Hubspot triples R&D, gets a B+ for 2011, sets bold course, #HUGS2011


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I was in Boston last week for #HUGS 2011, the 2nd HubSpot User Conference and this is my report.

Last week in Boston there was even more for marketers and HubSpot customers to get excited about than at this event a year ago.  HubSpot’s community has grown in the past year to more than 470+ partners and 5000+ customers and more than a thousand of the faithful gathered for the second Annual User Group Meeting. You can read my report on last year’s event HubSpot 2010 user group meeting here.

HubSpot was founded just 5 years ago by Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah (pic on stage taking Q&A at HUGS 2011), with a grand vision to makeBrian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah marketing easy for everyone. It is clear with the recent funding from mainstream V.C. firm Sequoia, as well as and Google that the bets the founders made in Inbound Marketing are beginning to look extremely valuable.

Hubspot’s Inbound Marketing method and product suite are very much what the market needs and wants as evidenced by the rapid adoption of the Inbound Marketing methodology and dramatic growth of the company.

Co-founders Brian Halligan and  Dharmesh Shah reviewed progress made in the past year and outlined the strategic direction for the company. (Disclaimer; – we are a San Francisco Bay Area Hubspot Value Added Reseller, focused on creating clarity in marketing messaging  to drive inbound marketing and sales performance and have been using the system for nearly 3 years.)

HubSpot 2011 Report Card

HubSpot is a tool that almost everyone in the user community uses every day; the founders use the product in same way as customers and experience the same frustrations with the product imperfections.

Co-founders Dharmesh Shah and Brian Halligan reviewed their progress over the past 12 months against the goals they set in 2010, based on qualitative and quantitative evidence and rated their performance as follows.

HubSpot Self Assessment Report Card

Fewer Bugs; bugs/customer/month reduced from .12 to .06


Page Loads reduced from  4-6 seconds to < 2 seconds


Call wait for tech support from 220 secs to 43 secs


Application Maturity


Middle of the Funnel (MOFU)


Throughput on Idea implementation


12 Month Product Plans

If you’re a HubSpot user you will be delighted with what is coming. Hubspot is tripling its investment in R&D and has grown the R&D team from 15 last year to 70 this year and will grow to 130 people in the coming year. This means; –

  • Tighter integration between applications in the existing product
  • Improved usability and functionality of applications
  • Rewrite of the Content Management System
  • Better social media integration
  • Snappier performance
  • Integration of the Performable functionality in the platform toHubSpot enrich Middle of the Funnel. The vision here is very exciting and with the implementation of Performable, Hubspot intends to Leap-frog the competition in functionality in the marketing automation space

Big Ideas

A Market of 1

Brian Halligan framed the big idea that will drive the innovation and medium term direction of the company.  In the same way that Amazon, Netflix and Google learns more about its customers with every transaction and presents highly attuned offers to increase conversions, HubSpot’s goal is to create a platform that will allow mere mortals to be effective in marketing to a market of one, whether via the Website, email or social media interaction.

Outbound to Inbound:

HubSpot started with the goal of changing marketing from Outbound to Inbound and the team is delivering on this vision. Inbound Marketing is the future of marketing and the changes HubSpot has championed are already being felt in most parts of the industry.

Application to Platform

The product is a currently an integrated set of 19 core applications that work together to improve productivity in performing the tasks required to execute the Inbound Marketing Methodology.

Over the past 12 months, the API has been opened up to partners with the goal of platformization.

3rdParty applications integrated today and available in the HubSpot Marketplaceinclude

  • CRM
  • Email
  • Blogging and content creation
  • Content Management System
  • PR News feeds
  • Webinar lead capture
  • HubSpot productivity applications including social, search, benchmarking, keyword and search analysis.
Software System to Ecosystem

HubSpot was quick to recognize that success is dependent on an effective and vibrant partner channel. The HubSpot Services Marketplace will enable the VAR community and service providers to market and deliver their services via HubSpot and for their performance in partner projects and implementation to be delivered, analyzed and, rated within HubSpot.


  1. Like great software companies before it, HubSpot has a vision that is changing an industry and is attracting lots of really smart people to make the journey with them. Don’t bet against HubSpot or Inbound Marketing.
  2. If you are thinking about HubSpot, or on the fence waiting for a bolt of inspiration from the blue, what else do you need to convince you to make the leap?
  3. Don’t have the time or the manpower to do Inbound Marketing yourself? – don’t worry you can hire in certified talent and make it happen from the HubSpot Services Marketplace.


Republished with author's permission from original post.

Mark Gibson
Mark Gibson has been at the forefront of developing sales and marketing tools that create clarity in messaging value for 30 years. As a consultant he is now engaged in helping sales, marketing and enablement teams to get clear about value creation. Clarity attracts inbound leads, clarity converts visitors into leads and leads into customers, clarity builds mindshare, clarity engages customers, clarity differentiates value, clarity helps onboard new hires clarity helps raise funds, clarity + execution win markets.


  1. A Hubspot Partner UK based and also in Boston for HUGS, I liked it when Brian Halligan said – the way people buy has changed – their behviour has changed – so why hasn’t marketing.


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