Anyone in the Promotional Products space want to talk and share ideas?
Thanks for the tag @kvlschaefer😊. Hi @Matt-B and welcome to HubSpot + Community! I think it's great you're asking this question. @jolle has a great detailed response for sure. While I'm not in the promotional products space, I've been using HubSpot a few years (since 2010) and now work for a partner with various clients across business categories. I'm happy to chat - you're welcome to DM me, we can have a "real" chat, or you can ask questions here.
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I've worked with several clients in the promotional products industry, though it was been a couple of years. A lot has changed with HubSpot since then, but I remember the biggest pain point being integration with the order management system for order follow-up and tracking. Some of that may be doable with HubSpot now depending on what platform you use, and HubSpot is still super powerful in a bunch of other areas! Here's some of what I built out.
The pipeline typically looked something like:
Discovery/intro call (if applicable)
Quoting/sourcing/design based on the client's process
Quote delivered (this was usually closed/won if fulfilmment was tracked in another platform)
Delivered (this was usually closed/won if fulfillment was tracked in HubSpot)
The clients usually worked out of the company record but had all applicable contacts associated with the company and the deal. Upsells and repeat purchases were huge, so we were able to include those associated contacts in ongoing marketing (email drips, newsletters, promotional emails). These emails were typically built manually and directed users to online stores or catalogs to find other items that interested them. We were able to capture the product area/type of interest on the contact record and built corresponding email drips where we manually set "products that may interest you" and such. There could be a better way to automatically populate products (maybe using HubSpot Products) though! At the time, HubSpot Products were still pretty new and the clients tended to have huge catalogs, so I didn't touch a whole lot there. I bet there are more applications for Products, Quotes, and Payments today though!
In terms of automation, we found a lot of success with the following:
Quote follow-up automation. We used both marketing workflows and sales sequences (depending on the HubSpot subscription) to automate emails for deals that got stuck in the "Quoted" stage. We tended to see drop-off there if the prospect was shopping around or saw a big price tag (I'm sure that's gotten more challenging with the shortages over the last couple of years), but regular check-ins from their rep were helpful in opening up conversations around alternative products or configurations. It's not too uncommon for deals to sit in "Quoted" without follow-up (even if reminder tasks are created), so some light automation here went a long way.
Pipeline re-engagement campaigns. While different companies and reps handle this differently, we had ongoing nurturing campaigns in place for both closed/won and closed/lost contacts. These were high-level, evergreen email campaigns that kept the client top-of-mind alongside regular monthly/bi-monthly recurring emails. The automated emails would look like they were coming from the respective rep (and sometimes we'd set tasks to send follow-up emails to closed/won customers instead of sending automated emails). It's way easier to sell to prospects/customers who have been qualified already than net new prospects who are starting at square one!
Trade show campaigns. We saw a ton of success with these in two parts: pre-show nurturing and post-show follow-up. We were usually able to acquire attendee lists for the event and send out a pre-show email nurturing drip that pushed the attendees to book a meeting with the client. We would also share booth details and info around any events that we were hosting. Even if someone didn't book a meeting with us, they still had exposure to the brand name and could recognize our booth if they were walking by. We'd start sending emails a few weeks before the event and would usually send a welcome email on the first day of the show and a "last chance" email toward the end of the show. Afterwards, we had three outcome-specific email drips for prospects who booked meetings:
Attendees — thanks for meeting with us! Here are the next steps
Cancelations — sorry we missed you! Here are other opportunities to connect
No-shows — we saved a spot for you and are bummed that we missed you. Here are moreopportunities to connect
We'd have these emails start sending the day after the show (with the attendee emails starting the night of the meeting). All of this relied on reps getting the right outcome data into HubSpot (along with creating any contacts that they met at the show), but we typically saw healthy responses! We were also able to track the shows where we saw those contacts (and could set the lead source appropriately if that was our first interactoin) and add to our list of engaged contacts.
I know that was a bit all over the place, but hopefully it's helpful! Let me know if you have any questions or want to discuss anything further!