Finding a CRM Partner for Financial, Fintech and SaaS Verticals
From the moment Sheila Mitham, CEO and founder of Inbound FinTech, decided to launch her marketing agency, she knew she wanted to focus on the financial, fintech and SaaS verticals.
She chose HubSpot as her CRM platform.
“It was seen as a big risk to go vertical specific with HubSpot because HubSpot isn’t vertical specific,” says Sheila. “But I was confident HubSpot could support us.”
Shortly after, Maria joined InboundFintech. In fact, Sheila and Maria doubled down on the chosen verticals and have grown their agency hand in hand with HubSpot.
At the same time, they surveyed the market to see what software solution they could offer to their enterprise clients. Tech stacks for enterprise companies can be complex, which means a one-size-fits all approach doesn’t work.
“The solution is rarely as simple as ripping out one platform and replacing it with another,” says Sheila. “We needed a platform that could support a customizable process of rip, replace and integrate.”
Sheila explains further: “Many of these companies are large, multinational organizations. They often have a custom-built CRM that they’ve been using for 10+ years along with other systems, none of which talks to the others. It makes forecasting, pipeline management and ROI reporting nearly impossible. We needed a flexible platform that could replace some of these systems and integrate with others.”
Change management is also an important consideration for these clients. Most would never agree to rip everything out at once, even if feasible. Instead, implementation has to occur in phases, with flexible solutions and integrations applied when needed.
Maria and Sheila soon realized that HubSpot had the flexibility and scalability that Inbound FinTech needed to support the complex needs of its client base. So beyond using the HubSpot CRM Platform to power her company they sign on as a Solutions Partner to deepen the relationship
“In HubSpot, we found a partner that could work with us to resolve not only our pain points, but our clients’ pain points as well,” says Maria
Scaling a Technical Agency as a HubSpot Diamond Solutions Partner
Once they joined the HubSpot Solutions Partner program, Inbound FinTech was able to take advantage of new revenue opportunities while also offering its clients a complete, unified solution to run their businesses, whether they’re a small team of two or a workforce of thousands.
A new source of revenue
As a HubSpot Solutions Partner, Inbound FinTech is frequently brought into deals by their HubSpot account manager.
HubSpot provides the product expertise in these deals, while Inbound FinTech provides the technical expertise by essentially working as software engineers and industry sector experts.
“It’s an amazing marriage and presents the client with a unified approach,” says Sheila. “Our channel account manager has been instrumental in bringing deals to us and managing our pipeline. In contrast, we were a Google Premier Partner for a while, and we never met our Google channel account manager, ever.”
Integrations for change management
With the HubSpot CRM Platform, Inbound FinTech gives their clients breathing room to adapt to big changes through its many app integrations.
Maria gives an example of how HubSpot’s diverse offerings play a crucial role in change management:
“We recently had a SaaS technology client that was on six platforms, none of which spoke to the others. They had a real problem with manual processes, data loss and reporting. We came in, made the HubSpot CRM Platform the master and set up a phased migration. We got rid of Salesforce and put in HubSpot Sales Hub. We then added Chargify, PandaDoc and Zendesk, again making HubSpot the master. It was the perfect approach and solution to this company’s complex tech stack, and we could only do it thanks to HubSpot’s long list of APIs.”
A voice in product development
As a HubSpot Diamond partner, Sheila and Maria also has a voice in product development with the opportunity to lobby for new or improved features in product releases. For example, she and other HubSpot Solutions Partner members were instrumental in making HubSpot’s custom objects feature a reality.
“We needed custom objects to land large enterprise customers, and we were losing opportunities without it,” says Sheila. “The product development team listened to us and built it. Now, we can go even deeper into the enterprise space and have grown our revenue as a result.”
Competing for large enterprise clients
“The HubSpot CRM Platform can stand up against any solution on the market, including Salesforce,” says Maria. “It really is on par and often better.”
She also likes how the Enterprise CRM Platform can serve companies of all sizes, whether through the flexible pricing of the Starter Suite or the sophisticated development features of the Enterprise Suite.
“You can compete on any level,” says Maria. “You simply can’t get these offerings anywhere else—HubSpot has a monopoly on them.”
Staying ahead of the curve
Inbound FinTech also appreciates how HubSpot is continually iterating and improving. In the past two years alone, they’ve seen remarkable innovation with new product releases and feature improvements.
“HubSpot used to be all about marketing and sales, but now its focus is alignment and scalability,” says Maria. “This is a big thing for our clients, and HubSpot is ahead of the curve.”
“Businesses used to leave HubSpot to go to Salesforce once they reached a certain size,” says Maria. “But now, over and over again, businesses are leaving Salesforce to go to HubSpot. The trend has reversed.”
Opportunities and mentoring
For new technical agencies considering becoming a HubSpot Solutions Partner, Inbound FinTech has some advice:
“The entry-level partner group is well established, with good opportunities and mentoring. It’s like having a strategic coach that will help you build your pipeline, forecast deals and position your business.”
They also see good opportunities for established agencies to move up the program tiers.
“HubSpot has created a fair playing field,” says Sheila. “They appreciate and acknowledge partners for a wide variety of factors. So if you’re particularly strong in a certain area, you’ll be rewarded for it.”
38% Increase in Revenue as a HubSpot Solutions Partner
Since becoming a HubSpot Solutions Partner, Inbound FinTech has grown its revenue by 38%.
About 39% of that revenue is attributable to its relationship with HubSpot, whether from direct team collaborations, referrals from the channel account manager, referrals from the partner portal, or hits from “HubSpot” related organic search results.
Similarly, approximately 30% of all leads are attributable to the HubSpot partnership.
Today, 40% of Inbound FinTech’s clients are on retainers, with many of those stemming from the partner program.
Sheila and Maria believe so strongly in HubSpot, about 85% of Inbound FinTech’s clients are on the HubSpot CRM Platform or using some type of HubSpot offering.
Sheila and Maria strongly recommend the HubSpot Solutions Partner program to other tech agencies.
“The opportunity for technical partners to build or integrate their systems with HubSpot is absolutely huge,” she says. “It opens doors to big opportunities.”