Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Were You Fooled Today?

For those not familiar with what is going on: HubSpot sent out a message today that their IMU was shut down due to due to a cease and decist order from an attorney and to click to save Hubspot IMU. I clicked and it made me join Captain Inbound's ning group who says he's the only one not hit with the cease order and he's trying to keep his identity a secret but Hubspot would be sending secret codes we needed to figure out so they didn't get caught and we could help stop the cease order and get them back up and running.

Well, I checked out the lawyer. Whois directory says her website was created in April 2010. Phone number unlisted. No address on cease letter they put up. It's a one page website. The Marketing company who hired the lawyer - same thing - cruddy site, whois directory says website created in Apr 2010. No letter can make them stop either. Only a judge.

Within the hour I had figured them out. A few select of us as well. I felt bad because they probably planned this staged shutdown for a long time and we called them out on it in an hour.

Hubspot has a page up that you can find saying that they not in any trouble and it's game they are playing to make us all secret agents and come together as a community because their research shows that when you play a game with someone, you become closer to them and develop a better relationship. Of course, some people are upset because they wasted their time and they were duped.

But just for one moment, besides their excuse to use it as a community building exercise, think of all the twitters, etc. they are getting from this publicity stunt. Twitter is already flooded with people tweeting about the shutdown and it's not even true. All their secret missions where to talk about hubspot, sign up for hubspot, become a Facebook fan of Hubspot, etc. Clues were given in their book that you have to buy. They are generating a tremendous outdoor of SEO from twitter and Facebook, etc. right now.

I find this to be absolutely brilliant marketing. They took email addresses to sign up and help Hubspot (lead generation). They asked you to tweet to your followers to help Hubspot (social media promotion and gathered more lead generation). The blog spots, the Facebook Fans, and on and on.... Another lesson for the day. If you create remarkable content, you will create SEO and social media promotion.

This also gave them the opportunity to take all people affiliated and immediately start their own community... fast.

Any other feedback on what happened today?

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  1. I loved it. How could you not know it was a PR / Case Study after viewing either the video of Rebecca Corliss or the "lawyers" website? Within three minutes of seeing the initial tweet, I knew it was a promotional effort, and regardless of the malcontent concerning a breach of trust, I say, "well done."

  2. I agree. I do however, think I would have just done one thing different. And that is to have had the site down and said, while our site in maintenance we would like to play a game. Research shows those who play a game together connect better. So, while the site is down, we will be trying to figure out why. Join Captain Inbound in determining what has happened to hubspot. I think this would have been fine and everyone probably would have joined and played like they did. It just would have eliminated the "trust" issue. I also think they still would gotten the inbound links through Twitter and everything. I also feel it was brilliant. I just would have taken the safe road.