What is HubSpot? Read all about HubSpot here

5 min read
Apr 29, 2024 11:17:40 AM
All-in-one software for Marketing, Sales and Services: a clear explanation of HubSpot

This blog answers all the important questions Sales and Marketing professionals have around HubSpot: what is HubSpot, the software, its origins, Inbound Methodology, links and integrations, features and the best comparison sites.

accent-line-red-xl

What is HubSpot?

HubSpot is a (cloud-based) software platform that helps commercial teams effectively drive more website visitors, leads and (satisfied) customers. It offers three main platforms: Sales (a CRM and sales tools), Marketing (Marketing Automation software) and Services. HubSpot also has its own CMS.

Organizations can purchase licenses for these "hubs" separately, but the platforms are built to talk to each other and thus can be fully integrated for optimal results. So it's fair to say that HubSpot is a true all-in-one platform:

  • The (free) HubSpot CRM: insight and overview: customer-centric
  • The Marketing Automation platform: more traffic and leads
  • Sales Professional: additional Sales tools for more efficient Sales
  • Services: to retain customers longer and keep them happy
  • CMS: a website with the benefits of an integrated content platform

Integrations and links with other systems

The software has many available links and APIs. Some of the CRM platforms that can be linked to HubSpot include Salesforce, SugarCRM, NetSuite, Microsoft Dynamics CRM.

But so are many other smart Marketing and Sales tools that HubSpot can be linked to such as Zapier, SurveyMonkey, Eventbrite, Hotjar, Shopify and more. Check out the links and integrations "HubSpot Connect" library here. This allows commercial teams to have their existing software talk to HubSpot and exchange data to create closed loop reporting.

The origins of HubSpot

HubSpot is an American-origin platform founded in 2006 by Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah (met as graduate students at MIT), who to this day still lead the organization as CEO and CTO. It is headquartered in Boston, USA, and its European headquarters are in Dublin, Ireland.

HubSpot vs Inbound Marketing and Sales

HubSpot also relies on the Inbound methodology, which starts from attracting your potential customers by helping them in their customer journey: pull (diametrically opposed to outbound, which actually "pushes" information to recipients. HubSpot strongly believes that customers today do their own research on products and services and decide when to consume content.

The term "Inbound" was claimed by HubSpot's founders, and the entire platform and organization breathe this methodology. HubSpot originally started from a Marketing point of view, stating that Marketing, if well thought out and set up according to the right processes, can make a very valuable contribution to attracting more website visitors and good, qualified leads for Sales.

Smarketing: Sales and Marketing alignment

Soon HubSpot launched the free CRM platform because they claim that Marketing and Sales cannot achieve success without each other. Their software is fully equipped to apply Inbound Marketing and Sales strategies:

The Inbound Marketing Methodology

With Inbound Marketing, the marketing department gets more good website visitors and leads and "nurtures" or feeds the lead with valuable content through the funnel (being present at the right time with the right content, through the right channels and with the right audience), so Sales can start a conversation with leads who are far enough along in the buying journey. Read more about the Inbound Marketing methodology here.

The Inbound Sales methodology

In addition, Sales can follow an Inbound Sales methodology that helps them identify the right leads (this can be done passively, by leads provided by Marketing but also Actively, by working the market themselves), with promising leads to make a connection. Read more about the Inbound Sales methodology here.

HubSpot for Marketers

HubSpot's marketing hub consists of a very complete Marketing Automation platform. Marketing can structure activities, automate them and provide insight with reports. The marketer can get started themselves; very little IT knowledge is required to get started with HubSpot.

In addition, HubSpot's CMS. When you build - or have built - a website on HubSpot's CMS, you are not setting up a stand-alone product, but an entire content platform. Analytics and reporting thus becomes very easy.

  • Read more about HubSpot's Marketing Automation software here.
  • Read more about HubSpot's CMS here.

The important features of the Marketing Automation platform are:

  • Marketing Automation
  • Email Marketing
  • Insight into contacts and companies
  • Search engine optimization and topic clusters (SEO)
  • Social Media campaigns
  • Smart Content
  • Website (CMS, can also be purchased separately)
  • Business blogging
  • Landing pages
  • Reporting
  • Lead management and nurturing
  • Analytics
  • Call-to-actions
  • Paid campaigns
  • Live chat and chatbots
  • Ad management
  • Video hosting and management

HubSpot for Sales professionals / Commercial Directors

For Sales professionals, HubSpot offers the (free) CRM. There is also Sales Professional, which are separate Sales tools. The Sales professional can work much more efficiently and has all customers and prospects in one place. With this CRM, Sales can more easily keep a grip on leads and ongoing deals.

  • Read more about HubSpot's CRM here.
  • Read more about Sales Professional from HubSpot here.

Key features of the CRM include:

  • Contact management
  • Contact activity
  • Insight into contacts and companies
  • Gmail and Outlook integration
  • Forms (lead gen)
  • Documents (manage and share best practices)
  • Deal stages dashboard
  • Automatic call logging
  • Hot lead notifications
  • Complete company database
  • Automatic meeting booking
  • Email tracking
  • E-mail templates

The main functions of Sales Professional (which you can use in combination with the CRM, not separately) are:

  • E-mail sequences
  • Documents
  • E-mail tracking and notifications
  • Live Chat
  • Automatic booking of meetings
  • Call scheduling, logging and measurement
  • Lead scoring
  • Reporting

HubSpot for SME or Enterprise?

Originally, HubSpot started as a platform for Marketers, and specifically for SMEs. They are still known to the general public for that today. However, in recent years they have made great strides to fulfill all the needs for larger companies as well. They are well on their way to becoming the best SaaS party on the market in the field of Sales, Marketing and Services.

The launch of HubSpot Enterprise tools shows that they are creating a serious platform for organizations that operate in multiple countries or have multiple business units, or are part of a group. These organizations want to work in the same system, but need differentiation in key data and assets.

The image above shows that HubSpot expanded the Enterprise suite to include the Sales and Service hub during the INBOUND event in September 2018. Meanwhile, in the Enterprise suite, it is also possible to:

  • 50 teams per hub to be added;
  • Make part of the CRM (in)visible to different teams/divisions;
  • Grant or deny access based on, for example, team, region, product line, Business Unit, etc.;
  • Run unique reports per country;
  • Add additional domains (for a fee);
  • Grant or borrow custom access to specific landing pages, website pages, blogs;
  • Grant or borrow custom access to specific workflows, forms, Emails, CTAs.

Independent comparisons and reviews of other platforms

There are several independent websites that compare providers of Marketing Automation platforms and CRMs. Here you can often also apply relevant filters such as company size. For example:

  • G2Crowd
  • Trustradius

Dutch HubSpot partners for onboarding, implementation and more

There are several partners in the Netherlands that help get your tooling up and running properly. These are categorized - based on customer satisfaction - by:

  • Elite: the highest score you can achieve as a HubSpot partner (Webs is the first HubSpot Elite Partner in the Benelux and one of the #5 partners worldwide)
  • Diamond
  • Platinum
  • Gold
  • Silver

Getting Started With Inbound & HubSpot: You Don't Do It Alone

With HubSpot Marketing and Sales software, you have all the tools you need to generate more traffic, leads and customers. But you don't have to use HubSpot and Inbound Marketing and Sales optimally on your own. A HubSpot partner can help you grow effectively in the digital age.

There are several HubSpot partners to help get your tooling up and running properly. These are categorized - based on customer satisfaction - by (from low to high): Silver, Gold, Platinum, Diamond and Elite. Webs is the first HubSpot Elite Partner in the Benelux and one of the #5 partners worldwide.

Requesting a HubSpot demo - better insight into the capabilities of the software

Find out in a demo which Marketing and Sales tools from HubSpot will help you achieve your commercial growth plans. Click here to learn more about the HubSpot Demo.

quote-example

Want to stay updated on all HubSpot changes? Subscribe to our newsletters, follow us on Instagram or join our HubSpot User Days!

Explore HubSpot User Days