18 min read

Episode 173: Inbound19 & the importance of having a 6-pack!

Welcome to Episode 173 of HubShots!

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

This episode we chat about Inbound 2019 - some of the announcements and what we especially liked. Plus, why having a 6-pack is important.

Listen to the episode here: https://soundcloud.com/hubshots/173-inbound19-the-importance-of-having-a-6-pack/

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

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Recorded: Tuesday 09 September 2019 | Published: Friday 20 September 2019

Shot 1: Inbound Thought of the Week

Thoughts on the product announcements...


The awesome:

  • Facebook Messenger integration with Conversations
  • Forms integration with Conversations
  • Buy now button coming on Products
  • Landing pages coming to Starter
  • Starter will have 3 follow up emails
  • Workflow Go action
  • Sales Quotes are getting better (and bringing some Enterprise features to Pro)

The other:

  • App Marketplace experience
  • Workflow folders

Dharmesh keynote:


Brian keynote:


Shot 2: HubSpot Marketing Feature of the Week

Connect Facebook Messenger with HubSpot Conversations



Shot 3: HubSpot Sales Feature of the Week

Removing friction.  How can we do that in sales?

In Brian’s keynote, he spoke about these 2 things in the 5 points he had.

  1. Removing Friction
  2. Personalising

How are we removing friction from our sales process?

Are we making it easy for people to deal with our business?  Can they find what they need and buy what they need without going through a long sales process?

He mentioned the companies that disrupt use data well to personalise.

Also with great data comes great power, but great responsibility comes with it too!

Shot 4: HubSpot Gotcha of the Week

Workflow Go action is not yet in Contact Workflows.

Shot 5: Marketing Tip of the Week

Make your home page URL clean





If you don’t use just the clean URL you will confuse Google.

Often Google won’t give you a 6-pack for your brand term

You ideally want Google to show a 6-pack so it takes up more of the page:

xen systems   Google Search

Shot 6: Insight of the Week

The Group Chat trend



Interesting insights from Andreessen Horowitz around the rise of Group Chats as a path to transactions.

The article predominantly covers WeChat trends in China, but is applicable to many messenger apps including WhatsApp and FB Messenger, albeit with some privacy differences.

In a nutshell, the Group Chat approach involves dedicated ‘concierge’ admins who help members with questions. Often on a path to purchase.

A few key insights:

  • groups are often small: 500 people max, and usually less than 200
  • are often invite only (ie no public way of finding them)
  • or are otherwise word of mouth (they aren’t promoted)
  • they prioritise safety (often members are private, using aliases instead of real names/phone numbers, etc)
  • history of messages is only available from the point of joining ie a new member can’t see the history of previous questions
  • the groups grow relationships and trust
  • product recommendations are highly likely to be followed
  • products are added in the chats, with a link to purchase
  • the groups also allow group buying options which result in cheaper per item prices based on increasing group purchase quantity
  • the focus is on personal service, and not on technology to automate the chats

This is interesting from a number of points, and highlights that technology is still lagging in terms of delivering automated chat experiences. It is clear that embracing a conversational commerce approach requires more personal resources. Using automated technology actually destroys trust and value (at least currently).

All the bigger brands I interact with via chat, are definitely people driven (as opposed to chat bot). This requires significant resource, and is a factor to be weighed carefully when potentially adding to your marketing strategy.

Shot 7: Gold of the Week

How to turn blatant copying of your site into a promotion for your services:


Shot 8: Tweet of the Week

When Google puts 4 paid ads ahead of the first organic result for your own brand name:


Shot 9: Quote of the Week

“How they sell that is how they win.”

  • Brian Halligan (from 2019 Inbound keynote)

Shot 10: Bonus Links of the Week


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

Episode 173: Inbound19 & the importance of having a 6-pack!

- [Ian] Hi everyone, welcome to HubShots episode 173. In this episode, we talk about Inbound19 and the importance of having a six-pack. You're listening to Asia-Pacific's number one HubSpot focus podcast. Where we discuss HubSpot tips, tricks, and features and strategies for growing your marketing and sales results. My name is Ian Jacob from Search & Be Found, and with me is Craig Bailey from XEN Systems. How are you, Craig?

- [Craig] Ah, really good. And wow, 2019, just finished. We're recording this on Tuesday, September 10. You're supposed to be just back from Inbound, but what actually happened?

- [Ian] I didn't go, Craig.

- [Craig] So, just at the last minute?

- That's right.

- You had to cancel.

- [Ian] Canceled. Selling was more important?

- [Craig] That's right. Sell better. But, in spite of not attending you did get, and we both got, a bit of a taste of what happened at Inbound,

- That's right--

- And we we're looking forward to chatting with some of our friends. Actually about next HubSpot user group.

- Exactly.

- We're hearing all about it and also sharing some of the experiences. But, how did you experience Inbound 2019?

- [Ian] I set my alarm for 3 a.m. And got up to listen to Brian and Dharmesh, that's how it happened.

- [Craig] And what did you think of their keynotes?

- [Ian] To be honest, I really enjoyed Brian's keynote and Dharmesh's keynote. And then I waited half an hour to listen to Christopher O'Donnell deliver the product updates.

- [Craig] Well, we're gonna talk about some of those product updates in a second, but I haven't actually watched the keynotes yet, from Dharmesh and Brian. I'm looking forward to those, although I am seeing Dharmesh is just getting rave reviews everywhere, talking about how awesome it was. So, my expectations are high, I'm looking forward to that.

- [Ian] Yeah, so listeners I encourage you to, we'll put the links to the videos, take some time to actually go and listen to them and write some notes because there is absolute gold in there in how you can transform your business.

- [Craig] We're gonna unpack those in future episodes. So we'll do Dharmesh next week and then maybe Brian the week after. But on to some of the announcements. And so, Chris O'Donnell mentioned a few and there's been actually a good blog post, I actually think they did a good recap video which we've got in the show notes.

- [Ian] Yes.

- [Craig] Let's chat about some of the things we're gonna call, there's the good and the bad, well, we're gonna call it the awesome and the other. Let's talk about some of the awesome things that we liked.

- [Ian] First one is the Facebook Messenger integration in Conversations. I think that's fantastic.

- [Craig] This is in beta now. I was lucky enough to get the beta, so we've got this connected for one of our companies.

- Yes.

- And it's really good. It works really well. So, we've got links in the show notes, in fact, that's gonna be our marketing tip of the week in a second.

- [Ian] Second one being forms integration with conversations. So, again, this is another great one. Support forms can go straight into conversations.

- [Craig] I'm really liking conversations and I really like how it's, I think you get it in the free tier as well. Do you get forms in the free tier?

- [Ian] Yes, I think you do. I actually just tried to test it on a free account that we have.

- [Craig] And I'm pretty sure you get Facebook Messenger as well. Like, this tool, the free tool, I can't believe how much value there's getting in it and, well, that brings us onto another thing that's coming into, well actually not in the free, but in starter.

- [Ian] It's how to start better with landing pages, Craig.

- [Craig] They're bringing landing pages into starter.

- [Ian] Now we've spoken about this a lot of times. And I think one of the key things with this landing page tool is the drag and drop editor. Like the new email editor is gonna be the landing page editor, which will be really interesting to use, actually. And I think a great experience for people that are just starting like, what a great way to start.

- [Craig] You know what, we're gonna have to go back to whatever, what was that episode when we talked about our marketing stack? I can't, was it episode 145,

- Yeah.

- [Craig] Something like that. Where we talked about all the tools we use together to have our basic marketing stack. And there was Mailchimp and then another landing page tool, and then HubSpot started. Basically, we're gonna have to review all that and basically replace them all with HubSpot starter.

- [Ian] Absolutely.

- [Craig] Because one of the other things coming in HubSpot starter is you get three, not so much automated, but they're like a sequence. Mini-automation, in a way. Three follow-ups from a form submit, so that's coming. I actually haven't seen that part yet, so I'm looking forward to seeing how that's implemented.

- [Ian] All right, and then the other one is the Workflow on the Go action, in Workflows--

- Now which

- [Ian] Which we've tested out.

- [Craig] We chatted about this last week and we'll talk about in the Gotcha of the Week 'cause it's not in contacts yet, it's in companies, deals, and ticket work flows. But this is an awesome, much-wanted and long overdue feature.

- [Ian] And there is the Sales Quotes. And in Sales Professional actually getting the e-signature and one more which we didn't have in the show notes which is a Buy Now button, being able to actually create a Buy Now button integrated with Stripe and create that within HubSpot with what looks to be minimal fuss, and I'm really looking forward to that one.

- [Craig] Yeah, so that's good. Now, they're the awesome things. I just wanted to make a comment, 'cause this came up in the WhatsApp group as well.

- Yes.

- Someone was saying was the kind of product announcement, was it a bit underwhelming? And I felt it was. What were your thoughts, Ian?

- [Ian] It wasn't like last year where we had new products. We had a sleuth of new things. Like, very visionary, I guess. This year's been all about cementing that base, I think, and making things work better.

- [Craig] I think that's right. It's almost like the Apple iPhone releases, they'd have a big advance one year and then the next year it's just the "S" version which is kinda the just refinement, I kinda feel. I kinda feel like last year was the massive, was the iPhone X for HubSpot and this year was--

- XS.

- [Craig] Oh yeah, tweak a bit. I'll give you an example. From stage, Christopher O'Donnell promoted that they've put in folders into Workflows. Like, that is just I can't see why that warrants mention from the stage in a major keynote. It's like that was the extent that they had to talk about. And I guess that's it, I can't wait to see what happens next year. But yeah this was, it was very much a consolidation and kind of refinement piece and the tools are much, they are getting so much better. Even things like the quotes tool that deals in the sales side of things, just really nice now. So yeah, lots of refinement.

- [Ian] And also the new app marketplace experience I mean I've been using that a little bit and I think it's a good initiative and it's actually been pretty well done.

- [Craig] It's just getting nice to use. It's nicer to use. Like, it's not a big jump, there's nothing major about it. I mean, there's a lot more people or apps in the marketplace. But it's just a nicer experience.

- [Ian] All right, Craig. And on that note, do you realize it's four years since we started this podcast?

- [Craig] I didn't realize. Four years? Of course it is! Inbound, of course.

- [Ian] It was a week after Inbound when we returned to Sydney.

- [Craig] Ah, the time.

- [Ian] Happy anniversary, Craig.

- [Craig] Happy anniversary, Ian, thanks.

- [Ian] I hope your beverage is nice and warm.

- [Craig] And thank Thank you again for forcing me to do this. We've told this story before on the show but yeah, at Inbound four years ago you said, "We've gotta do a podcast." I was like, "I dunno if I can do a podcast. "Would anyone listen to it?" Well, you forced us to do it. We were terrible at first, we're better, I don't know if we're great or good yet, but we're getting better and certainly I, we both really value it and hopefully you listeners get some value out of the show as well!

- [Ian] Yeah, and thank you to all of the friends we've made along the way. And have become kind of an integral part of our businesses and lives. So, we appreciate all of you guys. Thank you. All right, Craig, onto HubSpot Marketing Feature of the Week and this is connecting Facebook Messenger with HubSpot Conversations.

- [Craig] We're just following on from what we said in the first shot about this feature. It is so easy to use, it's very slick. So, all you do, you're in conversations, by the way this is part of the beta, so you gotta sign up for the beta. I signed up for it and I got it pretty much a day later.

- [Ian] And I also think if you create a new HubSpot account, because I've created some new HubSpot accounts, it's available in there as well.

- [Craig] Okay, even better. So, you basically, from your Conversations inbox, you go to inbox and you go "Add another channel" you go "Facebook Messenger" Tick. It prompts and it opens up and says, "Tell me which Facebook page to connect to." You just choose it, and then it's in there. Then you pop back into your actual Facebook page and you might set that your main CTA to be a Messenger thing. Tested it, basically. Bang, that opens Messenger and you're straight into HubSpot. Here's the great thing of course, if you've got the Slack integration, that Messenger thing goes into your conversation in HubSpot which goes into your Slack channel. So, again, you're just replying to Facebook Messenger things from your Slack channel that you've denoted. It's so good. I find this is the way it should be. Really easy, reduces all the friction. A joy to use.

- [Ian] Yeah, so our tip to people out there that are actually using Facebook Messenger would be to connect this in and manage it better in the Conversations inbox. Or to give Sales the ability to manage it from the inbox. All right, Craig, onto our HubSpot Sales Feature. I want to talk about removing friction and this really stemmed from Brian's keynote at Inbound 2019. Now he had five points that he spoke about, but I just wanna highlight two from there. One was removing friction and he talked about businesses that are being disruptors, right? And why they have grown and all the examples he used were billion dollar plus businesses. How they've been disrupting and winning. And two of the things he used was, one was removing friction from the whole sales process. And the other, two, was personalizing. So, personalizing experiences. So, I wanted to talk about how do we remove friction from our sales process? Now you need to really think about this and are we making it easy for people to deal with our businesses? Can they find what they need and can they buy it without actually interacting with us? What can we automate in that process of buying? Now I think that Buy button that's being introduced that's a great great step. And he also talked about companies that use data really well to personalize. So, understanding what they're doing, when they're doing it and using that data to appropriately talk to them or give them what they need at the right time. And he also said, you know, with great data comes great power, and great responsibility comes with that too. And that is absolutely true. You can see, you can see what's going on in the media with people like Facebook, Google, and so on, like, data security is essential. But you know there is a lot of it around is how do we use it appropriately? And he was talking, he gave lots of experiences. One of the experiences I liked, and this might not relate directly to what I've spoken here, but he was talking about, he buys dog treats from a particular online store which gets delivered every week. He ended up buying a Superman shirt, I think it was. For his dog, whose name I've forgotten.

- [Craig] Romeo.

- [Ian] Romeo, that's right. Have to bring Milo in. Milo and Romeo. And he was saying, so he ordered the shirt, it was too small. So he rings up customer service. So this is a I guess, a point of friction that people would have. Rings up customer service thinking they're gonna say, "Send it back. "And then we'll send you the other one." Anyway, this is what he got. They were like, "Oh no, that's okay Brian. "If you want, just give that shirt "to one of your friends that has a dog, "that it'll fit and we'll just "send another one right now." And he was like, "Oh, okay." And then he gave it to one of his friends, I think who had a dog, spoke about his whole experience and now they've just gained another customer for life, out of his friend. And you just think about the experience he's had. He hasn't had to go through this rigamarole of "Ah, let's go to the post office, "now I gotta post this back to this person." All of that's gone out the window. So, just understanding that, is a key thing, right? He had heaps of stories. But I wanted, understand for us and for your businesses, if you're a listener, what is a process people are going through dealing with us and are we doing some stuff because we've always done it or because that's what we've been taught to do? Or have we actually thought about what is it like to deal with us as a person or a business and how does the other person feel? I think that's what it comes down to. How do I make it feel like they're dealing with a friend?

- [Craig] That's so well put and such a good example. And customer service, yeah, delivered there. It's kind of the Amazon experience, isn't it? We all need to emulate that. That's become the table stakes in a way.

- [Ian] All right, Craig, onto HubSpot Gotcha of the Week. And this is the Workflow Go actions, which we spoke about in the last episode.

- [Craig] Yes, it is. So, we love the Go action in Workflows. It means you can tie branches together.

- [Ian] And, you know what, it got me this week when I was trying to find it in contact workflow

- [Craig] This is the thing. 'Cause everyone's so keen to use it, they're like "Ah." And of course, the first thing they try to do is use it in a contact workflow. Well in fact, so as I said we're recording this on the 10th of September, it's not in Contact Workflows yet, it's in Companies, Deals, and Tickets.

- [Ian] But it is coming.

- [Craig] It is coming and I can't wait. 'Cause that is, that is a feature of the year. Folders in workflows? Not doing it for me. Go action in workflows? Yes.

- [Ian] All right, Craig, and onto our Marketing Tip of the Week.

- [Craig] Yes, this is the importance of having a six-pack and, I'll tell you how that, we're talking of course about the Google six-pack which is when you, say, search for your brand name and you see not only your first result, but then six other site links there, so we've got a screenshot example in the show notes of this in action. The reason this has come about is because we've seen some HubSpot agencies, I haven't seen it with other companies, it's only HubSpot agencies, where their homepage doesn't have the slash, like, just the default URL. They have their homepage set to something like brand name dot com AU, or brand name dot com slash

- [Ian] Inbound marketing agency.

- [Craig] Inbound marketing agency or Digital marketing agency like as the URL. And I'm not sure why they do it. Someone's probably read a blog post somewhere that said you should have keywords in your. Anyway, it's bad advice. Your homepage should just have the root URL. And the reason is because it confuses Google. And so, we didn't want to I guess point the finger at people, but there's a couple of agencies around Sydney, HubSpot agencies where they've, they haven't got this root URL, they're got this long URL as their homepage, and they don't have a six-pack for their brand. And, well, what are the reasons you would want to have a six-pack, Ian?

- [Ian] Well, firstly, let's take up more space on that search page, Craig. Like if you just look at it, the amount of real estate you can take up there is another, probably, one and a half results, let's put it that way, on that page right next to your local listing. So, I would liken this, these six-packs to having six site links in your Google Ads, which is almost identical, you could almost mimic exactly that.

- [Craig] That's right. So if you want to check, just type your brand name into Google, search for your brand. And if you're not getting at least seven links, your main link and then your six-pack, then there's work to be done.

- [Ian] Correct. And just have a look and see how that's working because there's a massive opportunity there for you to actually do that. All right, Craig, onto our Insight of the Week, group chat trend.

- [Craig] Another really good post from Andreessen Horowitz in their, I guess, insights into digital trends. And this one's about the group chat and again looking at behaviors in China. And the rise of what I'll call the concierge group chat. So these are private groups, could be on WhatsApp, well these are often in WeChat, could be in WhatsApp, could be in...

- [Ian] Messenger?

- [Craig] Could be in Messenger. What's the other one I've just had a mental blank with? Telegram and other messaging apps like that.

- [Ian] Yep.

- [Craig] So these are private groups, they're often invite only, they're not publicly available. In some ways you could say our WhatsApp group is like this.

- [Ian] Correct.

- [Craig] It's not really publicly findable, unless you see a link from us. It's normally invite-only, you're normally booted out as soon as you start spamming.

- [Ian] Correct.

- [Craig] Or are obnoxious in the group.

- [Ian] Which we've done.

- [Craig] Which we have done, yes. And it's a safe space and here's the key, though. It's the entree to e-commerce and transactions. So basically, brands are setting these up. Very much the case in China. Set up brands especially for people traveling and going abroad, they're asking questions of what's this? Good examples in this article about "What adapter should I use here, "I'm in another country." "How can I find this?" And then, often, "What should I use to do" and products are promoted and they're sold and it's like this, the barriers are down, you're not being sold too. You have a need that's being answered right there. Okay, I'm just gonna click the buy link and buy it. And so that's it. It's the pathway to transactions. So this is an excellent article about--

- [Ian] To reduce friction.

- [Craig] About reducing friction, but also behavior trends that are changing and that as marketers we need to be aware of. So this advertising on the newsfeed in Facebook, sure, keep doing that, but we've gotta be aware of all these other channels and, some of them you can't even get into. So it's not an advertising play, it's actually a provide value play. And the key takeaway I had from this is that you need a lot more resources. This isn't something you just outsource to an agency or if it is, here's an opportunity for agencies to be actually providing that service authentically. It's a resource-heavy piece and so this is where brands will have an advantage, that if you've got the bigger, kind of, base across customer support, this is a channel where it's a first mover advantage for sure before this becomes mainstream.

- [Ian] Gold.

- [Craig] Speaking of gold.

- [Ian] What is the gold of the week, Craig?

- [Craig] This is an article on Medium right. It's about a health company, actually to do with doctors, where they had a form, online form that you fill out. And one of their main competitors completely copied every single element of the form completely with spelling mistakes, the questions they asked, like there's a whole bunch of questions, takes you through a series of forms. Gotta read this article, 'cause they're just pointing the finger. But it's written so well, 'cause they said: "Thank you so much. "We take this as such a compliment, "it's so encouraging to see that "you've just copied every single decision we made. "It's obvious that we have done it right and well. "However, here's a few things that you didn't copy "which we do recommend in addition, "because your clients will love this as well "'cause we know ours do. So, recommend." It's written so well. And it's kinda like, this is the promotion of the week for this brand. Anyway, it's an article on Medium, it's gone in the show notes, go and check it out, it's classic.

- [Ian] All right, and the tweet of the week, Craig? "When Google puts four paid ads ahead of your first organic result, for your own brand name."

- [Craig] This blew up on Twitter. Jason Fried, from Basecamp, talking about how he has to bid on his own brand name to appear, and lamenting that there's four other ads ahead of his first organic result. And they're all competitors bidding on his brand name. Now, we've known about this for years.

- [Ian] Yes.

- [Craig] And we kind of use it with our clients. It's kind of one of those unfortunate things that happen in Google, so you've gotta embrace it. But to many people not aware of this, they're appalled by it!

- [Ian] So let's read this ad, I was quite amused by the ad. And I was actually surprised it was able to run, but anyway. It says, so this is the ad headline, it says, "Basecamp.com. "We don't want to run this ad. "We are the number one result, "but this site lets companies advertise against us, "using our brand. "So here we are, a small independent co., "forced to pay ransom to a giant tech company."

- [Craig] When you read this, of course there's hundreds of replies, and replies to a lot of them, he couldn't even use the word "Google" in his ad to say "Google won't let us run ads here" He had to say "This site." He couldn't actually say "Google." So, the hypocrisy. In a sense like, oh no, you can't say anything detrimental about the Google brand, but of course Google will let lots of other brands sit ahead of you in the search result. So it's great. And I think it's good, it's a barometer of people's--

- Correct.

- [Craig] I guess frustration with huge tech companies, in a way.

- [Ian] All right, Craig, and our Quote of the Week? And this is from Brian Halligan, from his 2019 Inbound keynote, and this really stood out to me, it says, "How they sell is how they win." All right, there's some Bonus Links of the Week.

- [Craig] There was one just talking about, this was just a WordPress plugin. You know how Chrome supports lazy--

- [Ian] Lazy loading?

- [Craig] Yeah. So there's a plugin that will actually, you pop on WordPress and it'll go through and make sure that they are all set, mostly images, to lazy load. So, even faster performance.

- [Ian] And we'd love you to share this podcast with anybody that is using HubSpot or is considering using HubSpot as that would greatly help us. So, thank you, listeners, for another great year as we finished four years of podcasting and we enter another one. I hope you've been enjoying listening to us And until next time?

- [Craig] Catch you later, Ian.

- [Ian] See you, Craig.

- [Craig] Hey there, thanks for listening to this episode of HubShots. For show notes and the latest HubSpot news and tips, please visit us at hubshots.com.