Plotting a Course for Inbound SuccessBy the end of 2016, MO Agency had realised that it needed to change its approach to marketing. While it was creating plenty of content, it wasn’t doing it in a strategic way. It was wasting time producing pieces that didn’t speak to the needs of its prospects, and it was missing out on opportunities to drive them through the funnel.
“We weren’t generating the website traffic and the quality leads that we needed. We wanted to get all our activities working together, from first touch right through to closed sale. The inbound methodology offered a blueprint for that,” explains Luke Marthinusen, founder and managing director at MO.
Luke knew that the right software partner would be crucial, and he investigated a number of options, including Pardot and SharpSpring. However, it was the HubSpot software that really grabbed his attention.
“HubSpot had been on my radar for years, so I was excited to test it out. The HubSpot team gave me a demo, and it was everything I hoped it would be – easy to use, with all the features we needed under the one roof.”
As a digital agency, MO naturally wanted to use inbound not only for itself but for its clients as well. The HubSpot Partner Program offered a way to do just that.
“We wouldn’t just be getting a software platform but rather a whole system for inbound success. The amount of guidance and training on offer was amazing. It had everything we needed to grow as an inbound agency and to help our customers achieve their goals. I was pretty much sold, but I still did my due diligence by reading online reviews and talking to local HubSpot Partner agencies. The message was clear – HubSpot is the leader in this field.”
The decision was an easy one, and MO signed up to the HubSpot Partner Program in late 2016.
Strategic Content and Aligned Teams
MO wanted its own website to be a model of all that can be achieved with the HubSpot software. It got started by creating personas – marketing managers and business executives in the B2B technology, legal and finance sectors. The agency also adopted a goal-oriented content strategy inspired by the inbound methodology. Today, it has a popular blog, a newsletter and a content library that includes ebooks, infographics and videos. Everything is tailored to the interests and pain points of its personas, and visitors are moved through the funnel with Calls-to-Action and Forms.
MO uses the HubSpot Growth Stack, the combination of the marketing, CRM and sales software, which has helped it to align its sales and marketing functions. The marketing team is able to deliver a high volume of quality leads, and the sales department can take full advantage.
“Sales Pro has been a revelation for our salespeople. Before, they were using spreadsheets, which meant that deals could slip through the cracks. Now they have a complete view on the pipeline, targets to hit and a better way to connect with every prospect,” says Luke.
He believes that the support on offer from HubSpot has been a big part of MO’s success. As well having access to all the resources available from the HubSpot Academy, the agency also gets one-to-one coaching from the HubSpot team.
“Our HubSpot channel consultant made sure that we got up and running really quickly. He’s very knowledgeable about the platform, and he gives us loads of pointers on how to get the most out of it. As well as that, we have our HubSpot channel account manager, who is helping us to position and sell our new inbound services. We feel that HubSpot is truly our partner; we know that it’s invested in our journey.”
Skyrocketing Results After Just 16 Months
Since becoming a HubSpot Partner, MO has seen some simply remarkable results. Organic traffic has grown by 12X. Contacts have been boosted by 66X and there has been a 63X uptick in marketing qualified leads year on year.
“The organic traffic stat is such a turnaround for us. In the past, we had very few website visitors, and most of our leads came from referrals or word of mouth. Now, we are turning visitors into contacts and leads in an automated way. We find that the lead quality is much improved as well. Today, sales qualified leads convert into customers at double the rate that they used to,” says Luke.
The agency is also getting more retainer work than it did in the past. Previously, about 30% of its income came from retainer contracts, but that’s risen to over 50%.
“That’s a big change for us, and it’s something that we plan to develop even more. Our turnover has increased by 40% since 2016, and with more retainers, we’ll be able to get that figure up even higher.”
MO’s clients are also benefiting from its new focus on inbound. It now has 11 companies on the HubSpot software, and it is a Gold Tier Partner.
“Once our customers see how powerful inbound can be, they want to go all in with it. For example, we have just sold seven Sales Pro licences to one client, because they see that working with the Growth Stack can help them to align their teams and achieve results across the board.”
Looking ahead, Luke says that the HubSpot software is going to become increasingly important to the agency’s work.
“It’s synced up all those things that we’ve done in the past – email, social media, SEO, content – into one really cool system that is so much more effective. We want to position it to all our clients and become known as the go-to inbound experts in our marketplace.”