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What's in Your Stack? The 3 Layers of the HubSpot Growth Stack

by Courtney Sembler

Date

August 31, 2017 at 11:00 AM

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During the last seven weeks of this blog series, we've discussed some of the tools and strategies that can help you and your business be successful. 

The HubSpot Growth Stack is made up of three layers: CRM, Sales, and Marketing. And there are some great tools and strategies hidden inside those layers — but how do they work together?

In this week's article, we'll take a look at the essential tools inside each layer of the Growth Stack that are key to making your all-in-one platform work.

The HubSpot Growth Stack 

stack is a set of tools that work together to achieve a specific result. Many teams have an entire stack of tools they use to market, sell, and communicate with their customers. HubSpot's answer to this is called a growth stack.

At INBOUND16, Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah, HubSpot's founders, got up on stage and discussed this idea behind the HubSpot Growth Stack: CRM, sales, and marketing products working together to help your business succeed.

The Growth Stack products help you make sure all your marketing and sales efforts are working together, as an all-in-one platform.

Below is the breakdown of the Growth Stack, where you can see the different tools that are included in each layer. At your company, you may have one layer, or the start of two layers, or even all three, but let's take a look at each one and how the tools build onto one another. 

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The Foundation: Your CRM 

HubSpot CRM is everything you need to organize, track, and nurture your leads and customers. And unlike the other two layers of the Growth Stack, it's totally free. If you haven't signed up for the CRM yet, it's already part of your free HubSpot Academy account— check it out here.

In the Growth Stack, the CRM is the first layer. It's a tool to manage your contacts and deals. You can keep track of contacts and customer interactions, monitor deals at every stage, and make sure everyone on your sales team is on the same page.  

The most important tools inside the HubSpot CRM are those that help you manage your contacts and deals. 

Contacts Management

When you set up the first layer of the Growth Stack, you'll import your contacts. But how can you make it easy to find these contacts on a day-to-day basis?

Let's walk through an example of how to best use the CRM as a contacts management tool inside your Growth Stack. 

It is a typical Wednesday afternoon, and you're preparing for the end of the week. You know that tomorrow you'll need to start following up with leads and scheduling for next week. You want prioritize your outreach and filter your contacts. With the help of custom views inside the HubSpot CRM, you can create views to organize your outreach. 

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By creating these filters, you can manage your contact database for success

Ready to take filtering a step further? Check out this blog post on three CRM views every sales team should use.

Deal Management

The second tool inside of the CRM that helps the Growth Stack work as an all-in-one platform is the ability to manage deals. 

Once you've qualified a sales lead, you'll want to create a deal to indicate and track the revenue opportunity. If this information is not organized, you could be losing revenue for your business. 

As you spend time on Wednesday afternoon adding filters and setting up views, you'll want to switch over to your deal dashboard. Here you can check out the current status of your deals.  

With all your deals in one place, it's easy to measure where you and your team need to spend your time. 

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Essentially, the CRM is about organizing your database to optimize information about your contacts and deals — more productivity for you, and nothing falling between the cracks. This sets the foundation of the Growth Stack. 

 

The Second Layer: Sales 

The second layer of the Growth Stack is HubSpot Sales, which builds off the CRM. 

HubSpot Sales helps you prepare your sales reps. Using the sales tools, they know all the useful information about the leads they're talking with. The two most powerful tools inside HubSpot Sales are tasks and sequences

Let's walk through an example of how these tools aid in our productivity with the Growth Stack.

It's a typical Thursday morning, and you receive a notification email in your inbox that says you've been assigned a new lead. This notification was triggered from marketing to let you know someone is ready to talk to sales. Using the HubSpot CRM and sales tools, you're able to follow up with them in under five minutes. 

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HubSpot Sales helps you and your sales team work seamlessly together to close leads and deals. Here's what Loren Padelford from Shopify said.

"What I looked for is a tool that a salesperson can use for every part of their sales process and their customer engagement. HubSpot is at the core of our sales process. Without it, I don't know how we'd manage sales at Shopify." 

Your growth stack needs to be working to creating revenue for your business, and the tools in it should help you create that bridge from marketing and sales to ROI.  

Want to learn how to use HubSpot Sales? Get started here

 

The Top Layer: Marketing
 
The last layer of the Growth Stack is the marketing tools. Your sales and marketing teams need to work together to create a seamless transition for your leads and for your business. 
 
Marketing is the largest sector of the Growth Stack and includes the most tools. There are three key  tools in this layer of the Growth Stack that can help you be successful. 

Marketing Automation 

The HubSpot workflows tool is automation beyond email, so you can scale your growth and spend less time on repetitive tasks. The ability to automate tasks for you and your team can not only be a time saver but also allow for a better relationship between marketing and sales. 

By implementing marketing automation in your growth stack, you're creating a process that lets your leads find their own path to purchase. Using the lead nurturing tool inside HubSpot, called workflows, you can create different paths for your leads to take to make the right decisions for their businesses at the right time. 

Workflows uses "if/then branching logic" to help you create these different paths for your leads. This allows you to implement lead nurturing that focuses your efforts on engaging with your leads and customers in a way that encourages them to progress toward a specific action. 

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Content Creation and Strategy 
 
When looking at the success of an all in-one-platform, you can't skip over content creation. To drive success for you and your company, you need to be able to create and publish content. 
 
The Growth Stack provides two ways to drive productivity forward with content. 
 
  • Content creation tools 
  • Content strategy tools 

With the content creation tools — landing pages, website pages, and blogs — you can create the educational content your contacts need. And the content strategy tools will help you plan and organize this content. 

The brand new HubSpot content strategy tool helps you discover, validate, and execute on content that generates results. 
 
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The HubSpot content strategy tool is currently in beta and will be released in early September.
 
 
Analytics 

What's the point of pulling all of the Growth Stack elements together if we can't measure the success of our efforts? And how will we improve? Using the Growth Stack, we have the ability to measure our entire funnel in one place, which means we can drive better results. 

The combination of website analytics and reporting features in HubSpot gives you access to all the information about what happens with your leads and customers. 

Below you can see an overview of the website analytics tool, which will show you: 

  • Traffic metrics. Total sessions, % new sessions, and % mobile sessions during your selected time frame. 
  • Sessions. The number of sessions over time, split out by new vs. returning sessions. Note that, in this case, we're talking about new sessions, not new visitors. In other words, what percent of the engagements with your website come from people who've never been there before?
  • Engagement metrics. Your website’s bounce rate, average time on site, and pages per session.

Read more about the web analytics dashboard

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If you want to dig in deeper into conversion events or create a report to send to your team, you can do so using the reports tool. One of the most useful reports is the sources report, which can help you discover where your leads and customers are finding you. 

As Marjorie Munroe, the HubSpot Academy Professor for CRO, says: 

"Analytics allows you to identify what areas of your content strategy are working well and what areas could be further optimized for your visitors, leads, and customers." 

And when it all comes together in the end?

You have a full stack of products to help you build the bridge in connecting marketing and sales with ROI for your business.

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Throughout this series, we'll continue to talk about more products in the Growth Stack and how to use them. Each layer builds on another to come together at the end as a full stack of products that can fuel the success of your business.  

Next on the Contacts: A Growth Stack Story series

Tune in next Thursday for the next episode of Contacts: A Growth Stack Story. I'll be joined by a HubSpot customer success manager to discuss a lead nurturing strategy for your business. You won’t want to miss out.

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Written by Courtney Sembler

Courtney hails from San Francisco, CA and moved to Boston, MA to work for HubSpot in 2015. She is an Inbound Professor on the HubSpot Academy Team dedicated to educating and inspiring people about contact management, lists, email, workflows/marketing automation and lead scoring. She is devoted to education, environmental programs and an avid Sports Fan (Go Niners).

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