Turn Your Website Into a Lead Machine with HubSpot Lead Flows

You did it! Your site traffic is growing. Your blogging, social media, and offline brand development are all working. You kick back, relax, and wait for the leads to flow in. But aside from the robo-SEO service from Kazakhstan, your lead forms aren’t doing much. What’s wrong? It’s possible your offers aren’t aligning with your content or your website visitors aren’t getting pointed to your highest value conversion points. How do you fix it? If you’re a HubSpot user, it’s HubSpot lead flows to the rescue.

hubspot lead flows blog

What is a Hubspot Lead Flow

A HubSpot lead flow is a special kind of conversion unit that you set up in HubSpot. It is a pop-up form based on parameters you set and can either gather lead information on the spot – or direct a website visitor to a high-value page like a resource center or limited time offer.

Forms vs Lead Flow

So what’s the difference between a HubSpot form and a lead flow? The biggest difference is the way the two are served to a user.

A form is a static destination that you have to create a conversion funnel (call to action, landing page, etc.) to drive a website user to.

A lead flow brings the form and point of conversion to a visitor based on key behaviors and parameters you’ve identified.

For example, the user is reading content related to a new offer you have, or they are on a list of MQLs and you want to serve them a decision stage offer, or they came from a referral URL as part of an account-based marketing program and you want to personalize an offer to them.

How Can a Lead Flow Supplement a Visitors Experience

Not all pop-ups are appreciated by users and a lot of sites go overkill with exit-intent “Are you sure you don’t want to subscribe to our email list before you leave? PLEEEEEEASE!?”. But if used judiciously, lead flows can improve the overall visitor experience on your site. Here are a few best practices to consider.

  • When choosing where they “pop in” consider other notifications, i.e. chat or cookie notices. Having them all overlap creates chaos.
  • Use exclusion lists to make sure people aren’t seeing it that shouldn’t
  • Be as specific as you can in your targeting and matching up the offer to the visitor

HubSpot Lead Flow Example

The obvious use of a lead flow is to offer a piece of content in exchange for lead intel right away. But the creativity comes in targeting and in the application. But there are creative ways to make the most of the feature as well. Here is a lead flow example that goes beyond immediate conversion.

When crisis strikes, lead flows are a great way to get your website visitors to your most critical content right away. This example from Communication Firm and Lake One client, Beehive Strategic Communication is a great example. They also utilized an exit-intent on the page to allow visitors to get an update as new resources become available.

How to Set Up a HubSpot Lead Flow

Lead flows are a snap to set up. Here is a step-by-step outline and video walkthrough to get you going:

  • Under the “Marketing” navigation, head to Lead Capture > Forms
  • Select Create Form
  • Choose Pop up Form > Next
  • Choose Type and Name your form
  • Build your call out and define the action you want your CTA to take
  • If capturing lead info in the Pop-Up, build the form
  • Optional: send a follow-up email
  • Define your targeting parameters
  • Set options for mobile and how long to not show to those who dismiss
  • Preview
  • Turn it live

Need help putting your lead flows in motion? Schedule a free consult.

 Book Your Consultation Now

Evaluating HubSpot for Startups? 4 Questions to Consider

Two things we love here at Lake One. Startups and HubSpot. Startup marketing has a special place in our heart. Most of our team has had a stint in a funded startup at some point, so we know the culture and mindset that drives startups. We team up with venture funds and accelerators here in the midwest to share marketing insights with startups every year. Many of those startups, through their venture fund or accelerator, get access to a special perk known as the HubSpot for Startups program. We’ve worked with many startups through this program and want to share some of the essential questions we’ve helped organizations consider when evaluating HubSpot for startups.

Evaluating HubSpot for Startups

What is HubSpot for Startups

HubSpot for Startups is a special program for startups who are members of or alumni of more than 2,000 approved HubSpot for Startup Partners. These partners are incubators, accelerators or Venture Capital firms all over the world. Additionally, there are revenue guidelines that apply to your startup. If you’re eligible, startups earn significant discounts on HubSpot Growth Suite subscriptions and gain access to startup specific resources. You can learn more about the program and see if you’re eligible for it here.

Is My Startup Ready for HubSpot?

One of the first questions to consider when thinking about onboarding with the HubSpot for Startups program – is your startup ready for a platform like HubSpot? There’s a couple of different ways to think about this.

Inbound

Would inbound marketing for your startup work? Not every startup is a great fit and those resources might be better served somewhere else.

How do you know if you’re a good fit? If you answer yes to some of these questions for example:

  • Do you sell your product or service direct to your end-user?
  • Do you have a long, complex sales process?
  • Is your good or service a considered buying process, in other words, does it require multiple decision-makers and/or a lot of research?

Market Traction

Does your startup have some initial traction? This is important because traction indicates some semblance of process. When you adopt marketing and sales tech, data governance around your CRM and thinking critically about logic for workflows is a key part of the success you’ll have with your technology. That’s not to say you have to have everything figured out, but if you’re expecting the tool or an agency partner to make your startup launch, you’re probably not ready for this investment of money and time yet.

Which Hubs Should I Leverage From HubSpot?

Let’s assume you’ve made the decision that the timing is right. The discount is awesome from HubSpot – does that mean it’s worth signing up for all three hubs of the Growth Suite? Not necessarily.

Just like not every startup will lend itself well to inbound, or your maturity level might not have the traction needed for a platform like HubSpot, every Hub may not be immediately valuable to you.

Reflect on your most pressing needs with your startup.

Sales

  • Are you looking to scale and define sales processes?
  • Do you want to better report on your pipeline and have the ability to forecast?
  • Are you looking to automate certain aspects of your sales process like prospecting and outreach?
  • Do you need one source of truth for your CRM that supports both sales and marketing activity?

Sales Hub is worth a look.

Marketing

  • Do you have a long sales cycle with a complex product with prospects that need educating?
  • Do you have manual processes dragging down your team?
  • Do you want to be able to launch rapid tests with landing pages, emails and other creative?
  • Do you want to be able to send segmented and personalized email content?
  • Do you want a tool to launch lead capture without needing IT?

Marketing Hub is worth a look.

Service

  • Are you drowning in support tickets?
  • Wish you could just send people links to commonly asked questions so they can help themselves?
  • Is customer service a top priority for your brand?

Service Hub is worth a look.

You may find you want to go all-in right away, but know you can always add on over time as well. Take one Hub, implement it and get it operational. As a HubSpot partner, we’ve seen a lot of abandoned Hubs where teams just got overwhelmed.

How Long Should I Expect to Implement HubSpot?

Implementation time will be directly related to the complexity of your business and it’s processes. On the low end give yourself 4-6 weeks. It can scale up dramatically if you’re dealing with large amounts of existing customer data, integrations with third-party tools or your own product.

How Long Should I Expect to Get an ROI?

Technology is not a strategy. So the ROI will be contingent on how effective your strategy is within the platform. Whether it’s lead gen and conversion or customer experience improvements. That said, some rules of thumb, for example, are a lead gen program from inbound can take anywhere from 6 – 18 months to start building momentum. Also, give yourself time to continue to apply learnings around lead quality. It takes time to build the momentum around driving high quality traffic at volume.

search terms growth - inbound story

Is a HubSpot CRM Right for Me? 7 Questions to Consider

If you do a Google search for “easy to use CRM” you’ll return more than 50 million results. Why so many? Because people hate using CRMs. Back in 2001, Gartner measured a 50% CRM failure rate. Chief among the reasons: lack of focus, complexity, and lack of commitment or buy-in. I’ve worked across multiple CRMs from Salesforce to HubSpot. As our client work spans marketing and sales teams, we inevitable tackle the CRM question. Many times we get asked, “Is a HubSpot CRM is right for our company?”. Sometimes it is, sometimes it isn’t. This is how we help our clients answer this question. 

Is a HubSpot CRM Right

TL;DR

If your organization matches any of the following, the HubSpot CRM might be a good fit for you:

  • You’ve struggled to adopt a CRM,
  • You’ve struggled to align sales and marketing
  • Your sales processes aren’t extremely complex
  • You like access to support without large costs
  • You’re looking for a functional CRM without blowing the bank. 

Don’t go it alone. Let’s figure out your best CRM option together.

REQUEST A CONSULTATION

Where are you in your CRM journey?

If you’re relatively new to CRM, or an organization that’s struggled to adopt CRM across functions, HubSpot can be a great option. It’s been built to drive ease of adoption. Its integration to email inbox makes managing contacts easy, and it let’s reps spend more time selling and less time updating contact records. 

Are your sales and marketing teams in alignment?

If you’re looking to drive alignment throughout your marketing machine through the lead management – and you’re using the HubSpot marketing platform, HubSpot sales is a smart addition. Rather than adding more tools and tech to the mix, keeping with one platform helps drive data quality and reporting consistency. (Ps- Here’s a way to check your Smarketing alignment if you need it.)

How complex are your sales processes?

Generally, the more complex the sales process gets, HubSpot (at this version) may not be the best CRM solution for you. The caveat being how you answer questions one and two. If your organization struggles with CRM adoption and aligning your sales and marketing team around consistent processes – HubSpot’s CRM is a great entry point to building your sales and marketing data muscle. 

Having a sales & marketing Service Level Agreement can help streamline your process. Here’s what ours looks like.

Is a HubSpot CRM Right

What kind of support and training do you need?

How do you learn best? Are you a self teacher who can poke around new software with ease? HubSpot is an intuitive CRM with a fantastic knowledge base and support team. If you’re looking to get a CRM up and running fast, you’ll be hard-pressed to find better support resources without shelling out thousands of dollars for training or administrators. 

What kind of efficiency would your sales team benefit from?

Ironically, sales reps spend the minority of their time actually selling. Too often they’re stuck with the administration of their CRM. HubSpot’s CRM is loaded with easy to use tools to drive sales rep efficiency so they can spend more time selling and less time administering software. 

What’s your budget threshold for software?

How much do you want to invest in your CRM? Consider all the costs. Subscription fees – term – setup and ongoing maintenance – support. If you’re looking for a budget-friendly CRM with some horsepower, HubSpot might be the right fit for you. 

MarTech Assessment

What are your reporting needs?

Generally speaking, the more robust your reporting needs are, the more HubSpot may not be able to deliver. There are a lot of reporting options available within HubSpot, and with the reporting add-on, you can accomplish more. But compared with enterprise-level CRM, this is one area where the CRM doesn’t always stack up.

5 Reasons the HubSpot LinkedIn ad integration has us swooning

Hubspot gave us a nice Valentine’s day gift today – integrating LinkedIn ads to their ad product. As inbound marketers who look at a multichannel approach that includes ads – this is welcomed news (especially because we found a lot of problems with alternative solutions). On this Valentine’s day, we’re swooning over this product update. So what does this mean for B2B marketers looking to add LinkedIn marketing to their mix? What’s got us all excited about the Hubspot LinkedIn ad integration? Let’s break it down.

Benefits of hubspot linkedin ad integration

Seamlessly sync Linkedin leads with Hubspot CRM

This is probably the most exciting thing we’re looking at. Historically, you’ve either had to use third party tools like Zapier to connect Linkedin and Hubspot or assign someone manually to go in daily to download your lead list and update your CRM. Yuck! With the native integration to Hubspot, when a prospect submits a lead gen ad, they get created as a new contact in Hubspot (winning!)

Easily report ROI through the CRM

LinkedIn’s ad product is coming along from where it was even last year, but reporting ROI is still a struggle. Now, closing the loop at the contact level, you can report ROI either by assigning a static value to all contacts or with real data from your CRM’s pipeline and opportunities that flow into it from your LinkedIn marketing activity.

Auto tracking

Another area of challenge with LinkedIn ads, is referral sourcing and tracking. Ads don’t always seem to get tracked well in Hubspot – now, campaigns are auto tracked. Of course, you can still append additional parameters, but if the idea of tagging a bunch of blogs that you’re running as sponsored content sounds laborious – take a breath.

Close the gap on remarketing

Similar to Facebook, reaching customer and prospect lists with audiences is even easier now with a direct connection between your CRM. Shortening any step in a day full of tasks is a welcomed event.

Hubspot LinkedIn Ads

Very B2B friendly

What we’re most excited about, is that while Google and Facebook have their place, for B2B clients who really benefit from inbound, sometimes Google and Facebook is hard to advocate for in aligning with inbound further up in the funnel. Now, with the LinkedIn ads product for Hubspot, it feels truly useful across a customer’s journey and fully aligned with the mantra of being helpful.

Word of caution

When connecting, Hubspot will sync past LeadGen Forms. This has caused some weird timeline details on some portals we’re working in. The benefits of the sync going forward far outweigh any quirks with some of the retroactive data, but if you see some historical changes to the way you were tracking your Lead Gen Form contacts, be aware there is a historical sync that takes place.