What to Expect When You're Expecting... Marketing Hub!

You’ve been thinking about doing it forever. Something in your day-to-day feels empty, and there’s one thing that everyone keeps telling you is the key to happiness. You speak with the closest people around you and after a lot of thought, you go through a collaborative process that will eventually create something beautiful. A little bit of time goes by and before you know it…

Congratulations on your new bundle of joy! It's a Marketing Hub!

While I have had exactly 0 human bundles of joy, I have handled hundreds of new HubSpot “bundles”, most of those being Marketing Hub licenses. HubSpot's CRM system is truly the best on the market, but many companies underestimate what it’s going to take to start getting ROI on this new piece of tech. (And no, you can’t just bank on your HubSpot license becoming a doctor or professional athlete who can pay for your retirement someday.) 

If a new Marketing Hub license is in your team's future, this article will help you understand some key things to think about prior to kick-off so that you can make the most of your HubSpot Onboarding time.

Prior to Marketing Hub Onboarding:

Perform a Data Check 

Remember how the mitochondria is the powerhouse of the cell? Think of data as the powerhouse of HubSpot, so let’s start there. Some questions to ask yourself before Onboarding kicks off:

  • Have you done a gut check on the quality of your data? 
    • When is the last time you've run your email addresses through a validation tool?
      The last thing you want to do is start your first campaign off with a bunch of hard-bounced email sends, which negatively impacts your sender score. Validation tools like Never Bounce integrate with HubSpot and can help avoid hard bounces.
    • How old is your data? 
      Getting a new CRM is a great excuse to audit your data for any records that aren't critical or up to date. Looking at data >3 and >5 years old (or in the spirit of this post, 36 months or 60 months old) is a great place to start.
  • Are you set up to avoid duplicate records?
    • HubSpot automatically deduplicates records for contacts based on the 'email' property, and for companies based on the 'company domain name' (i.e. the website URL) property. If you plan to import contacts and companies, make sure you have those values for as many of those new records as possible. Ask your onboarding specialist when you should turn on the "automatically associate with companies with contacts" setting, a handy tool that takes away the manual labor of association by looking at the email domain of your contact's email addresses. 
  • Do you have existing data that should be standardized?
    • Easy example: Is your business location based? Yes?
      Have you previously been capturing geographic information in a single line text field? Yes?
      If yes, WHYYY?!!!! Just kidding, I'm not here to judge. You'll want to get that into a standardized dropdown to make segmentation and routing easy and accurate. Your onboarding specialist can help you with some tricks on how to easily convert your current data into a standardized State/Region property.
  • Do you have existing data that is specific to your business?
    • Custom properties will help you take full advantage of HubSpot's segmentation and marketing automation capabilities, so come prepared to your trainings with an idea of what those custom properties should be.  
      For example: Pretend you work at a company that makes NFL team apparel. Custom properties like 'Favorite Football Team' or 'Favorite NFL Quarterback' would make sure you're emailing the right contacts when there's a new drop for their favorite team, and capturing Favorite NFL Quarterback would show you that most of your audience wants Tom Brady swag...😎 (I am willing to risk you stopping your read here).

Identify Your First Goal

In my opinion, the BEST way to make use of your onboarding period is to come to your kick-off call with an upcoming priority that you would like to use HubSpot for. It could be the promotion of a trade show or a new product. Maybe you want to implement automation that updates lifecycle stages according to the type of form a contact submitted. Whatever it is, if it can be done in HubSpot, your onboarding specialist can tailor your training time to accomplish this goal. You’re already going to be learning how to use HubSpot’s email editor and workflow tool, why not use that time towards a realistic, tangible effort? Some questions to ask yourself to help you prep: 

  • What is the upcoming effort you want to focus on? 
  • Which contacts should you be marketing to, and what's the plan to get them in HubSpot? 
  • Is this a repeatable effort like a monthly webinar, or a one-off effort like a limited-time promotion? 
  • What marketing assets would be required to support this effort, and are those assets created already? Assets could be emails, videos, PDFs, etc. If you don't have the assets ready, we'll create placeholders and train you on the technical setup.

During Marketing Hub Onboarding: 

Integrate Your Website with HubSpot

Did you know that you can integrate Marketing Hub with your website, even if you're not hosting your site in HubSpot? Here are some realistic quick wins that you can put in place during Onboarding. And, if you're Onboarding with a partner like Instrumental we'll help guide you through these steps:

  • Install the HubSpot Tracking Code 
    • We'll work with your team to make sure you get the HubSpot Tracking Code on your website so that you start seeing traffic analytics right away. HubSpot buckets each traffic channel so you can see which channels are driving the most traffic to your website, and which ones are creating the highest volume of new contacts.
  • Replace Your Website’s Call-To-Action Buttons with HubSpot CTAs 
    • HubSpot CTAs are trackable buttons and images that help you report on your most viewed and clicked-on conversion triggers. You can even A/B test your HubSpot CTAs to see if changes in color or text drive visitors to take action.
  • Replace Your Website's Forms with HubSpot Forms 
    • HubSpot Forms offer countless benefits, the top one being the ability to set up automated follow-ups and internal notifications to make sure no leads slip through the cracks.

Now that you know the top secrets of preparing for a successful HubSpot Onboarding, what next?

Everything mentioned above will give you a list of priorities and approachable ideas for your HubSpot Onboarding period that many companies don't realize they should think about prior to their kick-off call. And with how powerful HubSpot is, and everything I've learned since I started using it in 2016, I can tell you this list is still not even the tip of the iceberg of everything you can do to maximize HubSpot's potential in the first couple of months!

When you purchase Marketing Hub, you are required to go through Onboarding. You can either onboard through HubSpot, or onboard with an elite partner agency like Instrumental and our team of dedicated HubSpot Success Managers who have learned a lot along the way on what it takes to make the most of your Onboarding period. Some benefits of signing up for HubSpot Onboarding with us are:

  • We hold longer, more thorough training sessions
  • We handle the technical configuration of the platform vs. HubSpot's 'DIY' configuration approach so you don't have to spend time doing backend work
  • We can complete onboarding in 30-45 days if your team has the bandwidth to move fast (HubSpot's timeline is 90 days)
  • We take a tailored approach to training your team where we'll make clear connections between the tool and your goals for buying it in the first place
  • We're the same price!

If you want to make sure you are working with an expert who knows how to get you off to a successful start, contact us and we'll work with your HubSpot sales rep (or get you in touch with one) to get you onboarded with a member of our team. And hey, if you don't want to take my word on all the benefits of going through HubSpot Onboarding with a Partner like us, check out our client's reviews of working with us! 

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