As an inbound agency, video content is something we encourage every client to embrace. We try to practise what we preach when it comes to marketing trends. 

Earlier in September, we were out in Boston hanging out with some of the brightest marketing, sales and product minds the world currently has to offer. So, while we had them, we asked them a few questions...

Over the next couple of weeks, we're going to be sharing our short-fire interviews taken out at #HYPERGROWTH18 and #INBOUND18. These micro-interviews should hopefully give you a flavour where marketing is heading...

The questions we asked were simple…

  1. What do you love about marketing in 2018?
  2. What do you hate/dislike or want to change about marketing in 2018?
  3. What's your marketing hint/tip/hack for the next 12 months?

As we release the videos each day, we'll post them here. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did filming them!

Dan Tyre - HubSpot  

Dan is HubSpot’s number 6… pretty cool right? It’s always great to catch up with Dan, he’s great fun.

Dan told us there are two things that he loves - the first being when marketers understand who he is, and develop and provide the right information for his exact needs. The second thing he loves if you can deliver great marketing in 90 seconds… he told us he has a very short attention span, you might be able to tell in this video.

Unsurprisingly, he dislikes mass marketing. A lot of people will just send the same thing to everyone, without any personalisation or content designed for the top, middle or end of the funnel, and it doesn’t make any sense.

As Dan explained: “If you treat everyone the same way, it’s kinda ‘dopey’, so what people need to understand is they need to work with a company like Six & Flow to provide the information where it’s tailored to what they need through the buyer’s process... if you don’t do that you’re going to be in trouble.”

Dan had two marketing tips for the next 12 months:

1. Be helpful to as many people as you can

2. “Be like Charlotte, you gotta be video!” (For those who don’t know Charlotte, she’s our BD) “I see my friend Charlotte (by the way she’s the lion of the year) and she’s on my LinkedIn every week, she’s 5,000 miles away but i see Charlotte smiling and helping people every single week. At least 50% of your content needs to be on video.”

Seamus McGrath - Drift 

Seamus is definitely one of our favourite Drifters… and it’s not just because he jumped out of a plane with us!

The thing he loves about marketing in 2018 is that companies are starting to realise that leads are actually human, and are now designing their campaigns around being more authentic as opposed to automated.

Seamus dislikes waiting to hear back from marketing and sales teams, especially when he’s actually interested in making a purchase. “Don’t leave me hanging guys” is the way he worded it.

Something that may be impactful in the future is studying how B2C companies market. Seamus argues the B2B and B2C market are going to start blending together, and pretty soon there will just be a B2H (Business to Human) market. As we’re all consumers, this is essentially where we’re heading.

Elissa Hudson - HubSpot 

Elissa was at Inbound this year, but we met her again as a guest speaker at our Leeds HubSpot User Group in September. Elissa is actually from Leeds, but has been working at HubSpot in Sydney as a Senior Marketing Manager.

Elissa loves that 2018 was the year of messaging. She predicts that next year things are going to get more sophisticated, as there are lots of new tools under development, including HubSpot conversations.

There are plenty of people who are still taking advantage of their audience and pushing out a lot of low-value, non-personalised marketing material, which is Elissa’s biggest bugbear. If you’re utilising the information you have in your CRM, you can get much better results and also provide a much better experience for your leads.

Elissa was a big fan of Dharmesh Shah’s keynote speech at Inbound, especially the phrase “growing better rather than growing at a cost.” She told us this is the best thing you can take with you into 2019. Succeeding with soul and doing the right thing will see you grow. It might take you more time to get there, but ultimately you’ll succeed in the long run if you have a conscience about everything you’re doing with your marketing, sales and customer service.

Jared Fuller - Drift 

Jared is a Senior Director of Partnerships at conversational marketing platform Drift.

Similarly to the other Drifters, Jared told us he loves the evolution from brand-to-brand marketing to human-to-human approaches. He believes it’s all about making a genuine connection. Whichever brand is the most human - those are the people who are winning.

While being interrupted by Drift’s Elias for not taking part in the Six & Flow and Drift team skydive, Jared tried to explain what he dislikes most in marketing. He told us how people are often expecting positive results every time from human-to-human marketing - just because you give value, you’re not always going to receive value back every time! Jared argued that if brands do exceptional things consistently, every once in a while they’ll generate exceptional results. It’s about doing things that might not have an obvious and immediate ROI, don’t be so focused on the short term when you can build long term results instead.

For the next 12 months, Jared’s marketing tip is embracing video content. One to one video communication is really hot right now, and for good reason.

Benny Hua - Vidyard 

Online video platform Vidyard recently integrated with HubSpot, so we thought we’d go over to their stand at Inbound to meet Benny and pick up some tips and tricks.

Benny told us he loves the growing interest and excitement around video marketing. Seeing people use video in their everyday marketing strategy is crazy but exciting to him.

He also said that given the chance, he would get rid of non-personalised content. Some marketers are still spamming leads with impersonal messaging, and Benny agues we need to be more human.

Benny’s tip for the next 12 months was simply to get started with video. Why wouldn’t you, when you can showcase your product, educate leads and explain your strengths on camera?

Robbie McFarlane - HubSpot 

Robbie is our HubSpot Channel Consultant. He’s part of the family at Six & Flow and alongside Steve Vaughan, instrumental in where we are as an agency.

Robbie is based in Dublin so it was great to catch up with him in Boston.

Robbie told us that he loves GDPR… it’s controversial, but when you look at the changes being made to support the data privacy concerns of everybody else out there it means we’re going to be doing more ethical marketing, so it’s a huge benefit.

Robbie said the thing we should be looking to change is adding more value before we extract values - creating conversations, using chat functions on sites and having that information feed into the relevant people at the right time, which completely makes sense.

His top tip for the next 12 months is to ask your customers, be open and transparent about what’s happening with your customer base and learn from them. You can learn the good things and the bad things, then use those insights to drive more business and drive better value for your clients.

Michelle Albanese - Drift 

Michelle is our eyes and ears at Drift, she’s been instrumental in creating and amazing partner program and experience. We love Michele.

Even though as a team we’re regularly speaking with Michele it was lovely to see her face to face out in Boston. 

And that leads us onto Michelle’s first point.

Michelle loves that there is more human to human interaction these day. With tools like Drift and other conversational marketing platforms around, you’re able to meet in a personal way with the people you’re marketing to. They’re not just email addresses in the CRM anymore.

If Michelle could change anything it would be to decrease bulk sending of emails and continue to be more human. There are a lot of tools out there but Michele wishes there was more humanisation.

For the next 12 months… Michelle’s top tip is video.

If you can send a video instead of a long listed email you’re going to get much more engagement as its easier for the receiver to digest. Not to mention it’s a lot easier, but it also gives you that human connection. You can say exactly what you’re trying to say in your own voice, without the context or tone getting lost in the lines of text on a screen. Did we mention, the conversion rate is also much higher...

Adriano Tagliarina - Trialta

Adriano is the CEO of German Inbound Marketing company Trialta. It was great to meet Adriano at this years Inbound and hear his tips on marketing. It was nice to get an outlook from a HubSpot Partner who wasn’t from North America or the UK.

Adriano told us that he loved the alignment between sales and marketing. He loves that communication has become more relevant and interactive - it’s inbound, it’s contextual and it’s what people are looking for..

A pet marketing hate for Adriano? He said that despite GDPR there are still so many spam emails around. Marketers must change their attitude and approach. It’s not sustainable and the benefits gained in initial lead volume or clicks throughs can often do untold damage to you overall brand. Short term gain. Long term damage.

And what does our favourite inbound German suggest for the next 12 months? Three things: be more relevant, be more helpful and be more transparent.

Luke Summerfield - HubSpot

 

Luke is part of the HubSpot Product team at HubSpot - most of you will also recognise him as the ‘God Father’ of GDD. Luckily I managed to catch him in the last few minutes of Inbound 18.

Watching the video you’ll have realised that Luke is all about the user. He loves the shift to thinking about your customer as the centre.

In his words “we need to preach user experience”. There’s a lot of things that you can do to make more of a personal connection, like building tactics and tools. Luke is most definitely looking forward to the future to see how we can make a better user experience.

Luke dislikes when people try and force old broken systems and try to put it in the modern age, it’s still a broken system at its core. He gave us an example of display advertising, where a company has worked with Uber to place digital screens on the side of cars. Luke said it’s interesting but you’re not solving the user experience.

You won’t be surprised to hear that Luke’s tip for the next 12 months is to become more user-centric in terms of the way you’re thinking.

You have to talk to your users and actual customers to understand them. Whether it’s sending them your meeting link or setting up a call. Have a conversation with them.

Molly O’Connell - Ceros 

Molly is Strategic Partnerships Manager for Ceros, an interactive content software platform. Our visual designer uses Ceros on a daily basis and is a big fan, so go ahead and check it out.

I had the pleasure of meeting Molly at HubSpot’s Inbound Conference. Molly told us she loves seeing the industry move towards experiential marketing, which involved following people across every touch point throughout the buyer journey.

Molly says she has been hoping to kill the PDF since 2017… so that’s one thing she’d love to change. She also wants to see more insights from the content that’s already out there.

Molly’s marketing tip for the next 12 months is go to more events like Inbound. Whether you’re a SaaS product or an agency, getting in front of your clients is the best way to have conversations with them. From Molly’s experience, she said it’s really interactive when you can get in front of them and have a face to face conversation.

David Murray - HubSpot 

David is the EMEA Partner Acquisition Marketing Manager at HubSpot and one of our favourite Dubliners…

I was able to grab a minute with David at HubSpot Partner Day at Inbound this year.

David’s video was short and sweet but to the point. He told us he loves brands that are standing for interesting causes and incorporating that into their branding and messaging.

A pet hate of David’s is email marketing… an unpopular opinion he told us but he meant the unnecessary emails that we all receive are useless. He wants you to send useful, helpful contextual emails that look good and empower (or at the very least help) the receiver.

David’s top tip for the next 12 months? Get into podcasting. He said that it’s the most accessible form of content. All you need is a microphone and you’re good to go. We have to agree, it’s a great way to share your knowledge and speak to a wider audience.

Julie Hogan - Drift 

Julie is the VP of Customer Success at Drift and an all-around awesome human being. Our whole team met Julie in July when she jetted over from Boston for our ‘Drift Up’ events in Manchester & London, so it was great to see her again at #HYPERGROWTH18. Drift’s West Coast event is actually today so head over to their social channels or follow #HYPERGROWTH18 and keep up to date!

You may start to see a pattern with all the Drifters answers, (and no it was not planned or discussed before). Julie loves the personalisation side of marketing from 2018. Her words were ‘real time personalisation is where it’s at’. You must have noticed by now, but more than ever you’re seeing videos, messages and you’re having conversations with people as opposed to being marketed at or to. Agree?

One thing that Julie would change is the assumption people have to follow tradition. You have to think about what the way forward is and then release yourself from tradition. Think about it, the kind of thing you did in 2015 is different to how you market today. Markets are constantly changing.

Julie’s tip for the next 12 months is to do things like this - use video as much as possible. There may be certain people in your office who are the one’s on camera all the time but you should interview the ones who aren’t on camera, so maybe video those who are the product experts, those who are behind the scenes talking to customers at customer support. All you have to do is share something of value and bring that to the universe of your potential customers and prospects, it’s easy!

Daniel Murphy - Drift   

Dan is the Demand Generation Team Leader at Drift. He’s also one of our favourite ‘Drifters’. 

Dan told us one thing that he loved about marketing from 2018 was that anyone, anywhere can be a content creator. You see so many videos of people filming from all around the world, you don’t necessarily have to do it from your desk (which is boring anyway). Dan told us that you can accomplish your goals with things like LinkedIn video, Instagram and blogging (our #marketingshorts and #insidesix videos are a prime example...). In 2018 more people than ever have the power to go out there and market their brand.

From 2018 Dan doesn’t like that there is a lot of stigma around marketers spending a lot of money. Like PPC for instance, spending on Adwords (now Google Ads) or Facebook ads.

We’re now seeing a new generation of marketers emerge - Dave Gerhardt (VP of Marketing at Drift) is a great example of this. DG, as he’s known to the marketing world, is in charge of creating a lot of great compelling content and building a brand around that. You should check out the ‘Seeking wisdom’ podcast with him and David Cancel (out first #MarketingShort contender in the list).

Dan’s top tip for the next 12 months is to try LinkedIn video. He gave a great example of a friend who wasn’t a marketer but got 10,000 views on his video because the content was compelling. There will be people who want to interact with your brand, so go out there, start marketing yourself and make a LinkedIn video (it’s not as hard as it looks - I promise!).

Jessica Engel - Sigstr

We managed to grab Jess on the first day of #Inbound18. Jess is the Demand Generation Manager at Sigstr, an email signature marketing platform. If you’ve ever received an email from me or from a member of the Six & Flow team you’ll see our signature at the bottom… that’s Sigstr’s work. Company-wide, centrally managed, CRM integrated - you should definitely be playing with Sigstr...

The one thing Jess loves about marketing from 2018 is the integrations. She enjoys looking around and thinking about all the use cases of how Sigstr can integrate with others and how they can customise their entire journey.

However, even though Jess loves integrations, one thing she would change is how to report on it. I’m sure most of us can agree reporting can make our jobs difficult, or at least time-consuming. Jess said the hard part of her job is making sure everything is tracked appropriately so that she can modify what’s working and what isn’t.

Jess’ top tip for the next 12 months is simple, use the customer support options available to you. You’ve got to reach out to people, the majority of people would love to help you if you’re trying to use their platform, so just go ahead and give it a go, what’s the worst that could happen? 

Kevin Dunn - HubSpot 

Next up we have Kevin Dunn from the world famous HubSpot Academy.

I had the delight of meeting Kevin at HubSpot’s partner day and if you’ve ever watched any of the HubSpot academy videos you’d recognise him straight away! I would say he is the voice of HubSpot Academy.

Kevin told us that the quality of their content has never been better… and we couldn’t agree more!

So, his first love in marketing in 2018? Pillar pages and topic cluster… if you haven’t heard of them, then you should really get onto it! As a marketer, you should be creating high-quality content that maps to how your readers and prospects want to consume the information. Make it stand out, make it easy to consume and focus on the user experience. Google will reward you for it.

You can grab our guide to inbound lead generation here...

Heard of the term ‘smarketing’? Kevin told us that if you’re sales and marketing teams don’t align then that is something you MUST change. You have to integrate the sales and marketing process of your business. The objective is to have a common integration approach and according to a study this can lead to annual revenue growth of up to 20%. Get aligned, see greater growth.

Kevin’s biggest tip for the next 12 months? Survey your existing customers or at least don’t forget about your existing customers. The content that you’re creating for your customers and for website visitors should be different. By just keeping your current customers happy there’s a lot of revenue and profit opportunities. Think ‘flywheel’ not ‘funnel’.

David Cancel - Drift 

First up we had the man at the bleeding edge of conversational marketing, hot off the stage from his keynote at #HYPERGRWOTH18.

I managed to grab ‘DC’ the CEO and founder of conversational marketing platform Drift. Unsurprisingly, he told us that his marketing love is conversations - and that's very much focussed around the shift towards the "NOW". Human centric engagement when and where people want it. 

Want our guide to conversational marketing? You'll have to chat to our bot...

The thing he dislikes most about marketing is that it’s become so formulaic, people can’t function without Google Analytics, data and statistics. Take Hypergrowth as an example - building in-person human centric engagement, that's not 'scalable' in the same way email marketing or paid media are - but what it does for the brand and what it does for the community takes it past "attribution" and means you can build something greater than a transaction. While you can’t measure or track that as meaningful marketing data, DC told us they see the payback and find big opportunities. 

Finally, his biggest tip for the next 12 months was to do things that don't scale. Forget about Google Analytics and measuring everything, go out and have conversations with people.  

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