Jun 14, 2022 5:03 AM
We are a just laucnhed a B2B SaaS company and are in the process of onboarding the HubSpot Professional suite.
we are looking at best ways to track all the information we would like from an onboarding and customer success perspective - we aren't big enough yet to have a separate ccustomer success platform.
We have 50 companies with 400 total users so far and sell annual subscriptions only. We don't have integrated payments and payments are done offline thorugh invoicing and currently everythign is manual to set up users on our platform
We are currently looking at using a ticket pipeline to onboard customers and setting up a workflow so that closed / won deals automatically set up a ticket with all the info our customer success manager needs to onboard, with a stamped annual renewal date.
Has anyone else has success with this approach or any learnings for using HubSpot as a SaaS company? Currently it seems great for the marketing automation side of things and for raising support tickets but less so as somethign that helps us manage our onboarding and renewals.
Jul 12, 2022 12:28 PM - edited Jul 12, 2022 1:45 PM
Hey - congrats on the growth so far! This is a great question and one that we hear all the time at Arrows. While HubSpot might not be positioned as a common tool for onboarding and customer success but running those workflows in your CRM is great for a few reasons:
Setting up HubSpot pipelines for Onboarding & Renewals
As you mentioned a ticket pipeline is a fantastic way to manage the onboarding process. I Would absolutely recommend this approach vs adding onboarding data in custom properties on a contact or company record because pipeline movements will always be timestamped making reporting much easier and you’ll have a visual way to see the progression of companies through onboarding and quickly identify bottlenecks.
We wrote a pretty complete guide on setting up HubSpot pipelines for onboarding including some common workflows and reporting.
Here’s a example ticket pipeline for onboarding:
Creating a customer-facing plan for successful onboarding & renewals
One thing to think about when it comes to running your process in HubSpot (or really any customer success tool) is that it's internal facing, so as much as you get setup your customer doesn't have visibility.
To improve transparency and help everyone get a better understanding of what needs to happen next we recommend using customer facing action plans attached to each deal or ticket you create.
This way you can collect any information you need that would block getting accounts setup and customers up and running while also laying out the success roadmap that will lead to stress free renewals.
Here's an example of what a customer facing plan might look like, and also how it would show up in a deal or ticket to enrich your data and make it eay to see what's happening.
Besides providing a clear next step for customers you could also use the plan to:
With Arrows this customer facing plan would be attached 1-1 to a deal or ticket and plan data is synced into HubSpot properties allowing you to use it in workflows and reporting.
Automating onboarding workflows
I’d suggest creating a workflow to handle as many steps related to handoffs as possible to ensure they happen repeatably and without things falling through the cracks.
We see a lot of teams create a workflow that triggers when a deal in a specific pipeline moves to closed won. That workflow can then:
2. Reminders and Escalations
Another workflow I really like for managing onboarding is to set thresholds for ticket property values and then send alerts or assign tasks based on them. For example:
If you are using a customer facing plan with due dates, you can sync the due date of the current task from Arrows to HubSpot and then if it is past due kickoff reminders to the customer and/or your team to follow up.
You could also use a similar workflow based on the time since the customer was last contacted or if they are within a certain number of days of the target date and have not completed specific required steps.
Depending on the parameters you could assign to the ticket owner, escalate to additional team members or kickoff a whole new playbook as needed.
3. Renewals and "health scoring"
No matter whether you use a dedicated CS platform or HubSpot to manage your customer onboarding and renewals process, the chanes are at somepoint you'll want to be able to see what customers are doing in your product and how engaged they are to identify churn risks and ensure you have all the information you need for renewal conversations. As mentioned briefly above this is absolutely possible we HubSpot.
I’d suggest putting account level data like product usage from external systems in custom properties on the company record and then using a workflow like the one below to copy it to the appropriate ticket in your onboarding pipeline whenever it gets updated. If the data is user specific you could of course do the same thing with a contact record.
Once you have the data in HubSpot you could use computed properties to create a score for each customer as shown below and then use a workflow to take action based on that score.
The example shows how we pull customer product usage data from our software product into HubSpot company records and then push it into deals (which would work the same way for tickets).
Reporting on onboarding performance
A huge advantage of running onboarding and renewals using HubSpot ticket pipelines is you can drastically simplify the work involved in getting all your data together for reporting.
Here are a few onboarding specific reports I'd suggest setting up:
1. Total tickets/deals in each stage of onboarding
This report is really helpful for quickly identifying bottlenecks and potential problem steps. For example do you have a lot of customers in a stage that requires a file upload? Are there many tasks in one stage? Is the point person for the customer not the right person to complete a task in this stage?
Identifying the bottleneck is the first step in improving the process to remove it.
2. Total tickets/deals in onboarding by rep
Quickly see workloads and assignments to current onboardings/renewals. If you have a known threshold for the number of accounts a rep can handle this can also help predict hiring needs or the need for improved routing.
3. Incomplete tasks by rep
If you are assigning internal tasks for onboarding and renewals - this report provides a centralized place to see things that might be slipping through the cracks and impacting the customer experience.
1. Reporting on onboarding progress vs team activity
HubSpot Custom Reports that combine data from both your team's activity and your customer's behavior during onboarding are a really powerful way to get insight into your customers progress and how effective your process is at making them successful.
This video shows how to setup an onboarding dashboard that also surfaces at risk onboarding's based on a threshold level of progress you set.
2. Segmenting onboarding/renewal performance by team member
I recorded a video here of how I would think about setting this up to show the impact team members have on the velocity and success of customers during onboarding.
In summary - running onboarding and renewals in HubSpot using ticket pipelines is absolutely possible and has a ton of advantages. If you have questions or want to dig into anything here in more detail I'm always happy to chat and we have a ton more free resources for building onboarding programs too if you're curious.
Jun 14, 2022 9:38 PM
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