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HubSpot Onboarding with HubSpot vs a HubSpot Partner Agency

Posted by Tyler Samani-Sprunk on December 13, 2018
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So you've decided to purchase HubSpot to grow your business?


That's a big decision, but a good one. 

Now comes the next tricky question. How should you get started with HubSpot and learn how it all works?

While HubSpot is an intuitive tool, there are many moving parts and it's important that you understand them and set them up correctly.

In our experience, poor onboarding is the number one reason companies have problems with HubSpot.

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To get everything set up, you have two options: receive onboarding consulting directly from HubSpot, or work with a certified HubSpot Partner Agency.

One isn’t necessarily better than the other, but there are some pretty big differences. We’re here to help you decide which is best for your team.

But before we start rolling, let's answer the basic question:

Why do you need HubSpot onboarding?

First, it is a requirement from HubSpot. Yes, it might feel a bit like a parent telling their child, "you'll do it because I said so." But trust us when we say the requirement is there for good reason.

Second, HubSpot has a wide variety of features, especially if you purchase the whole suite. It can be easy to be overwhelmed at first or never fully use HubSpot as it was intended. That's what we don't want to happen. Onboarding helps you get the most out of the tool you're paying for, because you’ll know how each feature works and how they can be used in your marketing strategies.

Finally, there’s a lot of room for error when it comes to correctly implementing HubSpot for your company—from adding customer information to integrating it with other software. When you're just getting started, that's when you're most prone to run into issues or make decisions that will set your HubSpot account up for failure. It all gets much easier when you have someone to guide you and give you pointers along the way.

HubSpot Onboarding Tweet

Partner Onboarding

While the specifics of HubSpot onboarding from a partner agency might vary based on the agency, one thing is consistent—this is a good option if you truly want a partner throughout the process, from implementation to strategy to future marketing campaigns.

What's included with HubSpot Agency Partner onboarding?

Note: the specifics may vary slightly based on the agency, but these are commonly included.

  • HubSpot Technical Setup: Basic portal setup including time zones, tracking codes, user management, social integrations, software integrations, etc.
  • Designing and developing templates for emails, landing pages, and more
  • HubSpot CRM Customization: Help with setting up custom fields, reports, dashboards, user views, task automation, and more
  • HubSpot Contact Import: Import your contacts into the HubSpot CRM or migrating your database from another CRM
  • Additional strategic development and consulting
  • Sales enablement services
  • Flexible pricing on your company’s needs
  • A marketing resource for the future
  • Customized HubSpot and marketing training specific to your organization

Additional Things to Consider:

Future Relationship with a Marketing Agency

Are you considering hiring a marketing agency to do work with you in the future? This is a good chance to do a test run with the agency to see how you work together. Not considering an agency for future work? Then your best bet might be to stick with HubSpot onboarding instead. While most agencies would still be open to working with you, it might not be ideal if you aren’t considering a longer term relationship with them.

Differences in Process and Price

When you onboard with a partner agency, you don’t have to pay the HubSpot onboarding fee. However, the agency will charge for their onboarding services. This will vary based on the agency that you work with and the scope of work you ask them to tackle, so make sure you ask good questions about what you’ll receive and the cost of their services.

Potential for Onsite Training

Many partner agencies offer onsite training. There’s nothing quite like being in person, especially when working through difficult and complex problems and strategies.

Team Alignment

One of the best things about HubSpot is that it makes it super easy for different teams inside your organization (like the marketing and sales departments) to stay on the same page and work well together. But a tool is only as good as the processes built around it. Many partner agencies can help you determine what those processes should be and help you use HubSpot to implement them.


HubSpot Onboarding

There are different levels of onboarding from HubSpot—based on the plan you purchase. Here are the basics of what HubSpot provides to make sure your setup and first campaign are a success.

What’s included in HubSpot onboarding?

  • HubSpot Implementation Specialist: They will be assigned to your company for the first 90 days of your subscription to help you get started with HubSpot
  • Technical Setup Assistance: You will receive advice and assistance as you set up your portal
  • Advice on Integrations: Your Implementation Specialist will give you guidance on integrating your existing system with HubSpot
  • Help developing and executing one inbound campaign within HubSpot
  • Ongoing support and resources from the HubSpot support and customer success teams

Additional Things to Consider:

Jumping in with Both Feet

The primary difference between HubSpot-provided onboarding and HubSpot Partner Agency onboarding is who’s actually doing the implementation work. With HubSpot, you’ll get detailed instructions and quality consulting, but your team has to do the vast majority of the work along the way. This can be a great way to learn the ins and outs of the software very quickly. In fact, if you choose to onboard with an agency, make sure they teach you and let you work in the platform as well. HubSpot will become too important of a tool for your organization not to have people on your team that are comfortable using it.

Your Team’s Bandwidth

On the flip side of the point above, having someone to help “do the work” can be a big advantage. This is especially true if you have a small team or one that’s not very tech savvy.

Your Timeline

How quickly do you need to get HubSpot up and running? Your timeline might impact your onboarding decision. HubSpot onboarding is built around a standardized process with a clear timeline. Agency onboarding timelines can vary based on the scope of work, and it can take time to find the right agency for you if you don’t already have one in mind.

Consistent Pricing

Unlike a partner agency, the pricing of HubSpot onboarding is always consistent, based on your package. This means you have a good idea of how much you will spend on onboarding as you plan out your purchase.

So what's best for you?

As you can see, both options have their advantages, so do what makes the most sense for your team. Your choice might depend on the size of your team, the direction of your company, or your future marketing goals.

If you have a large marketing team who can handle the implementation, HubSpot onboarding might be the best choice for you. If you want more strategic direction and a partner in the process, you might choose to work with a partner agency—especially if you plan to continue working with an agency for your marketing.

As you make your investment in HubSpot, be sure to also invest in getting your team up to speed so you can take full advantage of everything the platform has to offer.

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Posted in HubSpot, Marketing Software/Apps, Inbound Marketing