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Episode 1: How HubSpot is changing the sales process

by Plats Loukoianov, on 28/06/21 3:34 PM

 

We sat down with Luke Trewin from Modern Visual, a HubSpot Advanced Implementation Partner to chat about the impact HubSpot is having on the sales process and the trends and patterns he's noticed when handling HubSpot implementations day-to-day.

Emily

Well, HubSpot is a tool for B2B businesses all over the world that are looking to make services and processes as smooth and succinct as possible. On tuning the HubSpot flywheel, we'll be chatting with a bunch of people who live and breathe HubSpot. We'll be talking about their experience to help you improve your business and to inspire you to go further.

Emily

Throughout the series, we'll also be chatting about Cradle, which is a HubSpot integrated cloud phone system. Throughout the series, we're going to deep dive into different elements of HubSpot and Cradle and chat with both those who are using its functionalities and customers who are on the other end of the line. So, hello and welcome, wherever or whichever lockdown you're listening from. Today, I'm joined by Luke Trewin all the way from Melbourne. Hello, or should I say, good day?

Luke Trewin
Hi, good day, how are you?

Emily

Very good. So, we met Luke last year when he managed to come across Cradle. He's the founder and CEO of Modern Visual and also parallel to that, I'm told that you sit on a board of a charity organisation? Just quickly, what's that one?

Luke Trewin
Yeah, so it's called SEE4YC and we help children in need on the peninsula where I live here.

Emily

Awesome. All right. You're also a very proud father and I'm told that you're a big water sports fan and previously used to do freestyle motocross, which you're still very passionate about. I feel like that deserves a podcast on its own, so I'll save that for my extreme sport Friday podcast, we'll just cook on with HubSpot today. But why don't you start by telling us a little bit about Modern Visual?

Luke Trewin

Yeah, so Modern Visual Business Growth Solutions was founded in 2014 and we help businesses with workflow processes and their tech stack and putting that all together to make sure they're removing friction, increasing efficiency and growing the business.

Emily

Cool, so why don't you tell us a little bit as well about what your team does individually?

Luke Trewin

Yeah, so we're currently a team of 12 or 13, I think it is at the moment. We've got mainly a series of developers and technical experts and then backing those up, we have graphic designers, general graphic designers, UX designers, we have customer success managers and then we have a series of other team members that do the in-between.

Emily

Cool, and how long has Modern Visual been around for?

Luke Trewin
Yeah, so it's almost six and a half years now and still going strong.

Emily
Awesome. Okay, so then what led you to HubSpot?

Luke Trewin

Very good question. So we downloaded HubSpot a couple of years ago for ourselves. We were looking for a CRM solution and they approached me to ask if I wanted to become an agency partner. It looked quite lucrative and it looked like we could add a lot more value to what we were doing currently for our customers and the rest is history.

Emily

Okay, cool. We're going to dive into that a little bit later, but just for now, what are your thoughts on the current state around sales?

Luke Trewin

Yeah, good question. Look, sales is always an evolving beast. I think times have changed drastically and there is a lot of people out there that are still trying to sell the old way in very much an outbound way. And what that means is obviously they're trying to, I guess, push their good will people to get them across the line as a customer.

Luke Trewin

And I think these days, that's changed a lot, where people want to be buying on their own terms. They want to make their own decisions. They feel more informed, because of the internet, they can do their own research. Obviously, Encarta back in the day, wasn't very good for research, because it wasn't very current. So yeah, I think the state of sales has changed drastically and I think a lot of reps need to keep up with that.

Emily
Okay, so you mentioned that it's ever evolving, how does HubSpot fit in to your current sales?

Luke Trewin

Yeah, so it fits in, in a big way. There's a number of sort of elements to HubSpot and how that fits. We use it to manage our deal pipeline, so keeping track of the progress of each deal or prospect that we're talking to. It also helps us from an intelligence point of view. So, you can almost think of it as like a virtual or software-based PA for the business where it's actually helping us with a lot of the legwork around sales, so it's making our team more efficient.

Luke Trewin

But also helping us, I guess, get insights into what people's traits and behaviors are. So, as an example, if we sent someone a PDF with, say, 10 pages, add some examples of our previous work, we can actually see what pages that person has been on and for how long. But also, every time they open that PDF, we get a little notification, so that allows us to see, I guess, when they're hot, you would say, so we can actually touch base with that person at that time and tailor the conversation around what they're actually looking at.

Emily

Right, so you've been using it for two years now, you said. What's been the most surprising thing that you've learnt from it so far?

Luke Trewin

I think the most surprising thing is how much efficiency it does introduce into the business. So, traditionally, a lot of businesses, prior to having a CRM, will use spreadsheets and Word documents or even the humble notepad. I think the surprising thing for me is how efficient it makes the team. The amount of activity they're having during the day compared to prior is absolutely mind blowing.

Emily
Cool. What are some of the current challenges that you're facing in sales at the moment?

Luke Trewin

I think it's always the old classic, not enough people to talk to. We can constantly be talking to various people and it's just one of those things, you always want more, you always want more. I think that's always going to be an ongoing challenge, the volume of leads that you need to be talking to.

Emily
Look, how do you know that you're getting that efficiency?

Luke Trewin

Yeah, so there's a lot of reporting built into HubSpot out of the box, including reporting on a lot of the integrations that connect to HubSpot. So, we can tell how many calls, how many emails, how many meetings our team are having. Also, if you have multiple team members, it creates a bit of a scoreboard or a sport environment for them to be competing, to produce the most activity as well, so that's a really big benefit for the CRM. And obviously those reports can be sent to whoever needs to see them in the business, tailored to them at any interval that we require

Emily
And that data's collected in real time?

Luke Trewin
100% yeah, it's all live.

Emily

Amazing, cool. So you've been using HubSpot for some time now, what do you think has been the biggest difference? And when I say this, I mean, not just for you, but for your team of 13, what are they also telling you that they've seen a difference in, in their work?

Luke Trewin

Yeah, I think collaboration is key. And especially in this new normal, we say, after the pandemic. A lot of people are working remotely now, whereas before they wouldn't and we even hired more people remotely, something we'd never done before. Because of the pandemic, we considered it as something to do, and it's been quite successful. And the reason it's been successful is because of that collaboration element that's been added to the business. So, having a timeline across the business of every interaction with every customer in one place is absolutely gold for us. Keeping track of all of that just means that everyone's on the same page.

Emily
Okay, great. Yeah, well, I mean, I was reluctant to bring up the C word, but now that we're kind of here...

Luke Trewin
It's out of the box.

Emily

Yeah, so you feel like it's been obviously quite helpful in the time during a pandemic, because you can still keep tabs on your employees? Not in a overarching way, but it's good to make sure that everyone's keeping productive at home as well.

Luke Trewin

Yeah, definitely. I mean, it's one of those things, I think, although the pandemic's happened, it's now just how things are. I think a lot of businesses are going to have people working remotely, because they were forced into testing it, realizing it's not that bad. So for me, it's obviously great for me to keep track of employees' time and all that kind of... Obviously we trust all our employees, we wouldn't have them around if we didn't trust them, but end of the day, we really need those strong metrics to back up the business and make sure it is chugging along like the engine it should be.

Emily

Great. And then, I guess, just lastly, for those in our audience who are listening right now, I'm sure some of them will be looking to improve their business or wanting to improve their software or processes, what's some advice that you'd give them if they were looking to make that change?

Luke Trewin
Yeah, do you mean in regards to how do you make that change? What's the transition look like?

Emily

Yeah.

Luke Trewin

Yeah, so it does take time to make a transition to a new piece of software or moving your business into multiple pieces of software from what you had, even if you didn't have any software prior or you're changing from other software. I think there is a process and I think getting buy in from all the different team members based on what their roles are and what their wants and needs are, is really critical.

Luke Trewin

And I think a lot of businesses, they'll throw a new piece of software in and just say to everyone, "Just use it, this is how it works," but it often fails, because they haven't sat down with each team member and discussed with them how it's going to benefit them. You've almost got to sell the idea of the software in different ways to each team member to get that buy in. And if you do, you'll find that the uptake will happen and you'll obviously reap all the benefits of that.

Emily
Okay, cool. All right, so Luke, let's talk new customers. How do you approach fresh meat?

Luke Trewin

Yeah, so when a new customer approaches us, first, we make sure they, I guess, are a fit for our business and vice versa. We want to make sure that we're not going to waste each other's time. So, if they are a fit for us, we will make sure that we go through a really thorough discovery process. And in that discovery process, we'll make sure we pull in the appropriate team members. So, depending if it's a basic website replacement or we're looking at their business holistically to roll out a 12 month strategy to really overhaul everything, that's where we'll bring in multiple team members, we'll bring in our designers, our developers, our business consultants, our workflow specialists, stuff like that.

Luke Trewin

So, it's all about really, really learning as much as we can about the business, going back and researching what's going to benefit that business and what the new business could look like from a structure point of view in regards to software and processes, and then actually presenting that and then rolling that out over time. I think it's really important that you don't overload a business with change. That can absolutely kill a business very rapidly, so it's about slow but efficient change and prioritizing what's going to have the biggest impact in a particular order for that business.

Emily

Okay, cool. And in this series, as I mentioned, we'll also be chatting about Cradle, so how's Cradle helped you as well?

Luke Trewin

Yeah, Cradle has been absolutely instrumental for our business. We were using an existing old school phone system prior to Cradle. It wasn't a VoIP or a software based system, but we just found that it was lacking in a lot of features that we sort of thought would make sense for the business. They just weren't there. This was a large business that we were working with prior, so when I did come across Cradle, I did notice that it just had so many no-brainer features that made so much sense that just impacted our efficiency on a daily basis.

Luke Trewin

And I think as well, because it does integrate with HubSpot, which is the biggest piece of software in our business, that just creates that integration automatically. That means that the team, not even have to worry about, I guess, all the, "How do I do this or how do I learn how to use another system?" It's fully integrated, so as long as they know how to use a dial pad, which I'm sure everyone knows how to, the rest automatically sort of make sense.

Emily

Yeah, I think that keyword no-brainer is really significant when it comes to Cradle, because every time I've discussed it with people, it just seems like a no brainer to have such a simple piece of technology to engage with your customers. And I'm interested to hear what's your customer feedback been with such a simple process of getting what they need?

Luke Trewin

Yeah, I think it's been good, because Cradle, I guess, allows you, paired with HubSpot, to create more of an experience for the customer. So instead of just being a phone system, you can actually create all these little experiences such as, if one of my team misses a call because they're on lunch or whatever it may be, it can send an email through a HubSpot workflow to that person and recommend that they book a time in the calendar that works for them and they can automatically do that.

Luke Trewin

So, that's just one example of where the customers commented and said, "Wow, this is such a nifty little thing, how do I do this? This is just game changing, we're not used to this." So, to get comments like that, obviously you get the benefit of that process or that feature, but it's also the feedback on top of that, that's really good.

Emily

And some of those features are quite handy, having your desk phone set up within your mobile phone, what have your team said about that? Are they finding it a lot more convenient just having everything on their phone in front of them?

Luke Trewin

Yeah, so obviously, like I mentioned earlier, a lot of my team are working remotely at home as well now, so our account managers, as an example, are able to wander around their backyard on a client phone call in the sunshine, whereas before, they were tied to their desk and their phone.

Emily

Yeah. And I don't know, James, if you want to get into this, but that is quite unheard of in a sales industry. And back in the old day, it was sitting at your desk with a big clunky phone and big clunky computer and you were strapped into the chair for hours and hours every day. And now your team can wander outside in their backyard in the sunshine. And, I mean, your team must just be in a really happy place as well, having the freedom of working from home, a really great system where they can engage in customers and not be dealing with big clunky technology. It must be quite a happy environment for them, I imagine.

Luke Trewin

Yeah, most of the time it is a really good environment. Obviously, every now and then you have something that might happen, that's just normal as a business. But overall, I think, when we do have small incidents that every business has, they do realize and go, "Oh, wow, I do have it really good here. I'd be silly to ruin that for myself." So, I think that does happen quite often where, I guess, they're just always seeing how good they have it.

Luke Trewin

I think all the systems that back the business up make their lives so much easier. It's almost like a train that's on the tracks versus not on the tracks. That's just [inaudible 00:13:33]. I guess this technology is so available now, there's no excuses for a business not to investigate and implement this type of technology, because it's not hard. It's not like 20 years ago where you'd have to bring out 25 IT people to build out a custom system for your business, imagine all the servers over in the corner running your business. That's all in the past. Those days are gone. You can install this stuff with a couple of clicks.

Emily

Yeah, awesome. I guess it's the first... I don't know what it was like for you at the start, but I feel like you're probably in a position now where you feel like every day the technology is working with you and you're not slamming your keyboard against the desk working against it.

Luke Trewin

Yeah, it's almost like I mentioned earlier, a virtual, I guess, PA. You've got someone there to help you all day, that's not going to question you, it's going to be there to help you all day, whether it be streamlining a certain set of work that you're doing or reminding you of things that are really important or actually doing things on your behalf. So, reaching out to clients on your behalf from you, in an intelligent way.

Luke Trewin

So, I guess, there's all these reasons to use these pieces of software versus not. It is scary for a lot of businesses that are potentially a little bit old-school, I'll call them that, to think about this change and moving away from spreadsheets and moving away from the trusty little desk phone with the curly cord on it, that's all in the past. You're going to make a lot more impact on the world and a lot more financial gain if you're using these systems.

Emily

Great.

Topics:Turning the HubSpot flywheelSalesattract

Turning the HubSpot flywheel

A fortnightly show diving headfirst into the world of communication and HubSpot. Featuring insight, strategies and some great stories with our guests on all ends of the HubSpot universe.

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