5 Experts Share Strategies for Unlocking HubSpot's Full Potential

Earlier this month, I messaged some HubSpot power users asking for advice. What tips, tricks, or strategies do they recommend to unlock more value from the platform?

Two of them were colleagues from our Expert Practices team. (There aren’t many people around who know HubSpot better than Chris and Hannah.) The other three I can best describe as real power uses. On the off-chance you haven’t heard of them before, Kyle, Chris and Dimos are some of the most passionate HubSpot advocates around today.

As you might expect from these pillars of the HubSpot community, all five of them were only too willing to share their many and varied experiences using the platform. As a way of hacking the HubSpot side of their brains, I offered several prompts for them to consider:

  • What’s a quick win for unlocking more value from your portal?
  • What’s a strategy or way of approaching your portal to drive success?
  • What’s a pitfall to avoid when using HubSpot?

What I got back wasn’t just their expertise, although it certainly included that. In a hundred words or so, I also got their perspectives — different ways of looking at the platform, according to how each of these individuals sees it. It’s really opened my eyes to the role HubSpot plays in different organisations, for different industries, at different levels.

On top of the tips and insights you’ll find for helping you to get more out of your portal, I hope what follows gives you a different way of looking at the platform and its potential, too.

 

Most users don't realise how much flexibility HubSpot dashboards offer, says Kyle Jepson, HubSpot’s principal marketing evangelist

“Rearranging and resizing the HubSpot reports on a dashboard is great fun, of course, but you can add a lot of other things to your dashboards as well. Use rich text, images, and videos to add context to the data on the dashboard. Use the ‘Add external content’ action to add reports from other systems so you have one place to look for all of your analytics. I've even seen teams embed other HubSpot tools onto their dashboards so they can immediately take action on the data they see there!”

In other words, going beyond your dashboards’ surface-level functionality could unlock a lot more value that you could use to improve business by making your data easier to interpret.

  • Adding context to HubSpot reports through rich text, images, and videos helps users better understand the data and its significance. This can lead to more informed decision-making as stakeholders gain a deeper insight into the metrics and trends presented on the dashboard.
  • The ability to add external content onto the HubSpot dashboard simplifies the process of data analysis and enables stakeholders to gain a more complete picture of business performance.
  • Embedding other HubSpot tools onto a dashboard allows teams to take immediate action based on the insights derived from the data. For example, if a marketing team identifies a spike in website traffic on the dashboard, they can directly access HubSpot's marketing automation tools to launch targeted campaigns or follow up with leads, facilitating a more agile and responsive approach to decision-making.

With access to all relevant information and tools on one dashboard, you’ll save time and effort spent on switching between different systems or searching for relevant data, allowing you to focus on analysing insights and implementing strategies to actually drive growth.

 

According to Chris Grant, one of our HubSpot Platform consultants, the secret to unlocking platform potential is to look for the white space

“I spend so much time in different portals that I can often see straight away what’s missing. Whether I’m exploring a portal for the first time, or revisiting one I haven’t accessed in a while, my approach is to look for that white space. Even such simple changes as mandating contacts association when a deal is created can make a massive difference for a company.”

You don’t know what you don’t know, as the saying goes. When, like Chris, you DO know, unlocking more value from a portal can be a simple case of looking for what’s not there before zeroing in on how to improve or optimise what is. The catch here is that you need an eye for what’s missing, which is where a third-party perspective can come in real handy.

  • An accredited partner agency or consultant will have both the certifications and the experience to know exactly what’s not been switched on or made use of in a portal.
  • This work means they’re often the first to know when a new feature is about to drop. Having them in your pocket helps you to unlock value as it becomes available.
  • What is your HubSpot use saying about the bigger picture? Being able to flag underutilised functionality might be the springboard you need for a wider conversation about a process that isn’t working, a service level agreement for review, or your tech stack. Today, operational change; tomorrow, business transformation.

Going back to what I was saying earlier, it’s easy to think of third-party experts as just that — people with expertise — when half the time it’s their perspective that’s truly valuable.

 

HubSpot Community Champion Chris Bryant thinks a lot of people overlook just how much tech stack consolidation can drive revenue

“By moving more and more of your stack under the HubSpot roof, your internal teams have more and more visibility into what the others are saying or doing without having to ask them for updates. Yes, it can add complexity in maintenance, but it pays for itself over and over by saving your team time every day and letting them get on with the real work that matters.”

Technology touches everything we do today. But when you’re using different systems or platforms to accomplish all those things, it can start to turn from a help to a hindrance. Day to day, you might not notice it, perhaps because when that is the technology you’re expected to use to accomplish your tasks, you just get on with it. But at both the delivery and management levels, tech stack consolidation in HubSpot specifically can unlock huge value: 

  • Consolidating your systems into a single platform reduces the time and effort spent on managing multiple different ones. This allows employees to focus more on revenue-generating activities like sales, marketing campaigns, and customer support.
  • Centralising data from different sources within a unified platform enables better data integration and analysis. With a consolidated view of customer data, businesses can better capitalise on customer behaviour, preferences, and buying patterns. 
  • A consolidated tech stack can streamline processes and workflows. By automating repetitive tasks and eliminating manual data entry and transfer between systems, businesses can reduce errors and inefficiencies, allowing employees to focus their time and energy on revenue-generating activities rather than administrative tasks.

By consolidating their tech stack, businesses can unlock greater value from their existing resources, but what I’m reminded of most is how shifting your technology requirements to HubSpot can help your whole organisation, with all its various needs, to grow better.

 

Hannah Fisher, our CRM platform consultant, advises collating lists of stakeholder requests to improve ongoing portal administration

“Grouping those requests then prioritising them to assign objectives-based deliverables to each quarter will help you to avoid the pitfall of trying to action too much all at once. Any requests that can't be actioned due to limitations in platform functionality, budget, or capacity can then be put onto a wishlist for future review.”

For many organisations, effective portal management could be a full-time role in its own right. In any given quarter, you might need to:

  • review where records with gaps in key data points are coming from, so you can plug the gaps and fully benefit from the personalisation, customisation, and segmentation this data unlocks
  • understand why not all business development communications have been captured in the CRM, so you can refine the process and, if necessary, retrain users to ensure all communications are logged
  • map out your data retention policy, so we have a paper trail in the form of documentation and the confidence that you are remaining compliant.

Collating and grouping stakeholder requests as Hannah describes won’t just help you to manage — sometimes competing — business demands as they come in, but it will help you to set a clear focus for each quarter for maintaining the development of your platform.

 

Dimos Michailidis, head of marketing & RevOps at LegiStorm, reveals how to unlock more value from HubSpot’s AI

“Although HubSpot has built-in AI functionality, you can do so much more by leveraging the OpenAI API through Make (formerly Integromat). For example, you can use AI to report on self-reported attribution (“How did you hear about us?”). With a simple Make scenario, it’s now possible to have the best of both worlds (automatically): using free-text input in your forms while still being able to report based on categories.”

HubSpot has doubled down on its AI capabilities in recent years, but as Dimos explains, going one step further by integrating Make’s tools using OpenAI’s API will unlock more value out of the platform’s already impressive AI functionality. Here, Dimos explains how:

“The Make scenario will use the text from the form submissions and ask ChatGPT to categorize it based on the options of your list. You will need two contact properties in your CRM: A single-line text property (e.g. “Self-Reported Source”), which will include the text the prospect submitted, and a dropdown-select property (e.g. “Self-Reported Source Channel”) which will include your list’s options, e.g. social media, online search, word of mouth, etc.”

You can learn more about the prompt and Make modules in Dimos’ LinkedIn carousel

 

Could you unlock more value by looking at your HubSpot differently?

From portal administration and tech stack consolidation to how you develop your dashboards, there’s something in here for almost everyone. I hope there’s some food for thought in here for you, too, even if all it does it prompt you to start thinking about what’s not being used in your portal, and a second pair of eyes could help you to identify it. Insight is important, but if researching this piece has taught me anything, it’s that perspective is king. 

Strategy talk aside for one moment, there’s something very special about the HubSpot community, which is characterised by HubSpot employees, platform advocates, and all-round HubSpot champions who just want to help people. I’m convinced it’s one of the driving forces behind HubSpot’s success and why so many users succeed on the platform.

What’s your perspective into your portal, and how could shifting it reveal more value?

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