Iliyana's Blog

How to Produce Growth and Grow Better According to Dharmesh Shah

[fa icon="calendar'] 10-Oct-2017 09:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Inbound Marketing, Brands and Business, Startups

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Last week, we covered the first part of Brian Halligan's and Dharmesh Shah's keynote at our HubSpot INBOUND conference from two weeks ago.

After learning from Brian about how to get from startup to scaleup, today we'll look at what Dharmesh, HubSpot's CTO and co-founder, shared on how to grow better consistently by looking at the three key functions - marketing, sales and customer service - and how they should be creating a delightful customer experience at each key stage they take care of - attract, engage and delight.

Dharmesh started with a personal story of how he got to spend a whole dinner with Elon Musk. 

As the evening was progressing, Dharmesh asked Elon an important question, namely "How do you work towards solving really big problems?"

Here's how Elon explained it:

"Let's say you're trying to get your company from point A to point B. Every person on the team is a vector. Your progress is determined by the sum of all vectors." 

Now Dharmesh was a bit puzzled and of course, got to do some thinking around this.

Let's look at this a bit.

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How to Get From Startup to Scaleup: Brian Halligan's 3 Muscle Groups

[fa icon="calendar'] 03-Oct-2017 09:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Brands and Business, Startups

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Did you know that only about 5% of startups become scaleups? 

Last week, INBOUND17 took place and it was by far the best INBOUND I've attended, probably the best conference of all the ones that I've been to in my life so far. 

It hosted about 21,500 marketing, sales and other professionals from around the world. 

I'm proud of the event and I'm proud of our co-founders - Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah - who are not only leading our team at HubSpot but also leading where the industry is going, paving the way for marketing, sales and service companies to grow and scale. 

During their keynote at INBOUND17, they shared their learnings from starting HubSpot 11 years ago to scaling up to a 1,800-people company and 34,000 customers in 90 countries.

This week, I want to share with you the key insights from Brian's part of the keynote. (Next week, we'll run through Dharmesh's). 

How to Get From Startup to Scaleup

There are 3 phases that new companies go through from starting up to scaling (if they get there):

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Internet Trends 2017: The Future is all About Tech

[fa icon="calendar'] 04-Jul-2017 09:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Social Media, Marketing, Brands and Business

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I've been looking at a lot of data lately. 

Last week we dug into some social media marketing numbers, this week we'll go bigger and look at some of the major internet trends from Mary Meeker's latest report

Let's start with a bit of a perspective.

There are 3.4B global internet users. And there are about 7.5B people in the world. That's a penetration of 46%. 

Is your head spinning? It certainly will be after we go through some of the major learnings I've picked out for you. 

Let's get started. 

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The 7 Essential Questions for Better Business Communication

[fa icon="calendar'] 06-Jun-2017 09:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Personal Development, Brands and Business, Leadership

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I recently finished listening to The Coaching Habit: Say Yes, Ask More & Change the Way You Lead Forever by Michael Bungay Stanier. (It's funny to say "listening" instead of "reading" but hey, in our busy lives we optimise everything and so when I walk to work, I often listen to books. Thanks, Audible!) 

The book was written for managers to help them be better leaders, communicate more effectively with team members, provide better support and coaching and so have more impact. Achieving this comes down to seven key questions that the author identifies as the essence of leading. 

I believe, though, that these seven questions can be an effective technique in any business relationship that requires communication. 

When speaking to customers (especially over the phone or Zoom or skype), these seven questions can help you get to the bottom of what the problem really is and how you can help. The same applies to consulting. I've always said that the best form of consulting is question-asking.

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The 3 Pillars of Customer Delight for Agencies (And Not Only)

[fa icon="calendar'] 14-Mar-2017 08:30:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Brands and Business, Agencies

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Did you know that it's five to 25 times more expensive to acquire a new customer than to retain an existing one? 

On top of that, improving customer retention rates by 5% can increase profits by 25% to 95%. 

If you ask me, these are numbers that I certainly wouldn't ignore. 

Unfortunately, far too many companies focus almost exclusively on net new sales and customer service remains just there as a given. 

I see this with my agency partners at HubSpot all the time. 

Of course, money in is important. You need that to keep the business running but if you want to scale an agency, sales and services need to be on the same level. Keeping your customers happy is priority number one too because that's how you ensure you have a sustainable revenue flow coming in all the time. You renew your agency-client retainers year after year because you continue to provide value.

So how do you do keep your customer happy?  

With a simple framework that I call the three pillars of customer delight. 

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