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Industry Guide Series

Guide to Connection in the Age of AI

How to Drive Growth in the Professional Services Industry

Professional Services Guide

With the expansion of AI, it's time to rethink how you market, sell, and support your customers. Insights and strategies this new guide can help your professional services company drive growth through building meaningful customer connections at scale.
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Introduction: The Customer Journey is Changing

The world was already changing with the crisis of disconnection. And now, with the advent of AI, the world is changing even faster.

Screenshot 2023-08-21 at 5.03.35 PM

Appendix: Inventory and Checklist

In order to win in the age of AI, meaningful customer connections are a must. But it’s hard to put your best foot forward if you’re not even sure how far you are on your journey. By completing this checklist, you can not only get a sense of where you currently stand in regards to customer connection, but also know the actionable steps you can take to improve.


The Customer Journey is Changing

We are in an immense period of change.

In 2022, HubSpot CEO Yamini Rangan introduced the “Crisis of Disconnection” and pointed to the shifts in consumer behavior, data, and technology as the pain point causing the slowdown of growth that many companies are facing.

In fact, 93% of business leaders report less-than-ideal connection with their data, system, internal teams, and with their prospects and customers.

Where people spend their time, how people buy, and how people share information is all different. Plus, what consumer data companies have access to, the quality of data that’s available, and the ability that companies have to act on that data has all changed. Folks are no longer meeting customers where they are at or with the context they need. As a result, we see in the market that lead generation is slowing, sales response rates are declining, and retention rates are dipping.

Simply put, the traditional strategies companies have used to connect with their customers aren’t working anymore and it’s causing businesses to scramble on their way to growth.

Yamini also told us the solution: customer connection. When HubSpot talks about “customer connection”, we are referring to more than your existing paying customers. We use the term customer connection to refer to your entire market, inclusive of both prospective buyers and customers alike.

More recently, a new factor has been added to the customer connection equation. You’ve seen the news and felt the impact on your own business. With every passing moment, generative AI is dramatically changing the old customer journey in front of our eyes and influencing how companies connect with customers in the process.

The world was already changing with the crisis of disconnection. And now, with the advent of AI, the world is changing even faster.

Think about how far the internet has come in a few decades. Each phase has opened up new possibilities and transformed the way we live and interact:

Screenshot 2023-08-22 at 2.55.17 PM

With that change comes a wealth of exciting opportunities ahead.

This is the best time to be a go-to-market leader. Yes, change in the world can feel scary at first. But all that means is new ways of achieving meaningful customer connection are emerging, and you get to be on the front lines of thinking through and building those new strategies.

With AI we’ll see more access to intelligence, which will democratize the ability to understand, reason, and drive action with impact.

Most companies will get the AI strategy wrong on their first try. They will start cranking out vast volumes of content rather than focusing on value and focusing only on efficiency and neglecting the opportunity of optimizing for effectiveness. In the end, they’ll make the crisis of disconnection worse.

But you’re not most companies.

You’re going to get it right.

At HubSpot, our goal has always been to help you grow better. Right now that means empowering you to understand the most effective way to connect with your customers at every stage of this new, AI-influenced customer journey. We at HubSpot are obsessed with helping you find ways to connect with your customers and giving you not only the software -- but the strategies and approach to do it.

We decided the best way to offer you advice would be for us to dig into our most treasured source of knowledge -- our own incredibly remarkable customers.

We spent this past year digging deep into what the top 20% of growing HubSpot customers are doing to not only create meaningful customer connections, but harness those connections to drive growth in their businesses.

We call this remarkable group of folks “connectors.”


What’s a Connector? At HubSpot, we affectionately refer to our top 20% of growing customers that prioritize the art of forging deep customer connections in their growth strategies as "Connectors." These remarkable businesses understand that meaningful engagement with customers is not just a buzzword, but a powerful catalyst for driving sustainable growth and building lasting relationships.


In this guide, you’ll read about what we learned from HubSpot’s connectors and what they are doing to grow better in today’s ever-changing world. You’ll learn about the “Connection Gap” and how you could greatly increase your company growth through the power of customer connection. Plus, we’ll build off those learnings and incorporate a wealth of perspective on how you can leverage and build AI into your customer connection strategy.

Let’s get started.



Chapter 1

How to Get AI Right

As we mentioned before, the advent of AI makes this an extremely exciting time to be in business for several reasons.

At a high level, AI will help level the playing field with features that give you incredibly powerful content creation tools. For example, HubSpot’s AI features Content Assistant and ChatSpot both leverage the same large language model that OpenAI’s AI chatbot, ChatGPT, uses -- but conveniently packaged directly within your HubSpot portal.

Your natural instinct might be to run a strategy focused on efficiency and volume. Why? Because that is what your mindset has been in the past, and that’s what software up until today has offered to you for opportunities.

It’s true, you’ll be able to produce more content. And, you’ll be able to gain efficiency. But that’s not the path to winning AI and driving more customer connection and growth, and it’s how everyone else is going to start. That strategy can be impactful to a point, but what you should really be focusing on is how AI is going to drive you towards a higher value of engagement, benefit your customers, and help them achieve more of what they want.

Ultimately, winning AI and driving more customer connection and growth is more about value than volume, and more about effectiveness than efficiency.

Value Over Volume

If you go down the path of using AI to produce a massive amount of content without a thoughtful strategy behind it, customers will go from digitally fatigued to digitally fed up.

Digital Learning Institute, one of HubSpot’s connectors, knows there’s a better way to find success with AI.

We see AI as assisting, not replacing our team members. It’s going to help us scale.

Fergus Ryan

Digital Learning Institute

Effectiveness Over Efficiency

Once you’ve established your “value over volume” strategy, the next step is to leverage AI to get the most out of your resources.

It’s not about doing more with less, it’s about doing more with more. AI is an additional resource for your already talented team to use and make them even more effective in their sales, marketing, and services roles through optimization. In this sense, AI helps level the playing field for you and gives you the opportunity to compete and punch above your weight class.

We’ve been putting customer persona details into AI before we ask AI to write content -- that’s been effective in the way we’ve written content, especially with blogs. It’s early days, but in 6 months or so we’ll see if it’s having a positive effect.

Jeremy Robertshaw


Agility Digital on working with Healthcare Australia

Chapter 2

How HubSpot Professional Services Connectors Are Using AI

Now that you’ve wrapped your head around the idea of value over volume, and effectiveness over efficiency, let’s see how actual HubSpot customers are implementing these methods. To get a sense of how Content Assistant is empowering others to do more with more, we took a closer look at how connectors in professional services are using it.

Early Usage Patterns of Content Assistant
Inbound_booklets_graph_Professional Services_01-1

Description: These insights are based on data from HubSpot customers who owned Marketing Hub Professional or Enterprise and Sales Hub Professional or Enterprise and actively used deals in 2021-2022 (n=8,682).

First, professional services companies focus on fine-tuning the tone of their emails rather than going through extensive rewrites or expansions. By fine-tuning the feel of their content, professional services companies establish a more relatable and engaging connection with their audience.

Second, these professional services companies recognize the value of personalized and well-crafted email communication powered by AI. Analyzing customer email interactions, AI algorithms generate dynamic templates that align with customer preferences and past responses. This personalized approach allows professional services companies to tailor their email communication more effectively, resulting in higher engagement and conversion rates.

By leveraging AI, professional services companies are able to tap into its vast potential to streamline their content creation processes and deliver engaging, educational, and professional communications. Connectors understand that AI is not here to replace their expertise, but to augment and amplify their capabilities.

Professional Services Companies Have Big Plans for AI

We asked our professional services connectors what else they’d like to start doing with AI in the future. In essence, they had a few primary goals:

→ Develop AI-powered customer support systems to provide quick and accurate responses to customer inquiries, improving the overall support experience.

→ Build a comprehensive database of brand guidelines and terminology to enable AI-driven content creation, ensuring consistent messaging across all communication channels.

→ Leverage advanced algorithms and predictive analytics to analyze and interpret customer data, enabling them to identify the most promising leads with precision and efficiency


Chapter 3

Customer Connection Drives Growth

In today's business landscape, the importance of connection has taken center stage as an indispensable catalyst for driving growth. As we transition from the transformative era of AI to the realm of customer connection, businesses are realizing that forging meaningful relationships and fostering genuine connections with their customers needs to be a top priority. 

Now more than ever, businesses must prioritize customer-centric strategies and leverage the power of human connection to unlock new opportunities for growth and success.
Connection matters now more than ever. Why? It’s become an indispensable driver of growth.

After HubSpot talked to connectors across a slew of different industries, we discovered something we are calling the “Connection Gap”. It turns out that HubSpot’s top connectors are growing 29 percentage points more than baseline companies.

Said another way, connectors are growing 5x more than baseline companies that aren’t prioritizing customer connection in their growth strategies.


Year Over Year Growth Outcomes by Prevalence of Connection Behavior

2021-2022 Year Over Year Growth in Number of Deals Closed (%)

Inbound_booklets_graph_Professional Services_02-2

Description: These insights are based on a weighted average of year over year (2021 vs. 2022) growth of number of deals marked closed-won in HubSpot CRM by customers who owned Marketing Hub Professional/Enterprise, Sales Hub Professional/Enterprise or Service Hub Professional/Enterprise for at least 2 years (n=5,484).

The numbers are pretty similar in the professional services industry.

The Connection Gap for our professional services Connectors is a remarkable 29 percentage point growth advantage over baseline companies. Furthermore, they surpassed companies in the bottom 20% by an extraordinary 43 percentage points.

It’s clear that the professional services companies excelling in customer connection are not slightly outperforming the competition — they’re operating on a whole other level.


Year Over Year Growth Outcomes by Prevalence of Connection Behavior

2021-2022 Year Over Year Growth in Number of Deals Closed (%)

Inbound_booklets_graph_Professional Services_03-3

Description: These insights are based on a weighted average of year over year (2021 vs. 2022) growth of number of deals marked closed-won in HubSpot CRM by our customers in the Manufacturing industry who owned Marketing Hub Professional/Enterprise, Sales Hub Professional/Enterprise or Service Hub Professional/Enterprise for at least
2 years (n=336).

Invest in customer connection, and it’s clear you’ll see the results.

The advent of AI presents you with a wealth of opportunities to start closing that Connection Gap. Connectors are already embracing AI experimentation to get ready for whatever the future holds.

In fact, connectors are about 2x more likely to trial HubSpot’s AI tools versus the general population, suggesting they’re early adopters of new connection features6. They are testing AI now to be prepared for the future.At a time when customer connection has never been more important, connectors are paving the way forward.

Forging Connections in the Professional Services Industry

One thing that was very clear from our conversations with top connectors in the professional services industry is that they all view customer connection as a competitive advantage.

Customer connection is no longer a nicety in today’s world — it’s a necessity.

Still, many companies aren’t leveraging the wealth of data available from their market, prospect, and existing customers, missing out on invaluable insights that are sitting right in front of them. When we look back to the connectors, it’s evident that acting on this data is the key to unlocking growth.

HubSpot customer Jonas Hager from Carvolution credits personal communication through customer connection as a competitive advantage in their success.

Our competitive advantage is prioritizing personal communication and 1:1 meetings throughout the customer journey. Our prospects feel we don’t just have fancy brochures and marketing videos — but our sales teams actually love the product, know the product, and help you find the best solution for you.

Jonas Hager


The bottom line is clear: if you operate within the professional services industry and haven’t made customer connection a priority, the time to start is now.

It’s all in the details. Matt Gallo, Customer Success Manager at HubSpot, says the companies he works with see a lot of success by investing time in the “little things.”

For example, highlight a one-year anniversary by setting up a workflow that sends an email that says “It’s been one year since you’ve been with us” and includes a coupon code. Companies that are really strategic about how they keep in touch with customers create those strong connections.

Matt Gallo

Customer Success Manager


Embrace the power of nurturing meaningful relationships with prospects and customers, tap into their invaluable feedback, and involve them in your company's iterative process. Do that, and you’ll be on your way toward driving growth and fostering a sense of partnership that sets your professional services business apart from the rest.

Chapter 4

We Need to Rethink the Customer Journey

The customer journey and customer connection naturally go hand-in-hand, and AI is set to reshape the entire experience. When looking at the varying stages within the customer journey, we expect to see change.


We expect to see a significant shift from traditional methods of searching and clicking to a more interactive and personalized approach on social. Customers will no longer rely on manual searches to find information from companies. Instead, they’ll prompt AI systems to provide them with tailored information that precisely matches their specific needs. This shift towards a more personalized and dynamic content experience empowers customers to receive tailored information that precisely matches their specific needs. As a result, the discovery process has become more efficient and meaningful, enhancing the customer journey from the very beginning.


The role of content will take on a dynamic and personalized dimension. Instead of receiving static, one-size-fits-all content, customers will be immersed in a world of tailored experiences. With the advent of Generative AI bots, customers will be served information based on their individual needs, creating responsive digital experiences for all. This shift will enable customers to have more in-depth and meaningful interactions and receive information across their preferred channels like direct messages and SMS. In turn, the consideration process becomes more engaging and relevant, which leads to stronger connections between customers and sellers.


The demand for a transformative shift will become even more apparent. Customers will no longer settle for a standard discovery experience with sales representatives who have limited knowledge about their specific needs and preferences. By leveraging AI-powered analytics and insights, sales representatives will have personalized intelligence about each customer. This newfound understanding will enable them to offer more efficient and effective guidance. Better guidance works to accelerate the buying process and forge stronger relationships with customers in the long run. The focus here shifts from a mere "discovery" to a comprehensive "diagnosis" of the customer’s needs, streamlining the self-serve buying experience and facilitating easy payment options.


Rather than providing reactive and often time-consuming support, AI will enable businesses to be proactive. Customers will receive a seamless and delightful customer experience, enabled by AI-powered automation and personalized support. They will enjoy prompt assistance and proactive help through user insights and customer-facing bots. AI ensures that seamless and delightful customer experiences become the norm, making it easier for customers to achieve their desired outcomes and empowering them to switch to a better solution if necessary. The focus here is on empowering customers to succeed and achieve their goals in stride.

Engaging Across the Entire Customer Journey is Critical to Success

What do the fastest-growing HubSpot connectors have in common? They’re all committed to engaging with customers throughout the entire customer  journey, across their entire business using the customer platform.

Companies that connected with customers across all five journey stages grew +19 percentage points more on average than those who connected with customers in a single lifecycle stage.


Incremental Growth by Number of Customer Journey Stages Engaged

Median Year Over Year Growth of Deals Closed (%)



Inbound_booklets_graph_Professional Services_04

Description: These insights are based the median year over year (2021 vs. 2022) growth of number of deals marked closed-won in HubSpot CRM by customers who owned Marketing Hub Professional/Enterprise, Sales Hub Professional/Enterprise or Service Hub Professional/Enterprise for at least 2 years (n=5,484).

It’s clear that running customer connection strategies aren’t important for just one department. This is an effort that needs to be carried out throughout your entire company -- an end-to-end customer connections strategy that shines through in every touch point that your prospects or customers have with you.

The numbers don’t lie; companies that connect with customers at every touchpoint, from initial discovery to post-purchase delight, are winning.

What's even more intriguing is the incremental growth that each additional lifecycle stage brings to the table. The growth generated from adding another stage surpasses the growth achieved in the preceding stage. So, transitioning from one lifecycle stage to two results in an impressive +3.5 percentage points of growth. Expanding from four stages to all five unlocks a whopping +6.4 percentage points of growth.


Based on these compounding results, we can confidently say that each lifecycle stage plays a role in contributing to the overall growth of your business.

Businesses that prioritize crafting customer connections across their entire business are about to foster meaningful connections with customers -- and they are not just winning. They are winning big.

More Features Lead to Better Connections

Another way to foster deep customer connections is by using a broader range of features to engage with customers within each of the stages of the customer journey.

The data speaks for itself: connectors are leveraging more features than baseline companies to actively engage with customers at each stage of the buyer’s journey.

Year Over Year Growth Outcomes by Number of Features Used in Each Customer Journey Stage

Growth in Deals Closed (%)

Inbound_booklets_graph_Professional Services_05

Description: These insights are based the median year over year (2021 vs. 2022) growth of number of deals marked closed-won in HubSpot CRM by customers who owned Marketing Hub Professional/Enterprise, Sales Hub Professional/Enterprise or Service Hub Professional/Enterprise for at least 2 years (n=5,484).

It doesn’t stop there. Top connectors are also engaging buyers across more lifecycle stages compared to average companies.

While just 38% of professional services companies using HubSpot are actively engaging customers at all five stages of the entire customer journey, 66% of top professional services industry connectors are engaging customers across the entire journey.

This perfectly captures the positive results that come with establishing meaningful connections with customers — from the initial touchpoint to post-purchase support and beyond.

By harnessing the full potential of HubSpot’s features and embracing a comprehensive approach to customer engagement, companies can elevate their performance, foster deep connections, and differentiate themselves in a competitive landscape.

Looking to optimize your customer journey strategy but not sure where to start? We’ve got you covered. Let’s look more closely at how a few of our top connectors in the professional services industry are getting the most out of HubSpot so you can learn from those who are leading the charge.

Take a moment and reflect for yourself — what areas of the customer journey could your company take some time to bolster and improve?

Below are three examples of top HubSpot professional services connectors who have reviewed their customer journey and are narrowing in on one or more focus areas. Think back to what stage in your customer journey needs the most improvement, and take some inspiration from some of our customers below who’ve shared what they are focusing on to be successful.

The first, Blip Billboards, tells us how they’re looking to AI to bolster their sales cycle and SEO strategies. Next, you’ll hear from Carvolution about their philosophy of continuously improving each stage in their customer journey. Lastly, you’ll see how the Digital Learning Institute is turning MQLs into SQLs with speed and simplicity.

Let’s take a look.

Blip Billboards is revolutionizing the world of advertising by offering a convenient digital platform that allows individuals to effortlessly secure billboard placements. With a robust sales cycle in place, Blip Billboards understands the importance of continuously refining their strategies to stay ahead in the competitive market. Currently, they are focused on enhancing their SEO strategy with the power of AI.

Recognizing the significance of organic online visibility, Blip Billboards is leveraging AI to optimize their website's performance in search engine rankings. By harnessing the potential of AI-driven algorithms and data analysis, they are uncovering valuable insights that inform their SEO approach. Being proactive here enables them to improve their online presence, attract more relevant traffic, and increase brand visibility among potential customers.

Blip Billboards' dedication to honing their SEO strategy showcases their commitment to staying at the forefront of the digital advertising landscape. By embracing the transformative capabilities of AI, they are positioning themselves to reach a wider audience and provide their customers with an unparalleled advertising experience.

“We are leveraging map data, targeting, and ChatGPT to craft personalized messages depending on where folks are from. For example, we’ll give ChatGPT the prompt “Tell me why people would want to advertise in California and reference a state park near this general location.” This gives a super specific pitch to that area which has been helping with SEO to drive more traffic because we’re using a lot of local keywords."

-- Brandon Tuttle, Senior Business Manager of Operations Automation 


Carvolution is on a never-ending quest for improvement. They believe that every stage in the customer journey holds opportunities for growth, and they’re committed to making each experience better than the last. It’s a cycle of constant tinkering and refining, driven by a passion for delivering above-and-beyond services.

Their latest focus? Customer onboarding. They understand that the onboarding process sets the tone for the entire customer relationship. By seamlessly guiding customers through a tailored onboarding process that includes personalized welcome messages, comprehensive product tutorials, and dedicated support channels, Carvolution ensures that every new customer feels valued, empowered, and equipped with the knowledge and resources to make the most of their car subscription services.

But Carvolution’s pursuit of connection doesn’t stop there. In fact, they’re already looking ahead to their prospecting journey.

They know that attracting the right prospects is vital for sustained growth. By regularly reviewing and analyzing their prospecting strategies, they are actively assessing the effectiveness of their targeting criteria, refining their messaging based on customer feedback and market trends, and experimenting with new lead generation techniques. They dive deep into their prospecting data to identify areas for improvement, and then make data-driven adjustments to their strategies to attract even more perfect-fit customers.

“We are working to improve the customer onboarding process. It’s a continuous journey. As soon as you finish one thing, you look at something we’ve implemented or improved a year ago and improve again. We are constantly rotating through and investing in the entire customer journey. Once we’ve done the whole journey we have to improve again and start from the beginning - it’s fun!"

-- Jonas Hager, Carvolution



Remember the Digital Learning Institute? Well, their story is just too good to not dive deeper.

As the global leader in digital learning design training, Digital Learning Institute is committed to empowering individuals to excel in their careers and organizations. While content creation remains a cornerstone of their marketing strategy, they’ve shifted their focus towards optimizing the conversion of MQLs into SQLs. Recognizing the importance of effectively nurturing leads throughout the customer journey, they are employing targeted tactics to facilitate a seamless transition from marketing to sales.

One notable adjustment they have made is in their live event strategy. By strategically coordinating MQLs and SQLs with highly targeted events focused on driving conversions and customer engagement in the late stage of the sales process, Digital Learning Institute alleviates the burden on their sales representatives. Now, they can focus their efforts on guiding qualified leads toward these impactful events where successful conversions are highly likely to occur. These events boast a remarkable conversion rate, providing a fertile ground for meaningful interactions and ultimately driving sales.

By optimizing the conversion process and leveraging the power of events, they are able to maximize the impact of their marketing efforts and foster stronger connections with their audience. Their innovative strategies and focus on seamless transitions from marketing to sales serve as an inspiration for businesses aiming to enhance their lead conversion and drive revenue growth.

“We recently learned that the order of our live events matters, and we switched things around. We know if we get someone to a Virtual Open Day and they hear from our customers, within two weeks we’ll see a 50% conversion rate. These events aren’t just us talking about the product — it’s the alumni talking about it and giving prospects the opportunity to hear customer stories that end up being the most powerful thing. "

-- Fergus Ryan, Digital Learning Institute


Chapter 5

Both Human and Non-human Engagement Matter

People often worry that integrating one-too-many AI-driven connections into your customer engagement strategy will create a false sense of connection, lacking the authenticity of a human-to-human interaction. The truth is that growth comes when companies embrace a balanced approach.

We’ve learned that connection is a team sport.

Human-driven tactics and scalable strategies are both essential for growth. It’s not about replacing one with the other — it’s about orchestrating a symphony where technology and personal interactions harmonize. As Paul Roetzer, founder and CEO of Marketing AI Institute, said "AI won't replace marketers, but marketers who use AI will replace marketers who don't." 

Using both humans and AI together is the key to creating incredible customer connections. Customers want control and choice. AI helps customers achieve things better, and it means that humans can uplevel their skills.

Engagement Across the Buyer’s Journey

As your customers move through each stage of their journey, you have the chance to strategically infuse human-led interactions and tap into AI. It’s a tag-team approach where both humans and technology work hand in hand to create the best possible user experiences.

As the customer journey progresses, more opportunity arises for leveraging human connection and usage of AI tools.


Human vs. Scaled Connection Tools Across the Customer Journey

Percent of Connection Model Tools

Inbound_booklets_graph_Professional Services_06

Description: These insights are based on models built to predict year-over-year customer deal growth based on their usage of connection features/tools.


On their own, human and scaled connections can accomplish a lot. But used together, and that’s when the magic happens.


Median Percent Growth by Amount of Stages

(min. 1 tool per stage, min. 500 records)

Inbound_booklets_graph_Professional Services_07

Description: These insights are based on the median year over year (2021 vs. 2022) growth of number of deals marked closed-won in HubSpot CRM by customers who owned Marketing Hub Professional/Enterprise, Sales Hub Professional/Enterprise or Service Hub Professional/Enterprise for at least 2 years (n=5,484).


HubSpot data shows that companies using both human and scaled connection tactics across the entire lifecycle are seeing 19% growth.

AI-driven connection tools do their best work early on in the customer journey. When it gets down to the later stages, human-led tools should be front and center. Neglecting human connection in the deal and customer stages can actually lead to negative growth (-1%).

By consistently providing valuable and regular touchpoints with your customers, you’ll not only show them the true value you bring to the table, but will also foster a stronger relationship that leads to long-term retention.

Jeremy Robertshaw, Founder of Solutions Partner Agility Digital and HubSpot customer, shares how enabling consistent connection creates better customer relationships:

We have a regularly scheduled fortnightly email that goes out so our customers know to expect those emails as a resource and know that we are there to help them. I heard that if one of those gets missed, several customers reach out and check in to get more information because they notice the absence. Regular cadence builds dependability and trust in the relationship.

Jeremy Robertshaw


Solutions Partner Agility Digital

For Your Inspiration

Ready to turn ideas into action? Check out a few of the recommendations that our professional services connectors shared with us.

While some of these strategies may seem obvious, it’s important to remember that being brilliant at the basics is key to driving growth through creating impactful customer connections. If you’re not doing any of the below, now is a great time to start. If you are, do an audit of what you have in place and optimize your processes.

Manufacturing_icon 1-1

Email Strategy

If you’re repeatedly sending the same type of emails to your customers, it can cause loss of interest or friction with customers and lead to disengagement over time. 
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First-Party Data

Leverage the wealth of first-party data and internal knowledge available through your HubSpot portal to personalize your messaging to each customer's specific needs.
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Tailored Automation

Make sure your automated content is finely tailored to what your customers are genuinely interested in. Avoid generic or impersonal messages, and inject some personalization when it makes sense to do so. 
Manufacturing_icon 5-1


Use the power of advanced chatbots integrated with Operations Hub. This dynamic combination empowers you to provide visitors with a highly customized experience, guiding them to exactly what they were looking for.
Manufacturing_icon 4-2

A/B Testing

xperiment with different email formats, subject lines, and messaging styles to uncover what truly resonates with your audience. Keep them on their toes, and you’ll have them eagerly awaiting your next message. The same goes for your webpages!
Manufacturing_icon 6-2


Take advantage of workflows for drip campaigns to establish consistent and strategic connections with your audience. For example, over the course of seven weeks engage with a customer at once a week with a message that builds on itself over time. This gradual progression ensures that your communication remains relevant and impactful. 
We’ve talked through a lot over the past few chapters -- now it’s time to summarize it all together.

Chapter 6

How to Win in the Age of AI

The customer journey in the age of AI is changing go-to-market motions. How can you navigate this evolving landscape with confidence and control?

Personal Over Personalized

When it comes to your customer journey, baseline personalization isn’t enough. You need to create hyper-personal experiences that truly speak to your customers' unique needs and preferences.

Value Over Volume

Don’t fall into the trap of believing volume is king. When it comes to content, quality beats quantity. Resist the urge to flood your customers with tons of resources, and instead focus on delivering high-value content that educates, inspires, and addresses their pain points.

Solve Over Sell

In this new era, sellers must become trusted advisors and problem-solvers. Seek opportunities to guide your customers, provide valuable insights, and help them overcome their challenges. By positioning yourself as a trusted ally, you'll build stronger connections and foster long-term loyalty.


Amidst Uncertainty, You Can Still Invest in Your Future

Tightening of the budget will continue to happen. It may be stressful right now, but it's truly an opportunity for collaboration and alignment -- because when things need to be tight, we see better efforts towards common goals.

Jessica King

HubSpot Customer Success Manager



You don’t need a crystal ball to know that change is always on the horizon. 

It’s true that the current circumstances demand immediate solutions. However, it's crucial to envision what lies beyond this most recent temporary hardship. Growth should not be viewed as a temporary fix, but rather as an ongoing pursuit even after we overcome the current macroeconomic challenges.

Don't put your future strategies on hold just because you can't fully leverage them now. Make sure you have both short-term and long-term plans in place that you can actively track and monitor.

The best of the best stay two steps ahead of the competition when it comes to innovation and advancement. How do we know? Data on our top connectors in the professional services industry suggests they’re already gearing up for change.


Leading Professional Services Are Investing in the Future

Top connectors in the professional services industry understand the need to adapt and stay ahead in an ever-evolving business landscape. To do so, they’re embracing key initiatives to drive growth, enhance customer experiences, and maximize their market potential. We asked some of our top connectors in the professional services industry what they are doing to plan for future growth. Here's what they shared with us about their own initiatives and preparations for the road ahead:

Embracing the uncertainty of the current landscape, our top professional services customers are demonstrating true resilience and foresight by making bold moves to drive long-term growth. These industry leaders understand the importance of adapting to the ever-evolving market dynamics, and they are seizing this opportunity to reimagine their strategies, establish new approaches across the entire customer journey, and make strategic investments in cutting-edge software solutions.

Let’s not forget — growing means taking the bumps and hurdles in stride. Instead of succumbing to complacency, lean into the discomfort of the moment. The best companies recognize that true growth requires embracing change and stepping outside of their comfort zones. With unwavering determination, they are doubling down on their efforts to explore new strategies and tactics that align with the shifting needs and expectations of their customers.

In essence, connectors are not content with short-term gains or momentary triumphs. They’ve got their eyes set on long-term growth, and are taking strategic leaps to ensure they get there.

Their willingness to embrace discomfort, explore new strategies, and invest in cutting-edge software is what makes them true connectors. Their commitment to driving customer-centric growth sets them apart as leaders in the industry.


This is Just the Beginning

Consider all of the ground we just covered, and then remember one of the first things we said in this guide; we’re just scratching the surface when it comes to AI.

In a world where everything is evolving at lightning speed, the true winners, the connectors, stand out because of their unwavering dedication to staying close to their customers.

At HubSpot, we embody this philosophy—we're not just a company, but a community built on the foundation of customer connection. We're thrilled to witness all of you harness the power of AI to fortify those connections and unlock unprecedented growth.

When faced with uncertainty or doubt, remember this fundamental principle: stay close to your customers. They are the compass that guides you through uncharted territories. By listening attentively, understanding their needs, and adapting your strategies accordingly, you'll forge bonds that transcend transactions and transform your business.

Embrace the possibilities that AI brings, but don't forget the importance of the human touch. Blend cutting-edge technology with genuine empathy and personal experiences. Of course, never underestimate the power of a smile or a well-timed joke to brighten someone's day. After all, a little levity can go a long way in building meaningful connections.

As we look over our new world, fueled by innovation and boundless potential, let’s seize the opportunity to grow better, stronger, and more connected than ever before.

Embrace the tools and resources at your disposal, and be fearless in your pursuit of growth.

Chapter 7

HubSpot Features for Customer Connection

When delving into the success of HubSpot’s top Connectors, we discovered an interesting pattern: the key drivers of growth were pretty different across varying industries. In the case of the professional services industry, we found the following features made a huge difference in supercharging growth for our professional services customers. 

Not only am I able to map data across and make sure the communication is where people need it -- I can create tasks, set reminders -- it’s so powerful, and the most important feature in HubSpot to me. It’s what I enjoy the most in our CRM. We’re a very small team, so the more efficiency we can manufacture, the better.

Stephen Michaelezki


Say Hello to the Latest and Greatest from HubSpot

At HubSpot, we’re always thinking about how we can help our customers grow better. In 2023, we’re excited to bring new solutions and services to the market that are designed to turbocharge growth strategies — even amidst unprecedented change.

Let’s dive in and explore the game-changing new additions to your growth toolkit.

Relaunching Sales Hub

We’re relaunching Sales Hub with new sales engagement features designed to make your reps more productive, while giving them the power to create better connection with customers and leads.

Meet the suite of advanced sales engagement tools purpose-built to help your team cut through the noise and connect with your ideal customers through relevant, contextual conversations that convert leads into deals.

The prospecting workspace introduces a new single view where your sellers can manage all of their work. Complete with all the data and tools, your reps won’t need to jump in and out of apps or cobbled-together systems, maximizing their performance.  

And with our smarter sequences, your teams can get their sales automation down to a science. Perform A/B tests on emails, see which sequences are generating the most revenue, and drill into the efficacy of each step to maximizing each touchpoint.

Content Assistant

Say goodbye to writer’s block and hello to content at its finest. Content Assistant is like having a trusted executive assistant by your side, offering real-time drafts, suggestions and recommendations as you create content. Craft irresistible blog posts, marketing emails, and social media captions in minutes, not hours. From persuasive sales emails to engaging marketing content, to drafting quick replies to customers, Content Assistant ensures your content hits the mark every time.



ChatSpot takes your productivity to a whole new level, combining the power of ChatGPT with dozens of unique data sources, most notably the Smart CRM. Imagine the ultimate AI-powered sales and marketing assistant designed to help your businesses grow. With ChatSpot, you'll be wowing your audience with engaging blog posts, social media captions, and emails, creating AI-generated images, and enjoying your in-house editor. You can also use ChatSpot to interact with your Smart CRM using natural language -– so you can just type “Create a sales report for the last quarter” and ChatSpot will get the data for you, instead of having to create a report “the old-fashion way”. Get ready to chat your way to growth greatness.


Want to learn more about these features?

See what's new at HubSpot.

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Appendix: Inventory and Checklist

In order to win in the age of AI, meaningful customer connections are a must. But it’s hard to put your best foot forward if you’re not even sure how far you are on your journey. By completing this checklist, you can not only get a sense of where you currently stand in regards to customer connection, but also know the actionable steps you can take to improve.

A massive thank you to all of our awesome HubSpot customers who took the time to chat with us about their strategies.

Your valuable input and willingness to share your experiences made this guide possible. We couldn't have done it without you, so thank you for being incredible partners and helping us create something amazing together!

Let’s Get Started

In your pursuit of better customer connections, you don't have to navigate the journey alone. Your dedicated Customer Success Manager at HubSpot is here to support and guide you every step of the way.