Once star-crossed lovers, sales and marketing had a tumultuous relationship in the past. But, those days are over, baby! Inbound marketing has changed the relationship between sales and marketing forever. What was once tense and competitive is now full of deep love and respect (..right?). Thanks to inbound marketing, marketers are able to provide sales with more and better leads and help shorten the sales cycles. Both functions work together to create a personal and meaningful relationship with customers and prospects. The blend is real, as marketers are now spending their time selling and sales is spending its time marketing.
Ok, ok, maybe it’s not all rainbows and butterflies. But, I think it is about to be, thanks to the MAJOR announcement that Hubspot Founders Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shaw made at INBOUND 2014 today.
INBOUND 2014: HubSpot CRM and Sidekick
This time last year, Hubspot launched the HubSpot COS, which further elevated the company’s position as the one-stop-shop for everything smarketing (sales + marketing), particularly with tools such as Signals and personalized marketing.
And, while this offered a major step in the right direction toward smarketing success, it wasn’t enough. Even though Sales and Marketing are working more closely together than ever before, they still spend their days in silos. While we had made so much progress, it hasn't been enough to function as one.
What was missing? From a tools perspective, it was a proper CRM. This year at INBOUND 2014, that’s exactly what we got.
This is a great addition to the HubSpot suite and I’m really excited about it. Let’s go through a quick features break down and chat about smarketing’s new baby: Sidekick.
HubSpot CRM: Overview
"We started HubSpot because we felt the way consumers shop and buy had fundamentally changed. The inbound movement has helped transform the world of marketing, and we really feel like there's a huge opportunity to transform the customer experience with sales technology that enables companies to sell more, better, and faster."
- Brian Halligan
One of the biggest challenges to the smarketing movement today is that sales and marketing still tend to operate in separate places, disconnected from each other. This CRM has an answer to that, in its seamless integration with all of the HubSpot tools that are currently in place today. One place, one interface, one smarketing function. So, if you are sitting there saying “wow, this is really cool, but it’s another new tool with complicated features that I have to learn,” you needn’t not worry.
The CRM is constantly working in the background, getting feedback from your web pages, your forms, your emails, social media, phone calls, and more to organize every interaction your contacts make without you having to manually input it.
Real-time Smarketing Helps You Prioritize Your Time
Whenever you need to, you can access all the details on the spot and up to date. This means that you won’t have to waste time with menial tasks. The tool does that for you. You can focus your time instead on actually making the sale.
Meet The New Features
The database feature helps you organize all the data you’ve collected on contacts, companies, deals, and tasks. It automatically creates a full overview of company records including all the details associated with it to provide you with a wholesome view of your buyers. It also de-duplicates leads so you never have a cluttered contact list.
But it doesn’t stop there. Data enrichment also adds any useful information about any contact or company. Any new piece of information about the company background, key employees, social data, and more gets logged in its relevant place so you never ever miss a beat.
Email, Phone, and Google Calendar Integration
HubSpot CRM connects to Gmail, Google Apps, Outlook and Apple Mail, to automatically fetch and log emails with your contacts. Through this integration, you can also send emails straight from the HubSpot CRM.
The phone integration allows you to make calls in your CRM, log notes, and even recordings of your call. The calendar integration logs your scheduled meetings and of course allows you to create meetings from within the CRM in seconds. Tada!
Without ever leaving the CRM you can send emails, make phone calls, and schedule meetings in a few seconds.
Now that the CRM logs every single communication, wouldn’t it be amazing to track each and every touch point across all platforms chronologically? Yes it would and that’s what timeline is all about.
It brings together all your communications with a contact and puts it in a neat chronology that you can refer back to in order to follow the sales path. This includes all phone calls, emails, reminders, notes, and social media interactions.
Sidekick Overview and Features
This is where smarketing really gets hot. The update to the sales tool that salespeople fell in love with empowers your inbox and your CRM to collect valuable details about your contacts and manage your sales processes even better than before.
Perhaps the most amazing feature of this new update is Insights. It tracks your interactions with contacts whether it’s via email or on the web and automatically collects important details about them.
After that, it lists this information in an awesome interface that gives you quick facts about the company and the contact you’re interested in.
Building on the real-time updates that Signals brought us, Sidekick notifications updates you on when, where, and how prospects are engaging with you. This includes opened emails, web pages visits, and more.
By keeping an eye on these reports, you’ll get a better understanding on how your sales team is interacting with prospects and how their messages are performing. Then you can analyze and optimize to get better results.
Don’t you wish you can just dedicate a certain hour to manage all your outgoing emails then carry on with the rest of your work-day uninterrupted? The Send Later feature helps you do just that.
Straight from Gmail in Google Chrome, you can schedule emails to be sent out on any day, at any time.
You can use this tool to make sure your emails are sent out when they are most likely to be opened and clicked through.
So, there you have it, folks!
These new tools are definitely game changers for sales and marketing teams looking to deepen and strengthen their relationship in order to close more business. However, there is one caveat: the tools, as magical as they seem, are not a bulletproof path to sales and marketing success. It still takes hard work and a commitment in order to make true smarketing happen. Hubspot, just makes it much easier to be productive.