HubSpot, the Cambridge, Mass.-based purveyor of content marketing tools, filed for a $100M IPO this week. This is one of the most significant IPOs in the marketing technology world since Marketo went public in 2013, so we'd better pay attention.
What's the Big Deal?
We live in a world's fair of marketing technology. There are now about 1,000 marketing automation vendors. Many of these companies are venture capital financed, but few will make it. My guess is that 90 percent of the 1,000 other marketing technology companies will go out of business.
HubSpot is one of the more successful venture-backed marketing tech (MarTech) companies. It has had immense revenue growth, it's got an active and growing user base, and its own marketing techniques generate a lot of buzz.
It's important to point out that although HubSpot is growing rapidly -- revenues increased from $28.6 million in 2011 to $77.6 million in 2013 -- it's still not profitable. The company had $17.7 million in net losses for the six months ending June 30. But there is no doubt that it has emerged as a market leader, with more than 11,000 paying customers and 1,900 marketing agency partners.
HubSpot's S-1 statement, which companies vying to go public must file with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), was a good read on the history of the company. It also yielded many insights into the company's success.
Here are the five secrets of success I gleaned after reading the S-1.