It's no secret that Sales and Marketing operations have become a crucial part of overall business success. Analyzing and evaluating data is a key component to forecasting and planning how a company will strategically grow and fit into its target market. However, with so many responsibilities to account for, taking the time to truly understand how your campaigns and processes are performing can be a significant source of stress. That is why businesses are beginning to work smarter, not harder - and implementing tools to streamline operations.

Common Problems Business Professionals Face

If you have implemented tools such as HubSpot or Salesforce, you know that while these platforms are ultra-powerful, they can also cause some confusion. There are so many features that it can be challenging to know where to start, causing many users to fumble at making the most of the product. It is always best to rely on a partner to help you find out the best strategy for your business right off the bat so that you can begin collecting and analyzing data as efficiently as possible. 

However, we know that many users will try to operate the platforms solo to start. While we admire this enthusiasm and grit, it is not uncommon for first-time users to run into frustrating problems like completing a Salesforce or HubSpot integration or fixing broken data that did not transfer properly. 

Solutions For First-Time Users Exploring New Platforms

When it comes to using a new platform such as Salesforce or HubSpot, there are many resources available for users to rely on when it comes to needing support. HubSpot Academy is a fantastic resource for commonly asked questions and general product breakdowns. If you are looking for basic tips to help get you started and grow your organization, this is the place to be! HubSpot also offers support for users who have custom questions about using the platform, but if you need a more personalized approach - users can buy a block of HubSpot consulting hours. 

Relying on other users or old pros via social media is another way first-time users can gain support when using a new platform. Sites such as Reddit, Twitter, and Discord offer groups for free advice, but the quality can certainly vary. DIY worksheets and PDF online guides are also available for users looking for a walk-through on how to get started with the product. 

In this digital age, Freelancing has become more popular now than ever before. Finding a freelancer on sites such as Fivver and UpWork can be a great way to build out your support team and hire an expert at a low cost. Be cautious, however, because even if the Freelancer does not complete the project, they will still need to be paid for their time spent tinkering. Hiring a full-time specialized to join your company is another alternative, but this can be costly and requires an intense recruitment process.

Becoming a Self-Taught Pro Can Be Hard

If you are planning on diving right into your new software system and exploring things for yourself, this is absolutely an option. However, there are some barriers associated with this method. First and foremost, learning a new product by trial and error can be extremely time-consuming, and many users find it hard to dedicate the time needed to truly understand the program. 

The online resources mentioned above can also be very helpful, but many provide just a sneak peek of what the programs actually offer. Most learning resources only have surface-level insight into tools and concepts instead of personalized advice specific to your business goals. Without a 1:1 coaching session, getting a complete understanding of your account and the features available to you can be a challenge. 

Exploring HubSpot Direct Help

HubSpot direct help is one of the most commonly used resources we mentioned above. This is an easy to request technical support system that provides solutions to bugs and kinks within the product. However, HubSpot direct will not offer any solutions for integrations (native ones included) which is one of the main features users rely on for cross-collaboration between platforms. This support is narrowly focused on technical bugs and shies away from individual customer needs. 

HubSpot consulting is another support system users can rely on if they plan well in advance. HubSpot consulting must be purchased in 4-hour blocks at a premium price. Bookings must be made in advance, so this is not the best resource for urgent issues. The agent you will be connected with will again be trained to resolve general bugs, but will not be specialized to your specific business challenges. While these are readily available resources and agents are experts in the world of HubSpot, weighing the pros and cons is crucial before moving forward. 

Finding a Freelancer

Hiring Freelancers has become an incredibly common business practice as it is fast, easy, and affordable. However, it is important to remember that the tasks completed by a Freelancer are on top of their regular job responsibilities. So, don't be surprised if the work is not completed to the level of a full-time employee. It can also be very hard to verify expertise on sites such as UpWork, as many self-proclaimed pros aren't always as knowledgeable as they market themselves to be. 

Freelancers are also usually only able to work during odd hours of the day, usually after their 9-5 is completed. So, having work completed in a timely manner can be difficult. Freelancers provide a very basic level of support and are not considered strategic partners. They don't always go above and beyond what you ask them to complete, but they are a readily available and cheap resource. 

Other Agencies (Besides Us!)

If you choose to move forward with a standard agency, you may run into some roadblocks that can prevent you from completing your projects. Most agencies are not specialized in Salesforce and HubSpot and will again only be able to provide you with very basic information. They also subcontract work to other agencies or freelancers, making it difficult to provide feedback. 

Remember that most agencies are built on the model of continuous need. This means that they want to keep you as a user for months or even years to come. So, they will likely not teach you everything they know and instead provide basic knowledge when it comes to troubleshooting. 

Coastal Consulting - Your Strategic Partner

Now it's time for a (humble) brag! If you choose to move forward with our services, you will have confidence that you are working with a small team that truly understands your business.  

Coastal Consulting is ready to roll in an average of 2 weeks since our services are a short-term budget commitment that doesn't include benefits or substantial compensation. You can partner with us for as long or as short of a time as you need! You'll be able to have access to an expert in Salesforce and HubSpot at your fingertips for weeks, months, or even years. 

We hope this article helps you navigate your options as an operations leader when it comes to moving forward with your new tools. Best of luck, we hope you choose to partner with us! 

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