Evenbound Becomes A Platinum HubSpot Solutions Partner

Evenbound Becomes A Platinum HubSpot Solutions Partner

Evenbound Becomes A Platinum HubSpot Solutions Partner

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Grand Rapids, Mich.  Today, Evenbound announced that it has reached the Platinum level of HubSpot’s Solutions Partner Program. HubSpot, a leading growth platform, works hand-in-hand with partner experts to grow their businesses through marketing and sales software, services, and support. This upgrade to Evenbound’s Solutions Partner status comes in spite of a shaky market amid a global pandemic. 

“Our growth journey has been exciting and this step is just another indicator that we’re on the right path. Climbing to Platinum HubSpot Solutions Partner is particularly notable while in the middle of a global pandemic. It’s challenging out there, but we’re finding a way. That’s what great teams do, they find a way.”

John HeritagePresident, Evenbound

The Solutions Partner Program is a global community that believes putting customers first is the key to growth, and enables its members to offer a wide breadth of more sophisticated solutions across the entire customer experience. 

“Since I began working with the Evenbound team two years ago, I’ve been consistently impressed by their deep understanding of results-driven strategy & execution, commitment to industry & product mastery, and perhaps most importantly, their customer-first approach to everything they do. I couldn’t be prouder to celebrate this milestone and look forward to seeing them continue to grow their agency and partnership for years to come.”

Suzana Mihajlica – HubSpot Senior Channel Consultant

A full-service digital marketing and growth agency, Evenbound works with a variety of clients in B2B and B2C industries to deliver qualified traffic and leads that support long-term growth. HubSpot is a significant component of the agency’s service, and they support clients on the platform with customized onboarding, personalized marketing training and sales enablement solutions. Notable milestones and achievements include:

  • 25 clients supported on the HubSpot platform.
  • Increased workforce headcount by 35% during Covid-19 pandemic.

About Evenbound

Evenbound is a full-service digital marketing and growth agency and a HubSpot Platinum Partner Agency. They use a variety of proven digital marketing tactics like content marketing, email marketing, inbound marketing, paid search advertising, and more to deliver their clients the qualified traffic and leads they need for serious growth. The Evenbound office is located at 41 Washington Ave, Suite #390 in Grand Haven, MI.

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Email Automation 101: HubSpot Sequences vs. Workflows

Email Automation 101: HubSpot Sequences vs. Workflows

Email Automation 101: HubSpot Sequences vs. Workflows

Welcome to email automation 101! This blog is going to focus on two specific ways to implement email automation using HubSpot — through their Sequences and Workflows tools. This information is great for anyone who is new to HubSpot services or is new to their email marketing tools.

Whether you’ve been using email automation since the dawn of dial-up, or if this is the first time you’ve ever scheduled an email, this blog is designed to help you navigate email automation through the HubSpot tool specifically.

(If you’re looking for more general, non-HubSpot-specific info on email automation, check out this blog on Email Workflow Best Practices, and this blog on Inbound Marketing Automation). 

With all of that in mind, let’s get down to it. What’s the difference between HubSpot Sequences vs. Workflows?

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HubSpot Sequences vs. HubSpot Workflows

The most basic difference in the two tools is that HubSpot Sequences are a sales tool, and HubSpot Workflows are a marketing tool. 

You have access to HubSpot Sequences with a Sales Hub Professional or Enterprise subscription, or a Service Hub Professional or Enterprise subscription with a connected personal inbox. 

You’ll have access to HubSpot Workflows with a Marketing Hub Professional or Enterprise subscription. 

Let’s take a clear, straightforward look at the differences between HubSpot Sequences vs. Workflows with this chart. 

If that’s all the information you need, great. If you’re looking for more explanation, keep reading past the chart, and we’ll dive a little deeper. 

Breaking Down Key Differences Between Sequences and Workflows

HubSpot Sequences vs. Workflows Chart

So that’s a lot. If you’re new to email automation, that might look a little overwhelming. 

Let’s look more closely at both HubSpot Sequences and Workflows. 

HubSpot Sequences: The Breakdown

HubSpot Sequences are designed to help your sales team reduce some of the time they put into repetitive communications. They can pull email templates set up in the “Templates” tool right into their inbox, where they can send out personalized, 1-1 content that nurtures those hot or warm sales leads they’ve already connected with. 

HubSpot Sequences are:

  • Customizable & Targeted. A sales rep can change the template in their email tool to tailor the message specifically to the hot lead they’re working with. 
  • Simple. A sequence email looks like any other email you’d get directly from a real person. They don’t feature a lot of images or styling. 
  • Direct. Sent directly from the sales rep’s inbox to the lead. 
  • Automatically unenrolled. The minute a lead responds to the sales rep, they’re unenrolled from the sequence. 
HubSpot Sequences are not:

  • Bulk Communication. Sequences are manually enrolled and can be sent to a max of 150 people per day. They’re meant to be 1-1 communication, rather than a sales campaign.
  • Metric Reporting. The only information you’ll get from a Sequence is whether a contact opened or replied. You won’t get metrics like click-through-rate. 
  • Automatically Triggered. Only people can trigger sequences.

    With a clear picture of what Sequences do and don’t do, here’s an example of when a Sequence might be useful. 

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    An example of when you might use a HubSpot Sequence

    Let’s say your sales team knows that your pricing sheet is a great piece of content that usually speeds up the decision making process. If they have a hot lead, they can use their “Pricing Sheet Sequence” to automate that communication a bit. 

     That might look something like this: 

    • Your sales rep sends out the first email with that pricing sheet and a meeting link. If that contact responds or books time to connect with the sales rep, that contact is automatically unenrolled from the sequence. 
    • If they don’t respond, another email might go out in 24 hours. This email might ask if the lead had any questions, and prompt them to schedule time with the rep to follow up. 
      • If they follow up, they’re out of the sequence. 
      • If they don’t they move onto the third (and usually final) email. 

    How HubSpot Sequences save your sales team time

    Sequences make frequent, regular communication a little easier. Your sales reps start with an email template that they can send straight out to the contact from their inbox or customize as necessary for that unique contact. 

    Follow-up is automatic, ensuring you keep that lead hot as they get ready to make a purchasing decision. 

    Sequences are a great method for nurturing and closing hot leads. They’re best sent individually to the leads who your team knows are ready to make a decision. 

    HubSpot Workflows: The Breakdown

    HubSpot Workflows are a marketing tool designed to nurture warm, lukewarm, and even cold leads. They’re often sent to bulk lists and are highly stylized. Most workflows are designed to give leads more of the information they want or need to help move them towards a purchasing decision. 

    Pro Tip:

    Workflows can also be used to trigger contact property changes, tasks for your sales or marketing team members, and more. Check out this workflow we use to send a text to a designated team member anytime someone chats a bot on our site.

    Though email automation is the primary use for HubSpot workflows, you can also use them to assign leads who take specific action to a corresponding contact list, trigger tasks for your team to reach out to those leads, and more. 

    BotWorkflow Example
    HubSpot Workflows are:

    • Automatically Triggered. Workflows are automatically triggered by specific actions you set, whether that’s a lead downloading a guide or interacting with a chatbot.
    • Sent Through HubSpot.  Rather than sending a 1-1 email, workflow emails are sent through HubSpot. You can change the “from” address to whatever you want, from a team member’s email address to your general marketing or info email.
    • Delayable. You can set up workflows with flexible time frames. Send an email one day, and then delay the follow-up for three days or even a week.
    • Dynamic. Add in as many pictures, videos, and visual components as you like. These emails are stylized in the HubSpot email tool, where you can use the drag and drop editor to create what you like.
    • Compatible. You can have one workflow trigger another workflow if you like. The customization options are endless and robust. 
    • Reporting. Workflows offer many metrics, from what links are clicked to the open rate, and more. As a marketing tool, you have access to marketing metrics associated with each workflow.

    HubSpot Workflows are not: 

    • Automatically Unenrolled. A contact will experience the full workflow unless you set a goal criteria that ends the workflow early for contacts who take a specific action. 
    • 1-1 Communication. These are bulk emails sent to specific, segmented contact lists. While you can implement personalization tokens, all replies will go to the same “from” email address.
    • Tracked by Reply. Anyone can send a workflow through HubSpot. Since these emails aren’t tied to a specific inbox, HubSpot cannot track replies. You will still see replies in the inbox of the “from” email address. 

    We already showed you an example of HubSpot Workflows setting tasks internally with our chatbot, but here’s an example of when an automated workflow would be helpful to your marketing team.

    An example of when you might use a HubSpot Workflow

    Let’s say your marketing team has just developed an awesome content offer. You know that when someone downloads this content offer, they’re a qualified lead. A workflow can continue nurturing that lead for your marketing team until they’re ready to talk to a sales rep. 

    Here’s how you might use a HubSpot Workflow after a lead takes the action of downloading a content offer. 

     

    EmailWorkflowExample
    • Immediately after the person downloads your content offer, you send them a “Thank You” email, with another link to download the offer, just in case they navigated away from your landing page before they saved the download. 
    • Three days later, your workflow sends them a follow-up email. It asks if they have any questions, and provides another piece of content that will be relevant to them, based on the content they’ve already downloaded. 
      • If that person downloads the second piece of content, you might send them a third email a few days later with an option to book time with a sales rep. 
      • If that person doesn’t download the second piece of content, you might send them a follow up encouraging them to reach out with any questions. Your workflow could then assign that lead to your “Newsletter” contact list, where they’ll get regular, monthly communication until they take another action that indicates they’re warming up. 

    This is a short example of a workflow. Yours can be much more in-depth than this, offering a variety of options based on every action that contact does or doesn’t take, but this is an initial example that’s a good use case for a basic workflow. 

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    How HubSpot Workflows save sales AND marketing time

    Workflows eliminate a lot of wasted time, both for sales and marketing. Workflows help nurture warm or cool leads without much work on the part of your marketing team. If a lead does take an action that indicates interest, your workflows can auto-notify the appropriate person on your team.

    HubSpot Workflows function as another marketing expert on your team, talking to your lukewarm leads for your marketing pros, and bringing them in only when it’s a good use of their time. 

    This helps your marketing team spend more of their time on the leads they know are warming up. This in turn ensures that your sales team only gets leads that are hot — ready to make a purchasing decision. 

    HubSpot Sequences vs. Workflows: Which To Use, When?

    Now that you’ve got a better idea of what Sequences and Workflows do, and what they don’t do, you should have a clear picture of when to use Sequences, and when to use Workflows. 

    As a general rule, if it’s not 1-1 communication, and you want to send a message out to a list of contacts, a workflow is your best bet. 

    If you’re working to close a hot lead or send out personalized communication to a contact your sales team has already talked to, then Sequences are the tool to use. 

    They help you deliver the right message, to the right person, at exactly the right time. 

    Now that you know more about how both email automation tools work, get your hands dirty! Set up your first workflow, or get building out your sales templates. Once you start using them, you’ll be able to see the unique benefits of each first-hand. 

    Let us know how your email automation with HubSpot goes! Are you loving the workflow and sequences tools? If you run into any questions, or if you just can’t seem to get your workflows working the way you’d like, just let us know. We’re a HubSpot Gold Partner Agency, and we’d be happy to answer any questions you’ve got about Sequences, Workflows, and more. 

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    Understanding the HubSpot Flywheel

    Understanding the HubSpot Flywheel

    Understanding the HubSpot Flywheel

    If you’ve been using HubSpot services or inbound marketing for a while, or if you’ve done any kind of marketing or sales work in the past, you’re probably familiar with some sort of funnel. A marketing funnel, a sales funnel, a buyer’s journey funnel — the list goes on. 

    For years, we’ve all used a funnel model to track our marketing and sales leads’ progress towards making a purchase. And while that worked alright, you’ve gotta admit it’s pretty linear. 

    People come in at the top of the funnel, and they leave at the bottom. 

    While that’s a nice, tidy way to think of leads, prospects, and customers, it doesn’t do a lot to keep the momentum going. As soon as a customer makes a sale, they drop out of your sales funnel, never to be seen again. 

    But, we know that pulling in and converting a new customer can cost 5x more than retaining an existing customer. The marketing or sales funnel just doesn’t illustrate this well. 

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    What is the HubSpot Flywheel?

    It’s an updated method of conceptualizing how your marketing and sales efforts affect your customers and your company’s overall growth. 

    It looks like this:

    You’ll notice some similarities here with the original HubSpot inbound marketing funnel, but also some differences. 

    Let’s talk a little about what each of those stages mean:

    Attract

    The attract stage focuses on drawing in new, qualified visitors, usually to your website. 

    This is fundamental to inbound marketing methodology — drawing visitors in with high-quality content that answers their questions and solves their pain points is considerably more effective than pushing your message out to a general, unqualified audience. 

    To attract qualified visitors, you’ll want to:

    • Identify who a qualified visitor is — what are their pain points? What are they looking for? What information would be helpful to them?
    • Develop content that addresses those questions and pain points. 
    • Publish and promote content on your website, social media platforms, and more. 

    Your goal in the attract stage is to draw more visitors to your site, introduce them to the product or service you offer, and then answer any questions they may have about it. The key here is drawing in qualified visitors, which you achieve by developing targeted content that is specific and relevant to the leads you’re hoping to pull in. 

    Engage

    From the attract stage, you continue to circle visitors through the HubSpot flywheel by engaging them in a specific, personalized way that delivers the best experience possible. 

    The engage stage focuses on making a connection with those visitors as they become qualified leads. You may provide content offers and more in-depth resources that help them through the consideration stage of buying, or you may engage directly with potential leads and existing clients over social media platforms and through email marketing strategies. 

    Engaging with your leads and customers helps build authority and trust. When you have a solid, positive relationship with new leads and even existing customers, they’re more likely to turn to your company when they’re ready to make a purchasing decision. 

    Delight

    Once a lead has chosen to purchase your product or service, you continue to delight them with the highest caliber service, and additional content that helps them better use your product and engage positively with your company. 

    This turns your customers into promoters: they love your company and the products you deliver and are happy to share their great experience with other consumers. 

    Each stage of the flywheel highlights a specific stage of the buying process, and there are specific inbound marketing tactics you can use at each one. We wrote a guide about which inbound marketing tactics to use at each stage of the HubSpot flywheel, if you want more info there. 

    How the HubSpot Flywheel Is Different

    Okay, so now we get the general premise of the inbound marketing flywheel  — attract, engage, and delight. It’s not so different from the old-school funnel, right?

    Well, not exactly.

    Though many of the stages are the same, the fundamental premise of the flywheel vs. a funnel is what’s important. 

    Rather than thinking of each customer having a specific start and end point with your company, they’re always at the center of your flywheel. 

    Your communications with a customer shouldn’t end just because they’ve made a purchase. By keeping that customer at the center of the flywheel, and continuing to deliver content, support, and service that’s relevant to their needs, you keep your flywheel spinning. 

    Customers who made a purchase might flow automatically back into the attract or engage stage as they consider additional services or products that your company offers. 

    It’s this fundamental change — putting the customer at the center of your flywheel, and visualizing it as a continuous circle, rather than a funnel — that sets the flywheel apart as a more efficient and productive marketing and sales model. 

    Check out HubSpot’s transformation video for a visual:

    You’ll see in the funnel, the customer makes up a very small percentage of the total funnel. What’s more, they’re almost portrayed as an afterthought. 

    Why the HubSpot Flywheel Works

    The inbound marketing flywheel puts customers at the heart of everything you do. 

    You can use the positive relationships you’ve built with existing customers to attract and engage new leads, convert new clients, and delight customers that help you continue attracting new ones. 

    When done properly, the flywheel spins in perpetual motion. 

    The flywheel lends itself much more to a holistic inbound marketing approach, where every customer, lead, and visitor matters. Because really, they do. 

    When you’re visualizing your marketing and sales efforts in a flywheel, rather than in a funnel, it’s much easier to remember how important each contact is to your company’s growth. 

    We hope this blog helps you understand the HubSpot Flywheel just a little bit better. If you’ve got more questions about how the flywheel works, or about how to pair it with your existing marketing and sale processes, the Evenbound team is here to help.

    Let us know what kind of support you’re looking for — we’re happy to answer questions about anything ranging from marketing to sales to HubSpot services, and even company growth. 

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    Email Automation 101: HubSpot Sequences vs. Workflows

    Solved: 4 Common HubSpot Onboarding Challenges

    Solved: 4 Common HubSpot Onboarding Challenges

    Investing in HubSpot is an exciting move for any team. You’ve got a full suite of robust marketing and sales tools, right at your fingertips! 

    You have everything you need to start making marketing and sales changes that will deliver serious results in the form of more deals closed and overall company growth. 

    But, before you can reap all of those benefits, you’ve got to get through the HubSpot onboarding process

    Let’s first clarify by saying that the HubSpot onboarding process isn’t as intimidating as it sounds. 

    There is some upfront work, and for any team, a major change in the way you conduct business is going to take a bit of work. But, it doesn’t have to be headaches and stress. 

    HubSpot onboarding can be a fun, exciting process, especially if you come into it with a positive attitude, and a plan to tackle some of the most common challenges teams run into. 

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    With that in mind, here are 4 of the HubSpot onboarding challenges we see the most often with our own clients, and the solutions we use to navigate these challenges efficiently, so our HubSpot services clients get up and running, and seeing benefits, improvements, and results as soon as possible: 

    HubSpot Onboarding Challenge #1

    Transitioning the Team

    In nearly every onboarding we’ve facilitated with clients, transitioning the whole team onto HubSpot tends to be one of the greatest challenges. 

    Your team is already busy. They’ve got sales calls to make, meetings to attend, quotes to write up, and more. Sales reps already have a full-time job (selling), and adding one more thing to the plate can feel overwhelming. They’ll get to HubSpot, but when they have time. 

    The problem is that if it’s not a priority, they won’t ever have time. 

    One of our HubSpot Certified Trainer’s favorite quotes is: 

    It’s all well and good for your team to sit down together for one big onboarding meeting, but everyone has to commit to using the tool regularly if you want to see results. And that’s a challenge. 

    It’s hard to get an entire team to do anything at once, much less learn a new tool and transition their sales process to a CRM they’re not familiar with. 

    The Solution:

    Make HubSpot onboarding a priority

    It sounds simple, but I think we all know that in practice, it’s not. 

    We’ve said this before, but it’s still a helpful tip: Get your team to commit to using HubSpot just 5 minutes a day. 

    Have everyone set up a daily reminder for themselves to spend just 5 minutes a day entering new contacts into the CRM or assigning deal stages to each of their leads. 

    This is fairly easy work to do, and even spending just 5 minutes a day in HubSpot will help them build a habit of logging into and working in the platform. 

    Another solution?

    Make HubSpot a Team Event

    Everyone can meet up, either virtually or in person, and spend an hour organizing their contacts in the CRM. 

    This is a great time for your team to collaborate — to talk about what tools they’re loving in the CRM, and what problems they may have come across. 

    Not only will regular team meetings help enforce the importance of using HubSpot, but it provides an opportunity to get the team together to share helpful information and tips that will help everyone improve. 

    HubSpot Onboarding Challenge #2

    Making Sure Your Process is Compatible with HubSpot

    For many companies, transitioning to HubSpot is a way to make the sales process easier. A tool like HubSpot gives you greater visibility and transparency into all the deals that everyone is working on, and it makes it so much easier to connect with the leads that can provide the greatest returns. 

    The problem that often arises, though, is that in onboarding to HubSpot, many sales teams realize their process isn’t compatible with the HubSpot tool. Don’t panic, this is totally normal and can be fixed. 

    Maybe your sales reps have all been using different sales processes. Maybe they all have their own literature they like to hand out. Maybe every sales rep has a different idea of what a qualified lead looks like. Maybe your sales process just isn’t standardized.

    This is a challenge that can cause a little bit of paralysis by analysis for any sales team. “Great. We’ve got this new sales tool, and our sales process doesn’t fit into it at all.”

    Take a deep breath, and keep on reading. There’s a solution here that will deliver serious results for your team.

    The Solution:

    Sit down as a team, and optimize your sales process.  

    The HubSpot CRM is built to optimize sales processes. If yours doesn’t immediately fit into the HubSpot CRM, that just means there’s a bit of room for improvement. 

    It’s good to know that HubSpot makes a lot of allowances for customizations all the way through the sales process, so you absolutely won’t be boxed in, but it does work to streamline your sales process by promoting standardization and repeatability. 

    Here’s how you adjust your sales process to ensure it’s compatible with HubSpot:

    Define what a lead is:

    Your team has to figure out what a lead looks like to them. Define each of these:

    • New leads
    • Warm leads
    • Hot leads
    • Cold leads
    • Customers

    Define your deal stages:

    Now that you know what your leads look like, what do you do with them? This is where your sales process comes in. What is the process your team uses to move a new, warm, or hot lead from an opportunity to a sale? 

    Each step of that process is called a “Deal Stage”. Figure out what deal stages make up your whole sales process, and define them for your whole team. A few common deal stages might include:

    • Opportunity
    • Customer contacted
    • Proposal Sent
    • Followed-Up
    • Closed-Won
    • Closed-Lost

    Set it up in HubSpot

    Once you’ve defined what a lead is, and how your team will handle each of those leads as they move through your sales process, you’ve done it! You’ve made your sale process compatible with HubSpot in two steps. 

    Now you can set all of that up in HubSpot. For help here, refer to the next challenge: Knocking Out the Upfront Workload. 

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    HubSpot Onboarding Challenge #3

    Knocking Out the Upfront Workload

    Transitioning to any new CRM is work. HubSpot is no different. It’s an awesome CRM, with wicked sales and marketing tools that can facilitate serious success. But, like any new tool, there’s some upfront work involved. 

    Imagine you were painting a room in your house. You could just pick up the paintbrush and go to town, but without any prep work, you’re going to have a sloppy finished product. A quality paint job takes careful taping, prepping any rough surfaces with a bit of sanding and primer, and a little bit of thought into which paint color you’re going to go with. 

    Onboarding to a CRM like HubSpot isn’t much different. You’re going to get out of it as much effort as you put in. 

    There is some upfront effort that goes into onboarding — you have to bring contacts into the new system. You have to determine what your sales deal stages look like. You have to set up a sales process that works for you, and you have to lay it out in the CRM. 

    This might feel like a lot of work. That makes it hard to even think about tackling, which halts your entire onboarding process. It’s a challenge that a lot of our clients run into. Here’s how we work to solve it. 

    The Solution:

    Assign one person to facilitate the upfront work

    A great way to make sure that all the upfront, onboarding work gets done is to assign someone to own it. 

    For our clients, that’s usually our HubSpot Certified Trainers. 

    Our team handles a lot of the upfront work, like bringing all existing customers into the CRM, setting up deal stages, building out a pipeline, etc. It’s a big benefit of working with a HubSpot Partner Agency — some of that hard, tedious work is just handled for you. 

    If you don’t have a HubSpot Partner or HubSpot Certified Trainer: 

    Assign someone on your team to own your onboarding process. Make this their primary responsibility for right now, and give them the flexibility they need to really commit to it. 

    They can do the work of figuring out:

    1. What your team needs to do to onboard successfully
    2. When it needs to happen
    3. Who can handle which tasks

    Think of them as your HubSpot project manager. They take the full project, and break it down into individual tasks with deadlines according to when you want to be fully functional on the HubSpot platform. 

    They can then assign individual tasks out to other team members, helping everyone stay accountable. 

    With clear direction and leadership, all of that upfront work that seems hard and a lot to tackle is easily broken down into manageable pieces and completed on a timeline that works for your team. 

    HubSpot Onboarding Challenge #4

    Investing in a Long-Term Solution and Expecting Short-Term Results 

    Another problem we see often when we’re bringing new teams onto HubSpot is the need for immediate results. 

    But, making a transition to a brand new sales tool and CRM is a walk/run process. You probably won’t see your sales numbers increase exponentially in a week. But if your team really invests and does the work, you’ll start to see serious results the more you use the platform. 

    Realistically, it’s going to take a month or two to get your team on board and using HubSpot daily (see challenge #1). Until that happens, you aren’t likely to see a massive upswing in sales. That said, you are going to see improvements. 

    The Solution: 

    Know what you’re looking at and identify the improvements that matter.

    You’re probably not going to see immediate results, but you are going to see immediate improvements. 

    The best way to beat the challenge of investing in a long-term solution and expecting short-term results, is making sure you’re looking at the results that matter right now.

    Focus on the improvements you have made:

    • Is your sales process a little easier to understand?
    • Does your sales team feel more cohesive?
    • Can you easily visualize all of the deals you have in your sales pipeline?  
    • Does your sales team feel like they’re spending less time on admin work, and more time on selling? 

    Those are all major wins, especially if you’re moving over from a CRM that wasn’t working for you, or from no CRM at all. 

    Though initial wins might not look like a bump to your bottom line right now, these are all real-time results that will matter in the future.

    Keeping the right perspective is the key to keeping your team invested in this new transition, and realizing how much positive change this new investment is making for your company. 

    Yes, HubSpot onboarding will eventually deliver huge dividends in terms of increased sales numbers and closed deals, but before that happens, you have to get the actual work and training under your team first. 

    HubSpot onboarding might sound like a long process, but with the right attitude, and a dedicated team, you can have everyone up and running in the CRM in less time than you think! Whether you’re considering making the switch to HubSpot, or you’ve hit a roadblock in your HubSpot onboarding process, we hope these solutions help. 

    If you’ve got more questions about the HubSpot CRM, HubSpot Sales tools, or HubSpot Onboarding, our team is here to help. With a full suite of HubSpot Services and HubSpot Certified Trainers on staff, we’re happy to answer any question you might have.

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    Getting Started with HubSpot Series: Sales and Marketing Alignment

    Getting Started with HubSpot Series: Sales and Marketing Alignment

    Getting Started with HubSpot Series: Sales and Marketing Alignment

    As a HubSpot Partner Agency, we know that sales and marketing alignment is a big deal for any of our clients. Having aligned sales and marketing teams is one of the key ways to foster efficient, strategic growth that you can carry into the future. But, if you’ve been functioning with disparate sales and marketing teams for years, or if you just have a sales team and not much marketing help, it can be difficult to know where to start. 

    That’s where HubSpot comes in.

    The platform itself was designed to help companies provide better, more personalized service to leads and customers alike. With tools to help your marketing and sales teams nurture leads with personalized workflows and real-time communication, HubSpot has everything you need to get your sales and marketing teams working together to close more of the deals you want, faster. And a HubSpot Partner Agency has the experience and the training your team needs to make it happen. 

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    If you’ve been looking into sales and marketing alignment or HubSpot, but just aren’t sure what to expect from the process, keep on reading. We’re going to give you a complete look at what the sales and marketing alignment process looks like when you use the HubSpot platform to make it happen. 

    Our Getting Started with HubSpot Series is written to help you understand what to expect when you sign on with a HubSpot Partner Agency for HubSpot Services. Over the next few months, we’ll work to cover everything from HubSpot onboarding to sales enablement and sales and marketing alignment. If you like these posts, and there’s a certain topic you’d like us to talk about, just let us know!

    What Does Sales and Marketing Alignment Look Like?

    Whether you have your own marketing team, or Evenbound is doing the work of a marketing team for you, our HubSpot Certified Trainers are always working to help align your sales and marketing goals. They are experts in sales enablement and alignment, and the work they’ve done with our current clients has shown just how important it is to the success of our clients to have aligned sales and marketing teams.

    Like many other HubSpot-related services, sales and marketing alignment starts with a big meeting. Best case scenario, you get both your sales and marketing teams in one room to chat with a HubSpot Certified Trainer. If that’s not possible, we’ll do our best to get as many team members together at once. During that first meeting, the top priority is setting up an SLA:

    Setting Up an SLA

    Sales and marketing alignment starts with a Service Level Agreement (SLA).  It’s a type of internal contract that helps your sales and marketing teams agree on one common goal that everyone is working towards. 

    It also outlines specific intermediary goals for both sales and marketing teams. (For more info about SLAs, check out this blog about Marketing and Sales Alignment Strategies.) This is one of the most important aspects of aligning your teams, and lucky for you, our HubSpot experts are masters of the SLA. 

    They’ll help you figure out: 

    • What specific roles your marketing team is responsible for. Delivering a certain number of MQLs to your sales team, nurturing a specific percentage of MQLs who aren’t ready to convert, and more.

    • What specific roles your sales team is responsible for. What percentage of SQLs they should follow up with, how many deals they should close per month, and what tools they should be using to do it.

    • What roles both teams will have to work together on. Communicating about both warm and cool leads, offering feedback about new marketing content, discussing which sales and marketing efforts are working or not.

    Once you have an SLA in place, you can work to determine more specific goals that both teams can work towards to deliver meaningful growth to your company. 

    Determining Your Goals

    Sales and marketing teams have always had goals, they just haven’t traditionally been aligned. This is another spot where a sales and marketing alignment service or HubSpot trainer comes in handy. 

    As a Certified HubSpot Trainer and a HubSpot Project Manager, it’s your HubSpot expert’s job to help you set goals that actually contribute to the overall success of your company, and they know how to do that with HubSpot. 

    So, they will help you set SMART goals that keep your sales and marketing teams aligned, and that ultimately help your company close more deals. 

    Best of all, your HubSpot expert can help you get these goals put into HubSpot, so your entire team can see at a glance, how far you’ve come, and how far you have left to go in reaching those goals. 

    Helping You Reach Them

    Your HubSpot expert is also here to help you reach those goals. This is a key benefit of working with a HubSpot Agency Partner that you won’t get anywhere else. 

    Beyond just helping you set up and onboard onto the HubSpot platform, they help you continue to learn about HubSpot’s tools in a way that pushes you towards those goals. They can work directly with both your sales and marketing teams to help them learn how to use the tools that will give them the best results, and put them closer to those goals. 

    Ongoing Support and Connect Meetings

    This ongoing support means they’ll continue to train your team on the tools that will help them the most. Whether that’s a refresher training on a tool they use every day, or brand new training on a tool your team isn’t familiar with yet, regular connect meetings give you the opportunity to ensure your team is continuously improving and growing. 

    Working with a HubSpot expert helps your team not only get used to the HubSpot platform, but truly get the most out of it. It’s a great way to make sure your team is making full use of your investment.

    How Much Work Will This Be For My Team?

    No matter what HubSpot service we’re talking about, the question we’re asked most often is, “how much work with this be for my team?”. When it comes to sales and marketing alignment, the work your team will have to put in has less to do with individual tasks, and more with shifting the way they think about marketing or selling. 

    Unlike HubSpot Onboarding and Sales Enablement, which are tools-focused services, sales and marketing alignment is primarily focused on how your sales and marketing teams work together to close more deals that grow your company. 

    While both teams will still need to learn about a variety of HubSpot tools, make it to meetings, and get comfortable with the HubSpot platform in general, the largest chunk of work they’ll have to do is less task-related and more focused on communication. 

    The goal of sales and marketing alignment is to ensure that both teams are working towards the same goals, in ways that benefit both teams. Here’s a look at some of the things your team will have to do when trying to align your sales and marketing teams:

    • Make Time for Regular Team Meetings. They don’t have to be long, but you should set up a regular meeting where both sales and marketing can talk about how they’re doing to reach their goals, what the other team is doing to help them reach those goals, and how they could be better supported in reaching those goals. 
    • Time for HubSpot Sales and Marketing Alignment Training. In the beginning, your team will have to do a little bit more work to 1) set up alignment goals, 2) put tactics in place to reach those goals, and 3) to make sure both teams are working together to reach those goals. 

     

    It’s important to remember that while your team might have to put in a bit more time upfront, once you’re marketing and selling with an aligned team, you’ll see better, faster results. The marketing team will nurture more of the right leads, delivering your sales team the warm, qualified leads they know they can close on quickly. 

    The Benefits of Parntering With A HubSpot Partner Agency for Sales and Marketing Alignment

    When you partner with Evenbound for help aligning your sales and marketing teams with HubSpot, the benefits are twofold. First, you get expert advice on how to align your teams. Second, your teams learn how to use the HubSpot platform effectively, which means you get the most out of your investment in HubSpot.

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    When you work with a HubSpot Partner Agency, you’re getting help from the most qualified experts in the industry. HubSpot Certified Trainers have completed a number of certifications and in-depth training sessions, plus they’ve worked with companies just like yours to teach sales and marketing alignment before. 

    HubSpot experts know how to set up a quality SLA, and they know just what tools your team will need to be successful with sales and marketing alignment in the long term.

    If you’re looking to get the most out of your HubSpot account and bring your sales and marketing teams together to close bigger deals more efficiently, a HubSpot Partner Agency is your best bet. 

    Interested in Sales and Marketing Alignment Help for Your Team?

    Evenbound is a HubSpot Gold Agency Partner. That means we have HubSpot Certified Trainers and project managers who are trained through HubSpot to help your teams with these specific challenges. 

    To learn more about our HubSpot Services, just get in touch. Our HubSpot Certified Trainers would be happy to talk more about your specific goals for sales and marketing alignment, and the HubSpot platform in general. And, if you’d like to learn more about how our HubSpot services have helped companies just like you discover serious growth, check out the case study below. 

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    5 Ways a CRM Helps Streamline Your Sales Process

    5 Ways a CRM Helps Streamline Your Sales Process

    5 Ways a CRM Helps Streamline Your Sales Process

    Looking to streamline your sales process? It is an integral component of your business’ success. If your sales team has trouble selling efficiently, you’re going to see your company growth drop, which isn’t good for anyone. 

    In general, sales reps spend a significant amount of time on admin work — scheduling meetings, setting up reminders, sending emails, and other small tasks that take serious time out of their day that they could be spending closing deals. 

    So, how can you streamline your sales process in a way that all of that admin work still gets done, but your sales team has the time they need to close deals? For many companies, a CRM, or Customer Relationship Management software, is the answer. 

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    Here at Evenbound, we’re big fans of HubSpot, but you might also have heard of other popular options like Pardot and Salesforce. While some options are better than others, the general purpose of a CRM is to make it easier for your sales team to foster positive relationships with all of the leads who come into your sales cycle and eliminate a lot of the busywork that keeps them from closing.

    Here are just 5 of the top ways a CRM helps streamline your sales process. 

    #1 Streamline Marketing to Sales Handoff Process

    For most companies, the handoff from marketing to sales is where leads fall through the cracks. Whether your sales and marketing teams aren’t communicating or your sales team is just too busy to follow up on all the leads marketing sends over, it’s easy, and common for leads to fall out of the sales funnel during the handoff from marketing to sales. 

    A CRM can solve the majority of these sales dropoff problems. 

    The first fix is to notify your sales team. When the marketing team decides a lead is ready to move up to sales, a CRM can automatically alert your sales team of the move. This is a great way to eliminate lost leads who drop out of the cycle because no one contacts them.

    The next fix is to help your sales team see immediately if that lead is actually ready for your sales team or not. A CRM shows your sales team exactly where a lead is in the buying process. The CRM will track every contact marketing has with that lead, giving the sales team a good idea of how warm the lead is, and how ready they are to buy. 

    This makes it easy for your sales reps to see at a glance whether a lead is ready for them, or if they’d rather send them back down to marketing. 

    And with a quality CRM, transferring that lead back down to marketing is a snap. Your sales rep just reassigns or recategorizes the lead, and they’re back in marketing’s “to nurture” bucket. 

    For many companies, a significant percentage of marketing leads do not convert to sales. This is partially handled with sales and marketing alignment, but a CRM is also a very useful tool to make no one is losing track of those leads. 

    Implementing a quality CRM not only helps make sure those leads get through the sales process, but it helps bring your sales and marketing teams together, and understand better what both teams need to effectively reach their goals.

    #2 CRMs Increase Prospect Visibility in the Sales Funnel

    Your sales team is busy. There’s no getting around it. As long as your marketing team is delivering leads, your sales team is busy contacting them all, establishing which of your products or service is the best fit for each and then getting through the actual nurturing and closing process. A CRM streamlines your sales process by offering greater visibility on all of those prospects in the sales funnel. 

    CRMs make it easy to see where every prospect is in the sales funnel, at any given time. If your sales team is managing their leads with a post-it note system, a notebook, or any other method, they’re probably letting leads drop out of the sales funnel. And it’s not their fault — we’re all only human! 

    But, a CRM can help resolve this problem, and make it easy for your sales team to prioritize the warmest leads above leads who still need a bit of nurturing. 

    • Organize leads by priority. Most quality CRMs allow you to segment leads based on how qualified they are, and where they are in the sales funnel. When your top-priority leads are listed right at the top of the page, your sales team doesn’t even have to think about who to call first. 
    • See at a glance which leads have been contacted, by who, and when. Another key visibility benefit that comes with a quality CRM is that your sales reps can see at a glance who has contacted what lead, and when. They’ll be able to see which of your resources a lead has already received, and what information they might still need to make a final decision. 

    Increased visibility thanks to a quality CRM leads to a more effective, efficient sales process. When your leads are automatically organized by industry, job title, interest level, and more, your sales team can spend more time on what they’re best at — closing deals. 

    #3 Automated Tasks Help Streamline Your Sales Process

    Even though it’s necessary, sending out product catalogs, brochures, and pricing guides is repetitive and time-consuming. Your sales team already knows that they don’t have to reinvent the wheel with every email, but they do have to take the time to copy-paste their text, change the names, attach the documents, and then finally send the email. A CRM can automate these repetitive tasks so your sales team has more time to actually sell. 

    Quality CRMs offer tools like automated workflows, follow-up emails, chatbots, and more, so your leads still get the quality service they need to feel nurtured and supported through the sales process, but your sales team is freed up to use their time for more important tasks. 

    And for tasks that CRMs can’t automate, they can send automated reminders. Your sales reps have to talk to any contact multiple times before they close a deal. Your CRM can automatically remind sales reps when to make those calls so that no leads fall through the cracks. 

    #4 Easy Reporting

    No one likes to make reports. What if they didn’t have to? 

    Quality CRMs can generate sales reports at the click of a button, so your team can easily see what’s working, and what’s not.

    One of the greatest benefits of a CRM for any sales team is the data it has to offer. In addition to supporting your sales team, your CRM is constantly collecting data. Data about your clients, how long they take to close, what content offer brings in the leads most likely to close, and what sales tools are most effective at closing those sales.

    All of that data, combined and compiled for you by the CRM, helps you interpret your sales team’s success, and further streamline your sales process for even better results. 

    #5 Sales Leaderboards and Productivity Reports

    We’re a big proponent of teamwork. As a growth agency, we’ve seen that companies who encourage their sales reps to work together tend to do significantly better than companies with sales reps who are all using different sales tactics, and even different sales processes. 

    Advanced CRMs, like HubSpot, are designed to give you and your sales team all of the data you need to optimize and streamline your sales process as a team. Sales leaderboards and productivity reports are one great way to do that.

    They show you which of your team members are doing great, and which might be struggling with your new sales process or CRM. You can use these stats to bring your whole team up, by asking those at the top of the leaderboard to share what they’re doing to close so many deals. 

    Generating a sales leaderboard and a productivity report also helps give you a better picture of where your reps are spending their time.

    Maybe one rep has been spending a ton of time in your CRM, and is super productive, but is low on the leaderboard. This might be an opportunity to show them some more of those automation tools, so they can get out of their inbox, and back on the phone with clients. 

    A CRM is designed to organize and store all of your sales team’s information and data in one easy-to-access location. In addition to providing exceptional visibility, a CRM helps streamline your sales process by handling the repetitive tasks that take time out of your team’s day of selling. The goal is to enable your sales team with all the tools they need to be able to sell better, and more efficiently, and when implemented properly, that’s exactly what a CRM does. 

    If you’re thinking about a CRM, but aren’t sure how to get started, or are afraid of a lengthy learning curve, get in touch with the Evenbound team. We have team members dedicated to onboarding and training sales reps and marketing teams on how to use the HubSpot CRM effectively, and we’re confident we can help you too. Just take a look at the results we provided for this company in the case study below!

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