We received some exciting news from HubSpot during #Inbound13 last week. In between some incredible presentations from Seth Godin and Arianna Huffington, Brian Halligan, CEO and co-founder of HubSpot, announced three game-changing new features to the HubSpot software. In case you missed it, here is a brief description of the new features and what they mean for the future of inbound marketing.
- Content Optimization System
- Social Inbox
The first new feature is geared towards sales reps and is a first step towards making the sales process more like the inbound process. The new feature is called Signals. The main purpose of Signals is to give sales reps an instant update on the actions of their prospects and leads.
More specifically, the feature sends a desktop notification to the sales rep once a prospect or lead does any of the following: opens an email, clicks on a link in an email or visits your website.
The feedback is instantaneous so that a sales rep is always in the know. This immediate information can then be leveraged in a follow-up email or sales call. By doing so, the sales rep becomes more relevant to the prospect or lead on the other end.
This tool comes with some initial drawbacks the biggest of which is that the actions your recipients take from the email are not connected to that recipient’s contact information in HubSpot. I believe this will be updated and eventually tie back to the contact information.
A few other drawbacks are that the tool does not work on mobile devices, the data cannot be downloaded in any form and is exclusive to Gmail and Outlook on PCs (not MACs).
Overall, Signals is a great first start for integrating the sales process into the inbound marketing process.
Content Optimization System
The content optimization system is really transformational. There are still many details to come but the short of it is that the content and webpages that show on your website can now be changed depending on who is visiting your website.
For example, you could display a different homepage and experience to a current customer than to a person visiting your site for the first time. This is extremely powerful for marketers who are always trying to find ways to customize and personalize the experience for their contacts.
The backend works similarly to many of the current tools in HubSpot that allow segmenting and personalization.
I see plenty of opportunities with this tool and I think the entire web design/development industry will be transformed because of it. More to come as we learn more about the tool.
Social Inbox is the last feature that HubSpot launched at Inbound13. It brings context to the social ecosystem. In the past, all social content from contacts was treated the same. Now, Social Inbox allows users to filter their social content by leads, customers or those that are neither. This allows sales reps and marketers to know immediately how to engage with the social contact.
Social Inbox also provides an easy way for companies to follow topics. For example, you may want to receive alerts in your social stream when users mention your company or your competitors on Twitter. Again, once they mention one of your selected terms, you can easily and quickly identify the stage the user is in your funnel and follow up appropriately.
As expected, HubSpot has added some great new features to its software that are going to help not just marketers but also sales reps, extending the reach of inbound into the sales process. I’m excited to see the results as we start implementing these new features for ourselves and our clients. Stay tuned.