What are best practices for managing B2B contacts, companies and deals in HubSpot?

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Occasional Contributor | Gold Partner

For a b2b company, what are the best practices for managing the marketing / sales process?

 

  • When do you manage contacts?
  • When do you manage companies?
  • When do you manage deals?

 

Of course, it's always gonna be different at each company and for each agency...

 

but what are some good Do's and Dont's for using HubSpot CRM?

9 Replies
Community Manager

Hi @diller, great question! Because all Contact and Company activities appear on the Deal's timeline (similarly to Contacts activity appearing in Companies timelines and vice versa), all three can quite easily be used in tandem. That being said, Deals are best suited to identify, track and record the experiences your contacts and companies went through before becoming customers. They are most widely used to track Sales activities through the pipeline. You can learn more about creating and managing deals in the CRM in this article

 

The decision to gear your activity in the CRM towards a contact or a company should be done on an individual basis, since as you mentioned, every company's Sales process is different. However, one thing to keep in mind is that emails can only be sent in the CRM through a contact record (and those emails will subsequently appear in associated Deals' and Companies' timelines), so if you are targeting a company through one main point of contact, you may choose to add the majority of your activities directly through that contact record.

 

Ultimately, the short answer to your question is: it depends, but whatever the choice you make, most timeline events will appear in all associated objects' timelines no matter what!

Occasional Contributor | Gold Partner

I think a good blog post on some consistent "do's and dont's" for b2b companies would be ideal. 

 

I see prospects and clients managing things via all 3 - contacts, companies and deals (and sometimes using tasks or next activity as the primary item, which is kinda crazy)

 

I think what I'm trying to figure out... Once a contact enters info into a BOFU form (example: free inbound marketing consultation) - but BEFORE they are BANT qualified and a deal is created, should a company manage that contact as a "company" that is a SQL or a contact that is SQL... assuming once the "free inbound marketing consultation" is done, they would become an OPP. 

 

I know there are a lot of other HubSpot partners that have similar questions regarding this. 

Community Manager

Hi diler, 

You may want to check out our Sync Companies to Contact Lifecycle Stage feature in the CRM. This will take the lifecycle stage of the company and apply it to all the associated contacts. Using this feature, you can manage the company record throughout the deal process, and onces that company becomes an Opportunity, that lifecycle stage will sync to all the associated contacts. This may make it easier to manage in a B2B Sales structure. 

Hope this helps, and would definitely love to hear any other suggestions from other users as well! 

 

Top Contributor

We are talking about the same things at my company, particularly this bit, "Once a contact enters info into a BOFU form (example: free inbound marketing consultation) - but BEFORE they are BANT qualified and a deal is created, should a company manage that contact as a "company" that is a SQL or a contact that is SQL... assuming once the "free inbound marketing consultation" is done, they would become an OPP. "

 

Since we have multiple contacts for each company that fill out a form and enter our CRM at various stages in a company's lifecycle, how can we keep track of each Lead to MQL to SQL progression (for Marketing has KPIs around these numbers)? We can either track it as one lump at the Company level, (as it was suggested, by syncing the Lifecycle Stage across all contacts) OR we can track it at the Contact level with unique Lifecycle Stages. 

 

Right now we have Lifecycle Stage set to sync across all contacts (and there are definite benefits to doing so), but Marketing is unable to quantify the Lead to MQL to SQL progression this way. 

 

I know that wasn't answering your question...but I wanted to let you know you aren't the only people out there working through that right now! 

 

...haven't come up with the perfect answer yet, have you? Everyone else out there, how are you doing this now?

Occasional Contributor

"how can we keep track of each Lead to MQL to SQL progression (for Marketing has KPIs around these numbers)?"

 

Our company has recently started creating Deals for MQL's and adding them into a new "MQL Pipeline". When the Deal is vetted by Sales and becomes SQL, it is moved from the MQL Pipeline into the Sales Pipeline as "Gained Access". Once the Deal moves into the "Introduction" stage then we consider it an Opportunity. Using the different deal pipelines makes it easy to report MQL->SQL conversion.

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New Contributor

Good questions you have there. I don't know if this answers all your queries but my colleague, Dan, wrote about Winning Habits for Sales and I think some of his points can contribute and answer your question a bit. 

New Contributor

@BrookeHarper1 That was a SOLID blog post, but doesn't really answer the tactical problems I'm trying to solve. 

 

Maybe I should just write a blog post about this and see what other b2b companies (agencies as well) are doing. 

New Contributor

@JasonDiller wondering where you ended up on this? Would love to get your feedback on best practice if you have one.

 

Thanks! Melissa

Top Contributor

any news about this?

I'm also struggling with this issue.