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    What Is CRM (Customer Relationship Management) Software?

    By Ginny Soskey

    crm-image2

    CRM. If you work in sales or marketing, you've probably heard this three-letter acronym tossed around before. Maybe you've even been told you need one. No matter what, you're curious about one thing: What does it actually mean? 

    CRM stands for 'customer relationship management.' I know, I know -- that doesn't exactly clear things up. Keep on reading, folks, and we'll explain exactly what CRM software is and how to figure out whether you actually need one. 

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    8 Email Workflow Tips for the College Admissions Process

    By Alexandra Ritter

    One of the key elements of inbound marketing is the use of automated workflows because they allow you to better engage leads through a set of targeted emails, while saving time by automating the process. Workflows can be a helpful addition for any industry, but especially for higher education.

    The college admissions process is a perfect use case for automated workflows, as they can be used to move a potential student along the buyer’s journey to an end goal – in this case, to apply to your institution. 

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    6 Cool Company Blogs Everyone Will Enjoy Reading

    By Nichole Elizabeth DeMeré

    When I need inspiration for content that delights, email campaigns that actually work, and social media interactions that are genuinely fun ... I turn to one source: an online clothing store called ModCloth. My closet is proof that their marketing works. (Perhaps a little too well.) And watching them grow has been a master class in what a customer-driven company should look like.

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    10 Ways to Reach Customers Who Don’t Know They Need You

    By Danielle Irigoyen

    Event planner, lawyer, daycare owner, tow truck driver. Regardless of our chosen professions, it’s fair to say that we all want to build our businesses’ customer bases. It’s how we thrive. So it’s only natural for us to want to market our products or services to everyone, in hopes of capturing a larger audience, and thus making more money.

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    These Landing Page Flaws Could Be Hurting Your Conversion Rates [Infographic]

    By Lindsay Kolowich

    Lead generation is a major component of inbound marketing. It's an exchange of information: You offer people valuable content, and they offer you valuable information about themselves, like their name, email address, and company.

    When it comes to meeting your lead generation goals, landing pages are the strongest tools marketers have -- which is why it's so important to get them right.

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    Want Improve Your Relationship With Finance? Here Are 3 Simple Things You Can Do

    By Laurie Aquilante

    Sometimes, when it comes to budget, marketers and their colleagues in the finance can find themselves on different pages. If you've ever asked to move budget from one budget to another, or requested more money to support an idea that wasn't part of the yearly planning process, then you know what I mean. The back-and-forth can be frustrating for Marketing and Finance alike.

    If this sounds a little like the relationship you have with your finance department, then you're not alone.

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    10 Free Ways to Teach Yourself Inbound Marketing

    By Ginny Soskey

    When you're first starting to learn something new, it's easy to feel overwhelmed and intimidated.

    Why? Maybe it's been a while since you've deviated from the things you're good at and know well. Or maybe you had to make a pretty significant monetary or time investment, and you're feeling the pressure. Perhaps you have all the drive in the world to learn ... but you're having trouble finding the right resources and references to learn from.

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    The Anatomy of an Optimized Web Page [Infographic]

    By Lindsay Kolowich

    Optimizing your web pages shouldn't just be a task on your to-do list. It should be an overarching strategy -- something you think about and test and tweak every single day.

    Why? Because your website is how people get to know your brand, and having optimized web pages will make for a more engaging and delightful experience. Plus, you'll see greater returns on the content you publish across your marketing channels.

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    Making Cents of Inbound Marketing: An Interview With HubSpot's CFO

    By Mike Volpe

    One of the toughest challenges CMOs face is getting buy-in on new programs and initiatives from the rest of the executive team -- especially from the CFO. A lot of CMOs feel like they’re begging for money each month. And if the money ends up going to something that doesn’t quite pan out, their budget is on the chopping block.

    But it doesn’t have to be that way. There are many ways CMOs can improve their relationship with their CFOs, and the best way to get started is to figure out how your CFO thinks.

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    HubSpot Goes #DeskFree, Pioneering the Next Frontier of Workspace Collaboration

    By JD Sherman

    Workplace collaboration has become a hot topic in the software and tech space. Companies all around the world are experimenting with the ideal office setup to strengthen culture and improve workplace productivity. 

    HubSpot has always been committed to building a collaborative environment that helps our employees do their best work. Today, we're proud to unveil our latest development: the desk-free office.

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    10 LinkedIn Groups Every Entrepreneur Should Follow

    By Justin Pavoni

    There are at least three problems with this list. First, “entrepreneurship” is an extremely broad subject. Second, opinions are ubiquitous. Third, LinkedIn groups aren’t exactly scarce. Trying to highlight the best ones is somewhat of a fool’s errand, but you may be pleasantly surprised by what you find! With that in mind, here are ten recommendations to get you started...

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    How a Good Content Strategy Can Repair Your "SEO Problem"

    By Ronell Smith

    “We’re in dire need of some SEO help,” said the owner of a small, successful business located in central Texas. “I can’t put my finger on what’s wrong, but something’s clearly amiss. No one’s reading or sharing the content on our blog, and the information we share on social media just sits there.”

    It’s impossible to work in marketing without hearing grievances like this one over and over.

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    Why We Acquired Rekindle

    By Brian Halligan

    As you may have seen, HubSpot has acquired Rekindle, a Boston based technology startup with unique IP and innovations that we believe will help HubSpot and our customers advance. But how? Below I’ve taken the time to share some of my thoughts on why we made this specific acquisition and how we view acquisitions like these as part of our commitment to rapid growth and transforming the marketing and sales landscape.

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    How Inbound Marketing Can Boost Enrollment for Daycares

    By Johnny Hughes

    If you’re a child care owner, director, or start-up who’s tired of struggling to find new ways to fill the enrollment for your daycare, then inbound marketing might be the golden ticket you’ve been looking for.

    In this article, you will learn what stages a parent goes through when selecting a new child care facility and discover fresh marketing techniques proven to help you boost enrollment immediately with inbound marketing.

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    Speak Your CFO's Language: 3 Ways to Explain Inbound Marketing's Value

    By Laurie Aquilante

    As savvy marketers, it's easy for us to get excited about implementing an inbound marketing strategy or writing our next blog post -- we know that the content we're creating will attract and generate qualified leads that will turn into customers.

    And to fully implement our plan, we'll usually need to gain buy-in from other company stakeholders. Often, this will happen in our quarterly budget meeting.

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    10 Marketing Job Descriptions to Recruit and Hire an All-Star Team

    By Hannah Fleishman


    Are you ready to build your dream team of inbound marketers? Do you know what roles to fill and how to find the best people for the job? Hiring inbound marketers is fairly new and uncharted territory for many businesses straying from traditional marketing and adopting more inbound-driven, web-based marketing tactics.

    Just recognizing the need to invest in inbound marketing is step one. The next step is assembling an all-star cast of marketers -- a team of lean, mean, digitally fluent, content-creating machines to take your marketing to the next level.

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    How to Prove the Value of Inbound to Your CFO [Free Kit]

    By Laurie Aquilante

    If you're a marketing leader who knows the value of inbound marketing, you may have already implemented pieces of inbound into your overall marketing strategy. And you're probably finding that you need to shift resources around -- or get more of them -- to make the changes needed to increase lead generation, reduce costs, and grow new markets.

    Another obstacle that could be standing between you and your vision for more effective marketing? Your Chief Financial Officer (CFO).

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    8 Rookie Mistakes You Might Be Making With Buyer Personas

    By Siobhán McGinty

    Creating buyer personas is an essential part of building a successful inbound marketing strategy. Buyer personas help you better understand your current and potential customers, what their pain points are, what information they need, and how you can position your offering to meet their needs.

    Without documented buyer personas, essential inbound marketing tasks such as creating engaging content can be challenging.

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    How to Quickly & Easily Create a Buyer Persona [Free Tool]

    By Lisa Toner

    Whenever people ask for a primer on inbound marketing, I always start by talking about buyer personas. Why? Because without knowing who your ideal customers are -- their backgrounds, goals, challenges, and so on -- it's very difficult to create an effective marketing strategy to attract more of those types of people. Without understanding your ideal customers inside and out -- and integrating that research across your entire marketing funnel -- you risk stifling the growth of your business.

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    A Year in Review: Why 2014 Was HubSpot's Best Year (So Far)

    By Brian Halligan

    The proudest moment of my entire career, at HubSpot and beyond, was in September 2014.

    Surrounded by over 10,000 people at our INBOUND conference, the impact that inbound has had on marketing, sales, and business was undeniable. What started as just an idea when Dharmesh and I were at MIT had grown into a movement, and hearing about the impact that inbound has had on companies and customers worldwide was truly humbling.

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    Just Finished Serial? Here Are 11 Podcasts Every Marketer Should Listen To

    By Doug Eldridge

    The Internet is an extraordinarily personal medium. People own or use personal devices; rarely is it a shared experience.   Occasionally, something unique will come along to revolutionize the way we do things. I first heard of the Serial Podcast from my wife. On our drive from Denver to Dallas to celebrate Christmas, she asked if I’d like to listen to it. 

    We streamed it through our iPad and listened to it together.

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    How to Write a Marketing Resume Hiring Managers Will Notice [Free Templates + Samples]

    By Lindsay Kolowich

    It's ironic, but despite knowing how to sell products and services, so many marketers have a hard time selling themselves. It can often be difficult to turn the spotlight inward, but creating a standout resume is a skill all marketers need to perfect if they want to grow their career. 

    If you're a marketer whose resume could use a little polish, don't worry. With just a few resources and some actionable tips from hiring managers themselves, we'll help you create a truly impressive marketing resume that's sure to stand out to recruiters.

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    What the Next Generation of Marketers Is Learning in School

    By C.C. Chapman

    Twenty years ago, I graduated from Bentley University with a degree in Computer Information Systems. I had always thought about going for a marketing degree, but was advised that it would be too hard to find a job after college. I decided to focus my energy elsewhere.

    Little did I know that I’d have a very successful career in marketing, starting my own agency and working on campaigns for clients as diverse as HBO, American Eagle Outfitters. and The Coca-Cola Company.

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    Getting Started With Content Marketing: 9 Takeaways From One Company's Experience

    By Gal Rimon

    When the gameffective team and I decided to get serious about content marketing back in June of 2014, we treaded carefully at first. The return on an investment of creativity and content creation was still somewhat of a mystery to us at that point. It was something people spoke about in guest posts, but like any team trying a new business approach, we were a little hesitant to implement it ourselves.

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    9 Professional New Year's Resolutions You Should Actually Keep

    By Ginny Soskey

    I never used to make New Year's resolutions. They seemed like a forced, trite way to make a change in my life. If I really wanted to change, why would I wait around for January First? I figured I'd be better off just making sporadic changes throughout the year. 

    Well, that strategy hasn't always served me well. Waiting until I "felt ready" to change often enabled me to push aside goals that were important to me but not time-sensitive goals -- like learning photography with a new camera I was given -- in favor of more time-sensitive goals, like making next week's brunch plans with friends.

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    Human-to-Human Marketing: A Trend for 2015 and Beyond

    By Jess Marranco

    Imagine walking into your favorite coffee shop. It still looks and smells the same, but something is off. As you approach the counter, ready to order the usual, it hits you – this place is being run by robots.

    These particular robots don’t care that you’ve been coming there every day for the past six months, or that you’re lactose intolerant.

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    10 Inbound Marketing Myths It's Time to Leave Behind

    By Michael Reynolds

    Many things in life and business are misunderstood and under-appreciated. Professional athletes make playing a sport look easy but you don't see the hundreds of hours of training that occurred behind the scenes. After all, it's just putting a ball in a hoop, right? Attorneys often just get a few minutes to make their case in court but no one else sees all the behind the scenes work that goes into that short presentation.

    After all, it's just asking a bunch of questions, right? Building an app can look simple but if you knew how much planning and coding occurred behind the scenes it would blow your mind. After all, it's just putting a few screen together and writing a little bit of code, right?

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    Buyer Persona: Defined in a Single GIF

    By Ginny Soskey

    When you're first starting out with inbound, it's really easy to get carried away with all the things you want to accomplish. Blog about all the things! Build all the landing pages! Send all the emails! Schedule all the tweets!

    In reality, there's one huge, super important thing you need to do before doing any of the above: You need to build buyer personas.

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    Marketing Strategies That Rock the SaaS World

    By John McTigue

    According to Gartner, the market for SaaS (Software as a Service) applications will grow from $20 billion in 2013 to $33 billion in 2016, with a compound annual growth rate of 19.5%. A Compass study shows that SaaS is growing nearly 3X as fast as software as a whole, and that 72% of all SaaS startups are at least partially funded.

    Good news for SaaS startups and growing SaaS ventures alike, but the space is getting crowded and competition is fierce. What can founders and executives do to improve the odds that their companies will get to the top of the market and stay there?

    The SaaS Challenge

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    What the Collaborative Economy Means to Marketers [Infographic]

    By Jeremiah Owyang

    When you think of the “collaborative economy,” chances are, you picture people sharing their cars, homes, and money. But that’s not the only thing people are sharing. 

    Now, more and more people are sharing their time. They’re sharing their time to do small projects like deliveries, or they’re helping other businesses online as contractors, or using their time to create physical goods in the maker movement.

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    One-Hit Holiday Wonders: Popular Products That Totally Tanked in the 2000s

    By Erik Devaney

    The Holiday Season. It’s a season of giving. A season of eating, drinking, and being merry. And, most importantly of all, it’s a season of buying biomorphic robots, sleeved blankets, and sexually suggestive fitness equipment.

    Don’t worry, all of those references will make sense soon … I think. But the main point here is that each and every holiday season, we’re presented with a fresh array of “must-have” products, from toys and trinkets to consumer electronics.

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    5 Kid-Friendly Cookie Marketing Lessons for Girl Scouts

    By Lindsay Kolowich

    Better get another gallon of milk -- Girl Scout cookies have gone digital.

    That's right: The Girl Scouts of the USA have approved a brand new platform for most scouts to sell Girl Scout cookies online and ship them across the States starting in the 2014-2015 cookie season. The program is called "Digital Cookie," and it will allow scouts to sell cookies online using their own cookie website and/or mobile application.

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    The Science of Building Better Buyer Personas [Infographic]

    By Lindsay Kolowich

    Creating buyer personas is an important part of a successful inbound strategy.

    These semifictional representations of your ideal buyers help you understand your customers better; and when you understand your customers better, you can create content better geared toward them.

    And better content helps attract website visitors who may well turn into customers one day.

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    The Top 50 Marketing Blogs on the Internet Right Now (+ Advice From #1)

    By Dharmesh Shah

    If you're anything like me (and my apologies if you are), you like lists. And, if you also happen to work in marketing, you've probably heard of the old AdAge Power150 list -- it was a list of the top marketing blogs in the world. I use the past tense, because a few months ago AdAge said they were "powering down" the list. As the folks from Monty Python would say ... the Power150 has ceased to be. (Video link here -- you're welcome.)

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    How to Set SMART Marketing Goals [Free Template]

    By Mike Lemire

    Goal setting is probably one of the hardest things marketers have to do. You've got to choose a goal that's lofty, but not too lofty. And it's possible you have no idea what "lofty" is anyway -- for marketers implementing brand new activities, picking the right goals (and then tackling them) can feel like a guessing game.

    To help you eliminate the guesswork and set the right goals for your marketing team, HubSpot's put together a goal-setting template. This marketing goal-setting template will help you set yearly, quarterly, monthly, and even daily goals that are realistic, measurable, and help you figure out how to actually hit those goals with ... you know ... a plan.

    First, download your free marketing goal-setting template here; then learn how to use it effectively by following along in this post.

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