Full Marketing Automation Tools Without The Painful Pricetag
Updated November 27, 2015

Full Marketing Automation Tools Without The Painful Pricetag

Marc Herschberger | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Software Version


Modules Used

  • Everything

Overall Satisfaction with HubSpot

As an inbound marketing agency, Revenue River utilizes HubSpot as our marketing automation software of choice. It allows us to implement detailed marketing campaigns for our clients in half the time it would take in other platforms (which we used to deal with before the days of HubSpot). From website creation to social media campaigns to Email marketing strategy, we run full campaigns for all of our clients in HubSpot's powerful, integrated tools. This tool allows us to create, track and easily change campaigns for all clients in a way that allows us show our worth.
  • Customer Service. I cannot praise this part of the company enough. If you ever have an issue with the product or don't know how to use a tool, they will go out of their way to help you fix it.
  • The HubSpot COS (Content Optimization System) is an incredibly powerful tool that can be used to create beautiful,dynamic website in that make it easy for non-coders to easily edit pages and content without the help of those strange coding geeks.
  • Research and Development. HubSpot is continuously finding new things to improve and integrate into their tools to help marketers better create and promote content to their potential buyers.
  • User Education. Through their blog, content offers (ebooks, webinars, etc.) and other educational elements, HubSpot is always working to better educate their users on the newest trends and best marketing practices out there.
  • Reporting. The reporting tools leave a little to be desired when you want to dive deep into different things such as devices people are using to view your website and average time on pages. Thankfully, it looks like they're starting to work on building out more serious tools so hopefully this will change soon!
  • Automated Workflows. The current layout is not as easy to set up as other marketing automation systems and doesn't provide as many options when it comes to if/then scenarios and time-sensitive options.
  • Increased and faster lead conversion. The tools have allowed us to connect the dots between our own and our clients' campaigns in a way that make it very easy to generate and nurture leads.
  • Increased marketing knowledge. HubSpot makes it their business to continually educate you as a user so that you can continue to be successful with your campaigns inside of their tools. They most certainly do not forget about you once you sign on with them.
Other things we've used in the past have been tools that only satisfy one area of an integrated digital marketing campaign (social, email, etc.). Once HubSpot came into the picture and updated some of their tools, we no longer had a use for these tools since the cost of advantages made no sense compared to what HubSpot provided us.
  • Email marketing
  • Lead nurturing
  • Lead scoring and grading
  • Landing pages
  • List segmentation
  • Sales intelligence
  • Sales campaigns
  • Integration with CRM system
  • Integration with webinar system
  • Social marketing
  • SEO
  • Blogging
  • Surveys
Overall, the email tool is very powerful and easy to use but is not always the easiest when you want to create custom designs and templates that will look great in different email boxes. While this is a small thing and the only reason I didn't give an overall score or a 9 or 10, it is something that I've heard from others when they negatively compare the platform with others like MailChimp or ConstantContact. Really though, it's not nearly as bad as people may have you believe and the new analytics and dashboard give you so much great insight into your email sends that you can easily forget about the other stuff. It also helps you very easily create strong content, customize it if you would like and then pick and choose the lists of people you would like to send it to.
HubSpot has a very powerful and built out lead management platform that leads you nurture leads through workflows, segment them through lead scoring and other methods and gives you an incredible amount of lead intelligence through some of its tools like SideKick and its free CRM. While this are all very good tools and well built, there are some things that I believe could be better, especially in the lead nurturing/workflow area where the platform is not as well laid out UX-wise as other platforms like Marketo's. It would be nice to see some improvements in the UX to be able to actually map out the workflows with a more accurate visual representation of it/then structures as well as include some newer tools in the if/then functionalities. Other than that, everything is great!
The reporting and analytics functionality of HubSpot is probably their weakest area but one that still gives a good look at the different KPI's that any digital marketer would want to see. They are currently working on additions to these tools that I've gotten a sneak peak at already and have been very happy with, so I won't go into too much detail on things that are already changing.
Seeing as our existing CRM is HubSpot's free CRM (which is very, very good- especially considering it's free), I would say it integrates very well. Contacts immediately go from the Marketing side of things into Sales and lead intelligence information is easily found and added to the profiles before deals are created and life cycle stages are automatically changed as things progress.
HubSpot is best for people who have plans for implementing a fully integrated marketing campaign versus paying for one time services for static websites. Also, retail websites probably aren't best for the full allotment of tools, at least not in my experience.

Questions to ask:
-Do you have full marketing goals or plans for this tool? (versus just wanting something to post social stuff with)
-Do you have the time to spend digging into the tool and all of the different features and benefits you can receive from it?

HubSpot Marketing Hub Feature Ratings

WYSIWYG email editor
Dynamic content
Ability to test dynamic content
Landing pages
A/B testing
Mobile optimization
Email deliverability reporting
List management
Triggered drip sequences
Lead nurturing automation
Lead scoring and grading
Data quality management
Automated sales alerts and tasks
Event/webinar marketing
Social sharing and campaigns
Social profile integration
Standard reports
Custom reports
Role-based workflow & approvals
Integration with Salesforce.com
Integration with Microsoft Dynamics CRM
Integration with SugarCRM

Using HubSpot

15 - As a full service marketing firm, we have employees using HubSpot for content creation, campaign analysis, back-end development and front-end design.
15 - On the marketing side of things, the product is extremely intuitive, allowing for just about anyone with a basic understanding of a SaaS portal to easily find and do what they need for digital marketing. From a back-end, development standpoint, having the knowledge and experience with coding helps you implement the necessary elements for styling and functionality on the website.
  • Social media marketing- we use the social media tool both for our own organization and our clients to ensure that we publish content on a regular basis and are able to monitor and engage with our fans within one easy to use portal.
  • Email marketing- we use the email marketing tool to continually engage with our database to drive leads and nurture those into sales ready prospects for our business development team.
  • Marketing automation- we utilize the automation tools through workflows and lead scoring to better connect with and understand out leads in order to make us more efficient and effective marketers.
  • Conference/Event integrations between HubSpot and Eventbrite have allowed us to utilize hubspot to promote and track the success of different seminars and events put together by our clients.
  • Increased use of the CRM for client management
We completely believe in what HubSpot as a company is trying to achieve within the market for digital marketing automation and because of this, we are fully integrated (website, campaigns tools, etc.). We completely "walk the walk" when it comes to practicing what we preach with both inbound marketing and the use of HubSpot and its tools.

HubSpot Implementation

While HubSpot does a good job of laying out what you need to do in order to set up your portal, there are a number of different tools and items to consider. Using a vendor or professional who knows the software intimately would be a good idea so that you can get the most out of the system immediately and not waste time and money finding out the hard way how to do some simple things.

HubSpot Support

They are responsive, attentive, friendly, and knowledgeable. I've come to them for help multiple times with items that other support systems may have said no to and they have always been extremely helpful in digging in to help me understand the problem before fixing it for me or setting me up to easily fix it myself.
Quick Resolution
Good followup
Knowledgeable team
Problems get solved
Kept well informed
No escalation required
Immediate help available
Support understands my problem
Support cares about my success
Quick Initial Response
No - There's no need when their support is already so good. I can get ahold of a trained, helpful and friendly support agent almost any time without having to wait longer than a minute on hold. It's incredible and one of the best parts about an already amazing company. They absolutely rock.
At one point, our website started to render improperly. Because I am not a developer or have any experience with the back-end of our website, I ended up calling HubSpot for help. Even though this issue most likely fell completely out of the scope of what their support team normally does and was almost certainly not a HubSpot issue, their team helped me go through the code to find and fix the issues that were causing the rendering problem. They saved me a massive amount of time and headache by going above and beyond!

Using HubSpot

The interface is very intuitive, the support and hints on the pages are helpful and almost everything is easy to find.
Like to use
Relatively simple
Easy to use
Technical support not required
Well integrated
Quick to learn
Feel confident using
  • The contacts section and individual profile pages are extremely well laid out and allow you to easily find information you need for a specific person.
  • The list creation section is very easy to use when putting together specific rules and requests as well as when you want to preview them before creating the list.
  • Some of the smaller details regarding blog subscription emails are hidden deep inside the settings and can make it easy to set up a campaign in the software without ever establishing automated emails for blog subscriptions meaning that people who subscribe to your blog never get their emails.
Yes - Well enough. It doesn't let you make edits to your web pages and doesn't give you access into some of the other content areas, but it does provide you some simple and helpful pieces when you need to make edits to social posts or view reporting on a mobile device.