your email has the right Call to Action (CTA). A clear and enticing CTA can make all the difference in driving the desired response. It’s vital to keep your content fresh and repurpose it effectively. Closely monitor your Unsubscribes; an excessive number could signal that your emails aren’t providing value to your audience. By heeding these email insights, you can cultivate more meaningful connections and succeed tremendously in your email marketing endeavors.
Reese Witherspoon, Actor, Producer, Founder - Hello Sunshine
Zinhle Essamuah, Anchor of NBC News Daily - NBC
The final session at INBOUND23 with Reese Witherspoon was genuinely inspiring.
Reese stressed the power of authenticity in business, emphasizing how being true to oneself led to the success of her production company, Hello Sunshine.
She also highlighted the importance of diversity in storytelling and how promoting underrepresented voices can lead to more authentic stories. Reese shared her entrepreneurial journey, discussing her challenges and the value of learning from setbacks.
Personal branding in the digital age was another key topic, with Reese emphasizing the importance of staying true to your values. She reminded us not to be bothered by others’ opinions and stressed the need for adaptability in the ever-changing business landscape.
Reese’s session inspired and motivated us with valuable lessons to carry on their entrepreneurial journeys.
1. AI and Automation are Game-Changers
Artificial Intelligence and automation are changing how marketers approach inbound strategies. Speakers after speakers at INBOUND23 talked about the power of AI in personalizing user experiences, automating repetitive tasks, and analyzing data to make data-driven decisions. Marketers were urged to embrace AI tools like ChatGPT, Bard, and Copy AI to stay competitive.
2. Video is a Must-Have
Video content is taking center stage in the world of inbound marketing. From short-form videos on social media to long-form webinars, video engages audiences in ways other content formats can’t match. INBOUND23 emphasized integrating video into marketing strategies to boost engagement and build stronger consumer connections. The fact is, the majority of internet traffic today is video.
3. Customer Experience is Paramount
Customer experience (CX) is the critical differentiator in today’s competitive landscape. We were reminded that delivering exceptional CX is a top priority. This includes personalized interactions, responsive customer support, and a seamless online journey. Companies like LCP Media that prioritize CX will always win the loyalty of their customers. Putting customers at the center of all marketing and sales efforts cannot be overstated.
4. Diversity Digital Marketing Channels
Businesses must diversify their digital marketing channels in a rapidly changing digital landscape. INBOUND23 highlighted the need to explore various platforms, including social media (TikTok, LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, X - formerly Twitter, among others), search engines, email marketing, and content marketing, to reach and engage different target audience segments effectively. By diversifying marketing channels, businesses can maximize their reach and build a solid online presence.
5. Collaboration Between Sales and Marketing
Aligning sales and marketing and facilitating communication between these critical teams can lead to more effective lead generation, nurturing, and closing processes. By working together and sharing customer insights, marketing and sales teams can drive revenue growth and create a seamless customer experience.
Our biggest takeaway is that continuous learning and adaptation is the key to your company’s and personal success. In the rapidly evolving world of marketing and sales, staying up-to-date with the latest trends, technologies, and strategies is essential. At INBOUND23, our LCP Media team was encouraged to embrace a growth mindset and be open to trying new techniques, tactics, and approaches based on data and consumer behavior. From the enduring importance of content to the game-changing potential of AI and automation, we were left with a toolkit of knowledge to implement in our marketing efforts. We at LCP Media are committed to innovation and customer-centricity that perfectly align with the message of INBOUND23.
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