When it comes to digital marketing tools and CRM platforms, one of the most popular options is HubSpot. As a digital marketing agency, we get asked a ton of questions about this marketing platform so we’ve decided to write about it. This DIY HubSpot article will cover three cool things that you can do with HubSpot.
First of all, HubSpot is quite a robust tool, one that can help businesses reach for greatness and do fantastic things.
However, there’s a dilemma;
There are 1000 + 1 ways to utilize the HubSpot platform. I am not even going to consider the numerous updates churned out almost every week, that could complicate things further.
HubSpot is beyond robust; we should also think of it as an all-in-one platform with enormous functionalities.
Ask any HubSpot user; we’ve all experienced an “aha moment” when they discover another new thing that could be done with HubSpot. Of course, you also experience this every now and then.
Not to worry anyway, that’s why in one of our brainstorming sessions at Agency 41, a digital marketing agency in Costa Mesa, we arrived at a conclusion. Which is to do our best to show you the enormous potentials you have at your fingertips with HubSpot. More importantly, to hold you by the hand and show you how to get the most and the best out of HubSpot.
For starters, let’s consider something you’ve always wanted to know;
How to Schedule Blog Posts on HubSpot
Before doing this, we must mention something important; that’s what Neil Patel referred to as the science of social timing.
It’s not enough to be able to create excellent content. We are talking about content that is engaging and not aggressive, one that does not only generate leads but also build relationships.
If you need help with how to create such content, you can check out our comprehensive content marketing guide which helps you create awesome content.
But when do you post and share your content for maximum impact?
Regardless of how excellent your content could be, if you publish it when your potential audience are offline, it’ll not generate enough traction as it should.
This is why you need to understand the science of social timing and be able to use HubSpot in line with social timing.
We’ll give you a clue on social timing; you should try to schedule your post to between 9.30 am to 11 am, US East Coast Time.
Why not 8 am?
People are still settling down at work and just turning on their computers.
What about 9 am?
People are probably going over their social media feeds and scrolling through their email inbox.
Let’s go back to the sub-heading, how to schedule blog posts on HubSpot;
It would help if you were thinking of scheduling a post after you have optimized your blog. This means you have added a featured image with alt text, inputted your keywords, added the links, and selected your campaign. You may have to wait for your editorial team to give you the go-ahead to publish.
Then you are ready to schedule the blog post and share it with HubSpot.
There are three ways of writing on HubSpot:
- Pasting from Word Document
- Importing from Google Doc
- Write in the composer mode
Once your post is ready, it’s time to either publish or schedule a post.
Click on the Publish or Schedule button. You have the option of publishing now or choosing a later date and time for publication.
What’s Special About Scheduling Posts on HubSpot;
You can choose to schedule and share your blog post on social media one or more times. There is room to select multiple times that the post can go out. You’ll choose the number of times the blog post can be shared across different social media platforms.
How to Properly Set up Contact Workflows on HubSpot
We’ve already made something clear; HubSpot is a combination of powerful tools that every marketer needs to succeed. One of such tools in the HubSpot toolbox is the contact workflow.
Let’s assume you are new to HubSpot.
A workflow is a set of programmed actions that are only executed using clearly stated requirements. The requirement leads to an action when a lead is sited. The requirement or starting conditions can be when a form is submitted, when a contact joins a list, completes an event, or could even be manually triggered.
The possibilities of contact workflow on HubSpot are endless. Let’s start with an ongoing contact engagement, which can be used to stay in the mind of contact. There’s also a drive for more marketing qualified leads, which can help to qualify more contacts faster.
Another contact workflow possibility is towards an increment in sales efficiency. The sales team uses this to make sales more effective. Another option is using contact workflow to re-activate dormant contacts. These are contacts who have not been interacting with you based on a set metric. Lastly, there’s the trial engagement that is used in driving trial sign-ups for a trial period.
That said, setting up Contact Workflows on HubSpot is quite a straightforward action. Yet, you may still get it wrong.
To make this easier for you, we’ve broken it down into a 7-Phase process. By following each step, you are close to getting it right with workflows;
Phase 1: Goal Setting For Your WorkFlow
Do to set up a contact workflow without having a goal in mind. Have a clearly outlined goal, with proportional resources to achieve the goal also gathered.
The probable resources are:
- Contact properties
- Suppression lists
- Internal Emails
- Set values
As part of the first phase, you have to make up your mind on the type of Workflow that suits the goal identified;l standard, fixed based, or property base.
Most importantly, there should be a relationship between your contact workflow, the content offers, and the stages in the funnel. For example, you are guiding the contact from Top of the Funnel to Middle of the Funnel, Bottom of the Funnel, till when they can be considered for SQL.
What we are trying to spell out here is simple; allow the nurturing of leads to determine and drive your goals.
Phase 2: Decide the Starting Condition (Requirements) and the Workflow Type
The starting condition will either be one or all of the following;
- Completion of an event
- Landing and visiting a specific page
- Submission of form
- Or joining of a mailing list
Any or all of these conditions are not static. They can be changed to suit a particular time and date.
When it comes to deciding on the type of Workflow, your choice is limited to either:
- Standard Workflow: This is triggered when a contact fulfills a condition as chosen earlier. For example, when a contact downloads a free offer
- Property-based Workflow relies on the specificity of time. For instance, the birthday of the contact
- Lastly, the Fixed date workflow based on the time set by you
Phase 3: Programming and Adding Actions
In this phase, you are already in the process of creating the Workflow. You will be setting up the Workflow to take action. For example, you may expect the Workflow to send out an email when it reaches a particular date. Of course, the most popular and common action taken by Workflow is sending out automated emails. This does not mean that’s all HubSpot workflow is capable of doing; there is much more.
To program HubSpot workflow to take any action, there are four routes:
- Administrative tasks; setting the triggers, property values, and tasks.
- Lead nurturing; based on the automated emails and SMS sent.
- Delay; to indicate a time-sensitive action to be taken.
- If/Then, programming the Workflow to take an alternate action based on user behavior.
Phase 4: Studying Workflow Settings
Getting the best out of HubSpot workflow will require you to choose a specific approach to understanding how it works. The settings should be towards streamlining the process.
Importantly, specific instructions have to be given to the Workflow to allow it to know whether contacts are permitted to go through the Workflow more than a single cycle.
Let’s assume that a contact is in a particular workflow; the settings must allow for whether it should be removed from other lists. You have even to instruct the Workflow to block a contact from the Workflow.
Phase 5: Master Branching Logic in Workflow
First of all, let’s understand the reason behind this before going ahead to explain this phase. Not every lead will have an interest in your product or company. We should also say that not all leads will have the same level of interest. This is why a one-size-fits-all approach will truncate the entire workflow process.
What I’m trying to say here is simple; when you send out an offer, your action afterward should be built on the response of your contact. You should never assume everyone will see how ”sweet and irresistible” your offer is and jump on it.
The logic behind branching is to foresee that there will always be a “non-conformist” that will require you to have a plan B for every plan A.
However, don’t allow the branch to be complicated. As soon as you decipher it might be lengthy, it would be best if you triggered an alternate workflow. Your entire branching should be built on the If/Then logic.
Phase 6: Manual Enrollment of a Contact Into Workflow
One cent for your thoughts right now. You’ll be thinking that HubSpot workflow is supposed to be an automated process.” Yes, you are right, but there are times when you’ll need a manual starting condition.
This is when the Workflow starts with a manual trigger. Wait, do you also know that you can manually enroll a list yourself? Yes, and it won’t affect the actions of the Workflow.
In setting up the contact workflow, you’ll either choose to enroll a list for trigger effects or use the contact panel to bring in your lists.
Phase 7: Testing Your Contact Workflows
There’s an important caveat here. Never enroll leads until you’ve tested your Workflow. Don’t assume all is working and skip this last phase. When the Workflow is not correctly set up, the contacts enrolled in it will find it annoying, and you know the effect of that on your campaign.
If you set up an internal contact, you can use it to test the Workflow. The best option, however, is to set up Test Contact. In this step, you should observe how the workflow functions or malfunctions at all phases of the set up.
That’s that about contact workflows. One other aspect of HubSpot is social media, and that’s what we’ll focus on next.
Top 5 Ways to Connect Your Social Media to HubSpot
We’ll start this with a quick fact. Do you know the 10 most connected social media to HubSpot? Here’s how they rank:
- Design Wizard
Why do you have to know this fact? To enable you to know which social media is most valuable and used by other top brands via HubSpot. That does not mean you cannot add Pinterest, Xing, Google+, or others to HubSpot.
We’ve digressed enough, let’s trackback. The idea behind connecting your social media to HubSpot is to drive engagements. You are not doing enough as a brand if all you are doing is posting on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Instagram. Yes, that’s what social media should be, but getting leads from it requires you to be intentional and strategic about the content that you share on these platforms.
There are five ways, or tools, that help you connect your social media to HubSpot:
1. Social Media Inbox
There’s one thing that this does, and it does it perfectly; organizing your social media. Imagine you are present on all of the ten most used social media on HubSpot; how easy will it be to login to each of these accounts to post and share content?
That’s a problem that can be solved, all thanks to the intelligent features of HubSpot’s social media inbox. It cleverly merges all of your social media contacts linked to your organization.
We are not just talking about the ease that comes with one-click publishing of posts to all social media accounts. You now have the swiftness that comes to responding to all engagements from one entry-point.
2. Social Media Reporting
How effective is your social media marketing campaign? We are referring to not just one social media now, but all of the social media outlets. With the social media reporting tool, you’ll be aware of the results of your efforts.
It’s not enough to publish; you have to be able to measure and evaluate results. The tool also helps you to create a comparison between periods. For instance, you can compare the results of December 2019 and January 2020.
You can also compare results from a perspective of social media, let’s say Twitter and LinkedIn, to know where to appropriate more resources based on results.
3. Social Media Publishing
From a single point, you can publish content to all of your social media pages. With the right content published consistently and strategically, you can grow your engagement, leads, and customers. All of it leads to growth in revenue for your business.
There’s more the social media publishing tool can do for your social media marketing. When you are about to publish a blog post or send out newsletters, HubSpot’s Social Media Publishing tool also enables you to attach links to social media pages and other content.
4. Social Monitoring
Even though there are tools that make social mentioning and monitoring better, HubSpot does it excellently with this tool. With this tool, you can connect with your customers and leads at a more personal level.
With the tool, you are in tune with every conversation that affects your business, brand, and industry. You can quickly know what is being said about you on social media, giving you time and room to respond strategically.
That’s not all, if you know your way around HubSpot’s Social Monitoring, you will also spy on your competitors right from your comfort zone.
5. Social Media Settings
What if you can control the settings of all your social media profiles right from one space? That’s exactly what this tool does, giving you the power to work around scheduling of posts on all of your social media accounts.
As a marketer using HubSpot, you’ll need to understand that there are different social timing for all social media. Wrapping your social media settings around this scheduling will bring about results.
With all of these tools, it makes it easier to connect all of your social media and get the best results from social media marketing.
Since you now know how to connect HubSpot to your social media, let’s further give you ideas. These ideas look simple, but if followed to the letter, it will turn you into a force to be reckoned with in your industry;
4 Tips for Taking Your Social Media Marketing to the Next Level via HubSpot
1. Ask Questions
Whenever you meet someone for the first time, and you want to be friends with them, you’ll have to ask questions. When you ask questions, you’ll get them to talk and open up. That’s precisely how you should approach social media marketing.
Ask your audience after every post, “What do you think?”
People want others to know what they think or what they are thinking. By letting your audience know that you value their opinions, you’ll quickly drive engagements.
You have plenty of options to ask for their opinion, and you’ll either “Post a Poll” or Post a “Test Your Knowledge Game.”
These two are proven to be irresistible.
2. Provide Incentives for Taking Action
One of my favorite Fintech company expects you to rate them on Google Playstore, take a screenshot and share it on any social media by tagging three friends. For every follower that does this, there’s a $10 gift card.
Humans love games, challenges, and also incentives. If you can tie all of these together, you’ll grow your engagements. When it comes to this approach, the size of the gift does not matter. All you have to do is to oil the competitive ego of your audience.
3. Attractive Offers, the Old Fashioned Way
Gamification does not have to be your strategy at all times; you can also employ offers to engage both customers and prospects. It could be in the form of free shipping, discount promotions, instant coupons, and many more.
To know which one suits your audience the most, experiment with different offers, and monitor engagements using the Social media monitor.
4. Educate Your Audience
As part of your social media strategy, seek to educate your audience. Not every audience will be moved by offers or gamification. Some want to be informed. Imagine if a large percentage of your audience now falls within this demography.
Create useful content in form of blog posts, infographics, webinars, tools, mini-courses, and several others. According to a research report, educating the audience can help to drive engagements. That might be your route to combining social media and content marketing.
The game plan is simple, develop useful content, and share it on social media.
All of these tips can be followed by using HubSpot Social.
Final Thoughts on HubSpot
Whether you’re just getting started with digital marketing, or you’re an agency trying to grow your knowledge of digital marketing tools, HubSpot is a great tool with plenty of resources that can help you learn more about the benefits of CRM and content marketing.
If you have read through this entire guide but feel like you need to work with a HubSpot expert, then give us a shout and let us help you out with your project.