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HubSpot for Startups- Gettin Buzzd Podcast Season 3 Episode 2

HubSpot for Startups: Gettin' Buzz'd Podcast Season 3 Episode 2

We've got another episode of the Gettin' Buzz'd Podcast for your listening enjoyment (and marketing education)! On this episode, Dustin and Michael are talking about the HubSpot for Startups program. Take a listen in the video below or keep scrolling to find the complete transcript. 

Dustin

Hey everybody! Welcome back to another episode of Gettin' Buzz'd. I'm Dustin Brackett, CEO and Founder of HIVE Digital Strategy and with me, as always, is Michael Thebeau, our Business Development Manager. Got the finger guns back. I love it.

Michael

It feels rusty. I haven't been doing them in a while, but I guess it's like riding a bike. They just always come with me.

Dustin

Well, you got so upset last time when I didn't, you know. I did the introduction and you missed your opportunity.

Michael

I think you were just getting sick of me. But yeah, I mean, we're back. You introduced me. It's just us two. So it would have been super rude if you had not introduced me this time.

Dustin

Fair, fair, but I did. So all is right with the world.

Michael

All is right, and the the finger guns are back.

Dustin

And so today we're actually going to be talking about a really cool program, HubSpot for Startups. It's a way that startup businesses can really kind of supercharge their growth and scale without huge software expenses.

But before we get into that, this is the Gettin' Buzz'd Podcast. So we're getting a different kind of buzz today. We have done a lot of day drinking during quarantine, but we're coffee-ing today. So one of my hobbies during quarantine has been figuring out how to make my own cold brew coffee. I don't really like hot coffee that much. If that's all we got, I'll drink that, but I'm very much an iced coffee guy. And for a long period of time, the Starbucks by my house was closed. It was just a whole rough period of my life. And so I started making my own cold brew at home and just trying to find different beans that I like and all of that. And so today I am doing Boyer's Colorado Cafe blend. So got that going on.

Michael

One, I think it's weird that you say you don't like hot coffee, because when we were in the office, I'd watch you drink five to six hot coffee cups every single day.

Dustin

It's not that I don't like hot coffee!

Michael

For somebody who, you know, is really like choking it down. I don't know if you can say that, but...

Dustin

If given the choice, I'm always choosing iced coffee.

Michael

Yeah, well, fair. I do as well. Even if it's dead of winter and we are waking up to a blizzard or something. However, I'm what some people would call like a lazy coffee drinker. So I don't deal with the iced coffee. I just go with the nice hot cup. But I'm also drinking Boyer's because I'm supporting the local businesses. And as you know, Boyer's used to be right next to our old office. We'd been over there a couple of times, and the factory or the plant kind of burned down about a year ago, right when COVID started. So it's been a tough year for them. If you can buy Boyer's, great to support them. But, yeah, we're both drinking Boyer's today.

Dustin

Yeah, I saw that. I think they're doing like — they're rebuilding and all of that. But I think they're doing coffee trucks out in front of the building now. So really cool. I mean, they've been a Denver and Colorado kind of staple forever.

Michael

Yeah. And it's good coffee, but yeah. Glad to see they bounced back and are doing something.

Dustin

Right. Well, so kind of diving into the topic today. We're talking about startups and how the HubSpot for Startups Program works. How you can kind of get a massive discount on your your stack, who's eligible, things like that.

And, you know, I think we're kind of in this time of entrepreneurship. Right, it's so easy to start a business and so many people are kind of taking it upon themselves to kind of build that American dream themselves. Whatever your passions are, there's probably a business you can start. And you know that the failure percentages of new startups and businesses and things like that are still like super staggering and, you know, it's crazy the percentages, but that I don't think that's stopping anyone. Right? That's not that's not scaring anyone off from starting a business.

And so, like I said, it's never been easier to start a business. But growing a business is so hard. Getting past that one year mark, three year mark, five year mark, ten year mark is so difficult. And how do you actually develop a business that scales and becomes profitable? It's a major challenge. And there are a ton of accelerators and incubators and things that that are really kind of designed to help take a startup from 'Oh, I have this idea' to a viable business to successful business.

Michael

Right.

Dustin

But I think one of the main things that really hinders startups is typically capital. Right? Either you get funded or you don't. Or you kind of bootstrap and you make it work however you can. And any time you're going through that process, spending money on a software can be really scary. Either you get locked into a long term contract or it's just more than you can really stomach spending. Every dollar for a startup is important.

And so HubSpot took it upon themselves to say, 'OK, we know we have this reputation of being not the cheapest software', right? Their software can be several thousand dollars a month depending on what you need and when you first started. For a startup, that just doesn't make sense, even if you need those tools. If that's the price tag, you're going to end up trying to cobble together some sort of FrankenStack, right? We have a CRM over here and we do email over here and we have our blog over here and our website over here. And it's just a rough situation to try to manage all of it and also figure out what's working right?

Michael

Yeah

Dustin

If you're not familiar with HubSpot, HubSpot is the world's leading marketing automation software. But they're way more than that. They started with their CRM, then moved to their marketing hub. And that's where you get things like blogging and social and email and all of these things — even marketing automation pieces. And then they've come out with sales tools and service tools and even their CMS where you can build your full website. If you're not familiar with a CMS, WordPress or Squarespace those are different CMS tools.

And one of the biggest benefits of it is it's all under one umbrella, right? You have a single login and you can manage everything — everything that you need. But like I mentioned, it typically ends up being really expensive.

Diving into the tools a little more, I mentioned there's the the CRM and Marketing and Sales and Service and CMS. There's a lot that you can do in there. And not everyone's going to need everything. But within those tools, within those Hubs, there are specific things that can really help a business grow.

And everyone's going to be a little different. Michael, I know you are really ingrained in the Sales tools, and you use Sales probably more than most people. What are some of those tools within Sales Hub that you kind of lean on or couldn't live without?

Michael

Yeah, well. I mean, I think you made a great point that now is the easiest time to start a business. Especially as we're still in COVID and this pandemic. We've been in it for a year. People may have left a job or been laid off, had a big severance, and now they've got this money and it's like, 'OK, I've got this passion project or a hobby that I've always wanted to turn into a business' or whatever it might be.

So it's great to start the business, but how you grow it or that exponential growth that you anticipate. Do you have the right tools and software in place to grow efficiently and effectively and not get overwhelmed. Which can collapse a great business. So using that sales tool properly can really help to guide that growth, organize that growth, so that stuff doesn't fall through the cracks.

Like you said, having HubSpot all under one umbrella, that's fantastic. I think starting with the sales tool, one of the big features that I love is their pipeline and the organization around it. I think from the very beginning you need a CRM. It's not 10 or 15 years ago where you can just keep your customers or whatever it might be, whether you're selling little trinkets, whether you're selling a software — you need to be able to organize and actually have a software system that is keeping track of these people versus just manual input. Because that manual input is a lot of time and effort that's not working as efficiently as it should be. So it's a little bit different.

But the CRM is number one. You've got to have that. But then you kind of take that to the sales side. Having that deal pipeline. That piece is huge — being able to track how people are moving throughout the pipeline, how efficient your sales process is. And then as you grow into the professional and enterprise level of HubSpot sales, you get some of that deal pipeline automation where when I move them here, it kicks off this email or it lets my account manager or success team or whatever that team for you guys looks like, it lets them know that they need to follow up. They need to send this email or it automatically sends. Having that pipeline automation. That's huge. It's efficient. Again, it allows you to make sure that you're not getting overwhelmed and that things aren't falling through the cracks.

Dustin

Yeah, absolutely. When you were talking about like 10 or 15 years ago, I had this picture of someone going through a Rolodex. Do you remember those? Or just using a spread sheet, right? I think that's where most startups start. I have to keep track of this. I know how to use excel or google sheets — I am just going to put it in there.

And I think what's important to note is that anything within HubSpot the foundation is the CRM. Everything is built on top of that. So whether you have just Sales or just Service or just the CMS, whatever, you have the CRM as well. And so starting there and making that works for you is super important.

And that is another great thing about HubSpot is it's not built for an industry. There are a bunch of those industry specific — oh, this is just for real estate, we have the CRM for real estate. But HubSpot can be the CRM for whatever your industry is. You can create the custom properties, you can create all those different fields. You can structure your CRM however you need it to work, but it definitely has to start there.

You've got to figure out what are those important pieces that you need to know about a customer or company and kind of go from there. In the pipeline it is something that we've seen so much value from ourselves, but also for our clients. Just understanding where your sales are in your pipeline, who's working on what, what the next step is, how likely are they to close all of those things are really vital to a scaling business or a brand new business.

Michael

Right, and I mean, the deal pipeline is just going to make life easier for you. Whether you're nurturing these prospects or their about to close. Rather than Excel spreadsheet that just says Customer A versus Customer B and you don't know where they're at. It helps lay things out for you, helps you stay organized. So it's just so integral as you grow the business and start the business.

And one thing you had mentioned is HubSpot is known as an expensive product, an expensive software. Because it's an industry leader and because it is so great and it's constantly coming out with new features and tools and stuff like that. That's super innovative. But the CRM is free.

So, you know, if you're sitting here thinking, 'OK, I can't buy anything else. I'm just going to use an Excel spreadsheet.' Don't. Because there's one free feature — it's the CRM and that can be the launch pad to a ton of growth. So if you are that entrepreneur who doesn't have the funding or isn't in these programs, but you're thinking, OK, I can't even chew off one hundred dollars on software or anything like that, don't worry about it, because the CRM is free. And that has to be where — even if you didn't choose HubSpot — that has to be where you start to grow your business because it's going to be so much more efficient than an excel spreadsheet that was great 15 years ago. Or the Rolodex, which was my favorite play tool when I would show up at my dad's office and I would just sit there and watch business cards turn for 30 minutes.

Dustin

Right. Well, I think that it's also important to note that it's not some scaled-back free version. There's not a free version of the HubSpot CRM and then a paid version. That's not how it works. The CRM is fully functional. It's not like, oh, you get 100 contacts in here, you only get the properties. You get the full CRM for free and it's always free. What you end up paying for is those additional Hubs — the Marketing, the Sales, the Service, the CMS.

Michael

Yeah.

Dustin

And I think there are so many cool tools within it, within the whole stack. Ticket pipelines, deal pipelines, like you mentioned, automation from a marketing and sales perspective. They're called workflows on the marketing side where you can automate tasks internally and externally. So somebody downloads a piece of content from you, and you can follow up with email marketing to them about that. You can change properties internally. You can move a deal internally. All of those things. Basically any task that you have to do manually, you can automate. And then on the sales side, they're called sequences and it is automated, but it is a one-to-one automation. Right? So it's Michael sending to Dustin, but it's a sequence of automated messages and tasks.

I think that that's just a huge piece that as you start to grow the business. You can't manually do everything all the time and so the more automation that you can set, the easier you're going to make it on yourself to scale and grow.

Michael

Yeah, I mean, sequences is probably the tool that I use the most, especially in my outreach. Can you hear me OK?

Dustin

Your audio just disconnected from your mouth, but we're getting you.

Michael

Am I still here? Are we still podcasting? Is the podcast picking up what I'm putting down?

Dustin

I think it is. It's just delayed.

Michael

OK, well, we'll see how it works out.

I think Sequences is such a huge tool for me. Especially HIVE, we're not this giant agency — two hundred people running around like it's Wall Street or something like that. The automation piece takes so much off of my plate. I have to find the right person to reach out to, but then by being able to plug them into sequences and it tells me, 'hey, you need to call this person at this time' or we're sending out these automated emails which you've crafted and we can add these personalization tokens. So it says, hey, Dustin, here's your company name, this is why it's important for us to talk. Being able to add all those pieces in after I have just found the right person allows me to free up my schedule to do all the other things that I need to do as one of the few people that's focused on sales here at HIVE. So it really clears things up for me, gives me a ton of freedom, especially when we don't have that 30-person sales force.

Dustin

For sure. You know, I think one of the best things that any startup or any business can do for themselves is to automate tasks that can be automated. I remember starting HIVE and wanting to manually touch everything. Right? I wanted to have a hand in every single thing that we did. I wanted to double, triple, quadruple check to make sure that everything was perfect. But the sooner you get over that and realize that you don't have to touch everything. Let things run on on their own. The better off you're going to be.

And we are talking about the HubSpot for startup program and we've teased on there's discounts and, you know, all of these things. So let's talk about what does the actual program entail? Who's eligible, how much does the cost? Things like that.

For eligibility, really, you just have to check a few different boxes. One, you can't already have HubSpot. It's not a retroactive thing, like, oh yeah now we qualify now I want that discount. That's not a thing, unfortunately. And then if you're either a current member or an alumni of any of HubSpot incubator, accelerator, or venture capital partners so they have like a list of like 2600+ partners, who qualify for that.

So if you're a member or have been a member in the past of any of them, you could qualify. And I'll put a link below the video so you can check it out and see — am I associated with any of these? And you may be and not realize that because the list is so big.

And then you've raised no more than a series A round. So, you know, your funding isn't through the roof. HubSpot probably doesn't love the idea of giving super discounted software to a billion dollar company.

Michael

Makes sense.

Dustin

And really, that's it. That's really all you need to qualify for the program.

  • You don't already have HubSpot
  • You're a current or past member of one of their partner programs
  • You haven't raised more than a series A

Pretty straightforward.

Michael

Cut and dry.

Dustin

Yeah, and then on the discount level: So first the discount can be on any HubSpot software. It can be any stack, whatever tools you need. If you do qualify for the program, we always recommend being forward looking. Paying a little bit more now is going to save you a lot more later. And so even if you are a brand new startup, it's just you. You qualify for this program, though. And maybe you're thinking, oh, I only need Marketing Pro. Thinking about the future a little bit and saying, hey, but those enterprise tools are really cool or an enterprise stack or a full professional growth suite. Doing that now, you're going to get that discount as opposed to adding them on later.

Michael

Yeah, and I think if I can cut in there, I think that's super important. As you mentioned earlier, every entrepreneur, everybody who's starting a new business, you really do take count of where each and every single dollar is going. But hopefully you've got a realistic forecast. Everybody wants to see their baby grow. Everybody thinks their baby is the best. Everybody thinks their business is the best. But take it realistically.

If you think within the next twenty four months or something like that, that you're going to grow and be doing 10x the business that you're doing within the first six months, you need to be getting that Marketing Pro or Enterprise level, that Sales Pro or Enterprise level. Because your business is going to grow that fast and you're never going to be offered these kinds of discounts again. So once you upgrade, you're going to lose that once you add a new Hub, you're going to lose that discount. And so if you can bite it off and bite the bullet for the first twelve months, if you know that you're going to be growing that fast or really have that kind of faith, it really does lend well for you to look at some of those bigger packages, even if you don't need them today.

Dustin

Right. Well I think even to your point, thinking about how you service your customers, as well. What you're doing today is probably not the scalable solution. How do you manage your client interactions or customer interactions? Thinking about what does that look like in a year or two years? Because it may be something that you've got to even get into some automation there and you're going to need some tools around actually servicing your customers.

You mentioned bite the bullet and maybe pay a little more now to save more later.

Michael

Yeah, save a ton. 

Dustin

Yeah. Honestly, the best part about this is that bullet is not really that big, right? You got to bite the bullet but it's not that big a bullet to bite. That was a lot of B's.

So there are two stages based on funding for your discount. The first one is for seed-stage startups. So you've raised under two million in funding. And every time I see this number, I want to fall out of my chair. So if you're a seed stage startup and you've raised under two million, you can get your HubSpot stack at up to 90 percent off.

Michael

Insane.

Dustin

It's just crazy. And I mean, you think about if you wanted that professional growth suite that's going to typically cost you, I don't know, twelve hundred dollars, something around that area. You're really looking at under 200 that you're going to spend. It's kind of crazy to think about. And then discounts do taper off in subsequent years, but you still have significant discounts. The lowest it ever gets to is twenty five percent off for the lifetime that you're with HubSpot. It's pretty significant.

And then so if you are a larger startup and so a Series A startup that you've raised over two million, including your Series A, you're eligible for up to 50 percent off.

Michael

So, still crazy.

Dustin

Yeah. If you've raised your Series A, you've been funded. You've raised significant money for your business and you're still going to get 50 percent off of your HubSpot stack. So it's a real game changer for startups. And it's a program that I don't think enough people know about. Thinking about if you've just started your business, you know, you're not funded, you've raised under two million, getting 90 percent off of your HubSpot is a crazy good deal. And probably reduces headaches, significantly reduces the amount of time that you have to put into your sales, marketing, and service processes. That can include your website, building out the website on the HubSpot CMS. There's so much that you can do there and doing it at 90 percent off is just amazing.

Michael

Yeah, I mean, it's almost unbeatable in this industry.

Dustin

Yeah, and the way that you get this is there is simple form that you have to fill out an application for it. They obviously vet this. You know, you are are part of or were part of one of those member programs, that you're not past your Series A, and that you don't currently have a HubSpot stack. Then you get approved for it and it's cut and dry. It's not 'Oh, HubSpot can negotiate with me and say, okay, you fit those qualifications, but not to this level.' There's no gray area. It's hey, you're a startup at your seed stage. You've raised under two million. You don't have HubSpot, you're a partner or you've been part of one of these partner programs. Here is your 90 percent off. What do you want? And that's what's so great about it.

Michael

Yeah, like you said, I mean, it's so cut and dry that it's easy to just say hey, I might as well fill out this form. I know I have these qualifications. You'll figure out quickly if you're eligible for it. And if you are, like we said, it's pretty much unbeatable.

Dustin

Yeah. Well I think that we touched on some of our favorite tools within HubSpot. But HubSpot is such a huge tool that I don't know how long this podcast episode would be if we actually went into all of them. And it can be a little overwhelming. We get that question all the time of: What does HubSpot do? And it's such a loaded question and there's so many different angles to it that it can be a little confusing. And so if you do have questions on HubSpot, want to see how it works, you know we can run a free demo for you, show you what the tools look like. Our entire team is in there every single day in all of the tools. So if you have questions, reach out to us. We're always here to answer those or run a demo. Even to help you figure out if you do qualify for these programs because the more startups we can get great tools to for these discounted prices than the more are going to succeed. If we can make any sort of dent in that churn rate of startups, I think that's just great for the world.

Michael

Right, no, I agree. And just to echo that point, if you have questions about HubSpot or want to see a demo sometimes talking to a smaller company than HubSpot, who's this multimillion, you know, hundreds, if not thousands of employees? They're great. And I love the team at HubSpot. But if you want to talk to people who have been there — our company is seven years old, started as a one man shop seven years ago and has seen a lot of growth because of HubSpot. We can speak directly to that. So we'd love to connect, help however we can, because we know what it's like to be smaller and see that growth over the last couple of years.

Dustin

Right. Well we added HubSpot to our own agency, you know, our own company when we were less than a year old. So we kind of went through that. And I mean, if HubSpot looked in 2015 like it does today we would have been in a better situation. But, you know, there are a ton of new tools and a lot more benefits to the software than there was even six years ago.

Michael

Right. But I mean, I still think it's one of if not the most important software that we use. Because like you said, it houses so much underneath one umbrella that it has been such an important tool for our growth and for our agency.

Dustin

Absolutely. Well, great, if you do have questions on the program, on HubSpot tools, on a demo, on anything like that, please feel free to reach out to us. I'll include our contact information below. It'll go directly to us. The HubSpot for Startups Program is something that more people need to know about. Yeah, just as simple as that.

Michael

Right, and it's like you mentioned, super easy to fill out the form, but happy to help however we can.

Dustin

So the last piece of our podcast is always how's the buzz. We got a little caffeine buzz going today. I've been testing a bunch of different beans because like I said, you know, making my own cold brew has become this covid project. I've tried a bunch of different ones and some I like, some I don't like. But actually, this Colorado cafe from Bowyer's is one of my favorites.  It's super smooth. I don't even put anything in it. It's just coffee and ice. And it's never overpowering or super bitter or anything like that. I'm team Boyer's.

Michael

Yeah. Well, like I said, I mean, typically when we're doing getting buzzed, I like to try something new. But I've tried all the coffee from the grocery store. Boyer's is who I'm loyal to. So it's nothing new to me, but I love it.

Dustin

Right. I don't know if they've got any sort of GoFundMe or anything like that. Like you mentioned, their plant and cafe and all of that actually burned down. Super sad, probably a little over a year ago. But if we find any of that information, I'll put that in there as well. I think they're nationally distributed. So, you know, pick up some Boyer's help support really great local (I mean, local, to Denver) coffee company. They roast their own beans and everything,

Michael

Yeah, yeah, it's great.

Dustin

Thank you everyone for tuning in. We'll have another episode next month. If you have any questions, reach out. And even if you want to hear us talk about a specific topic, always interested in hearing that as well. See you next time!

Michael

See you guys.

Dustin

Cheers.

That's a wrap! Check in next month for Episode 3 or check out some of our past episodes covering a wide array of topics around marketing, sales, and local drinks! 

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