A New Agency on an Inbound MissionWilliam Troillard was in charge of new business development for a traditional marketing agency, and he was becoming increasingly disenchanted with cold calling potential clients.
“I was looking for another way to attract prospects, so that they would welcome my call rather than ignore it. That’s when I discovered the HubSpot software and the inbound methodology. I saw how it could allow us to prove ROI to clients and start winning crucial retainer contracts. Unfortunately, my then-employer decided that it wasn’t a priority.”
However, he wasn’t ready to give up. In February 2015, he set up ComExplorer, his own marketing agency based purely around the inbound methodology.
“When we started, we were using WordPress for our website and blog, plugins to build landing pages and Google Analytics to track visitors. However, it wasn’t enough to implement a great inbound strategy.”
William looked into using a combination of point solutions, like MailChimp, Unbounce and Zapier, but ultimately decided that integration would be a problem. An all-in-one software was the way forward.
“We were budget-conscious, so we did investigate a number of options before we made our decision. However, we found that a lot of the solutions focused too much on one area. Eloqua, for example, was centred around emails, while others concentrated on the middle of the funnel. We wanted something that could do it all, and that was the HubSpot software.”
ComExplorer was also intrigued by the HubSpot Partner Program.
“It would allow us to offer the HubSpot software to our clients, so we could get them up and running with inbound really easily. But what was most exciting to us was the level of support we would receive. As a startup, we wanted to grow quickly, and HubSpot was offering all the training, coaching and resources we would ever need.”
Convincing Clients With Help From HubSpotComExplorer started using the HubSpot growth stack, the combination of the Marketing, CRM and Sales software, on its own website, and the HubSpot team helped make sure that it got the most out of it.
“The support we received was fantastic. That’s the HubSpot difference – you feel that there are human beings behind the software. When you're stuck on strategy or marketing questions, there is always someone who will help you find a solution. That's a real competitive advantage,” says William.
The agency soon began to get more inbound leads, and it found that it was now much easier to move them through the pipeline.
“I think the most valuable advice our HubSpot channel account manager gave us was on the sales process. We finally understood how to set up a system that is efficient and built to close more deals.”
ComExplorer focusses on clients in the IT startup and business services sectors. The IT companies are usually well aware of the inbound methodology, while the business services ones need more education. However, the agency’s personas have one thing in common – they all want to see ROI.
“The HubSpot team helped us to truly master inbound, and we use that knowledge to produce campaigns that really work. Then, with Marketing Analytics Dashboards, we show our clients how everything we do makes a difference. Once they have that proof, they are willing to sign up for more of our services and to longer retainer contracts, which means that we have a predictable, healthy revenue stream.”
Real Rewards as a HubSpot PartnerThe HubSpot Partner Program is certainly paying dividends for ComExplorer. It generates 40,000 visitors and 500 new leads every month, and it has reached Gold Tier status.
"The best business case we can sell to new clients is ourselves. We were complete unknowns two years ago, but now we are proof of how effective inbound can be.”
The agency gets 80% of its leads through inbound, and it has already converted 12 clients to the HubSpot software.
“Our profits have increased by 515% since starting with HubSpot. We are on track to reach our revenue forecast by the end of the year, and our goal is to become a Platinum Tier Partner by the start of 2018.”
ComExplorer’s customers are also reaping rewards. In 2016, they boosted their traffic by an average of 2X and their leads by 3X. Looking ahead, the agency plans to expand the type of content that it produces for them and also move into sales enablement.
William believes that the HubSpot Partner Program is the way forward for any agency that wants to supercharge their success and grow.
“Too many agencies are stuck doing project-based work. The Partner Program gives you a way to move on from that and build the predictable revenue stream that is so essential to growth.”