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Is this a threat or an 💡 incredible ecosystem opportunity?

When you look at thousands of SaaS products on the market, what do you see? A 😈 competitive threat or an 💡 incredible opportunity?

While everyone tried to get rid of competition, HubSpot recognized a chance to build a #platform ecosystem and harness the energy of the new entrants.

Insightful story about early days of that transition, shared by Scott Brinker. Scott has been famously mapping #martech ecosystem and now leads Platform Ecosystem in HubSpot:

📉 Everyone saw a threat

Over the years, as I kept doing iterations of that marketing technology landscape, I would very often find myself either in an interview or on stage with a leader in one of the large tech companies.

And I would show them the landscape and I'd be like,

"Okay, what do you see? When you look at this, what's your reaction?"

❌ And I would say, almost always, the answer was pretty negative. It was like, "Oh, this is a bad world. What we're trying to do is get rid of all that, so you can buy our thing and you don't have to worry about that."

It's almost like the classic fear, uncertainty and doubt, sales technique.

I think, actually, a lot of sales reps from these other companies would use my landscape in their sales deck as a way of saying, "Yes, this is a bad world. You just want to buy our stuff". That strategy clearly did not work because the software just continued to multiply.

🎯 HubSpot recognized an incredible opportunity

I remember when I showed the landscape, it was the very first interview I had with Brian Halligan [CEO of HubSpot], when they were considering who they would want to help with this mission.

I brought the landscape along and I'm like, "okay, Brian, when you look at this, what do you see?"

✔️ And without a moment's hesitation, he said “opportunity”.

It was like this recognition that all these other companies who are innovating and creating and building things, we shouldn't be trying to get rid of them all.

I mean, don't get me wrong, there's competitive overlap, and all of these things, but instead of trying to get rid of them, is there a way we can actually harness that energy and get more value by working together? Which is the whole dynamics of platforms.

And when he said that answer. I'm like, “Okay, if you want me to join, I'm in”.

That is my opinion, the right way to look at it.

👇 Source: Partner Insight fireside chat, Link in comments.

P.S. Over the last 5 years HubSpot grew it's ecosystem from 100 to more than a 1100 apps.


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