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Podcast hosted by Andrew Dymski & Gray MacKenzie

Operations

Inbound Marketing Agency Training Lessons Learned with Nick Sal

Nick Salvatoriello is passionate about inbound marketing agency training.

Over the past four years at HubSpot, Nick has worked in the Services Division and has consulted with over 200 inbound agencies. He has a lot of insights to share about why some agencies thrive and why others struggle.

Agencies with an entrepreneurial mindset take ownership of their own success. If their agency is going to succeed, it will be largely due to their internal drive and effort — attitude is the big differentiator.

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The agencies that make it big are those that are willing to change and move toward new goals as the business context changes.

Starting Out Big or Launching Small: Which is better?

The inbound agency ecosystem is growing fast. Agencies are beginning to see the value in providing inbound marketing and sales services. At the same time, more and more businesses are discovering that inbound is hard to do on their own.

This fast growth environment is filled with new agencies that are just getting started. Some are bigger traditional agencies that are making the transition to inbound. Others are starting out fresh as inbound agencies.

So from Nick's perspective, which is better?

An existing book of business is an advantage for big agencies that are shifting to inbound. They can pitch their new inbound services to their existing clients. This also means that there is existing cash flow to support the new inbound efforts.

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This type of business also comes with some downsides. Because they're bigger, they're more likely to be slow moving. They can get tied up in red tape and too many meetings, which can restrict growth out of the gate.

Smaller agencies with no established book of business have a bit more flexibility. Their lean nature allows them to pivot and react to the business environment. This can mean switching target verticals, adding new team members, or trying out new tactics on themselves first.

At the end of the day, size doesn't matter. Spirit does. If the leader has an entrepreneurial mindset and is willing to put in the necessary work, there is plenty of opportunity to grow.

Global Growth of Inbound Agencies

International inbound agencies are not a new thing at HubSpot. Nick shares stories of on-boarding partners from around the world when he first started working at HubSpot four years ago.

As inbound has grown globally, HubSpot has dedicated more resources to support these new partners. This has come through the growth of new offices in Dublin and Sidney in recent years.

Nick shares a big shout-out to HubSpot partners in Australia! Lots of energy and excitement happening there — keep it up!

Sharing Inbound Agency Success

Nick and the team make an effort to share the bright spots in the inbound agency community. This means researching and reaching out to partners who are doing things right.

Nick has committed to building a platform that provides inspiration. This means established agencies sharing what is working so younger agencies can grow.

Balance is key to building this platform. Product information and tactics are important to give partners direction. But it is the stories that give inbound agency owners the emotional boost to keep moving forward.

Lessons Learned from 100 Episodes of the HubSpot Partner Broadcast

The goal was to create a platform where all teams in the partner community could come together and share big updates. HubSpot wanted to create a place where the insiders gather and share key information.

If you're interested in hosting a live event like the HubSpot Partner Broadcast, here are some tips to help:

  • Create a production meeting to identify themes for each show
  • Build a list of topics to cover in the event. At HubSpot, Nick is reaching out to key team members and gathering updates.
  • Use Google Calendar as the collaboration tool. When you add updates, those updates get sent to the team.
  • Get all the slides and information submitted no later than 2 day before the event.
  • On the day of the broadcast, get people in the room and set up early.
  • If you're running live, make sure you're running two recordings. Two people logged into the webinar and clicking the record button - redundancy will save you.
  • Keep the energy high and have a clear host to keep the meeting flowing and following the agenda.

If you want more details on the processes that Nick and the team use to pull off these events, check it out here.

Growing Over Time

Nick and the team aren't happy with just sticking with the same format forever. Going through a self-analysis is key to improving over time.

Listen to feedback from polls and surveys, emails, Twitter comments, etc

Do It for Yourself!

You don't need to be big to do inbound for yourself. You don't need to be an audio and video pro to start creating a kick-butt podcast or webinar series. This stuff freaking works; it is a great way to streamline your content creation process. Each episode of a podcast not only gains exposure in iTunes, it is also an opportunity for a blog post.

Shout-outs to agencies who are going great work creating engaging content! Hats off to the teams at The Sales Lion and ThinkHandy.

Check out some of these awesome shows produced by inbound agencies:

For even more great inbound agency content, check out 10 Best Podcasts Produced by Inbound Agencies on the HubSpot blog!

Tools Nick Loves

  • GoToWebinar
  • Google Calendar
  • Google Docs
  • Wistia
  • HubSpot
  • People: Getting to know the people who can help connect with the target audience.

Connect with Nick

Andrew Dymski

Andrew Dymski

I'm a Founder at ZenPilot where I help marketing agencies buy back time by developing the processes and systems they need to scale without reinventing the wheel for every client. I'm co-host of the Agency Journey podcast where each week we interview an agency owner, consultant, or author. I'm also a founder at GuavaBox, an inbound marketing agency.