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Industry Guide Series

Guide to Connection in the Age of AI

How to Drive Growth in the Software and IT Industry

Software and IT 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 software or IT 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.

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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.


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:

Phases on human interaction

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.

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

We are deeply all-in on AI. We want to continue to maximize the workday of every team member, and we see AI as an arrow in the quiver of our team members, not replacing them.

Patrick Gillooly


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.

Chapter 2

How HubSpot Software and IT 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 software and IT are using it.

Early Usage Patterns of Content Assistant
Inbound_booklets_graph_Software IT_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).

Our analysis reveals that software and IT companies are prioritizing the editing aspect of content creation, specifically on refining the tone of their emails. Rather than rewriting or expanding extensively, these companies recognize the value of fine-tuning their messaging to strike the right balance. By leveraging AI-powered tools like Content Assistant, they’re able to easily adjust the tone of voice to be friendly and witty, which is exactly the tone that resonates best with their audience2.

On that note, our research also shows that these companies are leveraging Content Assistant to tailor their communication style based on their brand personality. With the ability to adjust the tone of voice, they can project a professional yet approachable image, aligning with their target audience’s expectations. They’re able to infuse their content with the right blend of friendliness and wit, which in turn makes their messaging more relatable and compelling.

By leveraging AI, software and IT 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.

Software and IT Companies Have Big Plans for AI

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

→ Develop an AI-powered tool that generates personalized quotes for customers based on their inbox communications.
→ Incorporate ChatSpot for insightful reporting and analytics purposes.
→ Integrate AI technology into their products to enhance their capabili- ties and features.


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 (%)


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 when you double click into the Software and IT industry specially.

The Connection Gap for software and IT industry Connectors is an impressive 29 percentage point growth advantage over baseline companies. Moreover, they outpaced companies in the bottom 20% by a remarkable 39 percentage points.

It’s evident that the software and IT companies that excel in customer connection are not just slightly outperforming the competition – they are operating on an entirely different 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_Software IT_03-1

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).

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 features. 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 Software and IT Industry

One thing that was very clear from our conversations with top connectors in the software and IT 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 Patrick Gillooly of Decisions credits customer connection as a competitive advantage in their success.

At the heart of it is continuing to be deeply dedicated to our customers’ needs. Our entire roadmap, how we structure our support, and how we structure team members, are all dedicated to what our customers need from us. We aren’t trying to force anything on them -- we want them to feel like customer-owners of the company. That philosophy is pervasive throughout our organization.

Patrick Gillooly


The bottom line is clear: if you operate within the software and IT 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 software and IT 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_Software IT_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_Software IT_05-1

Customer Journey Stage 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).


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

While just 40% of software and IT companies using HubSpot are actively engaging customers at all five stages of the entire customer journey, 61% of top software and IT 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 one of our top connectors in the software and IT industry and how they’re getting the most out of HubSpot.

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

Think back to what stage in your customer’s journey needs the most improvement, and take some inspiration from Decisions, who below shares what they are focusing on to be successful.

 Let’s take a look.

Remember Decisions from earlier in the playbook? Well, their story is just too good to not dive deeper.

As a comprehensive meeting optimization management tool, Decisions empowers businesses through its integration with the Microsoft ecosystem, mobile app, and web app. By prioritizing each stage of the customer journey, they ensure a seamless and rewarding experience for their users.

Let’s explore how they approach each stage.

1. Discover

Decisions leverages paid media channels to generate a relevant and engaged audience. Their strategic use of ads outside of HubSpot, coupled with data-driven insights, allows them to make informed decisions and back them up with concrete data. Reports play a crucial role in breaking down strategy decisions and providing valuable insights.

2. Consider

With a focus on inbound marketing, Decisions maximizes the potential of ads based on existing data in HubSpot. By targeting the right audience at the right time, they ensure that their message reaches the right people and generates quality leads.

Decisions optimize lead generation in a few different ways. First, they utilize website forms and leverage the native integration with Facebook lead ads to drive downloads for webinars. Second, they make use of Zapier integration for lead ads from other platforms. The ease of website development with HubSpot’s theming capabilities enables them to create robust and visually appealing websites in a fraction of the time.

3. Buy

HubSpot is extensively utilized by Decisions for both pre-sales and post-sales processes. They are dedicated to enhancing quote generation consistency and streamlining deal-making procedures. Integration with tools like Stripe allows for seamless payment processing, enabling a smooth sales experience for all.

4. Use

Decisions cares deeply about customer success. Their goal is to provide exceptional value and make their customer success team feel like a team of 100. As such, they’re revamping their knowledge base to better serve customers and building an automated self-ser- vice engine. Efficient automation is implemented to proactively address churn risk and identify upsell potential. By starting each day with clear insights into customer needs and potential actions, their customer success team can deliver personalized support and ensure customer satisfaction at every touchpoint.
Decisions is a prime example of a company that understands the importance of prioritizing every stage of the customer journey. Their commitment to data-driven decision-making, personalized customer experiences, and streamlined processes is setting them apart in the industry.


"I’m an elder millennial now — I don’t want to talk to someone on the phone. We’re trying to design our workflows in a way that when decision-makers don’t want to talk on the phone they don’t have to. The same goes for email. When you add on ChatGPT and AI, the pendulum is swinging all the way in that direc- tion of okay, this could be a really meaningful interaction without a heavy 1:1 human component. We’re invested in getting that done as best we can"

-- Patrick Gillooly, Decisions


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_Software IT_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_Software IT_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.

At Decisions, the focus is not on eliminating human interaction, but rather on achieving a higher level of client engagement tailored to their individual preferences:

We don’t like the phrases automated touch, humanless, or touchless -- that’s absolutely not the goal. The goal is a higher level of engagement with the clients in the way they want to be engaged with.

Patrick Gillooly


For Your Inspiration

Ready to turn ideas into action? Check out a few of the recommendations that our software and IT 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 software and IT industry suggests they’re already gearing up for change.


Leading Software and IT Are Investing in the Future

Top connectors in the software and IT 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 software and IT 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 software and IT 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 software and IT industry, we found the following features made a huge difference in supercharging growth for our customers.

Not having a singular strategy is an effective tactic for increasing connection with customers via sales emails. We treat certain people who want to raise their hand and talk to someone one way, and treat folks who never want to talk to someone a different way. For us, it’s been sorting those buckets out that has been one of our keys to success, for both sales and marketing.

Patrick Gillooly



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.


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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.