How to Set Up HubSpot So It Actually Transforms Your Business

Published on: | Updated on: | Caroline Lane

Imagine buying a smartphone and only ever using it to make calls.

That’s what you’re doing when you move your marketing operations and workflows from your existing marketing automation tool to HubSpot without revising your strategy to match the platform’s potential.

See, it’s no secret that HubSpot can be transformative for sales and marketing operations. 

But making the most of it requires more than just a traditional ‘onboarding’ process where you customize your settings, migrate your data, and learn specific tools and tactics.

Instead, you need to take the time to reimagine how you work and what your ultimate goals are - which is exactly what this strategic checklist is designed to help you do.

HubSpot Onboarding Strategic Checklist

1. Lay Out Your Ideal Processes

The central question in this process is simple: how would you build your sales and marketing processes if you were starting from scratch today? 

Most existing processes are the product of necessity or limitation. You built them around what was technologically feasible and what needed to get done; no one has had time to challenge or reinvent them. But this is an opportunity to outline the ideal buyer journey - and create protocols that make it a reality.

Assess your existing systems and practices: 

  • Which could be automated now? 
  • Which could be improved? 
  • Which already works well? 

Brutal honesty is required to make this worthwhile.

For example: maybe sales reps have to manually check on all of the leads in their pipelines and create tasks to remind them to follow up. But now, you want to automate that process in HubSpot so that reps can spend less time on this - and more time generating new business.

It’s also important to take a long view here: consider how you’d like to scale, which pain points you can see emerging as you do, and how your operations might evolve to address them.

2. Establish Why Existing Processes Don’t Work

Chances are, you’ve identified quite a few processes that are not currently producing the results you’d like. But it’s not enough to simply disregard them - you need to interrogate their failure.

Ask the following questions:

  • Were they instituted at a time when your buyer groups were smaller or behaved differently?1
  • Were they created by people who’ve now left the company? 
  • Do they simply not make sense in HubSpot?

This will give you far greater clarity on the overarching challenges you face when overhauling your system - as well as the opportunities at your disposal. 

If the problems are predominantly about outdated technology, shifting to HubSpot is likely to solve a lot of them. But if many are simply irrelevant to your existing needs, they will need to be replaced rather than simply translated when moving to the new platform.

3. Conduct a Cost/Benefit Analysis of Building New Processes

It’s time to ask yourself a tough question: is the ideal buyer journey you laid out in step 1 worth the time and financial investment required? 

While a truly seamless end-to-end system is attractive, it can be prohibitively expensive to build numerous new processes. Will the relative gains justify that cost? Do you have the resources to invest in a longer term strategy? And how much are you likely to change the processes in the future anyway?

The ultimate goal is to make your sales and marketing functions more effective and efficient. In fact, Gartner found that the top reason organizations adopt new software is to improve productivity.2

Some processes may not be ideal, but are better compensated for strategically than overhauled at great effort and expense. The simplest way to find the right balance is to quantify the effort required to build a new process; make a reasonable estimate of its value based on the improvement you expect it to bring about in your marketing or sales operations; and compare the two.

If you can reasonably expect to produce a net gain over the coming few months or years, the process is worth overhauling.

4. Find a Partner with Expertise to Help You Adapt

Onboarding your entire marketing and sales processes to HubSpot is a mammoth, which is why most organizations require an expert partner to help them adapt. But it’s a mistake to simply assume all HubSpot agencies are equally effective.

Instead, you need an agency that has experience and knowledge that is specific to your needs. If you’re going to use a combination of HubSpot and Salesforce, the agency should have demonstrable expertise not just in both but in using them in conjunction with one another.

Similarly, your HubSpot agency should understand your specific industry, the buyers you serve, your ideal sales processes and lead flows, and the complex strategic challenges you face. That way they can actually help guide you through the process outlined above - and ensure you truly make the most of the platform.

Make Your Transition a Success with ProperExpression’s HubSpot Onboarding Services

Our HubSpot agency is a true strategic partner, helping you build, manage and optimize your marketing processes in HubSpot - to create a truly seamless end-to-end pipeline.




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