A Looming Deadline to Change Platforms
If Katapult was going to move customer service onto the HubSpot CRM platform, Mark McCarthy, Director of Marketing at Katapult, would have to move fast.
When its existing customer service software contract came up for renewal, the timing was right. However, Black Friday was coming up soon, giving the team only a few weeks to make the change. The winter holiday period is the busiest time of year for Katapult’s customer service team as people look for alternative purchase plans for their holiday shopping.
Mark and his team would need to have Service Hub in place and all 200 service agents trained before the volume of customer inquiries skyrocketed. It would be an enormous challenge, especially for a business that supports eCommerce.
“Suddenly the timing was right,” says Mark. “But Black Friday is huge for us, so we would have to move fast.”
To complicate matters further, Katapult’s service agents are distributed in multiple locations around the world, making training even more challenging.
Marketing Hub and Sales Hub
In spite of these challenges, Mark and his team were unwavering in their decision to move forward with Service Hub. Mark had already implemented Marketing Hub at Katapult and witnessed how it empowered the marketing team to make better decisions with data insights and save time with automation.
Further, once Katapult’s sales team saw Marketing Hub in action—and calculated how much they could save by utilizing the same CRM—they too were sold. Sales moved from its existing platform to Sales Hub just a few months later.
Now, Mark wanted Service Hub to eliminate the remaining divide between customer service and the other teams.
“We had a lot of sales and marketing data that would be useful for our customer service agents, but we couldn’t give them immediate real-time access to it,” says Mark. “Once everyone saw the full power of the HubSpot CRM platform, we knew we needed to get the service team on it too.”
Convinced by the power of uniting all teams, Mark was given the green light to proceed, even with the short runway.
Migrating 200+ Agents to Service Hub in 6 Weeks
Mark and his team started by analyzing how the customer service team was using its current platform and then began building out Service Hub to support the same processes—but better and more efficiently.
“I talked to the service team to understand their requirements and then kept building and rebuilding,” says Mark. “We not only wanted to give them what they were used to but also find opportunities to improve and make their lives easier.”
Phased training approach
Mark and his team took a phased approach to get their new Help Desk up and running. They started by training the chat agents, showing them how to log customer interactions in the CRM and build tickets using HubSpot’s playbooks as a guide. Next, they rolled out the same training to phone agents.
By the time Black Friday arrived, Mark and his team had all service agents trained on Service Hub and ready to go.
“When we made the shift, our agents had everything they needed,” says Mark. “They could service everything that came out of Black Friday and through Christmas. Honestly, we didn’t have any issues.”
Ease of use and excellent support
Mark credits Service Hub’s ease of use—and the support he received from the HubSpot team—with his ability to get everyone up to speed so quickly.
“HubSpot was amazing in helping us navigate this project,” says Mark. “Our account manager, Amy, helped us brainstorm and develop quick solutions to problems that kept us on track. Without her, we couldn’t have done what we did.”
Mark also applauds the outstanding support he received from HubSpot’s implementation team. “Without Deanna, we wouldn’t have had the same buy-in from reps,” says Mark. “It was a true partnership.”
High agent adoption
Given the short timelines, Mark expected some pushback from agents. But to his surprise and relief, the agents were eager to adopt Service Hub, especially when they saw how easy and efficient it is to use.
“Nobody complained,” says Mark. “Every single person was thrilled with the new platform because they knew they would be able to service their customers better.”
Agent adoption was also facilitated by transparency and open communication among the teams.
“We supported our reps every step of the way,” says Mark. “We took their feedback, made changes, and stayed connected throughout.”
Automation saves time and reduces call volume
Since implementing Service Hub, customer service call volume has declined because issues are resolved more efficiently and customers are kept informed, which frees up the customer service team for other tasks.
Mark explains how ticket-based automated emails give customers peace of mind:
“When you combine customer service and marketing on the same platform, you can be more proactive. When a service ticket is created, we email the customer automatically. When the ticket is resolved, we email the customer again. We keep the customer informed about the status of their ticket automatically throughout the process, which means they don’t have to keep calling customer service for an update.”
Empowering agents to have contextualized conversations
With sales, marketing, and customer service on the same platform, agents are able to have more productive conversations with customers.
They can see the marketing efforts that are occurring and have all the necessary data points at their fingertips to provide more personalized customer service.
“At the end of the day, it’s about creating good customer experiences from beginning to end. When marketing and service are working hand-in-hand, you’re not having separate conversations with the customer. You can have one conversation that takes them end-to-end through your process. Without a tool like HubSpot, you’re piecemealing it—and the left-hand doesn’t know what the right is doing.”
Leveraging data to enhance the customer experience
Mark and his team are learning more and more about customer behavior, which helps them identify issues and opportunities to improve the customer experience.
“We track why people are calling, which allows us to identify and resolve issues,” says Mark. “Sometimes a simple change to our marketing message is all that’s needed to answer questions and prevent confusion.”
Having marketing and service on the same platform is also keeping everyone aligned and eliminating duplication of effort.
“Before, marketing had certain data points that service didn’t have, and service wanted those data points because customers always asked for them,” says Mark. “That put the onus on our tech team to push the data to multiple places, which was overwhelming. HubSpot has eliminated these information silos.”
Mark foresees Katapult going even deeper in its quest to understand and serve its customers better. “There’s still a ton of opportunities to learn more about our customers,” says Mark. “We’ve only scratched the surface.”
Automating surveys to get customer feedback
With the HubSpot CRM, Katapult has the tools to automatically send surveys to its customers to measure their feedback, something that Mark used to do manually before.
“It would take me hours to do some of these surveys, and I couldn’t do as many as I wanted with our small marketing team,” says Mark.
The automated surveys are returning impressive results, showing improved customer experience, greater customer loyalty, and more repeat business.
“When you provide a great customer experience, you create customers that are loyal to you and your brand,” says Mark. “When it’s a choppy experience because there’s a disconnect between marketing and customer service—you risk losing them.”
Snowflake integration surfaces data
Katapult is also using Operations Hub to surface data in Snowflake that resides in HubSpot.
For example, if a customer has arranged for special payment terms, that information is securely and seamlessly passed from HubSpot to Snowflake to ensure that both parties adhere to the terms.
Before implementing the HubSpot-Snowflake integration, Katapult manually exported special payment terms from HubSpot and cross-checked them with Snowflake. Today, this integration has made the process faster and less error-prone, which contributes to a better customer experience.
“It’s another example of how we’re using HubSpot to serve our customers in the best way possible,” says Mark.
HubDB for affiliate marketing
Mark and his team are also using HubDB tables and custom coded actions to automatically pull affiliate links and populate call to actions (CTAs) in affiliate emails.
Now, when customers click a CTA in an affiliate email, they’re automatically directed to that affiliate. This allows the affiliate to track performance and compensate Katapult with a percentage of every lease sold.
“Even if we’re only earning a small percentage on each deal, it’s still an important revenue driver,” says Mark.
Consistent 4.4-Star Customer Reviews
Since aligning sales, marketing, and customer service on the HubSpot CRM platform, Katapult has consistently received 4.4 stars out of five from its customers on Trustpilot.
Mark is delighted with these consistently high customer ratings because he predicts that customer service will only grow in importance.
“Customer expectations increase every day, and they choose to interact with companies that do it really well, especially in B2C,” says Mark. “The bar is high—and you have to be able to meet and exceed it.”
2X the work in the same amount of time
Even more impressive, Katapult is able to get these high ratings without dramatically expanding the size of its teams. In fact, thanks to automation, Mark estimates he and his team complete twice the amount of work in the same amount of time.
Given the great results that Katapult is achieving with the HubSpot CRM platform, Mark doesn’t hesitate to recommend it to others:
“HubSpot isn’t just a marketing tool. It’s a platform that can change your business by putting your customer at the center of sales, marketing, and customer service. That’s what they do—and why I love HubSpot.”