5 min read

Episode 137: Decentralising identity, Cancelling HubSpot, HubSpot Activity Feed and multivariate testing CTAs

Welcome to Episode 137 of HubShots!

Welcome to HubShots, APAC's number 1 HubSpot focused podcast, where we discuss HubSpot tips and tricks, new features, and strategies for growing your marketing results.

This episode we chat about canceling HubSpot, decentralising privacy and identity and how this will affect marketing in the future. Plus we look at the Activity Feed, and multivariate testing of HubSpot CTAs.

Listen to the show here: https://soundcloud.com/hubshots/137-decentralising-identity-cancelling-hubspot

HubShots, the podcast for marketing managers who use HubSpot hosted by Ian Jacob from Search & Be Found and Craig Bailey from XEN Systems.

Subscribe to our YouTube channel here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCD3Uo4X-IxPJLE8ygPDQhNQ

Join the Facebook group here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/hubshots/

Recorded: Wednesday 03 October 2018 | Published: Sunday 07 October 2018

Shot 1: Inbound Thought of the Week

Decentralising privacy and identity control

Identity and privacy are becoming products:


“Identity and privacy are finally becoming products. Distributed, secure identity, and privacy tools are starting to be rolled out — some are blockchain-based, and some are client-side, encrypted, and don’t require the blockchain. Productizing identity is important; the tight coupling of identity and your social graph is central to the lock-in that Facebook and other social messaging services have achieved. Distributing and productizing identity and privacy make sense for end-users; it’s a solution to the attention harvesting that has taken place over the last decade and it’s consistent with recent regulatory shifts (i.e. GDPR, the California Consumer Privacy act).”



“Solid changes the current model where users have to hand over personal data to digital giants in exchange for perceived value. As we’ve all discovered, this hasn’t been in our best interests. Solid is how we evolve the web in order to restore balance — by giving every one of us complete control over data, personal or not, in a revolutionary way.”


We can still unlock the true promise of the web by decentralizing the power that’s currently centralized in the hands of a few. How? By using the power of Solid.

Solid is the technically potent open-source platform built to decentralize the web. Inrupt is the company that’s helping to fuel Solid’s success.

See also our discussion about this in Shot 6 of episode 135:


Where we mentioned Justin Theng’s post about decentralising consumer data and ‘blockchain as marketing’:


Key takeaway: the ability we have as marketers to reach people (based on them having given up their privacy) will be reduced over the coming months and years. The ad targeting ability we have today will reduce - mostly with the people we probably most want to engage with.

Shot 2: HubSpot Marketing Feature of the Week

Multivariate testing of CTAs

In this example, we tested a CTA with the word “New” in it.  You can see from the result which one performed better in the email.

Calls to action beta HubSpot

Add variations to a CTA from the Actions menu:

cta actions

Note: you can only add multivariate testing to simple CTAs. Once a CTA is multivariate you can’t create a smart CTA from it (and vice versa: you can’t multi test a smart CTA)

Keep in mind you can test totally different things eg using an image instead of text button CTA

Key takeaway: go try to get a better click rate by creating a variation of your CTA.  Note this is only available in Marketing Hub Professional up.

Shot 3: HubSpot Customer Code Item of the Week

Cancelling HubSpot

Dharmesh on allowing customers to cancel more easily:


“At HubSpot, we’ve undertaken something we call the sharp edges initiative. An examination of all the places where we unintentionally make things harder for customers. One by one, we’re working to file all of them down.

We’ve reduced our cancellation notice window from 45 days to 10 days, with the goal of getting it to 0. This policy made sense for us (helped us forecast renewals), but it made no sense to our customers and was one of out top escalation issues. That’s a sharp edge that has to go.

We’re also rolling out functionality that will allow more customers (eventually all of them) to cancel “in portal.” We want to be more like Spotify and Netflix, companies that make no attempt to block the exit, and are as easy to end an agreement with as they are to start one.”

Scott Brinker on customer focus (referring to Dharmesh’ post):


“I know, I work for HubSpot, so I’m biased, but I absolutely love this. When was the last time a major SaaS platform you depend on made it a company-wide initiative to make it easier for you to cancel whenever you want?”

We thought about all the SaaS products we use, like Google G Suite, Teamwork, Adobe Creative Cloud, Slack, Evernote, Xero, Skype, Zoom, Qwilr, Shopify, WP Engine, Teachable, AdWords, any advertising platform, MailChimp, Landingi, etc to name a few and they all have the ability to cancel at any time. So why not all versions of HubSpot?

Shot 4: Marketing Tip of the Week

Analyse your twitter accounts, you might be surprised what you find!

  • Followers Audit
  • Quality Distribution
  • Analysis Info
  • SparkScore

Example Twitter Fake Followers analysis:


Fake Follower Audit for hubshots SparkToro

Shot 5: HubSpot Sales Feature of the Week

Looking at Lead Activity

Activity Feed 1


Key takeaway: Have a look at this on a daily basis and see if you have any opportunities to contact people.

Shot 6: Opinion of the Week

Smart speaker usage:


Based on 2000 US consumers (link)smart speaker common uses

“When breaking down usage during a typical day, people spend more time using their smart speakers on the weekend (average 72 total minutes) than the weekday (average 65 total minutes). Usage also increases throughout the day regardless of whether it’s a weekend or weekday, with peak use into the late evening.“

Note however, a lot of the usage time is likely to be listening to music - there was no information on how much of their time was spent on each of the activities.

Time spent daily:

minutes spent with smart speakers

Compare this to daily social usage:


Daily social usage around 1 hour on YouTube, 41 minutes on Facebook.

Key takeaway: people are spending more time using their smart speakers - it’s natural to assume their information gathering behaviour will increase.

It may become a starting point, that is then handed over to other devices eg desktop - ‘Alexa send that whitepaper to my phone, work email, etc’

Shot 7: Useful Post of the Week

Gender neutral pronouns


Key takeaway: be informed and aware of societal changes - don’t fall into the trap of turning into an out-of-touch fuddy duddy

Shot 8: Resource of the Week

Technical SEO findings from crawling billion of pages


Via: https://twitter.com/cyrusshepard/status/1046513415760605196?s=12

One key observations: Google’s move to mobile first indexing has been rapid: technical seo what i learned from crawling 10 billions of pages and analysing 5 trillions of log lines 14 638

Takeaway: If you haven’t yet optimised your site for mobile, you are at a distinct disadvantage.

Shot 9: Quote of the Week

The daily

Is there something you do every day that builds an asset for you?

Every single day?

Something that creates another bit of intellectual property that belongs to you?

Something that makes an asset you own more valuable?

Something that you learn?

Every single day is a lot of days. It’s easy to look at the long run and lull yourself into skipping a day now and then.

But the long run is made up of short runs.


Shot 10: Bonus Links of the Week

SEO hack of the week:


Useful reading:




Please rate and leave us some feedback as this helps us improve and reach more marketers.

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