How to beat Hubspot at its own game

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I like to help new bloggers and I had an interesting conversation a few weeks ago with a young woman who was exasperated over what seemed like a hopeless situation.

“How can I ever beat Hubspot?” she asked. “They have so many resources and put out so much great content. Why would anybody read my blog for content marketing advice?”

I can certainly understand her consternation. It can get downright depressing watching these big companies pump out post after post when all of us little guys are lucky to produce one great piece of content every week!

Let’s look at this problem and come up with a strategy to win.

First let me say that I admire HubSpot so this is not an anti-HubSpot post. They are a solid company with a great product and they are “walking the talk” by investing in content.

Having said that, you do not want to be Hubspot. You want to be you because you can win your niche on your terms. Here’s how.

Blow apart your expectations.

This is an important step. Forget about size. Forget about traffic. Forget about being HubSpot.

Focus on AUDIENCE.

Traffic is an ego metric that is not necessarily going to deliver business benefits. Would you rather have 10,000 readers a day who never come back or 10 passionate readers who engage with you and eventually buy from you? HubSpot is focused on building search traffic with Terminator like efficiency and they will win that game. But you can build your own meaningful audience who cares about YOU.

HubSpot is a machine, you’re not.

To stand out on the web, you need to be original. And to be original, you need to dig down deep and have the courage to show your personality and passion through your content,

There is only one you. You have no competition, including HubSpot. Be you and attract your own audience.

You can own your niche

To generate the thousands of posts HubSpot tosses into the blogosphere, it has to cover a pretty wide number of subjects. HubSpot is a generalist but the world also needs specialists and that is you.

Most pundits will tell you that you need to pick a specialized topic before you start creating content. I disagree. Let me ask you this: the job you’re doing now — is this exactly the job you thought you would be doing five years ago? The answer to that is almost always no. You carve your path in life by discovering your opportunities all along the way, Blogging works the same way.

So if you don’t know your niche yet, don’t let that stop you from creating content. Just start. It’s likely that your specialty and interests will evolve and perhaps even transform over time until you find your niche.

HubSpot has no soul

Every week I receive dozens of blog posts from HubSpot. They are all by different authors … people I have never heard of before. In fact, they have so many authors, the byline at the top of the post is almost invisible to me. I don’t even care who wrote it because it is a revolving door.

When I leave a comment on a HubSpot blog post, I don’t get a response. Why? Because comments probably don’t contribute to inbound leads as much as the original content becoming indexed by Google.

So, I have zero emotional attachment to HubSpot. They are a content machine.  I don’t know these people writing for HubSpot and they don’t want to know me either.

This is your opportunity

Think of the opportunity that YOU have here. People buy from people they know and trust. You can connect with me and I can connect with you because we can get to know each other … first in the comment section, then maybe through a call or email exchange. There is hardly a week that goes by that I don’t meet a {grow} blog reader in real life. And that’s when the real magic starts to happen!

By the way — the young blog reader who first asked the question about HubSpot? I got to know her through her blog comments on {grow}. We had a phone call so I could help her with a problem. Now she’s working for me. That’s the way building a real audience works. And that’s how YOU can beat HubSpot at their own game.


Illustration courtesy Mary Huang

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