Logo - Full (Color)
Skip to content
Background Blob Background Blob Mobile

How ESDES Business School Tripled its Applicant Pool with HubSpot

ESDES Business School is a major business and management school in France. Keen to optimize its applicant experience, ESDES has been using HubSpot’s software for the past four years in order to manage its student relationship more effectively. By combining Marketing Hub, Sales Hub, and Service Hub, student numbers have risen by 30% and the number of applicants by 300%.

  • +30% students enrolled

  • 3X increase in student applications

  • Productivity boost for the sales and marketing teams


Founded in 1987 as part of Lyon Catholic University (UCLy), ESDES Business School is a major business and management school (Grande École) with campuses in Lyon and Annecy. Today, it has 1,800 students and over 6,000 alumni. The institution emphasizes professionalization and an international outlook, welcoming students from different countries and forging partnerships with numerous universities all over the globe.


Company Size:


Use Case:


    Implementing HubSpot at ESDES Business School

    ESDES Business School introduced HubSpot’s software back in 2018 in order to better manage its application process. Having initially used Excel spreadsheets to process data, the school quickly switched to a CRM system dedicated exclusively to education. Although the software made it easier to pool data in a central location, it was not ideal to work with. For example, the monitoring process lacked flexibility as it was not possible to connect the CRM system to the digital tools used by the sales and marketing teams.

    HubSpot’s challenge was therefore to come up with a CRM system set up to facilitate interaction with the range of tools used by ESDES. This included ensuring full visibility of the applicant funnel, while at the same time taking individual profiles and choices into account. Improving data centralization and ensuring data reliability were other key criteria when choosing the platform. Last but not least, both the communications team and the promotion & admissions team were looking for a better way to measure the impact of their activity. Specifically, they wanted data on their website’s conversion rate as well as on in-person events they take part in, such as the local student fair.

    HubSpot was selected thanks to its ability to solve the problems raised by ESDES and to support the teams during its implementation across departments. ESDES was assisted by Lyon-based Diamond partner Ideagency throughout the process: From understanding its needs, gaining an in-depth understanding of its core services and educational workshops, and scoping and fleshing out its requirements, through to the deployment and integration of HubSpot.


    How ESDES Business School is using HubSpot

    In other words, ESDES Business School opted for HubSpot in order to address its specific requirements for better data processing. To achieve this, the Marketing Hub Pro, Sales Hub Pro, and Service Hub Pro were implemented and are now used by all the teams as well as leadership. These teams include a five-strong marketing and communications department and a promotion & admissions department made up of several sales representatives, each in charge of a specific market. As a result, a strong change management policy was needed in order to get all the staff on board.

    Once the personas, lifecycle, and target markets are identified, the Marketing Hub allows the teams to inject more efficiency and quality into their work. They can generate qualified leads through inbound marketing, branding, and marketing automation, and by incorporating relevant information at key moments.

    The tool has therefore enabled better lead segmentation and allowed for a more personalized communication, producing workflows for audience nurturing and engagement, and optimizing the applicant experience as a result. This is now achievable thanks to a better management of prospects’ needs and expectations and the use of real-time comprehensive reporting.

    Using Sales Hub, ESDES Business School has been able to produce a targeted pipeline and monitor the support given to prospects. This pipeline reflects the essential choices available to prospective students and covers most individual cases. Applicants are also categorized according to their level of education and native language. The sequences implemented have gone a long way toward improving the applicant experience, which has helped boost the conversion rate.


    Outcomes and next steps of ESDES Business School’s project

    Introducing HubSpot’s software has helped ESDES Business School grow its revenue as well as improve its budget management now that decisions and activities are being steered in a more relevant way.

    Applicant numbers have increased by 300% in the space of four years, while the number of students enrolled at the school has risen by 30% since 2020.

    This substantial growth in number of prospects and applicants was achieved without significant increase of the size of the marketing and sales teams. HubSpot has therefore enabled the school to scale up its processes for communicating with and persuading prospects while also improving the quality of the support that it provides.

    Positive results have also been observed on the organizational front, with teams working more efficiently thanks to the automation of numerous tasks. Meanwhile, processing and analyzing data in real time allow marketing campaigns to be tweaked on the spot, and avoid wasting any time on ineffective communications.

    ESDES Business School could not be happier with the software and recommends HubSpot to any company looking to optimize its processes. The institution plans to continue scaling up, focusing on increasing in size, reinforcing its position, and ensuring continuous improvement of the applicant experience – not least through increasingly personalized sales and marketing processes.

    Emilie Sotton Director of Marketing at ESDES
    Adopting HubSpot’s solutions has allowed us to personalize the messages we send to our applicants, to provide them with a top-quality service and support mirroring the experience that awaits them once they enroll at our school.

    Emilie Sotton

    Director of Marketing, Communication, and CSR

    Esdes Business School

    colorful still life with people and technology

    Start Growing With HubSpot Today

    With tools to make every part of your process more human and a support team excited to help you, growing your business with HubSpot has never been easier.