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Moving from Start-Up to Scale-Up

By 2017, Foleon had grown significantly over its first four years as a business. However, Michiel Schouten, Head of Marketing at Foleon, realised that its current CRM and marketing automation set-up was not sufficient for it’s desired trajectory. Foleon didn’t have an adequate CRM and used several disparate tools to drive its growth efforts. Foleon’s tech stack included using Mailchimp for email, Podio Project Management for CRM, G-Suite for reporting, and a custom CMS for its website. Michiel decided that change was needed. “Like many startups experience, our tech-stack had evolved over-time. It piled up. Using so many suboptimal platforms made us ineffective, caused inertia and provided insufficient insights to understand the added value of our sales & marketing efforts. It was time to make a change to bring these three steps forward.”

After extensive initial research, Foleon had a preference for HubSpot. “I wasn’t acquainted with HubSpot, but the trial experience was good, the customer stories resonated, and my conversations with HubSpot partners made it obvious that HubSpot was the best fit for our needs,” explains Michiel. Foleon then made the decision and signed up to the HubSpot Growth Platform in 2017, initially with the Professional tiers of Marketing Hub & Sales Hub.

From the outset, Foleon wanted to focus on improving its Sales & Marketing alignment, “HubSpot became one single source of truth, tying Sales & Marketing together. We now had one place where we could monitor the complete funnel performance, manage hand over from marketing to sales, understand conversion attribution, and improve insights on whatever segment you prefer. Geography, industry, use case, and more.”

On top of that, Michiel hoped to both streamline Foleon’s marketing efforts and improve sales efficiency. “For Marketing, HubSpot made so many other platforms redundant. We finally had proper insight into the impact of all of our efforts, thanks to solid attribution and proper dashboarding. We massively improved the output and impact of email marketing and integrated the blog section on our custom website to improve our content marketing efforts. For Sales and Customer Success, it massively streamlined administrative work in lead monitoring and nurturing, deals management, email template control and provided better insights into performance.”

Leveraging Data & Automation For Growth

Foleon was able to quickly and easily get started with the HubSpot platform and migrate its entire database from its sales CRM over to HubSpot. “While we were on-boarded via a HubSpot partner, it wasn’t long before we were able to manage the implementation ourselves, since we have quite some technical and online marketing know-how available, and relatively little legacy.”

Michiel was also impressed with how intuitive HubSpot was to use, even for team members who might not have used it before. “I have experience with multiple CRM and marketing automation platforms, but none of them has such a self-explanatory user interface. Leveraging HubSpot Academy is also a great way to get acquainted with the concept of inbound and the different solutions HubSpot has to offer.”

In early 2018, Foleon also upgraded its account by adding Marketing Hub Enterprise & CMS Hub. Sean Filidis, a Content Strategist at Foleon, was excited to discover how the CMS Hub could help them use data to enhance its growth. “We already used HubSpot as our CRM and were intrigued by the possibility of pulling information from our contact records for smart content on our website — and vice versa — enriching our CRM with website analytics. Furthermore, the developers who investigated the CMS Hub developer documentation for us reported that the platform was very powerful and had excellent online documentation. They promised us that virtually anything we wanted on our website would be possible to do within the CMS Hub and that we would be able to manage nearly everything on our own. This all proved true.”

CMS Hub has made managing Foleon’s website significantly easier for the marketing team. “Due to the complexity of our old CMS, virtually every minor website update required involvement from our in-house developers. For them, this was an annoyance as it distracted them from their primary work on our Saas product. With HubSpot, we rarely need development resources; our marketing team can fully manage our website. Not only can we manage the web copy ourselves, but we can create and modify pages, add custom scripts, change styling, and more.”

Sean also implemented multi-language pages and personalisation across the website. “For regular website pages and landing pages, the CMS Hub comes with built-in language groups that make creating multi-language pages very easy. In terms of personalisation, Thanks to HubSpot’s smart content and calendar integrations, visitors can immediately book time with the correct business development representative based on their physical location/time zone. They also always see only the most relevant phone numbers on our site.”

Foleon’s sales team, with over 30 members, is also leveraging the power of Sales Hub Professional to get deeper insights into prospects, automate repetitive tasks, and close more deals faster. Head of Sales Development, Carl Miser, credits features such as meetings, pipeline management, and tasks as vital to Foleon’s growth strategy. “Account Executives use the pipeline management feature to track their deals. As their deals progress along each stage, they leave updates in the notes for management and set tasks to remind themselves when and what to do to ensure they close. Once the deal finally makes it to Closed Won, we celebrate and move on to the next! On top of this, all 30+ Sales reps also use the meeting link feature to improve their productivity every day.”

The Foleon sales team relies heavily on the dashboards feature in Sales Hub to track sales performance & productivity, ensuring that they focus on the most impactful opportunities. “We live on dashboards. Part of being a scale-up is learning what works and what doesn’t. We are continuously learning and finding out who our ICP is. Dashboards are a key tool in this. Every internal presentation, meeting or discussion starts with HubSpot Dashboards. They are great for tracking individual and team performance. Our weekly monthly and quarterly team meetings are just screenshots from HubSpot. This helps the team understand where the company is and where they fit within the company. It boosts motivation and productivity just by looking at them!” explains Carl.

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