Tag: HubSpot Marketing Blog

HubSpot Celebrates Outstanding Partner Agencies at INBOUND15’s Partner Awards

 

 

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Today, inbound marketing and sales platform software company HubSpot Inc., announced their Partner Awards during a ceremony at their annual INBOUND conference. The Awards celebrate agencies, both domestic and international, that have demonstrated exceptional growth in the inbound marketing space over the past year. HubSpot has over 2,500 partners globally that share the company’s commitment to transforming marketing with personalization and context, and have been instrumental in changing the way businesses attract, engage, and delight their customers. The Awards ceremony honored a range of agency achievements with categories such as ‘Agency Partner of the Year’ to ‘Best Client Ebook.’

“The agencies recognized by our Partner Awards this year are marketing leaders who have reached new heights with their inbound approach. With HubSpot they have challenged the traditional marketing playbook and succeeded in delivering exceptional value to their customers. I am beyond proud to honor them tonight” said Arjun Moorthy, HubSpot’s VP of Business Development & Partner Products.

Below are the Awards categories and respective winners:

from HubSpot Marketing Blog https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/hubspot-celebrates-outstanding-partner-agencies-at-inbound15-s-partner-awards

10 Examples of Amazing Viral Marketing Videos

93 million. This number is the combined total of views for the 10 videos listed in the post below. That is nearly the number of people who watch the Super Bowl!

These 10 videos provide great examples of what it takes to make a video that can capture the attention of millions and market your product in the process. Take a look at each of these videos. They are all very different and invoke different emotions in order to capture attention. These videos prove that it doesn’t matter if your company is B2B or B2C; anyone can create a video that goes viral .

1. THE NEW DORK – Entrepreneur State of Mind (Jay-Z ft Alicia Keys Spoof) | grasshopper.com

2. 2010 Kia Soul Hamster Commercial | Black Sheep Kia Hamsters Video

3. Herding Cats – Ikea

4. <a title="Tea Partay – Smirnoff " href="”> Tea Partay – Smirnoff

5. Will It Blend? – iPhone – BlendTec

6. Dove Evolution – Dove

7. Evian Roller Babies – Evian

8. The T-Mobile Dance – T-Mobile

9. YouTube HD Camera Trick Challenge- Samsung

10. United Breaks Guitars – Sons of Maxwell

What other viral marketing videos have you enjoyed?


from HubSpot Marketing Blog https://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/6649/10-examples-of-amazing-viral-marketing-videos.aspx

The Future of Social Media Is Here: These Are the Trends You Need to Know

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It’s time we talked about how you’re using social media. That’s right, this is an intervention.

We’re concerned about what you’re doing, and more importantly what you’re not doing. Your lack of adoption of new channels. Your total disrespect of mobile first users. Your reluctance to try video. Your fear of spending money on social ads. Your results. We’re concerned.

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We bring up these concerns out of love for you and modern marketing. You see, social media marketing has changed, but most social media marketers haven’t. A modern social strategy is light-years away from the definition we used in 2012 and it’s time to adapt. Adapt to a mobile first, video obsessed audience. Adapt to new tactics that take advantage of new tools. Adapt how we measure success and what we’re trying to achieve.

This isn’t a matter of making tweaks, we need to start over.

We know this because it’s something our own marketing team has gone through here at HubSpot. Over the last few years we’ve had to constantly reinvent ourselves. We’ve learned the hard way so you don’t have have to.

Why do we need a new start?

Things have changed — and that all starts with Facebook.

Flash back to 2012 with me for a moment. It was an eventful year: we were all watching Gangnam Style on our iPad 3’s, morning the loss of Whitney Houston, and eagerly awaiting the Facebook IPO. An IPO that we were excited but unsure about.

It wasn’t clear at all in 2012 that Facebook had a viable business model. Investors were concerned if they could actually monetize. After the first few months of their IPO their stock was down and their future looked grim.

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The fact that this was only 5 years ago Facebook seems ludicrous. Today Facebook is one of the fastest growing, most well known, most trusted, and most valuable companies in the world. It’s only rivals may be Apple and Google.

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Facebook’s success as a business is directly related to their success in mobile. In 2012 Mobile represented only 10% of Facebook’s revenue, today it accounts for 82%. They were able to move with users from desktop to mobile and create a totally new stream of revenue that corresponded with a big shift in consumer behavior.

This success has allowed Facebook to expand. It’s gave them the means to buy Instagram and WhatsApp and spend time developing new products like Messenger.

The average person globally now spends 50 minutes a day with Facebook.

…there are only 24 hours in a day, and the average person sleeps for 8.8 of them. That means more than one-sixteenth of the average user’s waking time is spent on Facebook.  – New York Times

These new products are big bets that they hope will have the same impact on their business as their shift to mobile did for them back in 2012. Below is Facebook’s 10 year roadmap. An astonishingly ambitious plan to create multiple new products and revenue streams, most notably around messaging, video, virtual reality, and artificial intelligence.

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Facebook has never been more important than now. They are innovating incredibly fast and changing the meaning of social media. It’s critical to figure out how your audience lives in Facebook (Instagram, Messenger, WhatsApp) because they are there, everyone on the planet is. Once you do figure out how you can use the tools Facebook offers to connect with them.

The Trends: New Channels, Video, Mobile, Ads, AI

There are 5 major trends that are defining this next wave of social media.

1) New Channels

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One of Facebook’s most recent hits is Facebook Messenger. It’s one of a handful of new channels, along with Instagram, WhatsApp and Snapchat that’s dominating time spent on social.

In 2012 Social Media was the big three, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn. That’s it. Your goal was to engage and grow communities on these channels via desktop. The idea was to gain enough likes and followers so that you had a reliable distribution channel for your content.

Today, your audience may still be there, but there many other places as well. Social media usage hasn’t slowed down one bit since 2012, it’s grown and diversified. You must know your audience and you must focus your efforts on the networks that are most relevant for them.

To make this happen, the role of the social media manager / marketer needs expand. They need to understand your target market, and whatever social channel they spend time in. That probably includes Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin, but it’s now expanded to new networks like SnapChat, Reddit, YouTube, WhatsApp, and more.

They should know how those networks work and be able to create the content that does best in those channels. This means that social media marketers need to be experts in ads, creating video, stories, messaging bots, and more.

Furthermore, their goal shouldn’t be to try and turn these places into a distribution channel. Instagram for instance isn’t interested in having users leave their app. They’ve made it hard for marketers to drive people from their app to a landing page without an ad.

A modern social media marketing strategy doesn’t try to drive people out of these sites, they turn these sites into a conversion funnel in and of themselves. They create amazing content that brings attention and use ads and technology to convert those users in network. No landing pages, no emails. This is true for all networks now, not just Instagram. More on this later.

2) Video

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Instagram was one of the first totally visually focused social networks, at first it was almost all pictures. It’s massive success served as a spark for the rest of the industry. Quickly other social networks started leaning away from text into images, and that trend continued to video.

We all now have super computers in our pockets with strong wifi and cellular networks. This makes hosting, sharing, and serving video a fast enjoyable experience. The result is that video has become the currency of social media. People want video. You may have noticed how much more video you’re seeing in your Facebook and LinkedIn feeds, expect more.

This may have impacted you, but for even younger audiences social has totally replaced TV. They still want to consume video and now these cord cutters turn directly to YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook to get it.

All of this has already happened. It’s not new. This means if you haven’t figured out how your company or brand can produce relevant video you must now or risk becoming irrelevant. Producing video should be something you add to your personal repertoire, but isn’t easy, and unlike blogging a bad product can hurt your brand and image. If you can’t do it yourself get help. Lean on good freelancers or hire folks with experience to guide the way and help you build your video strategy and production arm.

Video should be part of all your marketing campaigns. It can be live, pre-produced, casual, or polished, you’ll figure out what works for your audience, but you have to get started now if you haven’t. An easy way to figure out what to create is to always ask “What’s the video element?” to every single marketing campaign your team creates. Once you get started start reviewing the data. Focus on metrics like watch time over views, and let that be your guide to decide what’s working.

3) Mobile

You, me, and everyone else in the world have relatively cheap, extremely powerful, mobile phones in our pockets. Wifi is now everywhere, and 4g networks can be found in all corners of the globe. This has made accessing the internet and consuming content on mobile much easier. And it turns out that as long as the experience is good people prefer using their mobile device for everything.

A result of this is that social media is now almost all mobile. 80% of social usage now comes from mobile devices. Social media is growing like crazy and almost all of it is coming from mobile first or mobile only users. That’s right, some users in some regions only access the internet from their mobile device. How are you going to reach those users?

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Obviously it’s important to know your own audiences trends, but the short story is your marketing should now also be mobile first. Assume that the majority of people you engage with or want to reach in social are coming from their mobile phone.

For most B2B marketers this is a hard pill to swallow. The school of thought is that mobile marketing doesn’t work for B2B. That a mobile users on the go isn’t going to be as interested in a long form white paper as someone asking it from a desktop. That forms with several fields turn off mobile users.

Those concerns are valid and true, but it doesn’t mean mobile marketing doesn’t work for B2B, it just means we need to change our tactics and Facebook is eager to help.

Recently Facebook introduced Lead Ads, and they can become your mobile marketing strategy. There aren’t many shortcuts in marketing or life but Facebook’s created a big one with Lead Ads.

The ad unit brings your content to users on the Facebook mobile app and Instagram. It’s format allows you to feature your lead gen content, and a strong call to action. This is all great, but the magic comes after a user clicks on the ads CTA, they are served a form, that is auto populated with their information by Facebook.

This dramatically increases conversion rates. We’ve seen this totally flip the script for some marketers. They are now actually getting a better cost per lead at a higher conversion rate from their mobile campaigns vs. desktop.

Another great option for converting mobile users is Facebook Messenger. HubSpot CMO Kipp Bodnar recently wrote, “Facebook Messenger will be the next great marketing channel, and it is arguably the best way to engage with the Facebook community as a marketer.”

Step one is encouraging users to start conversations via messenger. There are lots of reasons why a customer or prospect would want to chat with you via Messenger. Maybe it’s to aid communications at an event you’re hosting or perhaps to deal with a customer service question.

Whatever the reason, it’s a good idea to start doing it. Having access to people via messaging means have a direct, mobile first, channel to people. In a world where people are ignoring email, and spending the majority of their time on their phone in a Facebook property, this will be important. Start building a plan for how you can start messenger conversations now.

4) Social Ads

Most people would agree that a modern social media marketing strategy has to incorporate video and mobile, but do you have to use ads? The answer now is yes.

You don’t have to always be running ads or use them for every campaign. But if you can’t effectively use paid media to amplify your inbound marketing strategy you’re going to lose to the competition.

Earlier I mentioned we are now in a world where pushing people off of social to your site to convert no longer works. That means ads are your main path to conversion in social now. Before you grab your pitchfork and start chanting “pay to play is wrong” let me say this. A good social ad strategy will make you way more money than it will ever cost you and help you compete with much larger businesses.

You also don’t need to have a massive budget to be successful. Ads can be easily scaled up and down, so when you figure out the right conversion path and reach profitability, dial things up.

All of the major social networks are aggressively trying to monetize their audiences. Most of them have been for awhile. Those monetization efforts started with exciting marketing solutions for big consumer focused brands, and they work.

Now Facebook and the others though are looking for new audiences to build for. If you’re reading this you’re probably a B2B marketer who doesn’t work at a fortune 500 company. That’s a great place to be if you want to start using ads.

Facebook and LinkedIn both now have great lead generation solutions that are built for a mobile audience. This is a big opportunity and one you don’t want to miss out on. It’s important to build a strong social media advertising muscle now. Ads don’t have to be part of every campaign, but you should always consider it.

When you do decide to use ads, use them in conjunction with inbound. An ad that is only an ad is boring and disruptive. But an ad powered by great content that is part of a well targeted inbound campaign is something your audience will welcome.  

5) Artificial Intelligence 

Machine learning and artificial intelligence are ideas that marketers are chomping at the bit to put to work. But the question that hasn’t been answered is how? Social Media and Social Ads are the answer.

No other marketing channel has grasped AI like social. It defines what content you see, what ads you’re served, and how you engage with your friends. In many ways AI defines social, and it’s important to keep this in mind when creating content. There is no more optimizing for time of day or keywords in social, everything is defined by a machine learning algorithm specific to individuals. When you thinking about content try to think like the machines.

Facebook and others have now made the same AI that powers what content is show to whom, available to better target your ads. When you run Facebook ads for instance, you have a powerful toolset of AI at your fingertips, even if they don’t make that obvious. Leaning on Facebook to target and optimize your ads is a very good idea.

Upload lists of your most valuable customers or highest priority prospect to Facebook and then implement Lookalike Audiences. With this data Facebook will put it’s AI to work by combining with their global user data to serve your ads to only the most valuable people.

At HubSpot our own ads used to manually test and optimize combinations of creative and targeting to get the best results. But over the course of this year simply decided to stop. They couldn’t beat Facebook’s AI. At this point it’s just best to get out of your own way and let Facebook do it’s thing.

Look, things are different. Facebook has changed the world, mobile and video are here to stay, ads are they way forward, and it’s time to leverage AI. But for all the change that’s happened, inbound is still the way forward.

The best marketing will always be remarkable and focused on attracting people with the quality of its substance. And for all the advanced technology we have, the best marketing will still always be about people and personal connections.

No technology can replace the feeling someone gets when they feel like you’re talking only to them. It’s important to root everything you do in those concepts. It’s time to grasp these new concepts, tools, and tactics. If you can combine them with the fundamentals of inbound marketing, there is now stopping you.

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from HubSpot Marketing Blog https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/future-of-social-media-trends

6 Predictions for the Convergence of IoT and Digital Marketing

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We’re on the cusp of a tectonic shift in digital marketing.

The boom in IoT (Internet of Things) technology will soon allow us to analyze, predict, and respond to consumer behavior in almost every market possible.

That sounds amazing … but what’s the Internet of Things?

The Internet of Things is the connection of everyday products like cars, alarm clocks, and lights to computing devices via the internet. It allows them to exchange data with each other, providing marketers with more context about their customers’ product usage. This enables marketers to deliver more relevant messages and leads to greater customer engagement. 

For example, if you run out of milk or it spoils, a refrigerator connected to the internet could recognize your need and display a message on its screen or your phone about the best milk deals in town. You could even order a carton through one of those devices if the refrigerator company partnered with a grocery store.  

Since IoT technology connects the internet with objects that are ubiquitous in our daily lives, marketers in almost every industry will be able to engage consumers throughout every phase of the customer journey.

The term “Big Data” is an understatement for the amount of data IoT devices will produce. According to the Ericsson Mobility Report, IoT devices and sensors will exceed mobile phones as the largest category of connected devices in 2018 and generate a staggering 400 zettabytes of data per year.

IoT’s surge will overjoy marketers because they can leverage these massive data sets to integrate consumer behavioral signals into their marketing stack. This will allow them to capture interactions, conversion metrics, and consumer behavior predictions and link them to purchase-intent data.

Access to this data is exciting, but it could also lead to confusion. Marketers might not know how to interpret this unprecedented influx of information. Changes to the digital marketing landscape are clearly on the horizon. So check out these six predictions of how IoT will influence digital marketing’s growth and evolution and how you can prepare for it.

1) New digital devices will emerge.

Since anything connected to the internet could be an avenue for consumer engagement, marketers will move beyond today’s digital devices like laptops, mobile, and tablets.

For instance, we could use things like car and refrigerator monitors as possible touch points. Amazon already leverages IoT with their Dash buttons, allowing consumers to order a product with the push of a wifi-connected button.

2) IoT data, attribution, and analytics will revolutionize contextual marketing.

IoT devices generate unprecedented amounts of data, so every customer interaction allows marketers to capture consumer intent, behavior, needs, and desires. This makes it possible to serve contextually relevant marketing messages at the most optimal place and time.

Understanding a consumer’s behavior, purchase patterns, and location also provides a level of attribution, analytics, and predictive capabilities that were previously unavailable. Based on signals from IoT devices, we’ll be able to push timely notifications to consumers when they need to purchase something rather than waiting for them to show interest.

These insights and the ability to accurately attribute every interaction throughout the customer journey will be groundbreaking.

3) Marketing technology platforms will treat IoT data like their first born.

Marketing platforms and technologies will be able to ingest and use IoT data similarly to how cookies and unique IDs (UIDs) are used today. These platforms will also use IoT signals to further evolve our current cross-device technologies.

Developing platforms and technologies capable of ingesting, analyzing, and acting on these vast data sets will be a very complex undertaking. But evolution in digital marketing AI and machine learning applications will produce marketing technology platforms that can process, interpret, and evaluate these data sets in near real-time.

In other words, expect many new entrants in the marketing technology space to tackle this challenge.

4) The agency’s role will evolve.

Along with the traditional responsibilities of agencies, they will start playing an increasingly technical, data-centric role as technology partners. Agencies will help build their client’s platforms, develop their internal systems, and manage the implementation of tagging elements.

The agency staff’s skill set must adapt to the evolution of their role, though. They’ll need to develop an agile approach to managing campaigns, marketing initiatives, pricing, and product development.

Keen understanding of the data packets IoT devices can produce will become commonplace, as well as knowing what the actionable endpoints within a customer journey are.

5) Marketers will be able to deliver timely, personalized messages that align with their customer’s lifecycle stage

The ability to deliver timely, personalized messages at the precise moment to the optimal device will transform digital marketing. For example, using data collected from a fitness wearable and proximity data collected from beacons, digital marketers could deliver fitness product messaging or emails when the user is near a relevant advertiser’s store, like a smoothie joint.

The possibilities for using a combination of these signals to provide highly relevant messaging at the optimal moment are unlimited.

IoT could also provide marketers with the information to improve customer experience and determine when they should send acquisition or retention marketing messages. One example is using offline purchases coupled with proximity data from IoT devices in a brick and mortar store to target recent purchasers with an upsell email or social campaigns asking for product feedback to send to their peers.

6) There will be increased scrutiny of privacy and security.

With great data, comes great responsibility. We can expect more privacy and security regulations and technologies focused on protecting both consumer and enterprise data.

Methods such as network segmentation, device-to-device authentication, and bolstered encryption techniques will likely emerge to prevent IoT devices from being compromised.

The data created by the Internet of Things will unleash considerable digital marketing potential. Predicting exactly how these changes will play out is not exact, but the evolution is already underway.

The only question is: will you be prepared for it?

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from HubSpot Marketing Blog https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/6-predictions-for-the-convergence-of-iot-and-digital-marketing

6 of the Best Professional Bio Examples We’ve Ever Seen

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A short, professional bio is one of those things most people don’t think about until, all of a sudden, we’ve been asked to “shoot one over via email” and have approximately one afternoon to come up with it.

That’s when we scramble.

And when we scramble, our bio ends up reading like this:

Rodney Erickson is a content marketing professional at HubSpot, an inbound marketing and sales platform that helps companies attract visitors, convert leads, and close customers. Previously, Rodney worked as a marketing manager for a tech software startup. He graduated with honors from Columbia University with a dual degree in Business Administration and Creative Writing.”

… Woof, that was dull. Are you still with me? I swear, not even adding a tidbit about his cats would liven that bio up.

New Marketing Job

To be fair, in certain contexts, your professional bio does need to be more formal, like Mr. Erickson’s up there. But in many cases, writing a bio that’s readable — even conversational — is actually a really good thing. That means dropping that traditional format of listing your accomplishments like a robot and cramming as much professional-sounding jargon in there as you can.

Remember: The people reading your bio are suffering from information fatigue. If you don’t hook ’em in the first line, you’ll lose them quickly.

Alright, I know what you may be thinking … So what? It’s just a bio.

(P.S. Want to give your professional brand a boost? Take one of HubSpot Academy’s free certification courses. In just one weekend, you can add a line to your resume and bio that’s coveted by over 60,000 marketers.)

Why Does Your Professional Bio Matter?

I mean, how many people actually read those things, anyway?

The answer: A lot of people. More importantly, though, there’s no way to tell exactly who is reading it — and you always want it to be ready for when the right people to come across it. And when they do, you want it to catch their eye. In a good way.

You see, while your resume is only useful for when you’re actively applying for specific positions, your professional bio is much more visible. It can live on your LinkedIn profile, your company’s website, your guest blog posts, your speaker profiles, your Twitter bio, and many other places.

And, most importantly, it’s the tool that you can leverage most when you’re networking.

Bottom line? People will read your professional bio. Whether they remember it, and whether it makes them actually care about you, is a matter of how well you present yourself to your intended audience.

So, what does a top-notch professional bio look like?

Let’s take a look at some great examples. We’ve curated some of the best real professional bio examples we’ve ever seen online. Check ’em out, and use them as inspiration when crafting your own.

6 of the Best Professional Bio Examples We’ve Ever Seen

1) Phil Gutowski

Phil is a real estate broker for the East Boston neighborhood, and he’s mastered the art of adding a warm personality to the professional bio on his website.

First, check out the header of his bio: “Promoting positive community and economic growth in our neighborhood.”

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The header isn’t all about him, nor is it a hard sell about his business. Instead, he’s chosen to start with a value proposition. Why? Because Phil knows that his value proposition is the core of his competitive advantage. In header text that stands out on the page, he clearly articulates why someone would want to hire him instead of a competitor: This guy doesn’t just sell houses to make money; he promotes community and economic growth in the area.

The rest of his bio includes personal touches that make him more human. He does talk about his business history and accomplishments, but he does so while including personal details that invite readers to relate to him as a person.

For instance, he talks about where he’s from (a relevant detail for a real estate broker), his love of the water, why he started his business, and how he’s committed to the local community. His bio indicates he’s friendly and probably a pleasure to work with, which is important for a real estate broker someone would be working with one-on-one.

2) Ann Handley

If you’re a marketer, you’ve likely heard of Ann Handley. Her list of credentials is lengthy, and if she really wanted to, she could go on and on and on about her accomplishments.

But when people list out all their accomplishments in their bios, they risk sounding a little egotistical. Sure, you might impress a handful of people with all those laurels, but many people who read your bio will end up feeling either intimidated or annoyed. Think about it: Is that how you want the majority of your readers to feel when they read your bio?

To minimize the egoism that comes with talking about yourself, think about how you can list out your accomplishments without sounding like you’re bragging. Ann does this really well, choosing a tone in her bio that’s more approachable.

It starts with the excerpt in the footer of her personal website. Give it a quick read, paying close attention to the opening and closing lines:

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“This is Ann Handley’s website, and this is a bit of copy about her … That’s not giving you a lot of detail, is it? So read more here.” This is the kind of simple, friendly language that invites the reader in rather than shutting them out.

Follow the link and you’ll be led to a page dedicated to a fuller bio, which she’s divided into two parts: a “short version” (literally a bulleted list of key facts) and a “long version,” which includes traditional paragraphs. There’s something in there for everyone.

3) Mark Gallion

As a venture capitalist and an executive at several start-ups, Mark Gallion has different versions of his bio all over the internet. You can imagine some are more formal than others. But when it comes to his Twitter bio, he carefully phrased his information in a way that helps him connect with his audience — specifically, through the use of humor.

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Why would he choose humor when he runs four start-ups and constantly seeks funding for them? Well, Mark’s tactic is totally intentional: it’s a lever he pulls to refresh his brand while maintaining his already impressive and established identity as an entrepreneur.

Mark leverages his Twitter bio because it’s place where he can be human. And it helps him relate to his followers and potential investors.

When crafting your own Twitter bio, consider your audience and the personal brand you’re trying to create for yourself. Use it as an opportunity to be relatable. (And check out this list of amusing Twitter bios for inspiration.)

4) Lena Axelsson

When it all comes down to it, your professional bio is no different than any other piece of persuasive copy — no matter where it lives. One of the most common mistakes people make is thinking of it as its own beast, separate from other pieces of writing. If you think about it that way, you’re far more likely to write something painfully uninteresting.

When you sit down to write your professional bio and you’re watching that cursor blinking on the screen, think about how you would introduce a blog post. You don’t just dive right into the meat of the thing, now, do you? No. You start with an introduction.

The best bios are often concise (around 200–300 words), so you don’t have a lot of room to play around. But a single sentence that tees your reader up and provides context for the accomplishments that follow could make the rest of your bio that much more persuasive.

Take Lena Axelsson’s bio, for instance. She’s a marriage and family therapist — a job where empathy and compassion are a big part of the job description. That’s why she chooses to open her bio with a great introductory sentence: “When human beings experience trauma or severe life stressors, it is not uncommon for their lives to unravel.”

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Then, she goes into why she’s passionate about her job, how she helps her clients, and how she caters her approach to each individual patient. The necessary educational information is left for the end, after the reader has been hooked.

Your bio doesn’t have to be super serious, nor does it have to start with a joke. This bio shows how you can capture your reader’s attention by being empathetic or telling a brief story.

5) Mark Levy

Mark Levy is a small business owner who’s taken a more traditional approach to the professional bio on his website — but in a way that takes care to speak to his intended audience.

What we love about his bio is the way he’s set it up: On his business’ “About” page, he’s listed two biographies, which he’s labeled “Mark Levy’s Biography #1” and “Mark Levy’s Biography #2.”

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Click here to see the full version.

Like Ann, Mark’s given his readers two different options. The first biography is a “short version,” which includes a combination of bullet points listing his credentials and a few short paragraphs.

The second is the “long version,” which is actually even more interesting than the first one. Why? Because it reads like a story — a compelling one, at that. In fact, it gets really funny at parts.

The second sentence of the bio reads: “He was frightened of public school, loved playing baseball and football, ran home to watch ape films on the 4:30 Movie, listened to The Jam and The Buzzcocks, and read magic trick books.”

Here’s another excerpt from the middle:

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Of course, the fantastic copywriting isn’t a surprise, given that this guy wrote several books. But the conversational tone and entertaining copy let his quirky personality (and great writing skills) shine.

6) Corey Wainwright

Finally, we have Corey Wainwright, who’s the director of content here at HubSpot. She’s written content for HubSpot’s Marketing Blog for years, and her blog author bio has caught my eye since before I ever started working for HubSpot. (Back then, it started with, “Corey just took a cool vacation.”)

What I love most about Corey’s bio is that it’s a great example of how to deliver information about yourself without taking things too seriously. And in this context, that’s totally appropriate.

Despite having a number of impressive accomplishments under her belt, she simply doesn’t like displaying them publicly. So, she prefers making her author bio a little more “light.”

Her bio (pictured below) reads, “Corey is a Bruce Springsteen fan who does content marketing, in that order.”

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It works in this particular context because, at HubSpot, our blog authors often prefer to make themselves as friendly and approachable as possible — while letting the content speak for itself.

It helps that authors’ social media accounts are located right below our names and above our pictures. For folks who really do want a list of Corey’s credentials, they can click the LinkedIn button to go to her LinkedIn page. (You can read this blog post to learn how to create social media buttons and add them to your website.)

What are your favorite professional bio examples? Share with us in the comments.

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from HubSpot Marketing Blog https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/professional-bio-examples

Avoid the Summer Slump: 3 Tips from Growth Marketing Experts

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What was the last great idea you had for growth? 

No matter how skilled a marketer you are, sometimes we all get into flat-growth slumps. Even a year that started out strong can devolve into a mediocre one, especially during the summer. It can be tough to keep coming up with new ideas that lead to sustained growth over time.

To help you avoid the dreaded summer slump, we asked three growth marketing experts to share their proven tips on how to jump-start growth and keep up momentum through the rest of 2017. Check them all out below, and start incorporating these strategies into your team’s growth marketing approach.

3 Growth Tips to Avoid the Summer Slump

1) Seek Out New Voices for Your Content

If you want to grow your content reach, try using Help a Reporter Out to source expert influencers & partners. You can quote them in your piece, and they’ll share it to their own audiences.

— Blaise Lucey, Director of Product & Content Marketing at Bitly

2) Make Your Content Extremely Easy to Share

Create content with sharing in mind, and give your audience a way to easily share it. People share content that they want to represent them, so make sure the piece will make them look smart when they share it. Then, build in sharing mechanisms like social media share links, and mailto links directly into the content.

— Eric Peters, Growth Marketer at HubSpot Academy

3) Engage With Key Influencers

Be the first to comment on an influencer/journalist’s content, and make sure the content adds value to the discussion. That’s a better way to start a relationship (and drive more interaction with your own brand) than following them on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter.

— David Ly Khim, Growth Marketing Manager, Sales Products at HubSpot

Get more tips on how to drive sustained growth at in our upcoming live session, 10 Growth Hacks To Help You Crush The Rest of 2017.

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from HubSpot Marketing Blog https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/summer-slump-growth-tips

July Social Media News: Snapchat Links, Instagram Photo Replies & More

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In the age of the 24-hour news cycle, it’s tough — scratch that — it’s impossible to keep up with every single story that comes out.

And that’s especially true of social media, where new features and apps are launched at a speed that leaves social media marketers wondering, “So … where should I post today?”

That’s why we’ve written this monthly news roundup — to help you keep up and start testing out new features, new products, and stay up on trends. New Call-to-action

From Facebook to Snapchat, from new product launches to small tweaks, here’s a list of what’s new in social media this month. The list isn’t exhaustive, but you can expect to learn the major highlights — what was launched, what changed, and what these stories could mean for marketers.

9 of the Biggest Social Media News Stories This Month

1) Snapchat adds links to posts.

One of Instagram’s biggest competitive advantages over Snapchat was the ability to drive traffic: Brands and verified users could add links to Instagram Stories to drive followers to landing pages, blog posts, and purchase pages. This feature made Instagram a more formidable traffic and lead generation tool — and social media marketers could tie social media efforts directly to traffic generated.

But now, Snapchat offers the same capability — and it’s available to all users, not just a select few.

Users can add links by filming a Snap and tapping the paper clip to add a link, like so:

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(HubSpot customers: We recommend creating a tracking URL when adding links to Instagram and Snapchat Stories so you can calculate direct traffic numbers from the post. Learn how to set one up here.)

2) Snapchat users can add voice filters, change colors, and film multiple Snaps at once.

Another big rollout from Snapchat this month came in the form of expanded filming and editing capabilities.

Now, users can record up to six 10-second Snaps at the same time by holding down the recording button (so as not to interrupt filming) and can quickly and easily post the Snaps all at once. Try this feature out by holding down the record button for as long as you’d like and you’ll see the recording turn over after each 10-second video. Then, the snaps you’ve filmed will show up on the side of your screen that you can pick and choose from when it comes time to post. If you don’t like a Snap, you can click and drag it into the trashcan:

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Other new features include the Tint Brush, which lets users change the color of elements of a Snap, and backdrops, which let users choose a fun background, and then highlight a part of their Snap they want to be in the foreground. To access these fun editing tools, tap the scissors icon once you’ve recorded a Snap:

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Finally, you can now change the way you sound in Snaps with voice filters, too. Once you record a video, tap the volume icon to choose a squeaky animal voice, a robotic monotone, or an alien accent:

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3) Instagram users can now reply to Stories with photos and videos.

In an effort to keep up with Snapchat, on the other hand, Instagram launched the capability to reply to Instagram Stories and direct messages with photos or videos.

This feature has been in place for a while on Snapchat, so it’s a smart (and competitive) move to roll out a comparable camera feature. This will allow users to connect with friends and brands in the way they please — whether that’s with text, photos, or videos. Neater still — users can add a sticker of the story they’re replying to in order to make it extra meta:

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Source: Instagram

4) Facebook is rolling out custom audiences based on interaction with Instagram Business pages.

Facebook has started the rollout of targeting audiences on Facebook based on their prior interactions with Instagram Business profiles. Advertising on Facebook and Instagram was already advantageous, because advertisers could analyze user interactions with different topics and types of content — but soon, Facebook advertisers will be able to see which business pages specifically convert well. Then, advertisers can target users — and curate ad content — accordingly.

FacebookCustomAudiencesInstagramBusinessProfile-1.jpgSource: Adweek

5) Users can broadcast on Facebook Live in Spaces, Facebook’s VR communities.

Remember when we announced the launch of Spaces earlier this year? Facebook launched a new capability with Oculus that lets friends connect 1:1 or in groups of friends — in full virtual reality (VR).

Depending on your opinion of social media eroding in-person relationships, Spaces is a unique way to connect and engage in a high-tech way. And now, users can broadcast from Facebook Spaces using Facebook Live, so their entire Facebook audiences can see what they’re up to.

For brands and individuals who’ve seen success and engagement using Facebook Live, this could be a cool way to stand out in the busy News Feed. Check it out in action below:

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Ffacebook%2Fvideos%2F10156028448051729%2F&show_text=0&width=560

6) Facebook may begin testing a subscription service with publishers this fall.

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Source: Facebook

The Street reported this month that Facebook would be launching a subscription service with publishers later this year.

Tests will begin in October, and the service will involve Facebook’s Instant Articles — the already successful and popular publishing platform on the social network. Facebook and publishers will create a paywall after users read 10 articles per month, at which point they’ll be directed to a landing page encouraging them to subscribe.

This announcement is part of Facebook’s ongoing partnership with publishers as part of the Facebook Journalism Project, a Facebook spokesperson told TechCrunch. This move will be sure to make publishers happy — especially considering 66% of Facebook users get their news from the site.

7) Twitter users can mute new accounts and people they don’t know.

In another step toward improving user safety and preventing harassment, Twitter added a capability that lets users mute newly registered accounts, or accounts that don’t follow you. If an abusive user is blocked or suspended from tweeting, they might simply open a new account to continue harassing other Twitter users, and this measure lessens their visibility and prevents targeted users from seeing abusive content.

8) LinkedIn launches native video.

LinkedIn started rolling out a native video feature in a nod to the growing popularity of this content format across platforms. My colleague, Ryan Bonnici, noticed this on his LinkedIn feed recently, and once it rolls out to all users (it’s currently being tested among a few users and brands), we’ll give you a full rundown of how to use it.

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9) Amazon launches Spark, the shoppable social network for Prime users.

In a nod to the popularity of shoppable Instagram posts and lifestyle content on Pinterest, Amazon launched a social sharing platform for Amazon Prime subscribers. It’s available within the Amazon mobile app, where users can share visual content and tag different products available for purchase — where else? — on Amazon.

Download the Amazon mobile app and check it out:

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Did we miss any news this month? Start a discussion in the comments below.

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from HubSpot Marketing Blog https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/july-social-media-news