Today, I’m happy to announce the introduction of our newest product: Customer Hub.
Ten years ago, HubSpot’s primary focus was helping companies grow by creating marketing people could love. When you look at what drives growth, however, it turns out the thing people love most today is actually other people. Or more precisely, they love (and are influenced by) hearing from other successful customers. So, if delighted, successful customers are good for business, how do you create more of them?
We all love and value our customers, but the fact is, more often than not, the customer service playbook we use is built for the needs of the company -- not the customer. It's driven by tickets, cases, and queues -- by ticket deflection, ticket reduction and lots of processes. It can provide scale for big teams, but it's not designed to help your customer be successful.
Today’s customers expect more. HubSpot’s Customer Hub will be our answer to helping create a modern customer playbook.
We’ll be releasing features throughout the coming year, but I wanted to take a moment and detail our vision for what Customer Hub will grow to become.
I’m personally excited about this step forward because, in many ways, it completes the story we started years ago when we realized that businesses that truly Solve For The Customer -- in marketing, in sales, and throughout the complete customer experience -- will always earn a competitive advantage.
From Start to Finish
For over a decade, we’ve been implementing the inbound methodology for marketing and sales. Inbound is based on the premise that, by providing value from the very beginning of and throughout the buyer's journey, a company creates opportunities to win a customer’s business. That methodology is captured in a simple set of phases -- attract, convert, close, and delight.
It’s no secret that we started on the left-hand side of that spectrum. But all the while, we’ve had our eyes on the full breadth. HubSpot’s Customer Hub will help companies excel at the "delight" portion of the journey. It's the logical, you might say inevitable continuation of the inbound vision.
From Engagement to Experience
HubSpot’s marketing and sales products were conceived and designed with an understanding that the way customers discover, research and buy products has changed radically since the early 2000s. For small- and medium-sized businesses in 2006, the year HubSpot started, the key to winning was clear -- create content that engages prospects. HubSpot built the system to help write content and pull visitors and leads in through search and social media, and to measure and optimize it. And ten years ago, that allowed small and medium businesses to compete on an equal footing with big players.
Today, engagement alone is no longer enough. Earning a customer’s business is a broad discipline: from initial interest to the sale, and through ongoing use of the product or service. For SMBs in 2017, the key to winning is not just inbound engagement, but an end-to-end inbound experience.
It's with this mindset we conceived and designed Customer Hub. Customers expect their vendors and suppliers to know everything about them -- what they’ve bought, who they’ve talked to in the past, what sort of problems or questions they’ve had, and how they are using the product or service.
By getting the end-to-end inbound experience right, small- and medium-sized businesses have a new engine for growth. The most successful businesses of tomorrow will have top-tier sales and marketing teams, but they’ll excel at making their customers successful and turning them into vocal advocates who renew more, buy more, and refer their friends and colleagues.
From Automation to Alignment
HubSpot is often categorized as marketing and sales automation.
Yet, one of the most rewarding things we hear from our customers is how our products have helped them with their marketing and sales alignment. When sales and marketing teams aren't aligned, it's amazing how much energy is expended that doesn't create value for the customer or for the company. Marketing generates leads that aren't useful for sales, and friction grows as each group wonders why the other is so busy -- and yet, together they aren't achieving company goals. By getting talented sales and marketing teams that work hard to also work in the same direction, some of our customers have experienced breathtaking growth. Marketing Hub and Customer Hub work together to help align those vectors.
Now, consider the power of also aligning customer teams alongside sales and marketing teams. With Customer Hub, all communications with a customer -- from email, chat, Facebook, phone -- will be collected in one place. This way, not only will the left hand know what the right hand is doing, they can even exchange a high five at the appropriate time.
The result is a customer experience that doesn’t suffer from gaps and awkward handoffs from one phase of the relationship to the next. Weave into that experience the opportunity to solicit feedback, and the support organization will have alignment with product and service development and delivery, and with sales and marketing to accelerate the renewal and upgrade cycle.
Customer Hub is one addition to the HubSpot product line, but we hope it will be a multiplier for businesses biggest growth engine: successful customers.
For me, Customer Hub completes one journey and is the beginning of another one.
I find that exciting. I hope you do too.