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#10: Kieran Flanagan, VP of Marketing @ Hubspot, on SaaS, Scaleups, and Startups

By Dave Rogenmoser

If there’s a company that knows the playbook for Growth, it very well might be Hubspot. In 13 years, they’ve scaled to one of the biggest names in marketing & sales and joined the ranks of successful tech IPOs. Kieran Flanagan, VP of Marketing and Growth, is charged with three of the most important parts of Hubspot’s flywheel: acquisition for the Sales product, the Freemium funnel, and the global web strategy. In his career, he’s worked for some of the biggest names in SaaS including Salesforce and Marketo. Plus, he’s helped many startups implement the strategies that power larger businesses. In this episode, we’ll talk through how startups differ from scaleups, the inbound growth engine that has powered Hubspot’s success, why the funnel is dead, and the reasons more companies should invest in Customer Success. 0:00 Introduction 1:10 3:35 Kieran's career path to Hubspot’s VP of Marketing 4:23 Why the mission matter for SaaS 5:33 Scaleups are great when you want a new challenge every few years 7:37 What do the big companies do differently than small companies? 8:03 Check out our interview with Wade from Zapier on Season 1 Episode 6 9:12 100% sales are made from something we acquire 9:47 We have the advantage of being able to think 18 months down the line 11:46 How we experiment at Hubspot 13:00 Hubspot’s target persona — Marketing Mary 14:05 Hubspot startup discount 15:08 Going narrow at first is imperative for startups 16:00 Why the funnel is dead 16:40 Most companies are successful on 1 or 2 channels 18:16 Don't be underinvested in Customer Success 19:20 The Salty Six to know Kieran better 20:15 Inbound and Saastock 21:01 ReplyAll 21:10 Tim Ferriss 21:32 The Platform Revolution 22:48 @searchbrat 23:00 Growth TLDR Podcast This is an actionable episode — we hope you enjoy! Get ready to #ScaleOrDie... We're excited to have you along for Season 1 of #ScaleOrDie. Before you leave, be sure to leave a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ review, post a comment, or share with your friends! Tune into more episodes at and read more stories at Follow Dave & Proof on Twitter — @DaveRogemoser and @UseProof. We publish episodes every week so be sure to check back often for more interviews with the internet’s best minds in growth!

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