How We Built An Inbound Marketing Funnel While Riding The T


inbound marketing funnel

Inbound Marketing Funnels in Under 30 Minutes

For many Bostonians, just mentioning the T – The mass transit system known as the MBTA or Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority – brings a flood of emotions to most commuters who rely on mass transit. When it works, it’s a thing of beauty; when it doesn’t, it quickly becomes a chaotic scene filled with frustrated and frantic passengers. You may be asking, what does this have to do with growth marketing? Great question. Keep reading, and we’ll share our story with you.

The Infamous Red Line

Our office is conveniently located near Boston’s famous South Station which makes commuting a breeze when the infamous Red Line is running smoothly. However, over the last few years delays on the Red Line have become more and more frequent. There’s even an unofficial website that will inform riders if the Red Line is running “on-time” or if it’s experiencing “delays.” Alas, I digress, let’s get back to growth marketing.

Inbound Marketing Funnel Challenge

While riding the Red Line home from a long day at the office, we decided to challenge ourselves and see if we could build an entire growth marketing funnel strategy from the time we left South Station in Downtown Boston and before we arrived at Davis Square in Somerville, MA. For context, this is usually a 25 – 30-minute ride on the T (e.g., subway).

Before we dive in, let me set the stage for you; we wanted to create an entire inbound funnel in 30 minutes or less. Did we succeed? You’ll have to keep reading to find out, sorry to leave you hanging like the T. Before leaving the office, we printed out five pages of beautiful prose; yes, I said we printed it out. Although this is atypical behavior for us, we must have been feeling nostalgic, but in reality, we know that cell reception on the T is akin to Swiss cheese and we didn’t want to take any chances. Shortly after departing we got to work with old-fashioned pen and paper.

How Do We Maximize Our ROI From Content

Our first thought was, “how do we maximize the ROI from this pillar page filled with insightful nuggets of growth marketing wisdom?” We read through the document and picked out sections that could be repurposed into other types of content. Immediately after perusing the document, we determined that we were, in fact, looking at content gold. We started pulling out content ideas ranging from quick start guides to infographics to long-form downloadable assets.

Here’s a peek at a list of content ideas that followed:

  • Pillar page (i.e., a pillar page is an in-depth blog post significantly longer than a traditional blog post)
  • Snackable blogs to help support the pillar page content (e.g., improved internal linking)
  • Short-form assets:
    • Infographic: Visually appealing material that’s great for sharing on social media
    • Checklist: High-level overview of essential concepts
    • Quickstart guide: Help people quickly get started
  • Long-form assets:
    • Ultimate guide: Comprehensive downloadable asset
  • Product page:
    • Repurpose the content to help support the product page (read: SEO juice)
    • Extract critical points and integrate into the page to make the page more compelling
  • Landing page:
    • HubSpot landing pages with compelling and engaging content and clear CTA’s
  • Thank you pages
  • Explainer video
  • Email nurture track
  • Paid placement on social media:
    • Facebook
    • Google AdWords
    • LinkedIn
    • Twitter
Inspiration Drawn From A Pillar Page

After reviewing the vast array of content opportunities that this one pillar page provided, we decided to incorporate this approach into all of our content marketing strategies moving forward. We’re slightly obsessed with maximizing our return on investment, but we also understand that people learn in different ways. By taking our core concept and breaking it up into different types of content, we made our content more accessible, and in turn, more interesting — or at least that’s our hope.

By the time our train rolled into Davis Square – it arrived on-time btw – we had successfully completed our inbound marketing funnel challenge. As we walked off the T, we basked in the glory as we reflected on the amount of progress we had made on one uneventful ride home. We used the timeboxing technique to help us focus on one single task and maximize the amount of value we were able to extract from a single long-form piece of content.

Phase II: Asset Creation + HubSpot Implementation

Now, the real fun begins! We’ll start to build the growth funnel using our HubSpot marketing platform. While we create the workflows and associated logic, our designers will get started creating the short and long-form content assets (e.g., infographics, quickstart guides, checklists, ultimate guide, etc.). Although we were able to map out the strategy on our ride home, the asset creation process and HubSpot implementation will take a bit longer. Our ride doesn’t end here. In the coming weeks, we’ll continue to document our process and progress as we build out our inbound growth marketing funnel using HubSpot. We invite you to follow along as we continue on our growth journey.

To be continued…

paid growth marketing funnels - inbound marketing funnels