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The Future of Sales Content with Hubspot CMO Kipp Bodnar

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There was a time when most businesses saw content as something that customers engaged with only during specific phases of the buyer’s journey. Currently, more companies understand the critical role that high-value content plays at every stage of the buyer’s journey, and in particular, the selling process.

Our guest today, Kipp Bodnar is the Chief Marketing Officer of HubSpot, where he sets HubSpot’s global inbound marketing strategy to drive awareness and demand for HubSpot’s inbound marketing and sales products.

In this episode, we’ll be talking about:

  • The role and future of content in sales

  • Account based marketing

  • Artificial intelligence and its role in disrupting and changing the future of sales

It’s not easy to balance personalization with sales automation. Finding ways to maximize exposure while maintaining a human element in your sales team can be a lot of work. However, it’s not impossible. By using the right tools and developing high quality content, your sales team can balance add a personal touch to each interaction in a fast, efficient, and thoughtful way.

Nowadays, marketers using ABM (Account Based Marketing) work closely with sales to identify key prospects and then tailor customized programs and messages to the buying team within target accounts. ABM allows you to truly personalize your messaging, offers, and content for each account to better resonate with their needs.

Content is a powerful tool to fuel your sales process. The key to using that tool effectively is sales and marketing alignment. Allow your marketing team to better create high-quality content specifically for sales’s needs and your sales team to spend less time finding content and more time selling.

Mentioned in this episode:

Platform Revolution
Salt
Zoom
Hubspot.com – Free CRM

For more information on remote selling and a complete list of links mentioned in this podcast, visit this remote selling article on our website.


The Future of Sales Content with Hubspot CMO Kipp Bodnar:

Full Transcript

Liston Witherill:
Welcome to Modern Sales, a podcast for entrepreneurs, business owners, and salespeople looking to have more and better conversations with your perfect clients. You’ll get a healthy scoop of psychology, behavioral economics, and sales studies to help you create win-win relationships. I’m your host, Liston Witherill, I’m pleased to welcome you to Modern Sales.

Liston Witherill:
As fast as sales is changing, one thing is for sure, content is an increasingly important part of the sales process. Our buyers and clients have way more access to information, they can download a book on any subject on their Kindle in about 30 seconds, for a cost of $10. They can rent books, look up articles online, download free resources from you, and all of your competition instantly. All of that is available right now, which means our content strategy is an increasingly important part of the sales process, it’s an increasingly important part of the enablement process, it’s an increasingly important part of reducing the friction that our buyers experience when they’re doing business with us, or maybe even just looking to do business with us.

Liston Witherill:
That’s why I brought on my guest today, he is the Chief Marketing Officer at HubSpot. I’m really excited to have him here, because he talks about the role of content in sales, and the future of content in sales, including things like account-based marketing, including yes, of course we have to mention it since he’s from a software company, artificial intelligence. We have a brief chat about that, and it’s role in disrupting and changing the future of sales.

Liston Witherill:
One thing that I want to point out to you, before you listen to this is I personally do not see a future without human beings in the sales process, so go forth when you listen to this, with that in mind. Spoiler alert, Kipp doesn’t either, but I just wanted to clear up my opinion on that matter. Yes, you will still be involved in the sales process. And in fact, I believe as things become more automated, there will be a greater emphasis on interpersonal and so-called soft skills in the future, more than ever before.

Liston Witherill:
I’m excited to bring you this episode about the future of content in sales, with my guest CMO of HubSpot, Kipp Boddner.

Liston Witherill:
So Kipp, AI is all the rage in both sales and marketing right now, even though it doesn’t quite exist in the way that a lot of people think it does. How do you foresee AI being leveraged in a sales setting, within the context of HubSpot, or even in general?

Kipp Bodnar:
Yeah, if you think about AI, it’s one of those things. Any time you have a new technology, it takes quite a long time to reach it’s potential, and we’re in that phase where you start to see some of the glimmer of that potential, but there’s still a lot of work to do to really make that come to life.

Kipp Bodnar:
So, I think if you’re a seller, if you’re a sales leader, you think about how AI’s going to impact your life, maybe not tomorrow, but six months from now, a year from now, three years from now, it’s going to come to fruition in a lot of, some simple, and some not ways.

Kipp Bodnar:
For example, one thing that we do right now, we have call transcription in or CRM where we’re recording your call within our CRM, we’ll automatically turn that call into a transcript. We’ll use machine learning, natural language processing to identify potential follow up actions. We’ll basically scan that transcript and say, “Oh, do you want to set a follow up meeting on Tuesday, like you had said in your phone call?” That’s something that people will experience today, but man, I think there’s going to be a lot more additional implications.

Kipp Bodnar:
I think, if you’re a seller, it’s going to come through in a few ways. Right now, most of your time with AI is spent helping you identify who to talk to, and that’s certainly a very valuable thing, especially for some sellers who have a lot of potential leads to go after. Following that, after the who to give a call to, what I think it’s going to allow you to really do is help deliver the right content, and the right message on each individual sales interaction.

Kipp Bodnar:
We all know that sales is a complex, complex job, especially if you’ve got a suite of products you’re selling. How do you figure out which product you lead with, what product collateral is going to be most relevant to your buyer, what case studies are going to be most relevant to your buyers? I think you’re going to see AI come in and help on the recommendation side, in those types of use cases, to make it a little easier for a seller to figure out how to deliver a really remarkable buying experience to that prospect, and one that feels really tailored, and feels more tailored than, maybe, the sales rep had actual time to create it, through the help of the automation and those recommendations.

Liston Witherill:
Let’s talk about airlines and automated vehicles for a second.

Kipp Bodnar:
Sure, sure.

Liston Witherill:
One of the interesting things about why planes crash, and why automated vehicles crash is because, as we know, computers aren’t perfect, neither are people.

Kipp Bodnar:
No.

Liston Witherill:
Actually, computers tend to be better at repetitive things than people, we can agree on that?

Kipp Bodnar:
Correct.

Liston Witherill:
However, when there’s a copilot situation, people either get lazy or just forget how to operate the craft, and that’s been the case both in automated Tesla situations where it crashes, but also in airplanes. People would probably be a little afraid to know how inept some pilots are at flying planes.

Liston Witherill:
Now, I could foresee a situation in sales where the more complicated it is, the more adept the pilot has to be, the salesperson. What dangers or risks do you see AI posing, could it make us dumb at sales?

Kipp Bodnar:
Look, anything can make you dumb at your job, if it takes your focus away from it. If you’re relying on technology to do your work for you, so that you can do less, then you’re going to become complacent, and what you just outlined, it probably would come true.

Kipp Bodnar:
If you’re leveraging technology, whether it be AI or anything, to help give you an edge, to help you be better at the foundation of skills that you have, and build better and stronger skills, then it’s not. I think if you’re a seller who is determined to work hard, stand out from the pack, be a leader in their organization, then you’re going to look at this type of technology as an advantage that you have to build on your own skills.

Kipp Bodnar:
Ironically, I think it’s less of a fear in sales than many other professions, because I think salespeople, at least the ones I know, are very … They have their own point of view. They believe in themselves, have a lot of self confidence, and even though they’re going to get help and support, they think they’re always going to be a little skeptical of it. So, I think that will be a healthy skepticism, and allow them to check and make sure that help and support that they’re getting is actually the right thing for the deal they’re working on.

Kipp Bodnar:
So, it may happen across some disciplines. I think it’s less likely to happen in sales than many others, to be honest.

Liston Witherill:
Well, it’s interesting too, because one of the promises of AI, like you said, is a more personalized experience. We’ll talk about some of the things you said in a public talk you gave last year, but that was one of the things you talked about, was having this much more personalized experience from the buyer side.

Liston Witherill:
Does it really feel personal to be interacting … I don’t know if they’ll be directly interacting with a robot, but if someone, the salesperson, is depending on it, does that decrease the personalization? How do you think about balancing the need for a relational orientation between salesperson and prospect, with the AI being the detached, algorithmic decision making engine?

Kipp Bodnar:
At HubSpot, we fundamentally believe that it is how you sell more than it is what you sell. The experience of how you’re able to buy and sell something really, really fundamentally matters. So, in that world, what you have is you’ve got sellers who need all the information they can get, because they want to deliver a great buyer experience, and you have buyers who, quite frankly, just don’t want friction in their buying process. They want to be able, as we’ve seen throughout the last decade, do more self-service, acquire more knowledge themselves, and get human involvement involved when they’re really ready to have that discussion.

Kipp Bodnar:
So, what I think we’re going to see is that some of these recommendations are going to go from being for the seller, to being for the buyer. A lot of those are going to be directly exposed to the buyer, we’re going to be able to help that buyer make a better, more informed decision, figure out when that buyer should actually connect with the salesperson, and that’s going to be really valuable. I think companies who are going to be able to leverage technology in that way, and make it easier than ever for a buyer to buy your product than any of your competitors products, are going to be the most successful.

Kipp Bodnar:
I don’t think we’re going to see a weakening of relationships in sales, what I think we’re going to see is a strengthening of relationships, but a lot more buyers are probably going to opt out of a sales led experience, and really only need sales interactions either for the last mile of that decision making, for some very specific questions, for the enablement of a trial or product if you’re talking big enterprise purchases, and I think that’s going to be a good thing. I think it’s going to allow buyers to move at the pace they want, and it’s going to allow the sellers to really talk with and engage with well informed buyers, who have good decision making.

Liston Witherill:
Since this podcast is really for people who are in client services, do you foresee that also being true in a very complicated, relational type business? Or, are you speaking from the point of view of selling software that’s fairly tangible, and relatively easy to understand?

Kipp Bodnar:
I think you’re going to see that manifest in every business. I think the degree to which it does is obviously going to change, on the complexity of the product and the service, and the customization. Obviously, if it’s very customized service offerings, that’s going to be harder to do. But, you’re still selling to some target buyer, it’s not like you have 10 different buyer personas if you’re a services’ company. You probably have a handful, a couple of buyer personas, if you’re running client services.

Kipp Bodnar:
I think, because of that, you’re going to see technology, one, be able to make that buying experience easier for both the seller and the buyer. It’s going to enable you to really focus to the level that you need to. I don’t think it’s going to be a one size fits all, it’s obviously going to become a little less applicable as you go to those edge cases of real custom products and services. But, for the vast majority of folks out there, I think it’s going to be a helpful, additive supplement to their work. I don’t think it’s going to completely, in the near term, change how they do their day-to-day.

Liston Witherill:
Cool. Well, if you’ll allow it, I’d love to pull the curtain back a little bit, and understand what you guys are doing at HubSpot, with your sales team?

Kipp Bodnar:
Sure.

Liston Witherill:
So, one of my big questions is about ABM, account based marketing. That’s been a catch all, jargon-y term that’s been going around for five or 10 years. And I’m curious, how do you think about ABM in terms of, especially, what you’re making in order to enable your sales team to pursue these really high quality and high leverage accounts that they’re going after?

Kipp Bodnar:
Yeah. First, it’s different. We sell to growing companies, so sometimes the folks we sell to, there’s one decision maker. Often when you hear things like ABM, it’s more through the lens of enterprise deals, where there’s a host of decision makers, across different departments, who all needed to be marketed and sold to as one, singular account. So, there’s a large part of the selling that we do that just doesn’t fit with that.

Kipp Bodnar:
That being said, we do have a higher end part of our business, where ABM becomes factor, because we’re selling to marketers, salespeople, IT people, and executives who are all involved in that buying process. Because they’re thinking about, am I going to switch over my entire front office staff from my CRM, my marketing tools, my customer service tools, my sales acceleration tools? Am I going to go from a disparate point solution kind of package, to one all in one platform? When you have those, what we’re trying to do is run very focused plays, to make sure that we have the right enablement, and follow up content, targeted to everybody involved in that decision making.

Kipp Bodnar:
That largely comes through, mostly through automation. A little bit on the paid advertising side of things, but mostly in how we follow up, and provide information, both to prospects directly and to our sales team who is working with those prospects.

Liston Witherill:
I see. Is your messaging different for difference people within the same account? Or, how do you think about optimizing your ABM approach for, maybe, that small basket of accounts that are so important to you?

Kipp Bodnar:
Yeah. I think the way we like to think about it, and I don’t think this is a novel way of thinking about it is what’s the core objection that person has in the process? If that person has a different objection, then the content is different for them. What we have found is security and IT have different concerns that the CEO. Or, legal has concerns around indemnity, and certain issues around the contract, where the VP of Sales, they don’t care about that in their decision making, they care about the reporting that they’re going to get for their sales managers, and how their reps are going to be able to work day-to-day. Is this going to help their reps be more productive, for example?

Kipp Bodnar:
When you have those differences in objections, we try to make sure that we have the right content and campaigns to address those core decision maker.

Liston Witherill:
Great. One thing you’ve mentioned is about the friction between buyers and sellers. I was actually surprised at this statement you made. “The friction between buyers and sellers has never been greater.” That’s a direct quote.

Liston Witherill:
What you were referring to there, is the fact that it’s tough for buyers to get a hold of companies?

Kipp Bodnar:
Yeah.

Liston Witherill:
I can relate to this. One of my great pains is my love hate relationship with LinkedIn, and their customer support is quite atrocious.

Kipp Bodnar:
Sure.

Liston Witherill:
Feel free, by the way, anyone working at LinkedIn to contact me. I’ll bore you with all the reasons why I think that’s the case.

Kipp Bodnar:
Hook him up, guys, he needs some help.

Liston Witherill:
But, my complaints about LinkedIn put aside for a second, I think one of the reasons that a lot of companies want to wall off access is the Internet tends to attract a lot of people who, maybe, aren’t worth your time, or you can’t spend a lot of time servicing, because you do want to service your customers. So, we want to give access, but also the cost of sales is rising dramatically, over, and over, and over again, partially because of tools like HubSpot. I’m not picking on you, the dozens of other competitors, or similar tools out there.

Liston Witherill:
How do you see the balance between providing access to buyers, but also keeping control of the cost?

Kipp Bodnar:
One, to pushback a little bit, I think software is a very small part of sales cost, to be honest with you. I think a lot of it depends on where your sales team is set up, costs of living wages. The human capital cost of sales is still the big, core area of expense there. Certainly, things like software and other things factor into that, your marketing expense and everything, obviously.

Kipp Bodnar:
When I think about that, what we try to do is match the buying experience for the type of product you’re looking for. If you are trying to use our free products, for example, we want those products to be really good, so good, hopefully you don’t need much help. If you do need help, that our community of other users and service partners are able to provide you the quick responses you need. Partly that can happen because those free tools are reduced in scope, they’re more straightforward, they’re less customizable, so there’s less things to get stuck on.

Kipp Bodnar:
As you move up the product line, you get to our enterprise products, you’re going to have very excellent access to support, because you have much more access to customization in your products, there’s a lot more things for you to do. Subsequently, there’s lot more things that you can break, or get confused about, or have questions about. We need to provide that support. We also know that there’s more people involved in that buying process. So, if you’re using our free product, you’ll never talk to a salesperson at HubSpot, hardly, unless you’re maybe considering upgrading. But where if you are evaluating our enterprise product, you’re going to have a very deep relationship with that salesperson, and that salesperson is going to spend the time necessary with you, to help you make what is a very highly considered purchase.

Liston Witherill:
I see. It’s not an easy problem to solve.

Kipp Bodnar:
It’s not. I think we’re getting better at it. I think things like chat bot automation, in app chat in the software industry, website chat overall, things like that, that are able to get us real time interactions that are very helpful to the user, and less costly for the business, to balance that supply demand need for help, are definitely helping. But, I think it’s going to continue to evolve as we go about it, I don’t think there’s a perfect answer, to be honest with you.

Liston Witherill:
Well, there never is, my friend. Otherwise, you would just dominate the market, and we wouldn’t have to have this conversation.

Kipp Bodnar:
Yeah, we’d all be winning. That’s true.

Liston Witherill:
One thing that’s definitely true is things are more scattered. People are on Facebook, they’re on LinkedIn, they’re on Twitter, they’re on email. They’re occasionally talking on a phone, but seemingly a lot less?

Kipp Bodnar:
Yes, that’s true.

Liston Witherill:
You’ve mentioned that the average customer has over five inboxes. I actually am surprised by how low that number is. I’m wondering, are we headed into a paradigm where sales and marketing are so sufficiently complicated that competition can only occur at scale? And the small, growth oriented company can’t really compete in this world?

Kipp Bodnar:
No. I think the opposite’s true. I think it’s actually never been a better time to start a business, because the cost of starting a business is much lower, the ability to scale has never been easier. That comes with some complexities and some trade offs, for sure. I think there are a few things at play there.

Kipp Bodnar:
One, the world bundles and unbundles, that’s what we know for certain. 10 years ago, you had this very unbundled Internet, and it was a little easier to be discovered because Google, Facebook, Twitter, they were all much earlier in their monetization, there were way less ads. PPC ads, and Google search engine result page, to put it very simply, and just one way that you could get discovered. Now, there are a lot more today. So, it’s a little harder to get discovered, maybe, today, but that just means that you have to be better at different channels.

Kipp Bodnar:
We see the growth that Instagram, YouTube’s going through, and what that actually tells you is that you have to be a little bit better at video and visual communication than you had to be five years ago. I think small businesses that are really good at understanding who their audience is, removing that friction out of their buying experience, making it really easy to buy with you, delivering a great product or service that creates really great word of mouth, that’s actually going to fuel more people to discover your business can be more successful today than ever before.

Kipp Bodnar:
I think you’re seeing platforms reduce that friction. Facebook just did a F8, they’re going to integrate a shopping cart with Instagram. If your somebody who sells online, for example, you’re going to be able to transact right there. Whether that be, maybe, for a service product on the B2B side of things, or a $10 product on the consumer side of things. I think that reduction in friction is a really remarkable thing that’s going to have big impacts on businesses that take advantage of it.

Liston Witherill:
I’m just thinking, maybe, of much smaller businesses than you’re thinking of. Let’s think about your SMB market, 50 or fewer employees. What’s the likelihood that they’re going to be able to optimize for three to five inboxes? Even using a tool like HubSpot.

Kipp Bodnar:
Well yeah, I don’t know that if you’re a 50 person company that your job is to optimize for three to five inboxes. If you’re a 50 person company, your job is to optimize for the most important inbox to your audience, and get good enough at that, that you can then grow to be a 100 person company, or a 200 person company. Then, you can start worrying about the next inbox.

Kipp Bodnar:
As companies grow, they have the ability to expand their area of focus. If you’re a 30 person manufacturing company, maybe email is the inbox that matters in your market, and you get really good at email marketing. That works for you, and that’s what’s going to set you up to have your next stage of growth, that’s awesome.

Kipp Bodnar:
I think what a lot of those small businesses, that are embarking on their growth trajectory, the mistake they make is trying to take on too much, too early. When you’re just getting started, especially on the marketing side of things, what is the primary channel for growth that you have? And how can you get really good at driving growth through one channel? Once you have that ability, then you can expand to other marketing channels.

Liston Witherill:
Love that. Let’s talk about something related to what you just said, and that’s distribution. We could probably spend several hours, just on this topic.

Kipp Bodnar:
Of course, it’s very important.

Liston Witherill:
You said that distribution is one of the things that a lot of businesses get wrong, when it comes to creating content. Lets, maybe, not use HubSpot as an example, because of your gigantic, organic reach and email list, but how do you recommend your clients and customers approach distribution if they have, say, a thought piece or a white paper, or some other crucial piece of content that they’ve recently created?

Kipp Bodnar:
Yeah. The most simple advice I can give on this is that too many people create something without think of the distribution as part of that creation process. I have this thing I want to tell the world, let me create this thing, and then I will figure out how to get it to them.

Kipp Bodnar:
Fundamentally, the core thing that we do, that I think any successful company does, and successful marketer does is say, “Oh, before I create this thing, how am I going to get this to people? Based on that method of distribution, how does that inform how I create this thing?”

Kipp Bodnar:
Some examples of that. If I’m going to give this to people through search engine optimization, well then what is the topic that I’m trying to rank for? What are my supportive pieces of content, where am I going to get links to this piece of content from? Those are all part of the process of creating and publishing that piece of information.

Kipp Bodnar:
If I am going to distribute this idea through Facebook, great. What does that change? Oh, that means that the first three seconds of my video has to be catchy, and compelling, and immediately communicate the value prop or nobody’s going to watch it, and it’s just going to fall flat, and nobody’s going to discover it. This is Facebook, I’ll probably need a little bit of money for ads, to start to see the initial discovery of that video, for example.

Kipp Bodnar:
So, depending on the story and how you’re telling it, and how you’re distributing it, depends on the holistic approach you need, to creating it. Even if you’re a small business, if you’re a 20 person business, you’ve got one marketer, maybe you’re doing an email newsletter, and one blog post a week. Great. Think about, how are you adding people to your email newsletter subscriptions, so that email newsletter gets to more people. And what topics you’re optimizing for your blog, so that your blog gets read and discovered by more and more people.

Liston Witherill:
Okay. Let’s talk about email. I think this is a big one, and obviously email has the advantage of having less intermediaries controlling the channel, which is a huge deal.

Kipp Bodnar:
Yeah.

Liston Witherill:
What are some ways that you think about adding people to your email list? Are you a proponent of, maybe not buying a list, but creating a list and just adding people? Or, how do you think about that at HubSpot?

Kipp Bodnar:
There’s less gatekeepers in email, but wow, deliverability, and spam, and the savviness of the email regulatory world that’s out there has never been better, so buying lists is just a bad idea. You’re just going to get flagged, you’re going to get dinged, and messages are never going to reach any of those people after you send one really bad email out.

Kipp Bodnar:
What you want to do is figure out offers for people to come and join, and participate in your list. So, first of all, what is the value proposition to anybody for being on your email list? Is it that they’re going to learn something specific, that they’re going to get special access to something that they wouldn’t already get? Whatever that is, how often are they going to get it? Are they going to get it every day, are they getting it once a month, are they getting it once a week? It’s about how you set expectations for them, and once you set expectations for them, then there’s a few things you can do.

Kipp Bodnar:
One, if you’ve got a blog, then you ask people to subscribe to your blog or email newsletter there, because your blog is going to bring people in. We joked about LinkedIn earlier, but LinkedIn has a new documents feature, and maybe you have a call-to-action in your LinkedIn documents that, hey, if you really like this document, we share more of these through our email newsletters, subscribe here. It’s about creating content to get people opting in to your email lists.

Kipp Bodnar:
Some of the most popular ways are holding webinars, publishing eBooks, sharing content like documents and everything on social networks like LinkedIn, those are the ways that you’re going to do it. Maybe initially you have a small group of friends, and families, and customers that you seed the first couple of emails to, and they help spreading. What we’ve found, as you continue to build your email subscriber base, one channel you have is those people forward your email, if it’s good, to other people. You’re going to get more and more subscribers through that, so there’s a flywheel effect that really comes into happen once you get more than a few thousand people to subscribe to your email.

Kipp Bodnar:
It’s getting that first initial base of email subscribers that can be tricky, so you have to create the content, positioning it in a clear way, so that people will discover it, and come and opt in to the work that you’re sharing.

Liston Witherill:
Excellent. As we think about content being such a crucial part, and obviously built into HubSpot’s DNA, such a crucial part of the sales cycle, I know that you guys also famously have a very large outbound team, as well. Or, at least you did at one time. How do you see the balance of sales and marketing changing, even within HubSpot, moving forward? Do you think SDRs will still be a big part of your acquisition strategy? Or, will that start to fade?

Kipp Bodnar:
At HubSpot, we see our inbound channels and our inbound makes up the vast majority of the sales we have, and we think that’s going to continue to happen because it’s a lighter friction experience. It’s not getting jarred from your routine by maybe a cold email, or a cold phone call, something like that. Obviously, that can be an effective strategy, and has worked for folks like us, and lots of other folks in the past.

Kipp Bodnar:
But, I think fundamentally what we’ve found is things like website chat, for example, wow. If you have a chat rep, they’re just way more productive than an SDR, across the board. So, I think you’re going to see businesses shifting resources, and entry level sales talent to having really helpful customer interactions in places like chat, versus calling and interrupting their target buyers.

Liston Witherill:
Yeah. I was wondering, do you guys approach customer support from the perspective as customer success has the opportunity, potentially, to deepen value for your clients, and even expand? Not just get the renewal, but expand the level of client engagement you’re having?

Kipp Bodnar:
Yeah, we focus deeply on our customer NPS, as well as our support NPS. We believe that our customers are our best marketing channel, that we want to, one, expand relationships with them, and we want to give them a remarkable experience so they rave to their peers about us. That’s what we strive hard to do, and we do that through trying to provide great support, but also great customer success management experience, making sure they have a great team of people to work with, very clear on who they need to work with to get help on whatever ares of working with our product that they need help with. We see that as a core engine for growth, not an opportunity to minimize expense.

Liston Witherill:
Excellent. Well, I have a few quick questions for you here, as we wrap up.

Kipp Bodnar:
Lighting round, let’s do it.

Liston Witherill:
What is a book that you recommend? Not your own, and not published by HubSpot, a third party book.

Kipp Bodnar:
On any topic, or business related? My follow up question.

Liston Witherill:
No, totally open, man.

Kipp Bodnar:
Totally open?

Liston Witherill:
Hit me with your most non business-y book if you want.

Kipp Bodnar:
Let me go through a couple that I like, I’ll give you a business and a non business recommendation.

Kipp Bodnar:
On the business side, I really love the book The Platform Revolution, which talks about how platforms and networks have really changed our economy. I think it’s a very helpful primer for anybody whose in the modern work environment, I would highly recommend checking that out.

Kipp Bodnar:
There’s a female poet who, I will butcher her name, but has a book of poetry called Salt. It’s like, Nayyirah Waheed? I butchered her last name, but if you just look for Salt poem book on Amazon, you’ll find it. She writes some pretty remarkable poetry, and I’ve been reading that lately, and I would recommend people check that out.

Liston Witherill:
What is one habit or routine that you couldn’t live without?

Kipp Bodnar:
I walk to and from work every day, and it is the best thing ever.

Liston Witherill:
How far is your walk?

Kipp Bodnar:
I don’t have to drive. It’s about 25 minutes.

Liston Witherill:
Okay.

Kipp Bodnar:
It’s a little less than a mile, door to door. I get some great time outside, I don’t have the frustration of traffic, it’s fantastic. I couldn’t live without it.

Liston Witherill:
I love that, also. My commute’s shorter than yours, I just walk upstairs.

Kipp Bodnar:
Hey, it matters.

Liston Witherill:
It does. My wife and I take our dog for a walk every day, which is incredible. Okay, cool.

Liston Witherill:
What is one tool that you use in your work, that you find absolutely indispensable?

Kipp Bodnar:
Zoom. I’m Team Zoom, all the way. I have a team of marketers, a lot of us are here in Cambridge, Massachusetts, that’s the HubSpot HQ, but we’ve got some remote workers, we have offices all around the world, and Zoom has changed how we collaborate in a fundamental way. It was the biggest shift in how we work together as a team, and it’s essential. I am rarely in a meeting that I’m not on a Zoom call for, it’s huge.

Liston Witherill:
Yes. I’m also a huge fan. Did they IPO, or maybe just filed for their IPO?

Kipp Bodnar:
Yeah. Shout out to Eric, who’s the Zoom CEO, he is awesome. Janine, who runs marketing there, is amazing. They have built a remarkable company, we are super happy, happy Zoom customers.

Liston Witherill:
All right. Well, maybe I can have them on here, on the podcast one of these days.

Kipp Bodnar:
Yeah, they’re great.

Liston Witherill:
Excellent. Kipp, thank you for everything you’ve shared so far. I know some people might want to follow up with you directly, learn more about you or your company. What should they do?

Kipp Bodnar:
Yeah, if you want to learn more about HubSpot, just go to HubSpot.com, you can try our free CRM, other free products, or learn about any of our other products or content that will help you be a better marketer, seller, or customer service person.

Kipp Bodnar:
If you want to learn more about me, probably the best thing is connect with me on LinkedIn. LinkedIn.com/KippBoddner, and you will find me. I have a unique name, basically I’m super easy to track down. So, feel free to connect with me there.

Liston Witherill:
Awesome. Thank you so much for being here.

Kipp Bodnar:
Thanks so much for having me, appreciate the time.

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