Webinar Preview | Increase Sales During COVID-19 with HubSpot

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — As business becomes more digital, and in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, a company’s goal of landing new customers who become brand promoters “has become an increasingly complex task,” says Jeff Hedrich, president and lead brand strategist for the Prodigal Co.

Digital tools allow companies and their marketing teams to streamline the process and make it more effective, he says. Of all the tools available, Hedrich says HubSpot has proven to be the most useful to Prodigal, which is a Hubspot agency partner.

On June 11, Hedrich will join Adrienne Sabo, creative director and senior copywriter at Prodigal, and Casey Peddicord, channel account manager at HubSpot, along with Youngstown Publishing Co. CEO Jeff Leo Herrmann in a webinar to discuss strategies on using HubSpot to generate more leads and convert customers during the pandemic.

Success in doing so, he says, is from using the digital platform to “put the right content in the marketplace,” thus driving inbound sales opportunities – when messages are sent directly to prospects, who in turn reach out to the company for goods and services, he explains.

“When someone decides they want to interact with you, there’s a lot more impetus for them, in fact, to close the deal with you,” he says. “And HubSpot is simply the most powerful digital platform out there to help companies do that.”

As an agency that creates branding and sales content for its customers, HubSpot is helping to take Prodigal to “a whole other level of what we’re able to achieve with our clients,” Hedrich says.

One example is how it provides a single location and database for all departments within the company to work, Sabo says. In a typical business environment where HubSpot isn’t being used, everyone is “really sort of siloed out,” she says.

“Sales has their platform. Marketing is managing, like, five to 10 other platforms from a Hootsuite to a MailChimp, or Constant Contact,” Sabo says. Hubspot provides one place for all of those individuals to work, so they can, as a unit, “nurture that prospect lead into a customer throughout the entire journey, and you’re all using the same information to do so,” he says.

For Sabo, who manages multiple social media platforms and other digital tools, it allows her to efficiently do her job without having to log into several individual platforms, she says.

“I log in at the start of the day and that’s where I stay,” she says. “I love the fact that I can just log into one dashboard. Everything I need to do is in there.”

While some companies and their sales departments may have tried to resist such digital platforms, COVID-19, the disease spread by the coronavirus, has disrupted that, Hedrich says. Some customers may not want personal visits, he says, and “we don’t know when trade shows are coming back into effect.”

Typically, HubSpot is used in alignment with those personal interactions, he adds. But amid the pandemic, “now something like HubSpot is that much more important” by helping companies manage all the different ways sales associates are connecting with customers and prospects, he says.

Prodigal is seeing that play out in how its clients’ customers respond to digital communications, Sabo says. Marketing email opens “are up dramatically” as more people spend time in their inboxes and look at more of those types of communications, so it’s a good time to implement them into a marketing strategy, she says.

“Before all this, you might have been forgotten,” she says. “But I think people are realizing more and more this is the way we’re going to be communicating moving forward.”

For companies that don’t already use all of those digital platforms, the reporting feature of HubSpot is what makes it worth the investment, Sabo says. Users can see “who clicked what; what link,” which can help the business tailor a follow up with that prospect, she says.

Sabo cited Prodigal’s work with Brilex Technical Solutions and an email campaign referencing heavy-press operations. By using HubSpot’s reporting features, Sabo can “heat map” which contact is interested in which specific product or service, she says. She provides that information to the sales team as leads for follow-up contacts.

“You’re really now taking the data and using it. Not just looking at the data for the sake of looking at it; opens, click rates,” she says.

As a HubSpot partner, Prodigal has representatives with the platform on call to assist its clients with working out those processes, Hedrich notes.

Pairing HubSpot with a content strategy is imperative, he says, which is where agencies like Prodigal come in. HubSpot partners with agencies because “they see a much higher level of effectiveness,” particularly when an agency that produces informational and educational content rather than advertisements, he says.

Instead of feeding prospects ads, direct follow-up contacts can be anything from emails and blogs to videos and landing pages.

“Really, you’re educating people rather than necessarily selling them,” Hedrich says. “Today’s buyers, whether B2B buyers or consumers, ads aren’t always the best way to go by any means anymore. In fact, often aren’t. So you’re putting content in front of them.”

“These days, sales professionals need two things: digital content that represents their knowledge and direct distribution to qualified prospects. HubSpot enables both,” adds Youngstown Publishing Co.’s Herrmann.

Through its A-B testing, HubSpot allows users to test what messaging works best with prospects, Sabo says, and can be incorporated with a Google AdWords campaign. During the coronavirus pandemic, the types of messaging that seems to work best right now with customers are messages that are useful, she says.

“Even if it’s tips and tricks,” she says. Citing Brilex content again, Sabo says a blog post or a series of posts on how to clean equipment to prolong its life would be valuable content. A pillar content approach – where a company publishes a short series of posts on the same topic – can help a one-person marketing department get the most mileage out of a single concept, she says.

“For your sales organization, it’s all about process, rhythm and reporting. As HubSpot users ourselves at The Business Journal, we can attest to the power of having a defined deal flow and visibility into the forecast. You have to inspect what you expect,” Herrmann adds.

To learn more about how HubSpot can help small-business owners align their sales and marketing efforts through HubSpot’s shared database and generate more qualified leads, register for “Customer Acquisition Revolution” by clicking here. The webinar is scheduled for 11 a.m. on June 11.

Copyright 2020 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.