182 podcast episodes 🎙️

It’s another refresher of a past episode with Gregory Karelitz, Global Manager of HubSpot for Startups. HubSpot is a growth platform that lets your entire company to work together — from marketing, to sales, to customer service. 

Joe and Gregory explore how HubSpot provides quality integrations towards keeping a solid customer base, solutions the new plugin solves for end-user experience, and the importance of web page functionality.

What to Listen For:

  • 00:00 Intro
  • 02:49 Welcome to the pod, Gregory Karelitz!
  • 04:35 Working at HubSpot for six years
  • 06:10 How global partnerships work
  • 08:23 A look into the HubSpot’s integration build-out
  • 12:57 The complexity of disconnected tools
  • 15:28 Sponsorship of global WordCamps
  • 18:06 Gregory’s early days in the WordPress space
  • 21:18 Did you have a marketing strategy?
  • 23:48 The transition into the HubSpot community
  • 28:25 Optimizing your business growth with the right features and functions
  • 34:36 Innovation towards pushing for mobile-friendly websites
  • 37:55 The relationship between sales, marketing, and customer service

Episode Resources:

Podcast Transcript:

Joe Howard: [00:00:00] Yeah, these folks, Joe Howard here. So first off question for you. We are in the middle of a. Project right now, it’s community-based project. Allie is working diligently on it, and we want to create a space for some of our listeners here for some of our 10 days of the WP MRR virtual conference. Some of our folks who work with WP bus just in general, as many WordPress community people as possible.

So the question is where should we launch our new community? So there the couple of obvious answers, which are. No a Slack community or a Facebook group, we’re leaning away from Facebook, but Slack is possible. Definitely what we’ve also seen a couple of other options out there. Circle dot S Oh, tribe dot S O both areas where we can create kind of new social network for us.

I know now Slack or Facebook, but using. Different more community-based software. So I wanted to hear what you think about that. I trust the thoughts of folks listening to this. So if you go right now, twp, mrr.com forward slash survey that’s WP MRR forward slash survey intent. You can literally go there right now.

If you want to, are you on your computer? You can go there. If you don’t respond to them, type it into the mobile browser. Take a quick survey, Allie, put it together. We want to know where to build our community. What you’ll get the most value out of. Cool. Really appreciate that. Today’s episode, we are putting back out there into the world.

This week’s episode, this was a really good one. I always really enjoy chatting with people from HubSpot. It’s crazy. Everybody. I talked to some, there is like a killer marketer surprise, but a Gregory Carolyn’s is definitely no different. We really talked a lot in this episode about his specialty is really in the sales arena, but really this episode books, a lot of them.

Making sales and marketing, more straightforward, more streamlined using WordPress. I think that’ll be helpful for a lot of agencies, freelancers, WordPress professionals out there who want to do a little bit better around sales, one who better at marketing. I’ll tell you that when we. Once we got our like sales and marketing funnels down at WP bus and really started to hit the accelerator, I hired an Alex who’s now our head of growth, man.

He just took it and run with it. And now super predictable customer numbers coming in every month through sales marketing channel. So this is a great episode for people who want to try and push that way as well. All right. That’s all for this little intro for you. Enjoy today’s episode. Yo good people. Welcome back to the UWP MRR WordPress podcast. I’m Joe.

Gregory Karelitz: [00:02:51] And I’m superman.

Joe Howard: [00:02:52] And you’re listening to the WordPress business podcast. We’ve got the one and only Superman, a hundred podcasts this week. What’s gone up, man.

Gregory Karelitz: [00:03:00] All is good. Just taking a quick break from flying around and trying to save some lives, just to talk about WordPress and I grow some businesses now.

Joe Howard: [00:03:09] Maybe those two things are the same thing flying around and saving people by helping them out with WordPress, the superhero of the WordPress, Superman of the WordPress space.

Gregory Karelitz: [00:03:17] Right when we throw our Clark Kent glasses on that’s when we’re sitting by the computer, otherwise we’ve got the cake flying around, trying to to see some new things and save some people.

Joe Howard: [00:03:27] Nice. That’s a good parallel. Actually. I really liked that. All right. Yeah. Superman on the podcast this week also known as Gregory Karelitz. And I’m saying that last name today. Almost.

Gregory Karelitz: [00:03:44] Perfect. It’s perfect.

Joe Howard: [00:03:45] Nailed it. I practice beforehand. People are listening. We practice the last line. I just wanna make sure I got it right. Cool. And you go by is Gregory or Greg?

Gregory Karelitz: [00:03:52] Usually, if people are mad at me, they call me Gregory. But what’s funny is I also have a tough time pronouncing. My own name is Greg. People are like Ray or gray, like no, Greg but so Greg or Gregory, whichever one, Ron today, Joe, it works for me.

Joe Howard: [00:04:06] Cool. I have the same thing. I say, Joe, what people think? I said, Jim, and then, yeah, only usually when my parents get mad at me, it’s like Joseph Hirshhorn Howard, but mostly Joe is a cup of Joe is a little easier. So I think most people go with that, but yeah. Cool, Greg thanks for hopping on the podcast this week. Why don’t you shoot a little intro? Tell people a little bit about what you’re up to in the WordPress space.

Gregory Karelitz: [00:04:26] Sure. I’ve actually been a WordPress fanatic for a little over 10 years now. I remember building my first website in high school and actually starting businesses then in selling some products using WooCommerce way back when but today I work at HubSpot and I’ve been here for a little over six years.

And most recently I joined the HubSpot WordPress team. Leading our global partnership effort. So aligning with plugins themes, hosting companies with the sole mission of trying to help more businesses grow better, especially the ones using WordPress. Clearly since I’m focusing on the WordPress partnership, but to enable them to do more with their websites and their businesses to help more customers and engage with people in  a really streamlined fashion.

Joe Howard: [00:05:10] Nice. Very cool. Cool. So I just did a a presentation at the HubSpot user group in DC, which I didn’t really even know about that you guys have user groups. And then one of my friends invited me to come talk. And I was. Putting up like the hashtags I want people to use before.

And in my presentation I saw grow better as the HubSpot hashtag which I didn’t even know about. But, and I like that you use that just now in your intro shows, you guys are all on the same page. Even a huge team can all be on the same page and know know what you’re going after.

Cool. Okay. Part of global. Partnerships at HubSpot, obviously WP bus, very good friends of a y’all over at HubSpot where not only of the new WordPress plugin, but just the CRM sales CRM, which we use to part of our sales process. All excellent stuff. Cool. Global partnerships. How has that been diving into that?

Gregory Karelitz: [00:05:56] So it’s been great. I’ve been working on it for a few months now. One of my teammates Kim, who I think you might’ve had on the podcast in the past, he is now completely owning our WordPress plugin. We’re revamping it and relaunching it to the world, which we are slowly doing. But we’re going to have some big news coming out later this year.

And on the partnership side, our whole mission is to align with other businesses that sing very similar narratives to us. So ideally we want to help businesses grow better in the way that we do that is by giving businesses more intelligence around their contacts. So knowing what people are doing across their website from page views to.

Last time that they were by to forms that they were filling out and live chats that they’re engaging with all aggregated onto one timeline. So David’s working night and day with the rest of our engineering team to give a big shout out to them on producing a pretty killer plugin. And then our goal with the partnership realm is to align with other businesses that can continue to enhance the contact experience.

So page builders and e-commerce informs tools in calendar tools, all aggregating to basically give businesses more intelligence around what the heck people are doing on their site and give them more opportunities to attract, engage and delight them wherever they may be in their life cycle.

Joe Howard: [00:07:14] Yeah. I liked the idea a lot because I think WordPress, WordPress is an interesting industry to try and do that in because of the open source madness of it. The pros of open source are great. Like you can use this plugin from over here. You can use this theme from over here and throw it all together on a WordPress site.

And the most of the time it magically works. But then how does the data over here talk to that data over there. People who are visiting your website to buy from you. Don’t. Care about the disjointedness of a theme and the plugin. Like they just want that process to work. And as a business owner, you also have this come from this perspective of okay, I’m using like these 10 different tools in my sales process.

How do I get them all to talk to each other, which is probably easier in like a closed system, but in an open source, it makes it a little bit more difficult. So are you guys, is the plan just build integrations with all of these tools so that you can port that data all in HubSpot so that. You can say, okay, you want to look at all of your calendar stuff from this booking plugin, you can just check it out and HubSpot and the same with other tools. Is that kind of the plan? Just kind of integration buildup.

Gregory Karelitz: [00:08:14] Yeah. That’s exactly it. So I think speaking from like a customer perspective, and this is why I’m so passionate about it, having used WordPress for over 10 years.

When I think back to my experiences, either in starting a website or building websites for other businesses that are pretty thriving businesses, the beauty of open source is I can go pick anything I want and put it right into my environment. The challenge with that is, is with every additional plugin or tool that you incorporate into your tool belt.

It doesn’t just add one more level of sophistication. It actually adds, I think, like maybe a factor and factorial level of complications, because now you have one more tool that has to connect with the seven other tools you already have. And so starting a business and starting a website is actually really easy today with easy hosting and themes.

And then you can pick the plugins, but when you start to begin your growth endeavors is where that tech debt, that system begins to really fall apart and break. And that’s what we’re trying to solve here is we’re not necessarily the. Best form tool. We may not be, the best live chat tool, but we’re working hard to try to make our pieces of the puzzle.

Really good, but we’re going out and building world-class integrations with the best in class companies where gravity forms just released about a month ago, their HubSpot ad-on that makes gravity forms and HubSpot works seamlessly together. And now we’re doing that across every other vertical that sings that narrative of contact management businesses can use any tool they want. But HubSpot becomes the centerpiece of all that contact information that allows you as the business owner to just know everything about everybody, but not having to worry about connecting too many dots.

Joe Howard: [00:09:54] Yeah. That’s a cool idea. Even just with that one example, you said the way we use HubSpot and connected to our contact form right now is we just have our contact form, sends an email to this email address.

So that email is hooked into HubSpot. That’s fine, that sends the contact into HubSpot. We can start the sales process there, but it would be nice if we could have different forms that automatically fill into HubSpot so that when they come in, they’re automatically marked as a lead. They’re automatically marked as whatever the HubSpot kind of The areas we have in HubSpot. That would be nice.

Gregory Karelitz: [00:10:24] To that note too, I think like with that challenge, that’s what our plugin solves today is we have this feature that David’s built and the teams built called collected forms. That actually when you install that spot plugin, It adds a script on top of every form that already exists on your website almost as a listener.

So when somebody fills out that form and they fill out at, Joe at WP buffs.com, that information automatically sinks into HubSpot, but no longer do you have to get that email notification and be like, Hey team, can you add this to the CRM? And then lose track of everything? Now cooking also establish on that person, just from the plugin so that now you can see all the pages Joe’s actually already viewed the form that he filled out and then use that intelligently to potentially even serve it up, to do an email marketing campaign, or to have your team reach out to say, Hey, Joe, we actually noticed you looked at our pricing page and our services page, and we’re also looking at other assets, how can we help you? So the whole goal is to give you context. To your contacts to make sure that you can healthily and in a really easy way, build great relationships.

Joe Howard: [00:11:35] Yeah. I feel like the personalization of the, of that contact and that communication is really huge in our sales process. And so the more information we can have about what people are doing across all of across everything we do, whether it’s the website, whether it’s in HubSpot, whether it’s like in the meeting, people booked the more information we can have, the more.

The more informed we can be when we’re going through the sales process, because in our mind, sales is just education. We treated us like we just want to give you we want to show the value of our tool as it is going to be most valuable to you or the value of our services.

What’s most valuable to you. And some people are like, they just looked at the security page, obviously interested in security. So we want to talk more about security when we’re, either on a call with them or anything. Yeah. Yeah. Cool, man, it sounded, it sounds like the plugin is going pretty well.

Gregory Karelitz: [00:12:20] So far, I think there’s 80,000 plus active users. I think there’s a four and a half star rating which we feel good about it. We want to get that higher. But I also think with just our whole mission is we’re going and doing customer research and talking to our partners and our customers and the agencies.

And just saying what is it that you need? And I think a lot of times everything that you mentioned from disconnected tools, it’s not the disconnected tools. That’s the problem. It’s. W why does that matter? It’s then I’m doing my work in MailChimp, and then I have WP forms and then I have my ads tool with HootSweet and then I also have my social media over here. And then you have, you hire a person on your team and it’s all complicated. And they can’t grow. So we’re on that mission to help businesses grow better and figure out a way to do it in a really easy fashion that works nicely with tools that they may already be using today.

Joe Howard: [00:13:10] Yeah, you actually just described exactly what we did and it was like, we’ve got a lot of marketing and stuff to take care of.

That’s all slightly complicated and we always try to make it more automated and make it simpler. But yeah, my solution to that was okay, I’m hiring a marketer. So now Caitlin doesn’t have to, Mark is our head of marketing and she handles all the marketing, but we didn’t really solve that many problems in that higher of making things truly simpler and all.

Core in one place. It’s a continual journey that we’re always trying to do better at, but yeah. I mean I tell people all the time, the way to scale correctly is to figure out the things that you’re doing over and over again, and to automate them and to figure out what those hard pieces are and try and make them a little easier. And if you can do that, like you’ll be in a pretty good place. So that even when you do hire someone, they’re efficient with what they do.

Gregory Karelitz: [00:13:56] A hundred percent and then it’s fun to then it’s fun to, it’s The systems I think is one of the biggest challenges for people today. And I don’t know if that will ever go away. I actually feel like it’s just getting worse and worse with the more tools that get created. But I think in order to do it correctly is you will always have to hire great people, but ideally the systems take care of all the stuff like you mentioned that needs to be automated. And then the people can do their job in a system that works in a way that is repeatable. And that’s what we’re hoping to. To do with you guys as partners and as all these other companies that we’re trying to help with. And it’s a really fun mission to rally around.

Joe Howard: [00:14:35] Yeah, for sure, man. That’s cool. Now are you guys correct me if I’m wrong here, but are you guys now a global sponsor for word camps or maybe just a major sponsor of a lot of word camps?

Gregory Karelitz: [00:14:46] Yeah. So I believe we’re a global sponsor at this point. We’re going to, we were just at WordCamp Europe a few months back, which was super fun. And then we have us coming up and we’re also trying to jump into a few other word camps. I think Dublin being one of them. Nice. And it’s just an awesome way to get connected with folks and get to meet people in person. And I think this is where I get the fan boy is like, Oh my God, I’ve used your tools for and it’s just a, it’s a really cool way to immerse in the community.

Joe Howard: [00:15:12] Yeah. Love meeting people who make, create that amazing plugin. And a lot of times on these big, pretty successful businesses financially. And you’re like, Oh, that person is basically, you go talk to them. It’s Oh, they’re just a person. It’s just a guy who girl who created a plugin. And yeah, there’s just like the rest of us. So I liked that about word camps. It humanizes everybody. Yeah. Have you made it to a few words, camps around?

Gregory Karelitz: [00:15:32] So I had my first one at work camp Europe. Yeah, good start. I’m walking up to the these companies, whether they be plugging in theme or even at the hosting companies. And I was just like, I was actually, I was like, I had a fan boy moment with all of them and I was like, tapping my teammates on the shoulder Oh my God.

Look and tell the mentor, Oh my God, look, it’s her ex. And I like to think of the luckiest person in the world because now I get to go work hand in hand with these businesses to figure out more ways to do it. So word camps, killer. And it’s just cool to get, to meet the people behind the madness.

Joe Howard: [00:16:05] Yeah, I hear you. And now you’re officially like a WordPress nerd. Now that you’ve nerded out over these these companies you’ve worked with over the last little while and you can meet them at word gaps, right? Yeah, man. You also mentioned that you’ve been in WordPress for a long time, so it’s it’s interesting kind of that transition from being in the WordPress space, maybe, selling your own stuff with WooCommerce, all that, and eventually moving into HubSpot and now helping HubSpot to know what it’s like to come into the WordPress community because a lot of.

Businesses have tried and failed to do so because they don’t really get the WordPress space. They treated it as like a pure business opportunity, which it can be it right. There’s a there’s essences of that in everywhere, but the community piece is really important. And so the kind of global sponsorships you’re doing as well as the kind of, having you as part of the team and maybe other people on the team as well, who are like. WordPress people who’ve been around WordPress for a long time and understand the ecosystem. But I love to start with the stuff you did with WordPress before. What kind of stuff were you selling on WooCommerce and how did that go for you?

Gregory Karelitz: [00:17:07] So my first business ever on on WordPress was in high school and after doing woodworking all four years of high school, one of my buddies and I created a handmade wooden pen company. And so we were making like these beautiful exotic woods and turn them like physically on our lave into pens. And we started selling them both in stores and online. And that was like my first dipping of the toe into website building. And we were actually making a good amount of money. It was super cool.

It’s two little inexperienced high school kids figuring out how to sell a product was super cool. And actually my friend that I was doing that with has gone on to build a company called loci, which is a bracelet company that has helped raise. Tens of millions of dollars for different charitable causes.

And you see these bracelets now everywhere. So like that was our first step into WordPress and it’s a website building. Then I did another one in college that was a boat shoe business. And in a matter of months we were doing over, I think it was a few hundred thousand dollars in revenue. Which was pretty cool all through commerce, all for free, adding a few extensions into it. And then from there it was just like helping my friends and a couple other people that wanted business help and building websites. And it was all on WordPress. And now it’s a see like how the ecosystem’s grown is so fun to be on the other side of trying to add value back to the people trying to create.

Businesses and and beautiful website experiences trying to leverage HubSpot. So it’s been like a full circle journey and I get, I love putting myself, I am the customer. I still build on WordPress every single night. I’m like, I’m that geek, but that’s kinda been my journey throughout it all. And I probably dabbled in over a hundred websites and just. Do it for fun to continue to learn. And it actually is like my escape and don’t think about anything. So it’s so fun to be on the other side, getting to try to orchestrate a plugin and a, in a business endeavor to help more people.

Joe Howard: [00:19:07] Cool. I like what you said about that. You’re still a customer. I think that’s just like something I want to pick out for cause that’s, I think that’s so important for everybody to always be doing. You lose touch with the customer. It’s easy to lose touch with customer. It’s easy. It’s really easy to go and build a tool. Do you want to, all of these cool features, we have to have these five features.

Of course you have to have them. They’re awesome. But if you don’t talk to users, you don’t, and especially if you’re not a user, then it’s hard. It becomes harder to really build what people are going to want. What’s going to add value to people. So I liked that. When you were building these WooCommerce sites, you are selling, hundreds of thousands worth of like boat shoes and all sorts of stuff.

Maybe this was even if this was from high school on this may have been even like pre HubSpot pre SEO was around, but inbound marketing hadn’t made me not have been like named by HubSpot. So did you have a strategy behind like growing these small sites into making pretty significant revenue? Like what was your marketing strategy back then?

Gregory Karelitz: [00:20:01] Oh, man, I wish I had a strategy that was cool with the boat shoe endeavor is we had built a cool product. And then from there we put together a pretty good looking website. That just looked really nice where we had super high quality photos and not a ton of text and big images that, I think were enticing.

But the channel that we had tapped into then was college fraternity and sororities. And so I thought what was really cool was and I wish I had a contact management tool then was, we were just using spreadsheets. And literally going down the line and connecting with different fraternity and sorority and schools.

Cause we could do custom and Bostons on these shoes of any different logo. And basically say Hey we turned them all into ambassadors. Where if they sold a pair of shoes, we could give them a kickback of five to $10. And what was really cool is we then had an an army of these ambassadors that were looking to make money, spread a cool product and be more aligned with their own communities and have a unique product to bring to it.

And it worked really well. So that was like our initial go to market there. Had I done it all over again? I probably would have gone a lot heavier into search. I had no idea what I was doing back then. I still don’t know that much, but I’m now inside the walls of HubSpot I, in order to get to see really the machine behind the why, the how and the, what. Which is also what we’re trying to teach the world today, too.

Joe Howard: [00:21:26] Yeah, for sure. I love hearing about, marketing strategies. People tried 10, 15 years ago. It’s always, looking back, we’ll probably say the same thing in 15 years today. We’ll be like, Oh, are we doing back then? And that was crazy. We were just focusing on content marketing. There’s so much more now, but Yeah. It’s, when I started WP buffs, like before we were focused on any content marketing of any sort, I was like posting on Quora, like answering questions, like driving almost no traffic, like spending like hours answering questions and seeing like no traffic come up.

So we’ve all definitely had our like marketing. I dunno what I’m doing. That’s at times they’re not in a lot of marketing Oh. Classes for digital marketing at like universities. Like a lot of us are self-taught and a lot of the self-taught this is Figuring it out and try and stuff and seeing what works.

So yeah. Cool. Okay. So you had those sites, let’s talk about the transition to HubSpot. Did you have some other stuff in between, and then were you doing some marketing stuff and you were like maybe I should just go to the gold standard of marketing people and go work at HubSpot. Like how did that, how did you find your position there originally?

Gregory Karelitz: [00:22:27] Yeah. So while I was in school, I was doing the boat shoe business and then ended up deciding I need to learn a lot more before continuing down this path because we had. Probably a thousand different skews, our business model wasn’t super tight.

And I was like, you know what? Instead of grinding out on something that I’m not like I wasn’t ever super passionate about boat shoes. But I loved building websites and I loved doing marketing and I loved trying to figure out and talk to people to help them with their own stuff. I actually was going to go one of two paths after school, either be a teacher.

Or go work at HubSpot and I was super lucky to get an entry-level sales job at HubSpot, and I did that for about 18 months and then was a sales rep for another 18 months and then had an awesome experience getting to help. Start and build what’s now called HubSpot for startups after that Kim, who was the global head of it all, I came in to help her build the programming behind it and the partnerships.

And I did that for about three years and now And the last few months got to join the WordPress efforts to really meet my passion of WordPress and websites with HubSpot and try to help align partnerships and work alongside product and alongside content to try to build something really special in a new category inside of WordPress. So that’s been my journey and I just feel lucky to be able to learn at every single step. And this one feels the exact same way.

Joe Howard: [00:23:53] Yeah. Got you, man. Yeah. Six years is a long time at one company. From my perspective, I think WP boss is like the first thing I’ve spent. We just celebrated our four year anniversary. But the first year was thanks, man. Thank you. The first year was definitely like doing stuff on the side. Like I had a nine to five and I was doing five to nine. So like full-time I really been only been doing this for three years or so, but before that. I worked a few jobs for a year, maybe two years, max one was a high school math teacher. I was a high school math teacher for a couple of years. So it was your other route. Yeah. But yeah, it seems like your HubSpot is a kind of place that you started and stuck there. To me that says a lot about the company.

Gregory Karelitz: [00:24:34] Yeah. I, so when I started, I think it was around 500 employees now. I think there’s 3,500 employees. Yeah. It’s grown a lot since 500. That’s crazy. Oh my goodness. I just feel like everyday I get to be a student of the business. And I think what’s also really cool. And to this point that we’re also trying to bring into WordPress is like the culture of our business is.

Try as hard as you can. And if you fail, learn from it and then try something slightly different to see if you can continue to make it work. And so like the executive team and the leadership team and everybody supporting that there’s no wrong answer. There’s certainly a better answer. And it’s and we know that there’s a path to getting that better answer.

Which is why we go and do a ton of research and speak with partners and customers and say what is it you want? And then we come back and try to figure out the best ways to build it. And then how do we distribute it? And so all along the way everything that’s happened inside of HubSpot in some way, shape or form feels like it started as a little experiment.

And our plugin was actually an experiment started. Probably five years ago by these two guys, Andy and Nelson, and it’s just had its many iterations and it feels like now we’ve figured out what it is we want to do. And now we have the energy behind it to try to make it something special and make a difference in the WordPress space. That the journey is evolving and who knows what another year look like of it, but we’re keeping our eyes open and our ears open to make sure we’re listening to what people are saying and try to take that, to see what we can do to build.

Joe Howard: [00:26:07] Yeah. Yeah. What do you think at the same time, 2020 looks like from your experience so far doing a WordPress HubSpot stuff?

Gregory Karelitz: [00:26:15] My honest opinion.

Joe Howard: [00:26:16] Yeah.

Gregory Karelitz: [00:26:17] Let me, I’ll try to break it down for you. And this was just solely from a customer’s perspective. I think like our strategy is trying to play from that, but I’m going to put my shoes in the, myself, in the shoes of the listeners and the better the customers. And perhaps even the agencies out there building on WordPress is hard.

It’s gotten easier. If you are brand new to the ecosystem or have been done doing it before you sign up for a host, you probably have your domain and live somewhere else. You connect the two together. You end up WordPress inside that host you install a theme and a few plugins, and then you make your site look awesome.

And then what today we are. So people say I’m looking to redesign my website. I’m looking to redesign my website and we go and look at it and it’s not bad. So what’s the problem, right? I think the nature of WordPress and all these a hundred million plus websites in it, people care more about the look of their website than the way it actually helps perform their business.

I think that’s about to fundamentally change that’s our guests what’s happening now is if you look at the world’s best, plug-ins, there’s a select few that are monsters in the space. And everybody’s using them, which is awesome. It’s the way it should be. I think what happens in the long tail is it’s very hard to be a new business in the plugin space today and actually do great.

The service providers out there. Like you guys are adding a ton of value by connecting the dots between these super premium plugins, but how are you growing your business? It still comes down to my site. Looks good and has good features. That’s not enough today. The next phase of what I believe will happen inside of WordPress is this business growth phase.

Meaning how do we take our beautiful website and how do we attract the right people, engage with them the way that they want to be engaged and then delight them throughout the process that’s business model. That’s also operations and systems. And I think what we’re starting to see, and I’ll give an example of it.

Is you have to now tailor everything you do, not to your desire, but to the desire of the customer. The example I’ll use is I have a, I have friends that own and operate a big function hall just South of Boston. They are like, if not the best, one of the best in Boston for weddings, corporate events, social events, you name it.

Their website, they just went through a redesign that cost them a good amount of Chuck, a good amount of chunk of change. And the company that they used actually killed a bunch of pages that were ranking really? Oh man. Researching and Googling Boston Indian weddings. They used to rank number one and that page, because it didn’t fit the mold of the look and feel was killed.

So we had to then go back and say, what the heck do we want to do right now? You look better, but you don’t function better. And that traffic that you were once getting isn’t coming anymore, and this is happening, I’m going to put a guesstimate to it. Probably 30% of the time when I hear people do redesigns, we’re going to, we’re going to slim down our site.

We’re going to make it look better. But yes, that can be great for usability, but it can also absolutely kill everything that you’ve worked hard to gain. So we looked at it and we said, okay, what are your top performing pages? They have a weddings page. They have a homepage, they have a corporate events page.

They have a couple of other ones, but these were the ones from Google analytics with the WPM U dev plugin. We said, these are the top pages that people are coming on today. Great. Let’s start there. We put HubSpot live chat on their site, all through the plugin. And within a two month period, they generated 100 leads.

And the experience that was going through on that live chat is people don’t want to fill out long registration forms or say I’m having an a 150 person wedding on this date with this amount of it’s too much information. Stop it. Let’s now make it feel like texting. Let’s make it feel like customers can come to you and ask the questions without being scared to fill out a long form without giving too much information.

And so this live chat and the bot that you can turn on for free using HubSpot. The first thing that would prompt to do is say, Hey, where are your Lombardo’s concierge service bot, please chat with us and let us know where you’re looking for help with. And the first prompt is what are you looking for?

Wedding corporate event, menus, catering, whatever, when they click wedding, it says, Oh, great, congrats. When are you looking to have your wedding? They then ask a date. All of this feels human to human, but really there’s a bot behind the scene. They were generated a hundred leads in two months. So feature functionality and user experience.

That user experience is the last bullet that I think is going to start coming into WordPress. And it’s going to come in a big way. You now have to deliver great experiences wherever people are and do it in a way that’s unified to their interests. That also helps you engage with them where you said it best you have a sales team, but you just like to think of them as helping and supporting. That’s all you can do today. You just have to make sure that you’re converting people and talking to people in the right way. And then now they know everything about them and can tailor the right audience or the right information to the right audience.

Joe Howard: [00:31:30] Yeah, for sure, man, we used the live chat on our website, generates a ton of leads for us.

We’ve experimented with a bot as well. And it’s all pretty interesting to see how people are interacting with kind of such a, whether it’s a bot or truly chatting with us, it’s a much easier experience. It’s more like one-on-one experience in filling out a form or something. And a lot of people. Dig it and a lot of people.

Yeah, definitely generates a lot of leads for us. Yeah. I’d love to hear a little bit also about the. Like the direction we’re going in terms of mobile versus desktop. You’re talking a lot about like giving people great experiences. How are you guys and how is HubSpot helping people to do this?

Maybe not even just in the WordPress space, but in the WordPress space too, but with the move to mobile, everyone’s using their mobile phones. You mentioned like texting and such or Interacting with people like it’s texting, but yeah. What’s HubSpot about doing in terms of pushing, helping marketers to push into the mobile space.

Gregory Karelitz: [00:32:27] Yeah. Yeah. So when it comes to website development on specifically on WordPress, we’re partnering with the leaders in page building and we have our own CMS as well. That’s fully mobile responsive. That is pretty killer and is more tailored towards a. For businesses really trying to grow and not having to have the headache of infrastruct.

Sure. But if people are on WordPress, we’re partnering with if the world’s leaders in page building space. So that people can build beautiful mobile, responsive websites, and then have that live chat or engagement points or responsive email, all powered through the mobile. So if you were to actually even go, if you were to install HubSpot plugin and turn, live chat on your website somebody could live chat you and you could be using your Android or iPhone.

And even when you’re on the, go at dinner with your spouse or friends and you get a live chat on your site, you can respond to them from your mobile device now through the app. So it’s like your business doesn’t ever sleep, and you have to make sure that you can tailor your content and your follow-up and the responses that will suit.

The customer and like for Lombardo’s when people are doing wedding research, they’re not working during the day, they’re doing it at nine o’clock at night. So the bot responding to them to tee up the right information was all that was missing in their ingredient. So it’s just helping the people where they are when they are with the right sort of information that only you as the business owner can really figure out by going to survey your customers.

Joe Howard: [00:34:01] Yeah. It’s so funny how I have this Picture of my head of two guys digging holes in the door. And one guy’s turning around cause he’s tired and he’s ah, this is worthless. And he, there’s a big chunk of gold. And he was just about to hit the gold, but he just turned around because he was tired or the other guy is still going and he’s going to, he’s going to be the one to get that gold.

But anyway, that is just a parallel for, there’s usually not, I’m sure that there are a hundred things. A lot of business owners are doing wrong, but in terms of the high impact stuff, there’s probably not a hundred high-impact things are probably like two or three small changes you can make to the business that will have 80% of the impact you’re looking to have.

I’m a big like Pareto principle guys. So I’m always thinking what’s the minimum I could put in to have the most impact, not just because I’m lazy, but that’s how you should think, like you should think about how can I have that biggest impact in terms of my efficiency. I think HubSpot has has.

Has been one of those small changes that we’ve made to like have a big impact on the business? We were doing like all of our sales, like in our help desk software before. And it was like, Shitty, like not the way you should do things, especially when you have a small sales team. And it was always switching to HubSpot was like, Oh this is how professionals do sales. And now we’re getting into the marketing side of things too. Yeah. Cool man. And it sounds like for pushing the mobile and helping people, just the marketing in general. So I’ll go on as well.

Gregory Karelitz: [00:35:17] And I think Th the thought that I have, and I think this is what our executive team and a lot of us think about it keeps us up at night inside of HubSpot too, is today.

I think the functionality and division between sales, marketing, and services business is very fragmented. But what we’ve learned is that marketing can actually be your best sales. And sales can be your best marketing and customer service. Now, if you make customers happy and satisfied, it’s your best marketing and your best sales.

So I think we’re pushing businesses to try to do is become a little bit more modern and customer centric. And what that means is when you put them at the center of everything you’re doing, it gives marketing sales and services or a hybrid of all the above a unified mission. And like our services team is absolutely stellar and their goal is to make customers happy.

And guess what? When they’re happy, they’re the ones who, or the loudest microphone turning around to social media, turning around to the real engines, turning around and being the first ones to say it, Oh, we love HubSpot. We love this. We love that. Which just leads to more people finding that delight and like it, it’s not rocket science.

Every business can go out there and do it today, just know which are your best customers and which customers need your help. And we believe that a contact management tool is the right way to do that and just make sure you’re helpful. I couldn’t have said it better myself. I think that’s a great place to wrap up, but before we like officially wrap up, let’s do a little wind down.

Where can people find you online? Are you on social? Where can people like cook into the HubSpot? Whether it’s like the new plugin or just if they’re interested in like checking out, oh, the shit HubSpot, but we only talked about a fraction of the stuff HubSpot does, but yeah, if you want to check all that out, where’s all that at.

So if you’re looking for more information on like HubSpot’s WordPress plugin, just search HubSpot in the WordPress repository and it’ll be the first thing that comes up. If I can try to engage with anybody, I don’t know if anybody even would care to engage with me, but on, on Twitter G Corel it’s.

I happy to engage with people there or chat with them or LinkedIn, whatever, maybe. And then I think like the best learning opportunity is probably not anywhere other than going to talk to your customers. So that if I have one unsolicited piece of advice to the listening crew here is stop what you’re doing, or tonight, take a pen and paper and go through your process as a customer.

Do an incognito window start Googling things that would lead you to your business or to your industry, hit your website and say, okay, what next? Okay. So I click that then what then? Okay. Then I click that then what, and you will find so many damn doors that are closed, and if you can start opening up a door with a live chat, with a form, with a good piece of content. You are going to incrementally change your business and that’s how businesses actually achieve growth. It’s not a silver bullet.

Joe Howard: [00:38:21] Yeah, not a silver bullet is great advice. Everyone’s always what’s the one thing I can do to Scott. It’s not, it doesn’t always work that way. In fact, most time. It usually doesn’t. Yeah. HubSpot’s also on our recommended tools, WordPress tools page at WP buffs. You can just scroll to the footer. It’s just recommended tools. HubSpot’s one of our recommended ones there not only because we love the plugin, but we’re. Power users. So yeah, you can find a link there as well. Makes you follow Gregory on Twitter. What’s that handle again?

Gregory Karelitz: [00:38:51] Gregory gee corral. It’s not anything exciting there. 

Joe Howard: [00:38:57] Yeah, we’ll see if people can spell it. We’ll have we’ll link out to that in the show notes and stuff. So people are listening. Just check out the podcast episode there. And you can find it. Last thing I always ask. Guests to do on the podcast. Greg is just to ask our audience for a little five star iTunes review for the podcast. If you wouldn’t mind giving them a little ask.

Gregory Karelitz: [00:39:17] Why would they not give you a five star?

Joe Howard: [00:39:19] Yeah, exactly.

Gregory Karelitz: [00:39:20] I think won’t be end of the day. Like Joe, you’re doing super cool things. I think if it takes 30 seconds tops for somebody to go click on iTunes or click on anything to give you a review. If they’re listening to this show, they better do it. And then. Hit us up on Twitter to say you gave the five star review so we can give you some love back and in that way make the community keep going round and round. So go give your five star review. Go hit up, Joe on Twitter, hit me up on Twitter. We’re going to retweet that out and give you guys some love right back and try to publicize your own businesses through our channels too. I can’t guarantee that for Joe, but I’m gonna, I’m gonna hold.

Joe Howard: [00:39:54] Ah, yeah, I won’t do that. I hate everybody now. Okay. Yeah. Thanks man. Appreciate that. Yeah. Yeah. And if you’re leaving an iTunes review, make sure you mentioned Greg in the comments. Hey, something you learned about the episode and we’ll shoot that to Greg so he can say, Oh, I’m glad someone got something solid out of the episode. You can go to WP mrr.com/itunes. We direct you right to the iTunes page. Pretty easy to leave a review. There, if you wouldn’t like a new listeners, if you are, this is your first time listening or one of your first few episodes, we’ve got a ton of content. We’ve got dozens of episodes, Greg. I think you’re going to be episode 60.

So we’ve got a ton of content in the backlog. Yeah, if you are having certain challenges with WordPress, we’ve probably talked about it. Want to grow and scale your business. Go check out some old content and go listen to what is going to help you today. If you’re a new listener or an oldest, and then you have questions for us for one of do smart Q and a episode.

So shoot any questions you have to yo@wpmrr.com I man that. Inbox personally. So I will get back to you and we’ll answer some questions live here on the podcast. Christina wpmrr.com. If you are an agency or freelancer or WordPress professional, and you want to focus more on monthly recurring revenue, check out the video.

Of course we have open sources, everything we do at WP Buffs, so that you can sell care plans, ongoing support, do 24 seven stuff and make your clients. Delighted like Greg and I were talking about today. One delight to your clients. You can do that at 75% off the care plan, core video course. Grab it while it’s there. I don’t know what that expression. I don’t know why he’s Xpression but it’s there. Cool. That is it for this week. We’ll catch you all again next week, Greg. Thanks again for hopping on. It’s been real.

Gregory Karelitz: [00:41:35] Thank you guys.

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