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How HubSpot Built Its Channel Sales Organization

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Discover the 7 steps that HubSpot used to create its partner program.

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How HubSpot Built Its Channel Sales Organization

  1. How HubSpot Built Its Channel Sales Organization
  2. This is Brian Halligan.
  3. This is Brian Halligan. He’s the CEO of
  4. He likes to hire smart people with good ideas.
  5. He likes to hire smart people with good ideas. If someone has an idea that falls outside of their normal job duties
  6. He likes to hire smart people with good ideas. If someone has an idea that falls outside of their normal job duties that’s awesome.
  7. If you can prove that your pet project can work
  8. If you can prove that your pet project can work You get Halligan’s blessing to work on it full time.
  9. This is Pete Caputa.
  10. This is Pete Caputa. He started at HubSpot as an inbound marketing specialist.
  11. This is Pete Caputa. He started at HubSpot as an inbound marketing specialist. And he had an idea.
  12. Channel Sales.
  13. Channel Sales. He was told it couldn’t be done
  14. Channel Sales. He was told it couldn’t be done But he was determined.
  15. Fast forward to today.
  16. Fast forward to today. Channel sales has generated 40% of HubSpot’s customers as of June 2014.
  17. Long story short: Pete succeeded.
  18. Long story short: Pete succeeded. He’s now VP of Sales.
  19. Long story short: Pete succeeded. He’s now VP of Sales. But let’s make a long story long.
  20. Long story short: Pete succeeded. He’s now VP of Sales. But let’s make a long story long. How did he do it?
  21. Pete recently shared his process with OpenView Labs.
  22. Pete recently shared his process with OpenView Labs. Here are the 7 steps that built HubSpot’s channel sales program.
  23. 1 Don’t pitch agencies. Attract them using inbound marketing.
  24. Free webinars targeted specifically to marketing agencies were used to attract potential partners.
  25. Free webinars targeted specifically to marketing agencies were used to attract potential partners. The interest poured in.
  26. Free webinars targeted specifically to marketing agencies were used to attract potential partners. The interest poured in. The team never had to contact an agency that hadn’t contacted them first.
  27. Free webinars targeted specifically to marketing agencies were used to attract potential partners. The interest poured in. The team never had to contact an agency that hadn’t contacted them first. (Inbound marketing FTW)
  28. 2 Help your partners first. Then help their clients.
  29. At first, reseller leads were put into a lead queue, and called by the next rep in the rotation.
  30. At first, reseller leads were put into a lead queue, and called by the next rep in the rotation. That didn’t work so well.
  31. At first, reseller leads were put into a lead queue, and called by the next rep in the rotation. That didn’t work so well. Sales reps spent a lot of time talking to marketing consultants who couldn’t buy the software.
  32. At first, reseller leads were put into a lead queue, and called by the next rep in the rotation. That didn’t work so well. Sales reps spent a lot of time talking to marketing consultants who couldn’t buy the software. They had too many problems to deal with.
  33. So the channel team changed the message.
  34. So the channel team changed the message. “How can we help you solve your problems before we move on to your clients’?”
  35. So the channel team changed the message. “How can we help you solve your problems before we move on to your clients’?” This resonated with agencies.
  36. 3 Sell a platform.
  37. Over the years, HubSpot got bigger.
  38. Over the years, HubSpot got bigger. The software’s functionality deepened.
  39. Over the years, HubSpot got bigger. The software’s functionality deepened. And broadened.
  40. Over the years, HubSpot got bigger. The software’s functionality deepened. And broadened. This was good for partners, as they could provide more bang for their clients on the same buck.
  41. Over the years, HubSpot got bigger. The software’s functionality deepened. And broadened. They were happy with the all in one platform. This was good for partners, as they could provide more bang for their clients on the same buck.
  42. 4 Don’t make becoming a partner expensive.
  43. Becoming a partner at many organizations isn’t necessarily hard.
  44. Becoming a partner at many organizations isn’t necessarily hard. (But it does require one little thing).
  45. Becoming a partner at many organizations isn’t necessarily hard. (But it does require one little thing).
  46. But HubSpot took a different tack.
  47. But HubSpot took a different tack. No additional costs outside of those paid by a traditional customer. No limit on support calls.
  48. But HubSpot took a different tack. No additional costs outside of those paid by a traditional customer. No limit on support calls. This meant even small agencies could become partners.
  49. And HubSpot helped them scale.
  50. 5 Prove it out.
  51. It might be profitable to bring on one partner.
  52. But what about a few more?
  53. And some more after that?
  54. And then… well, you get the picture.
  55. Crunch the numbers and make sure the economics work at scale.
  56. Crunch the numbers and make sure the economics work at scale. (Otherwise you might be in a crunch).
  57. Crunch the numbers and make sure the economics work at scale. (Otherwise you might be in a crunch). It took some time, but we were able to prove the model out.
  58. 6 Create a marketplace.
  59. Reselling HubSpot didn’t just help partners.
  60. Reselling HubSpot didn’t just help partners. The team realized channel sales could also benefit direct customers.
  61. HubSpot sells software as a service, not services.
  62. HubSpot sells software as a service, not services. HubSpot partners sell services.
  63. So HubSpot customers who’d like marketing services…
  64. So HubSpot customers who’d like marketing services… Meet HubSpot partners.
  65. So HubSpot customers who’d like marketing services… Meet HubSpot partners. We’ll hook you up via the HubSpot Service Marketplace.
  66. 7 Reward partners for their clients’ success.
  67. Partners do well when their clients do well.
  68. Partners do well when their clients do well. So the team decided to reward partners based on client success.
  69. Rewards include:
  70. Rewards include: Invitations to events
  71. Rewards include: Invitations to events Tier program
  72. Rewards include: Invitations to events Tier program Additional support
  73. And there you have it.
  74. And there you have it. What was once an experiment
  75. Is now an integral part of our business
  76. Want to get inspired by more sales success stories?
  77. Want to get inspired by more sales success stories? Subscribe to HubSpot’s Sales blog.
  78. Want to get inspired by more sales success stories? Subscribe to HubSpot’s Sales blog. & stay up on the agency world at The Agency Post.
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Discover the 7 steps that HubSpot used to create its partner program.

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