4 min read

Episode 64: Preparing for 2017, Solve for the Problem, Artificial Intelligence

Welcome to Episode 64 of HubShots!

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

Recorded: Monday 19 December 2016 | Published: Friday 23 December 2016

Shot 1: Inbound Thought of the Year

Thinking back on 2016 and some of the key inbound learnings:

Craig’s biggest a-ha moment: Kipp Bodnar’s approach to: “solve for the problem”


It has fundamentally changed our approach to everything - in business and in personal activities as well

Ian’s biggest a-ha moment: I have to say that “solve for the problem” has been it.  But to give you something different I would say “be informed, read up and deep dive into topics” as that is how you learn and become a practitioner.

Shot 2: HubSpot Feature/Tip of the Year

Craig’s favourite new items in 2016:

  • Lead Flows - quickest wins we’ve had lately
  • New user interface refresh - user experience is a priority for HubSpot

Ian’s favourite new feature in 2016:

  • HubSpot Projects

Paul’s (in Craig’s office) favourite feature:

  • Progressive form fills

Shot 3: Pro Tip (Reminder) of the Week

Analysing content in HubSpot:

  1. Check your Page Performance report (Under Reports menu)
  2. Check the SEO optimisation of each page (start with your top 10 most popular pages)
  3. Update the content for latest findings and accuracy
  4. Update internal links to increase relevance and freshness
  5. Update ‘Last Updated’ date  
  6. Add a tailored Lead Flow slide-in onto the page
  7. Check the CTA results for the page and if needed create a variation to test the CTA against to increase click through and conversion

Shot 4: Opinion(s) of the Week

A look at:

  • What has changed in 2016
  • What won’t change in 2017
  • How to combine the two - with examples
  • Thinking about Artificial Intelligence

Planning for the new year should include some analysis of what is new, but also what isn’t changing.

What has changed in 2016

First, a look at 2016 in terms of marketing and what is changing:


  • Digital advertising overtook TV advertising for the first time.
  • Facebook dominates attention and marketing dollars
  • VR and AR take off (eg Pokemon Go)
  • AI starts changing from science fiction to reality
  • Enterprises are all changing to be media companies as part of the offering
  • Martech gets huge - Microsoft purchased LinkedIn
  • Privacy, fake news, data collection, Native advertising guidelines

What ISN’T going to change in 2017

Thinking about what ISN’T going to change in the next few years.

Recall Jeff Bezos’ advice:


“I very frequently get the question: ‘What’s going to change in the next 10 years?’ And that is a very interesting question; it’s a very common one. I almost never get the question: ‘What’s not going to change in the next 10 years?’ And I submit to you that that second question is actually the more important of the two — because you can build a business strategy around the things that are stable in time. … [I]n our retail business, we know that customers want low prices, and I know that’s going to be true 10 years from now. They want fast delivery; they want vast selection. It’s impossible to imagine a future 10 years from now where a customer comes up and says, ‘Jeff I love Amazon; I just wish the prices were a little higher,’ [or] ‘I love Amazon; I just wish you’d deliver a little more slowly.’ Impossible. And so the effort we put into those things, spinning those things up, we know the energy we put into it today will still be paying off dividends for our customers 10 years from now. When you have something that you know is true, even over the long term, you can afford to put a lot of energy into it.” ― Jeff Bezos

What things will remain constant for your customers?:

  • Prospects and customers want help and value and answers and solutions
  • They want quick response (consider whether you should invest in chat tools and the costs of having them managed)
  • They want trusted advisors, they want to feel safe
  • They want to feel like individuals, so focus on anything that will help to personalise their experience and make them feel special
  • They want a good user experience

Planning for 2017

Here’s two quick thoughts for ways you can combine the two:

  • Consider how you can use AI technology to help you automate providing a personalised user experience that makes your visitor/prospect/customer feel special.
  • Consider how you can use chat technology to help you provide help and value quicker - it’s interesting that many companies will not consider chat tools because they don’t have the budget to resource them with a person answering chat sessions… and yet they will happily spend big on driving traffic to the site...

Artificial Intelligence

Paul Roetzer discusses AI in marketing:


[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G6-fQznbowY?rel=0&w=640&h=360]

Makes you realise why Dharmesh is pushing Growthbot so hard - it is just the beginning…

If you have an Enterprise license of HubSpot you have Predictive Lead Scoring - where HubSpot uses its own models to lead score contacts

Quill Engage will use natural language to describe your Google Analytics - sign up for a free account to give it a spin:



IBM Watson is driving AI based products:


Eg their Customer Support tool is an example of where the industry is heading:


Shot 5: HubShots Resource of the Year

Interviews with 7 Marketing Experts from HubSpot Sydney

60+ pages of marketing guidance from seven of Australia’s most successful marketers.


We will be updating this in 2017 with more information!

Shot 6: Quote of the Week

"Christmas is doing a little something extra for someone."

~ Charles M. Schulz

snoopy hug

HubShots Episode 64