In the latest episode of Inbound Influencers I had the pleasure of interviewing Dan Tyre, Sales Director at HubSpot. We talk all things sales and marketing alignment...

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In this video we discuss...

  • Why marketing and sales need to work together
  • Who is responsible for marketing and sales alignment
  • Key tips for marketers to be successful with inbound marketing

Watch the video...

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Mark:

- Today on Inbound Influences we have a special guest. We have Dan Tyre. He's a sales director at HubSpot. Thanks for joining us, Dan.

Dan:

- Mark, nice to be with you.

Mark:

- That's great, and I really appreciate you. I know how busy you are at the minute so, again, thank you. Let's kick straight off, Dan. I know time is of the essence. Let's find out a little bit more about you. What's your story, Dan, and how did you handle HubSpot?

Dan:

- All right, so I am the luckiest guy in the world. I have been married for 28 years, I've got two beautiful kids, I live in Scottsdale, Arizona here in the United States, and I was employee number six at HubSpot. I've done five startups.

My first startup went to a billion and a half dollars right out of college. My second startup got bought out by a Phoenix based company. My third startup went bankrupt, which taught me business planning and humility. My fourth startup got bought out by Microsoft, and HubSpot's my fifth. I worked with Brian Halligan, the CEO, at my fourth startup.

He was Vice President of sales, and when Microsoft bought Groove, he went to MIT, and I went to work for Microsoft. When he decided to start HubSpot with Dharmesh, he gave me a call and he said, "We're starting this new company. I want you to be a part of the startup." Isn't that cool?

Mark:

- [Mark] Amazing, amazing.

Dan:

- I know, I know, I know, I know.

Mark:

- Yeah, it's great.

Dan:

- So I live in Scottsdale, Arizona and he calls me up and I said, "I can't move. I've got two kids." He's like, "No worries. We'll figure it out. It's 2007, we can do it remotely." I spent seven years commuting every other week to Cambridge, but it was a boat load of fun. Obviously, the whole inbound revolution has been amazing to see from the early stages.

Mark:

- All right, absolutely fantastic. I like the humility section you put in there. Failing forward

Dan:

- Oh my goodness, yes. A lot of failure. In fact, a lot of times when I'm speaking, people say, "All right, that's the headlines, right?" But in the twist and turns of all the stuff that I've done, there's tonnes of times when things didn't quite work out within HubSpot, in certain programmes, and before that.

I'm like any other human being, right? It's an important concept because we see on social media all the good things that people do. We see all of the highlights. Sometimes we don't necessarily get the texture and the challenges and the problems that we see that are part of everyday business life.

Mark:

- Absolutely fantastic. Really good. What I'd like to touch on today, Dan, our audience and listeners are marketing professionals. I know a part of what you do is deal with the alignment of the sales and the marketing team. Obviously, the business has changed completely in the last 20 years. Can you give us a little bit of a background about what you do with alignment?

Dan:

- Yeah, so it's not sales. It's not marketing. It's shmarketing. Say that, Mark, say that term.

Mark:

- Smarketing.

Dan:

- Shmarketing, you got to use the back of your throat.

Mark:

- Shmarketing

Dan:

- Yeah, you're getting there.

Yeah, I invented that term in 2007 with the CMO of HubSpot. What we were trying to convey is that sales and marketing as separate silos has been around for, like, 50 years. It's a hold over from, like, the 1980s, or something. In today's world, that alignment becomes super important because marketing is more important than ever.

In fact, I was doing a public presentation yesterday and from the stage I said, "How many CEOs in the audience?" and there was, like, 20%. I said, "If you have more than 10 people in your sales organisation, you should go back to your office and fire the two least productive sales people and give all the money to marketing." Some lady was standing up there, "That's great!" I go, "They're not going to make it anyway. They're not going to make their quota. They're not taking it seriously. They're somebody's cousin, or something like that, that's the only reason they're there. They're not really adding value." I go, "Marketing people, if you're not practising inbound marketing, you've got to take a good look at your organisation because your database will atrophy 22%-27% per year and, unless you're getting the net new leads that you get with inbound marketing, it's going to be very, very hard.

I said, "Sales people, if you're not getting inbound leads, quit, right?" Oh my goodness, inbound leads will change your life. If you're doing cold calling, and I asked from the stage how many people are doing cold calling. Yesterday, the first time, a guy in the front row raised his hand. It turned out he wasn't really doing cold calling, he was doing warm calling, but usually it's the guys in the back of the audience who say, "Yeah, I do a little cold calling." I'm like, "Does that make sense?" They go, "Not really, but I don't have any other choice. What am I gonna do? I've got to hit my quota." The whole idea is now marketing is more important than sales. If marketing can bring those leads into the website and give them to the sales people, you're going to have a much better outcome.

Mark:

- Yeah, totally agree, Dan. Some challenges we've had is we've got some fantastic clients with a fantastic sales team. A lot of these guys have been in the game 20 to 30 years, and it's just getting their mindset to change from the outbound marketing to inbound. What challenges have you seen?

Dan:

- They're typically male. They're typically 40, 50, 60 years old. They got their hands crossed. They've got a real issue, which is they want to make sure they're responsible for hitting their number. They don't want to change. They don't quite trust the new way of marketing manage to lead. Sometimes they want to talk to everybody and call all the leads, right? In most cases, we can make the, after running the analytics for a few months, you can make the intelligent decision that it's better off not talking to those folks, because it's somewhat of a waste of time for your sales people, right?

But you can also start grading leads so that you can see the efficacy of your sales people and whether they're closing SQLs and MQLs. The suggestions I give to marketing people when they're trying to align with sales is to bring free gifts, right? Sometimes that's the HubSpot CRM. Sometimes it's the HubSpot sales approach. Sometimes it's the growth pot, the artificial intelligence that HubSpot has created and put out. Sometimes it's the inbound sales certification, right, which is a free certification by HubSpot that provides a understanding of the philosophy of why you should be helping. It will teach people how to manage the new ways of engagement in the 21st century.

There's typically going to be a little bit of friction there but anytime a marketer goes to a sales person and says, "What's you're quota?" I asked, yesterday, how many marketers knew what their sales team's quota was. It was a very small percent. If you go and say, "I want to help you meet or exceed your quota." That's a very, very powerful statement. Then, same, to do that we need to understand a little bit about what your number is in revenue, the number of new customers you need, and then the subsequent number of leads, MQLs and SQLs, marketing qualified leads, sales qualified leads, to meet that.If you go to a sales executive and say, "Oh, no, I'm going to help you hit your number." That's usually a very positive message that's very well received.

Mark:

- Okay, I love the idea of the free gift. That last, definitely something that we can advise. Go there, set that up, prove it works. Show, don't tell.

Dan:

- Yeah.

Mark:

- Get that working then go for it, that's great. Who should take the leading role, the marketing or the sales person?

Dan:

- It's usually the marketer, right? The whole idea now is it's all about the customer experience, right? When I go out, I was doing a call here this morning and asked the prospect, "More competition or less in 2017?" He's going, "Oh my goodness, so much more." I go, "Do you think that will change in the next few years?" He goes, "It will accelerate. We see more and more companies popping up," and I go, "Do you see any specific competitors emerging online?" He goes, "I have two and he had their names and he was kind of tracking them." The key differential in 2017 is not necessarily your product or service, it's the effect of your customer experience, right?

That requires that your marketing people have the right statistics, your sales people have the right information, right? Mark, you're familiar with lead intelligence in HubSpot where a sales person can see the time somebody's come to the website, what pages they have, that kind of stuff?

Mark:

- Absolutely, we've got all this rigged up. We've done it for our customers as well, so fully aware of that, Dan.

Dan:

- Can you imagine a sales person that doesn't have lead intelligence?

Mark:

- Yes, it's crazy.

Dan:

- This guy I know, this marketer was super smart. He said, "I need to bring lead intelligence to my sales organisation." He said, "Today, they only know one thing about the lead. That's where it came, from which aggregated site. They don't know what the person is interested in, they don't know their background, how many times they've been to the website. I go, "That's like selling with duct tape over your mouth, right?" There's just no way that you can be effect unless you have that deep data information. Of course, 10 years ago it didn't exist. In 2017, it's there and required for people to utilise it.

Mark:

- Yeah, great. I suppose it's educating these people as well. I know you've got a lot of educational courses on HubSpot at the minute as well, so it's pointing in the direction to try and educate these sales people.

Dan:

- Super smart, that HubSpot Academy, Mark Kilen's HubSpot Academy. It's a very effective resource. The inbound sales, everybody asks me, "Well, I've got a little bit of friction with sales. How do I break it?" First of all, I suggest that relationship with the sales executive. The next thing that I suggest is pick one or two sales people who would buy in, who would be a little bit more wired, a little bit more interested in helping create content, a little bit more interested in going after the new way of working together, sales and marketing alignment. In those kind of scenarios, if you could pick two, and then you can show the benefit, then it would go a long way towards gaining alignment and showing efficacy and making sure that people get on board.

Mark:

- Yeah, fantastic. How about a question here? You kind of answered that. Is cold calling dead? Outbound marketing, is it dead? I suppose...

Dan:

- Outbound is not dead. Now, cold calling is different than warm calling, right? I actually teach a class, including to Caroline and other HubSpot agency partners, about the importance of what we call identify and connect. The importance of identify is you just can't call anybody. You have to call a right-fit customer. If you call and say, "I'm an inbound agency," there's one thing that goes on.

If you call and say, "I'm an inbound agency working with construction companies that have at least 10 to 30 employees that have a three million turnover, that's earning 25% a year. The reality is then, the narrower the niche--

Mark:

- The narrower the niche, yeah.

Dan:

- The better it's going to be for the acceptance of your message, we call it an agency positioning statement, right? Many people think I want a broad target market that I go after, but in 2017 with all of that competition, a more succinct target market that shows more specificity, in regard to who you're trying to help, will yield the better result.

You can say, "Hey, we work with inbound," or you can say, "We work with inbound in the construction industry with companies that have at least 10 employees, that are growing 25% a year, that want to leverage their website." That latter option, if that's the target market, you're talking to somebody in that target market, that person will have a better feeling about that relationship and be more receptive to your thoughts.

Mark:

- Totally agree, Dan. That's the shift we made, probably, seven months ago. Wee Walls is kind of, not a jack of all. We did the SEO, PPC design. We are full on, 100%, inbound HubSpot agency now. We made that shift, and since doing that we've accelerated. That proves your theory, with us anyway.

Dan:

- Boom! I love it.

Mark:

- Boom. Yeah, so it's great, thank you. Are you okay for time, Dan, or...

Dan:

- I got about two more minutes if that's all right, Mark?

Mark:

- Anymore tips, anymore advice for our viewers? Anything else just to add?

Dan:

- Yeah, so it's a very real thing. Marketers always led the charge, right? In 2007, all of the marketers that we talk with. They may not have moved on inbound marketing, although that would have been a mistake, but they definitely understood it and they wanted to find different ways to do it.

Marketing leads the charge over the next two years, three years, five years, more and more sales people will get involved and then it will permeate through the entire organisation, right? The ability to go through and have the entire organisation oriented towards inbound is a huge competitive advantage, that customer experience is what differentiates whether people are going work with you or not.

That's what you really have to build, that understanding that it's going to be an exceptional customer experience from the very, very beginning. Sometimes you have to establish the relationship years before somebody starts paying you money. That's just the way you have to do it in the 21st century.

Mark:

- Brilliant, Dan. I've got a question, something we're discussing internally. We're in the states, someone has gone onto our website or a clients website, they've downloaded an e-book, and have gone into a nurture sequence. Should sales ring them straight away or should we just leave them? Is that a cold lead or a warm lead?

Dan:

- It's very good. It's a great question. It depends on your lead volume, right? I'm okay with sales people calling those leads, but they can only ask two questions. First question is, "How are you doing today, Mark?," right? In a very friendly way. The second thing is what were you looking for help with? How can I help you? Those are very innocuous questions that greatly accelerate the relationship. On a connect call you never qualify, you're never harsh, right? You're leveraging that relationship, and you want to spend five to seven minutes to professionally position you and your company as a way that is a resource to help people solve their problems. I'm okay for people calling those top of the funnel leads if they want to, they just have to be very, very respectful of the way they engage.

Mark:

- Brilliant, great. Where do the listeners get the free CRM and the learning material you were talking about? Where do they go to?

Dan:

- Yup, so just Google HubSpot CRM and, boom, it's right there or, for the Academy, it's inbound sales certification. Inbound sales certification HubSpot and you'll have access to all of that information.

Mark:

- And it's all free, okay, that's brilliant.

Dan:

- It's all at no charge.

Mark:

- Thank you, take care then.

Dan:

- Happy to help.

Mark:

- All the best.

Dan:

- Keep going, bye.

Mark:

- Bye bye, take care.

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