Meet the speakers - Lisa Toner from Hubspot

To start, can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

I was born on the north-west coast of Ireland in Donegal and was raised in the wet and wild city of Galway. I currently lead a team of marketers on content strategy and influencer relations for HubSpot’s Sales line, including HubSpot CRM and HubSpot Sales.

After work, I’m currently into aerial acrobatics and I volunteer at Childline once a week. Every now and again I’ll decide I want to be a singer-songwriter so I’ll play the expensive keyboard I bought last year, realise I’m terrible, and hide it in the utility room again for another 6 months. My Dad calls my keyboard “the shelf”...

How did you get into your career?

I studied Business in GMIT and as soon as I graduated in 2010, I boarded a plane to Vancouver, Canada where I started my career in the tech industry. While in Canada I learned about a company called HubSpot. The company I worked for was a customer and I was a super fan! Consuming all their content as soon as a new article, ebook, or webinar was published...I couldn’t get enough and it was because of this content that I quickly excelled in my marketing role.

When I heard HubSpot was opening their European HQ in Dublin, that was it, my mind was made up to move home. I simply HAD to work at HubSpot. So I did.

It’s been almost 4 years now since I moved back to the homeland and I’m still learning from HubSpot every day.

What do you consider the greatest achievement in your work to date?

I could say I’ve run some of the top marketing campaigns in HubSpot history that have generated 50,000+ leads and resulted in hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenue for the business but that’s not actually what I’m most proud of.

I recently started a new monthly video series called Sell Like a Human and I booked Seth Godin as our first special guest. The content is incredible and I have been a lifelong fan of Seth’s. It was a huge achievement for me personally and opened up the doors to other influencers of his stature for future episodes.

The other thing that I take great pride in is taking junior marketers onto my team and developing them into absolute rock stars. Seeing people grow both personally and professionally under my guidance and direction is incredibly rewarding to me.

How does Social Media support your work?

In more ways than I can document in this answer. Social Media networks are an extremely effective distribution channel for us. We can reach our target audience in a way that is valuable to them. We can build trust, credibility, and likability through visual content that our audience can interact with and share with their peers. Social gives us tangible engagement metrics that shows us how we’re doing as a brand and gives us an opportunity to spread our message on a scale that other channels like email can’t offer.

What is the one app you can’t live without? Personally and for your business!

Personally, I love the app Sworkit for working out. Professionally, I love Slack for communicating and for communicating well :)

What is the one piece of Social Media advice you would give to businesses?

Don’t do it for the sake of doing it. Research where your customers actually spend their time and the type of content they like to consume there. Then figure out how you can offer that content better than anyone else on the network is doing it. Don’t be average. Don’t write one message and schedule it across Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. If you’re doing that, you’re failing. And always listen. Set up social monitoring for your business keywords and competitors names. You gain so much more from listening on social rather than talking. Sorry, that was two pieces of advice. :-/

What do you think is the next big thing in Social Media?

Everyone seems to be talking about chatbots at the moment. If you want a way to engage with your customers and drive MQLs for your sales teams on Facebook without needing a social media manager pushing out messages and offers, build yourself a chatbot.

HubSpot is doing some really cool things with a Facebook Messenger bot that actually books meetings on sales reps calendars for highly qualified leads. It’s really cool what we have the ability to do now without coding skills. Check out if you want to dabble in chatbots.

What will your brand/ business be focusing on in the Social Media landscape this year?

HubSpot is focusing on creating in-platform experiences instead of broadcasting messages with links to other offers or pages. We’ll use the functionality specific to each network to engage the users on that network e.g. Facebook Live events on Facebook tailored for our Facebook fans.

It’s going to enable us to offer a more tailored content experience for each of our audiences and will force us to really think about who our audience is on each network and what is going to be the most valuable content format and delivery method for them.

What can the attendees of this year’s Social Media Summit look forward to hearing from you?

I’m going to be talking about the upcoming trends we can expect from social media in 2017 and beyond as well as showing you examples of companies who are leading the charge and doing an awesome job already.

If you want standard best practices for social media, this is not your session. Come to my session if you want to walk away with innovative ideas that you can actually implement to drive real engagement for your brand on social.

What are you most looking forward to at the Social Media Summit this year?

I’m actually really excited to see a majority female-led speaker lineup which is unheard of at these kind of tech events. I’m most looking forward to being inspired by those badass women.

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