When it comes to inbound marketing, there are so many different pieces of the puzzle. It’s important to choose a platform that will give you all the capabilities you need. Some businesses are focused on the initial stages, like establishing a brand presence, building a modern website and creating content, while others are ready to ramp up by segmenting their audience, setting up social media campaigns and creating personalized experiences for their customers.
Whether you’re in the first stage, last stage or somewhere in between, it’s a good idea to take a step back and figure out where you are now, where you want to go and evaluate what you need to close the gap.
If you’re currently using a marketing platform (or several), take a moment to determine if what you have now will help you reach the goals you have in place for the future. If not, it may be time to look at your options.
Here are a few things to think about as you evaluate:
When you’re looking for a marketing platform, you want to make sure it’ll help your marketing department do what they do best.
Capabilities to keep in mind for your marketing team:
You may not need all of these capabilities. However, it’s important to have a system in place that focuses on those that are most important to you and can scale as you do.
There are numerous platforms out there that focus on specific needs, like Constant Contact or MailChimp for email marketing, or Hootsuite for social media management. But they don’t have the other integral features you may need, so you may still end up with a separate system for managing your content, hosting your website and selling to your customers online.
For some businesses, having multiple platforms in place means more freedom to customize, but it could also mean more hassle and disconnect in your marketing efforts. What if you could use one platform to create, monitor, update and review your marketing performance in a more integrated, streamlined way?
For your sales team, knowing who your most promising prospects are, when to reach out and what they are engaging with can be essential to success. You team’s time is important and automating simple tasks can help them focus on building lasting relationships instead of chasing down possible leads.
Capabilities to keep in mind for your sales team:
Communicating with leads when they’re still hot can lead to more business and better relationships, but depending on the technology you use, your team could be missing out on opportunities to engage.
This all starts with the pass off from marketing to sales. You’ve likely heard it a million times, but sales and marketing need to align to ensure a seamless transition. This is important for functioning at your best. With an aligned team, your marketing department can spend their time educating and engaging your audience and pass them to sales right when they’re ready to buy. By using features like lead scoring, workflows and automated emails, you can set up notifications to your team when a prospect is highly engaged and ready to talk. Automated emails can ensure they’re contacted within minutes of their last activity so you don’t lose any momentum. This opens your team up to have more meaningful conversations and develop long-lasting relationships.
This is the step of business often forgotten or put on the backburner. For relationships to be successful, they need to continue with the same enthusiasm as they began. Just because someone has purchased something from you doesn’t mean their journey is over. The more you cater to your customers, the more likely you are to develop a loyal fan base. In fact, a 5 percent reduction in the customer defection rate can increase profits by 25 to 85 percent, depending on the industry. So keeping your customers is just as, if not more, important than generating new business.
Capabilities to keep in mind for your customer service team:
Customers want to be treated like people, and having a good customer service system in place can ensure you do just that. Become their trusted resource no only for products and services, but also resolving issues and becoming more educated about your brand. Making your customers experts and keeping them engaged and satisfied can lead to strong customer loyalty, promotion and, ultimately, steady business.
Keeping in mind all the various things your business does, and the multiple teams that do them, aligning these main aspects of your business can be difficult. It’s important to make sure you have the systems in place to help everyone succeed. But can you do this and simplify your processes at the same time?
There are several reasons why reducing the number of platforms you use for marketing, sales and customer service is a good thing.
Having an all-inclusive platform can cut down on the number of subscription packages you pay for regularly. Instead of purchasing four or five solutions to market your business, you can roll those into one cost. You may also end up with other added benefits and capabilities, making the investment that much more worth it.
Using one system to monitor your contacts’ behaviors can give you better visibility into your sales process from start to finish. Having the ability to see what ads your audience has clicked on, the pages they’ve viewed, emails they’ve opened and how they became a customer can drive important decisions down the road. With multiple systems, you may have to piece together this information manually.
No one likes having to learn a whole new system, much less four. With less systems in place, you can simplify the onboarding process and get things moving quickly. To get buy-in early on, keep things focused on the portions of the system that may be most valuable to different members of your team and show how each area ties in to the big picture.
It seems like a far-off fantasy, but it is actually possible to achieve successful closed-loop reporting. With integrated systems and marketing performance dashboards that monitor progress in an easy-to-read manner, you can see how contacts come into your system, where marketing nurtures them and sales closes the deal. Finally, a way to measure ROI. You can also keep tabs on your contacts’ history in case you ever need to reference it for GDPR purposes.
With a system in place that works for sales, marketing and customer service, you’ll have the clarity you need to bridge the gap between sales and marketing and work more effectively on keeping your most valued customers. Marketing can see what contacts are setting up meetings with sales and turning into deals, and sales can see how leads are coming into the system and being qualified. Talk about a win-win situation. In addition to this, you can see how customer service is keeping those customers happy and monitor retention. The ability to align all three sections of your business is a force to be reckoned with.
HubSpot is an all-in-one inbound marketing platform used for sales and marketing teams, and has recently added customer service to the mix. Powered by HubSpot’s CRM, the platform features three hubs designed to help each department focus on what matters most to them.
The marketing hub combines the capabilities you may find across several platforms, allowing you to create content, design landing pages, send emails, manage social media and much more.
The sales hub allows your team to schedule meetings, send follow-up emails and track progress automatically. Using the sales tools, you’ll never have to miss out on a hot lead again.
The new service hub provides the ability to communicate with customers about questions and issues and resolve them quickly and easily. Where businesses once lacked, HubSpot has provided a solution.
Why juggle multiple platforms and try to piece together your sales and marketing efforts to show success when you could cut your tech stack and gain more visibility? Explore the possibilities with HubSpot and see how you could become a master marketer and cut some stress at the same time.