HubSpot recently released free versions of all of their tools, cleverly bundled into 1 expandable app. This free version mirrors their full software in a number of ways and will likely see considerable use in 2017 because of these 3 key features:
- Contacts, with Lead Flows. Bridging the gap between marketing and sales in a way that many other tools don’t is a staple of HubSpot. By adding in the contacts you have and setting up lead flows to nuture them, you can market directly to warmer leads and have the right sales information ready when they convert to leads.
- Prospects (or Visits) are huge. Pulling from a few sources, the Marketing plugin can identify where leads are visiting from. With this valuable insight you can target changes and content. Much of the data could be inaccurate but there is just enough to try A/B testing and seeing how you an affect lead behavior until leads are confirmed as contacts.
- Training, training, training. The tutorials and certifications available in the Free HubSpot app provide excellent insight into the methodoly of Inbounding. Follow this training and you’ll get the most out of any tool, HubSpot or otherwise, you put in your marketing pipeline. It may not get you out of the “required on boarding” but there is a ton to learn here.
The key here is to get started with Contacts by adding as many as you need, focusing on leads to start. (There’s no limit on contacts for the free version, only a limit on features.) If you don’t have leads to start with, set up a lead flow on your most trafficked content to start bringing in contacts. Contacts coupled with Prospects provide a comprehensive view of your audience.
HubSpot Free includes sales as well so you can create and track prospective deals but there are a few tools you can add to keep the focus on building your audience.
To keep building though, there are a few next pieces you’ll need to get the most out of Contacts and Lead Flows for them, additional analytics are needed (both between and on-page.)
- Google Analytics WITH proper goal setup. Google Analytics is a staple, of course, but so often it's installed and only examined in a cursory fashion. Goals are an absolute must to setup.
- HotJar builds on GA with in-page analytics. Even the free version, which only works on one page, can provide valuable insight into how users move through your homepage.
- HootSuite, with everything else sorted, start spreading the word. Before starting a full social media campaign you should have all of the basics, and even the on-page analytics, ready and their setup tested. Social media brings in audience which needs to know how to interact with your site and content.
Hubspot Free is an excellent resource and whether setting it up for your main site or a side project, there are any number of resources it offers but make sure you get Contacts, and their Lead Flows, set up and dive into your Prospects often (also know as Visits, there is some naming oddness) and last do the Training!