Is a HubSpot CRM Right For Your Business?

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 if a HubSpot CRM is right for our clients. 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. 

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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. 

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. 

inbound campaign checklist

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.

7 Key Findings from the 2018 State of Inbound to Fuel Your 2019 Planning

Don’t look now but, we’re on the fast track to the start of a new year. As we put the finishing touches on the fourth quarter, spend time with family and friends across a mountain of holiday parties – are you all set for 2019? Sales and marketing goals set – check. Budget in place – check. Awesome!

If not, you might find these insights from Hubspot’s 2018 state of inbound instructive as you finalize your 2019 planning.

Key Findings from the 2018 State of Inbound

Inbound is Mainstream

Inbound is now the primary approach to marketing across the organization’s surveyed. That means more organizations are listening to their buyers and creating marketing programs to attract, convert, and delight their buyers rather than push and cram marketing and sales messages down their throats.

Inbound Methodology is Mainstream

Traffic and Conversion Remains Top Priority

Getting more traffic and converting leads into customers continue to be top priorities for marketers. These two priorities emphasize the importance of aligning your marketing to the where your buyers are in their journey and always striving towards delivering content that is timely and relevant.

State of Inbound - Marketers Prioritize

Budgets Matter

One-third of the organizations surveyed spend $100,000 or more a year on marketing, and that doesn’t include marketing staff. Setting aside a budget for marketing – a real one – is critical to success. Expecting a unicorn college graduate to do everything and do it with only $1,000 a month to spend incrementally a month is a tough row to hoe – especially if you’re looking to grow.

While financial budgets are important, we find the clients who are the most successful are the ones who not only allocate financial resources but human resources as well. Committing the time necessary to collaborate and move marketing forward is a key driver of a humming marketing program.

Sales Wants to Focus on Closing

Sales folks overwhelmingly want to focus on closing more deals. Color us shocked. This really shouldn’t be all that insightful to anyone unless you’ve been under a rock. It becomes more insightful as we look at the other data points around sales priorities, capacity, and the alignment with marketing. Read on friends, read on.

State of Inbound Sales and Marketing Alignment

Getting a Response Has Gotten Harder

In order to be closing, you need a big ole’ pipeline which means you need to do a lot of prospecting. In fact, Jeb Blunt, the sales brain behind SalesGravy.com and author of Fanatical Prospecting, points out that, “the number one reason for failure in sales is an empty pipe, and the root cause of an empty pipeline is the failure to prospect.” Here’s the thing, modern marketing is well equipped to help in this area, and the best performing organizations understand this; they drive toward alignment between their sales and marketing teams to make this a reality.

State of Inbound Prospecting

Sales & Marketing Need to Better Align Roles Across the Funnel

Not only has prospecting gotten hard, but much of the presale activity, like prequalification, are also things sales folks struggle with. Again, modern marketing is equipped to help in these areas. Modern marketing is well intended to attract the right kinds of prospects and will put the automations and filtering mechanisms in place to qualify and identify them.

State of Inbound Presale

Teams with Sales and Marketing SLAs Perform Better

This all leads to the final insight that we found the most interesting. When sales and marketing teams come together around a sales and marketing SLA, the teams perform better.  There is naturally better alignment and accountability across sales and marketing teams, and each team is focused on what they are best equipped to do. Marketing – attracting, nurturing, and qualifying leads and opportunities at scale. Sales – identifying opportunity, advising on solutions, and closing deals.

State of Inbound SLAs

Our Take on Sales & Marketing Focus in 2019

Over the past 18 months, we’ve seen the best performance from our clients when sales and marketing tightly align around expectations and collaboration. Looking ahead to 2019, we expect to see more of this. The story the data from the 2019 State of Inbound tells is one of a tech-enabled evolution in the relationship between sales and marketing. One where the two teams realize they’re both playing with the same end in mind.

Download the 2018 State of Inbound Global Report

 

Interested in learning more about the latest sales and marketing trends sales and marketers are reporting globally? Download the 2018 State of Inbound.