At this point, there's little doubt that inbound marketing and content strategies have revolutionized online marketing. Inbound works, and the principles involved can - in theory - be utilized by virtually any business, even if they lack the budget to hire a dedicated marketing firm.
If you have a Hubspot account, you could manage your own inbound marketing campaigns using the same tools as the professional agencies... but you won't see positive returns unless you're also using the same methods as the professional agencies.
So, if you want to do your own online marketing, here's our quick guide to doing so successfully!
Five Steps To DIY Hubspot Success
1 - Be prepared to do your homework.
While Hubspot is relatively easy to use, compared to most Content Management Systems, the wide variety of tools will still require time, concentration, and study to learn. We recommend setting aside some time - perhaps an hour a day - for looking around Hubspot, reading their blogs and forums, and practicing.
Hubspot have also produced a range of excellent self-teaching materials which we cannot recommend highly enough.
2 - Have an actual strategy.
There's a very basic mistake we see a lot of newcomers make, and that's confusing "tactics" with "strategy." Strategy is your overall plan of business, with specific goals laid out that you want to achieve. Tactics are the individual moves you make in pursuit of those goals.
Which is to say, "Posting to Facebook" is a tactic, and not a strategy.
On the other hand, "Increasing our online revenues 50% through a combination of social media brand-building outreach and targeted blogging to reach ideal buyers" would be a fine starting point for crafting a detailed strategic plan.
For content marketing, much of this revolves around understanding your market better. If you understand what your buyers want, you can build your online image to give them what they want.
3 - Start slowly creating content.
In your early days with Hubspot, you want to go slowly. Start with only one or two kinds of content - blogs and LinkedIn posts, for example - and focus on laying a good foundation for future efforts.
It's easy to go nuts with Hubspot, since you can manage dozens of different campaigns and online presences at once. This is a great way to get in over your head and end up with fragmented and neglected presences across the Internet, damaging your reputation.
4 - Track and analyze your results.
Nothing is static in the world of content marketing. You should be making constant use of Hubspot's analytic capabilities to watch over the results of your marketing.
Virtually everything in Hubspot is test-able. You can run two or more campaigns simultaneously, and compare the results. This is how you can fine tune your wording, like figuring out whether your audience responds better to hard-sell or soft-touch techniques.
There's no such thing as a perfect inbound campaign. They can always be refined and improved, since it's unlikely anyone will ever see true 100% visitor-to-sale conversion.
5 - Rinse and repeat.
Keep reading, keep learning, keep strategizing, keep analyzing, and keep looking to move into new campaigns whenever it won't disrupt your other processes.
The Hubspot Agency Alternative
If this all sounds like a lot of work... well, it is. Ultimately, managing a set of inbound campaigns on Hubspot is a full-time job. You can start by doing DIY, but one day, you're almost certainly going to have to hire help.
So while it costs more up-front, hiring a Certified Hubspot Partner agency can get your online campaign up and running in weeks, rather than months, while providing much more reliable results the entire way.
Which method is best for you? It ultimately depends on your budget and your long-term plans.
However, whether you're just getting started or you're already an old hand at Hubspot, if you need more advice, feel free to contact us for a free consultation!