Yep. I said it. Hubspot isn’t the Holy Grail of internet marketing. Sure, it has great content and I have learned a lot from Hubspot. Heck, I’ve even been published in a few Hubspot e-books in partnership with Who’s Blogging What. But just because you read HubSpot’s features, you download their ebooks and watch their free webinars, it doesn’t mean that you are an internet marketing expert.
Let me explain.
- No website knows everything. I’m sure even the folks at HubSpot can tell you that. So can the folks at Mashable. And whatever other blog you may be reading at the time. Just because a blog or website has high prestige doesn’t mean all their ideas are the best ones.
- HubSpot is an internet marking company. Company as in, for-profit. Haven’t you recieved a follow-up email or call from their representatives after a webinar or e-book download? HubSpot releases great content because it helps them get customers. Yes, it is free in a monetary sense, but you are giving your personal information to a company looking to sell you their services. HubSpot is actually pretty smart when it comes to content marketing. Deliver great content and the customers will come.
- How much of ‘it’ is remarkable? I think HubSpot has 4 of my email addresses, probably because I have about 8 email addresses and keep forgetting which ones I’ve used in the past. But this means I get about 4-8 emails a week from them, asking me to sign up for webinars that have already run or yet another webinar about Facebook Marketing. When you are actually immersing yourself in internet marketing and social media for 40-60 hours a week like me, this gets old. I am not saying I know it all– I definitely believe that I learn something new every day– but I would say that I learn more by experience than anything a webinar can teach me.
- Going to HubSpot doesn’t make you an expert. Anyone can take a webinar, anyone can download a free e-book. But wouldn’t you agree there is a distinct difference between actually implementing Facebook campaigns and just reading about them? Same with reading “Running for Women” by Kara Goucher and running a sub-4 marathon. I could read her book in one Saturday. Does this mean I could go run a marathon on Sunday? Nope. Great, you know about websitegrader.com and Twitter. So do thousands, millions of other people. Tell me what else makes you special.
- There are tons of other resources out there. Some of which are independent marketing experts who write damn great content. Some of which have just as good (or better) e-books and studies as HubSpot. These blogs include Social Media Explorer, Social Media Examiner, econsultancy, Mari Smith’s Blog, Laura Lake’s Marketing Blog,Duct Tape Marketing, The Anti-Social Media, Brian Solis, Ignite’s Blog, Social Media Today, AllFacebook… I could keep going here but you get the point. The main thing is, don’t put all your reading in one basket. Expand your horizons. Maybe you’ve heard of all the blogs I’ve listed. Awesome. But I’m going to say that the colleague who told me, “I read the same blogs as you do” surely hasn’t because he/she wouldn’t have to tell me they read the same blogs as me. You don’t have to prove a point. You just have to show results.
Reading books, blogs, e-books, webinar transcripts, presentations, etc. can make you better at your job. But the only way you get to expert status is by being the one that writes the blogs, e-books, books, webinar transcriptions, and presentations that everyone else wants to read. And this my friends, this is what HubSpot is doing right. While their stuff isn’t re-inventing the wheel, it is introducing solid content to people who want to learn (and who also may be perspective customers).
So bottom line, instead of asking your potential social media marketing expert whether or not they have a Twitter account or have ever downloaded an e-book, maybe you should ask them if what their average Facebook Page impression rate and monthly “like” growth is per client. Maybe you should ask them to prove how they have helped other companies instead of being impressed that they have over 15,000 followers. Sure, peacocks look pretty when their wings are spread, but who knows how smart they are?