Choosing the right CRM is an important decision for all companies, regardless of their size or where they are in their business lifecycle. Yet far too often, decisions are made without a thorough evaluation process being completed to ensure that the CRM they select is fit for purpose; not just in the short-term, but can adapt and scale in alignment with the company in the long-term.
At EMPAUA, our focus is on working with hypergrowth companies and supporting them with their Salesforce implementation. We very regularly collaborate with businesses who are moving from HubSpot to Salesforce or are in the process of considering either HubSpot or Salesforce.
When choosing a CRM, I would probably group a company’s approach into 3 different categories:
If we look at Salesforce as an example, several years ago it was regarded more as an enterprise product - geared at fairly mature businesses with complex requirements - and at that time, their price point was a barrier to many companies that did not meet these criteria. That has entirely changed now, with Salesforce introducing editions such as Essentials - which starts at only £20 per user per month.
This opens up the market completely and allows companies to start their CRM journey with a product that meets their needs (and budget!) in the short-term. As they grow, however, and need to expand functionality, they can do so all on the same platform, by upgrading their edition of Salesforce as needed, allowing it to evolve in line with their business growth.
In my experience, it’s ultimately because HubSpot does not provide as much room to customise or adapt their technology as Salesforce does; especially for companies that wish to run their entire business on the platform. This is something that is pretty key should they wish to scale efficiently, especially as we want to (and need to!) engage with our customers at every point in their journey.
Traditionally, different business units such as sales and customer service, have operated in isolation - but as we know, that shouldn’t be the case at all. There is even more of an emphasis on the 360 degree view of our customers - and recognising that their journey does not end once they purchase something.
This is where Salesforce truly steps up and stands out from the crowd - its platform has the tools and capabilities to not only support this view and therefore the engagement of customers across their entire journey, but it can do it seamlessly across any channel and for any company regardless of their business model.
It is quite common for companies, particularly start-ups, to migrate to Salesforce in a phased approach. They do this by implementing first of all its core CRM products such as Salesforce Sales Cloud, whilst continuing to use HubSpot for marketing automation, with a bi-directional sync set up between the two platforms. This, which I will happily admit, works very well together at first glance…. So why should companies ultimately move their entire business onto Salesforce? Here are top 4 reasons:
If you are considering a move to Salesforce or any other CRM for that matter - do not take the ‘lift and shift’ approach. I’ve seen businesses switch CRMs, and pretty much recreate what they had already built in a legacy CRM, then have this expectation that everything will be magically improved. I wish it was as simple as that, but unfortunately, this is not the case.
Treat it like a new implementation and start from a clean slate. For example, if you think of doing a spring-clean of your kitchen cupboards; you don’t take everything out, clean it all then put back absolutely everything including all the out of date packages/products, do you? No, you throw away all the rubbish, and you sort everything out in a way/system which makes logical sense, so you know where everything is, with regularly used items at the front.
The same applies to a CRM switch, which goes back to my earlier point about choosing a CRM from day one that will scale and adapt with your business, as then you avoid an exercise like this which can be costly and time-intensive. However, in saying that, working with a partner who has expertise across both HubSpot and Salesforce will naturally make this process run a lot smoother and a lot quicker.
This is why we at EMPAUA have had a lot of success with migrating our customers from HubSpot to Salesforce, due to our knowledge of both platforms. You need partners who are responsive and agile and understand the need to deliver value to the business, and often their investors, quickly but successfully.
We have a proven track record in this area, and continue to work with some of the most well-known startups in the UK, including companies like Cazoo which is the fastest business ever to reach unicorn status in the UK.
We quite often recommend a phased approach to implementations, which our customers seem to really like as it keeps costs fairly low initially and also ensures the risk of a particular project is much lower.
We have solid HubSpot expertise internally - I’ve been working with the platform for 4 years now and took the time to also complete some certifications to strengthen my knowledge further.
Customers get a certain level of reassurance from us knowing that we know HubSpot, and particularly in the pre-sales phase, this is really helpful, especially if they have no prior knowledge of Salesforce. I am able to use terminology that is familiar with them, which instils a certain confidence in them which might not be there if our knowledge was limited to the Salesforce CRM.
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