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7 Takeaways from HubSpot's INBOUND 23

7 Takeaways from HubSpot's INBOUND 23

As a longtime HubSpot user and recent HubSpot solutions partner, I was thrilled to finally attend the annual HubSpot INBOUND 23 conference in Boston this year. After connecting with the vibrant HubSpot community and soaking in the insightful sessions, I wanted to share my key takeaways.

The week was filled with invaluable education and forward-looking insights to help businesses navigate the modern customer landscape. From discussions on AI to shifting buyer journeys and video content strategies, there were many thought-provoking lessons.

I was fortunate enough to receive tickets from Christina Garnett, making this first-time INBOUND trip possible. I am excited to share my top seven takeaways from the event.



So without further ado, here are my biggest takeaways from the jam-packed week of HubSpot Inbound 2023!

HubSpot is a customer platform

HubSpot Assets - Connected Customer Platform - Graphic 1

Ever since its CRM launch in 2014, a lot of HubSpot's messaging revolved around the CRM and Marketing automation suite.

At the recent INBOUND 23 conference, HubSpot's CEO Yamini Rangan emphasized that the company is evolving into a unified customer platform. Rather than just providing CRM and marketing tools, HubSpot aims to connect all the solutions a business needs to deliver great customer experiences.

The various hubs like Sales, Marketing, and Service are coming together in one Smart CRM, supported by Operations, Commerce, and CMS hubs.

This allows companies to consolidate all of their customer touchpoints and data into a single source of truth.


Buyer journeys have changed

B001 - Customer Journey

The buyer journey has fundamentally shifted. Prospects now prefer self-serve digital experiences where they can discover and research products themselves before actively searching.

Discovery is shifting away from search, customers are finding new solutions in social media feeds such as TikTok and Instagram for B2C, and LinkedIn for B2B. It is reported that 44% of internet users aged 16 to 64 use social media as a primary source of information when they’re researching brands. (Search Engine Journal, 2023)

Consideration has also changed. Instead of clicking through websites, customers increasingly want conversational experiences via chat interfaces. They prefer chatting with a bot or agent that can answer all their questions in a natural dialog.


You have to get Personal

HubSpot Screenshots - CRM Platform Edit Bot

In the age of AI, basic personalization is no longer enough to wow customers. They know you have access to AI tools that can fix the mediocre customer experience that they have been settling for.

With the help of AI tools, every customer-facing rep has access to each buyer's complete, up-to-date journey at their fingertips in a contextual and actionable format. Customers are done settling for reactive assistance and expect proactive action.

With an AI-powered CRM, prospects should never have to repeat information or answer the same question twice. Brands are expected to take the context from previous interactions across channels and use it to provide personalized value.


High-Quality original content is more important than ever

B001 - great content

AI tools can easily generate tons of commodity content that is flooding search engines today. The bar has never been lower for generating serviceable, high-qualityquality content using AI LLM like ChatGPT, Claude or HubSpot's own Content Assistant.

The opportunity is presenting itself for more companies to produce high-quality pillar content based on expertise and 1st party original research to stand out above the rest. If you're focused on creating content that adds to the knowledge pool and nobody else can replicate, you should not struggle to be seen. 

The bar has been raised. Simply cranking out high volumes of content is no longer effective. Companies must double down on insightful, original content.


AI content requires skilled editors

B001 - Skilled Editors

Great content marketers have done an amazing job leveraging the expertise of their subject matter experts (SMEs) to create value-filled pillar content. But that process can be a time-intensive one for both parties involved, even if the end result is worth it.

AI content tools can generate high volumes of content, but raw AI output often contains errors and quality issues. Without human oversight, brands risk publishing low-quality content that damages their reputation.

To leverage AI properly, brands need skilled editors to refine the content. Expert human editors bring a nuanced understanding of the subject matter, brand voice, and audience. Their role goes beyond just error correction - they optimize content for relevance, provide strategic input, and maintain brand standards.

Brands that invest in talented editors with subject matter expertise to steer their AI content will see much better outcomes and win the content race.


Prospects demand video Content

Demand Capture vs Demand Creation _ Stacking Growth 1-35 screenshot

Video has become the top format that customers rely on for information. However, producing lots of great original video can be challenging. That's why content repurposing and reuse is so important.

The cadence at which you need to produce video content to appease social media feeds is unsustainable when using traditional video production approaches. It is very easy for brands to get overwhelmed with the amount of time and resources required to create high quality original video content at the required pace.

But you don't need every single video to be produced from scratch.

B2B marketers have already seen success with creative reuse and repurposing of long form video content such as podcasts and webinars. That is what allowed them to dominate the LinkedIn feed when others we're pouring their video budgets into high production promos and ads.

Content marketing is here to stay. We suggest you stop resisting it.

Brands should focus on building content repurposing systems that enable them to efficiently create video content at scale to meet the demand.


Democratize video production across your team

B001 - Democratizing Video

Being personal with video is very effective. But it is also resource intensive if you are deploying your video production team for every project update video you might send to a client.

Sales, Marketing, and Service teams need to start becoming more comfortable with the tools available to them to create personal videos. However, it is your organization's responsibility to provide the proper training and support necessary to democratize video creation across the entire organization.

Recording and editing tools - like Wistia, Vimeo, Loom, Vidyard to name a few -  have become so powerful the barrier to entry is at an all-time low. Phone cameras leveraging computational photography are competing with the best cameras out there. There aren't any more excuses left.

With the right support from the organization, a team of motivated professionals should be able to clear the bar for personalized business video content. Video production can no longer be siloed - it must be embraced across the company.


Adapting to the Modern Customer Requires Digital Transformation

The insights and lessons from HubSpot Inbound 2023 make one thing clear - meeting the expectations of today's customers requires fundamental shifts across the business. From marketing and sales to service and product development, companies must take an integrated, customer-centric approach.

Platforms like HubSpot knit together disparate systems and data to create unified customer experiences. Meanwhile, AI and other technologies allow businesses to deliver the ultra-personalized, proactive support buyers have come to expect.

Brands focusing on high-quality content, video, and conversational interfaces will be primed to attract and engage the modern buyer. By democratizing capabilities like video production, any team can create thoughtful customer experiences that deepen loyalty.

The playbook for interacting with prospects and customers today looks very different than even 5 years ago. Companies that embrace this evolution will gain the advantage in our digital-first world.


And you didn't think we would leave you without some pictures from the event, did you?