Why It's Time for Marketers to Stop 'Hacking' Content [Podcast]

April 8, 2019 Randy Frisch

What does a wildly successful marketing brand do once success hits and growth explodes? According to HubSpot’s VP of Marketing and Growth Kieran Flanagan, it keeps optimizing.

By optimization, Flanagan isn’t referring to “hacking” content or experiments that result in short-term gains. Instead, HubSpot focuses on winning the hearts and minds of its audience. (Seriously, their content team is split into two parts: marketers focused on winning over “minds” and “hearts.”) With this strategy, HubSpot aims to maintain its reputation as a company that is both a teaching resource and a company that fosters personal connection.

With the goal of scalability and long-term maintenance in mind, Flanagan and his team approach each content experiment with no shortcuts, hacks, or tricks, Tune in to this episode to learn about HubSpot’s approach to engaging top-of-funnel users and alternatives to “hacking” content.

In This Episode: 

Why HubSpot Split Its Content Teams Into “Mind” and “Heart”

HubSpot’s goal is to win over both the hearts and minds of every business owner. To do that, they’ve segmented both their SMB and mid-market content teams into two. To win over minds, HubSpot creates tactical content that teaches something and helps solve a problem. And when it comes to winning over the hearts of those people, they create an emotional connection to something they truly care about.

“Have some sort of enemy in mind, or take some sort of stance—something that helps people feel one way or the other. It’s better to be on one end of that spectrum versus being a brand who just sits in the middle.” – @searchbrat

Hard Truths About The Short-Sightedness of “Growth Hacks”

When it comes to “growth hacks,” Flanagan explains that you have to implement something that's scalable or you're just not going to invest in it and it's not going to drive long-term growth for the company.  

“The problematic thing with most experiments is that they need to take into account scalability.” – @searchbrat

How HubSpot Optimizes Its “Freemium” Offerings to Attract More and Better Leads

Flanagan highlights the three ways in which someone begins their journey with HubSpot and how they structure their demand funnel. He explains PQLs (product qualified leads) that come from people using freemium versions of their product and hitting certain triggers within it.

“How we win the minds of business owners is we create tactical content that teaches them something and helps them solve a problem.” – @searchbrat

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For more insights from your favorite marketers, visit the Conex: The Content Experience Show stream.

About the Author

Randy Frisch

Randy Frisch is the CMO and Co-Founder of Uberflip, a content experience platform that empowers marketers to create content experiences at every stage of the buyer’s journey. He has defined and led this movement, prompting marketers to think beyond content creation and truly put their customers first by focusing on the experience. This movement has fuelled an annual conference, Conex: The Content Experience, that brings together 750+ passionate marketers, and a North American-wide Conex Tour. Randy is also the host of The Marketer’s Journey podcast, was named one of the Top 50 Fearless Marketers in the world by Marketo, and is the best-selling author of F#ck Content Marketing: Focus on Content Experience (yeah, he swears sometimes).

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