"What's Up Ops?"

Kelsey Galarza
May 04, 2021

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By now, you may have seen the press about HubSpot's new Operations Hub. But if you don't bleed orange 🍊 when you get a papercut, you may not know what it does or how it could help your business.

If you're already using HubSpot, YAY πŸ‘, you will be pretty stoked, as some new things are a good bang for the buck. If you're considering HubSpot but were hesitant because of some legacy systems, you're going to have to take a good hard look πŸ‘€, especially with the new bundled pricing.

So, without further ado, here's the Orange Marketing take on HubSpot Operations Hub.

What features are IN Operations Hub?

There are four main new feature groupings come with Operations Hub, depending on the level you purchase.

1. β€œNative” Integrations / Data sync  - Frankly, this is a rebrand of the PieSync acquisition from 2019. That's fine, it's a pretty nice tool and they've made several enhancements that are either new or substantially improved. For our clients, the most interesting of these is an out-of-the-box integration with NetSuite. There are other CRMs that were previously unsupported (Zoho, PipeDrive, Copper, etc.) and some additional ERPs and eCommerce capabilities. 

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Available with: All versions
The gotcha: custom fields aren't supported until the paid Starter version.

2. Data Cleansing / Transformation - For many, this will be an incredibly lovely feature. Using the standard Automation tools, you can build workflows that transform data from other systems or go to those systems that meet your data quality and formatting needs. Some of these are simple but important (Name Case for example) and some seem a little less common. Nonetheless, if you aren't already using a tool like Insycle for data transformation, or you are regularly suffering with Zapier or Excel, then you'll love it.

Available with: Professional
Gotcha: A POSITIVE gotcha! You know what they snuck in here? Required fields. Damn. Finally.

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3. Automation and customization - Definitely the belle of the ball, the automation available here is really up to your imagination. This is the big move the enterprises have been waiting for. It allows webhooks (been available in Marketing Hub Enterprise for some time.) But the new feature will enable you to use the standard automation tools to consume or post data to other systems using simple javascript. Our channel consultant said to us "javascript developers better up their rates; they're going to be in huge demand." He's probably right, I can see many people cooking up ideas to use this stuff. Some other features (duplicate management, records customization, calculated properties, contact scoring) have been around a while and repackaged here. 

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Available with: Professional
Gotcha: Um, it's been released for two weeks. It may be a while before the new car smell wears off enough to trust business-critical data or processes. From our experience driving the CMS off the lot, it may be about 4-6 months.Want to un-h*ck your HubSpot? Let us help!

4. Reporting - Some nice new custom reporting, deal and company scoring and β€œmore” of most everything.

Sounds good, I'm in.

Well, if you're a HubSpot customer, you sure are in, because you already got it. The integrations features have been packaged up in the free version, which you have been gifted. Other than that, here are a couple of use cases in which you may want to upgrade.

Customer revenue data is somewhere else.

Remember that NetSuite comment. It's because we've seen that three times in the last year. The customer data is in NetSuite, and if the sales reps want to book a new win, they have to get it in there. And conversely, if you're going to see customer billings and contract expirations, you need your finance and accounting platform, often an ERP.  In many cases, you may be able to do this with the Starter package, and for $50/mo, this could save you tons of time. It doesn't take too many sales hours to make up that fifty bucks.

You do a lot of personalization.

Even if you use first name, last name, and company name in your emails, it pays to make sure that personalization looks good. Bad personalization is avoidable, and if you don't have another tool to do so, this is a great solution. It's just expensive. I guess lousy personalization could cost you money, so you can probably still justify it.

You have a lot of other software.

Since we deal in software companies, our clients' applications frequently hold customer data. We've worked with their teams to build custom integrations using the API for simple call/post-type updates that usually get us where we need to start. But now, we can invoke that data directly in the workflows. There are going to be a ton of new use cases here, really quickly. 

Data enhancement and validation.

Ping those external data sources, even public ones, for whatever you want. Want to get someone's street address CASS certified? Sure. Append criminal records (ha, had to put in a background check reference for my old peeps) go ahead, follow the FCRA guidelines, ok? And how about some daily Cat Facts, random pictures of cats, or a cat for every http status? It's all available on the world wide web via Github. 

The final word.

Look, it's expensive if you add it only to Marketing. But if you buy it as part of the new Growth Suite, the discounts make this super attractive. The new Professional Growth Suite paid annually upfront is only* $1,600 per month, and it includes Marketing, Sales, Service, CMS, and Operations. *Though it sounds like a lot for a startup, it's pretty much everything you need.  

Here's how I pencil it from an ROI standpoint: One average semi-junior marketing ops person costs about $78,000. If you work 40 hours a week (the rest of the startup time spent on TikTok or around the kombucha machine back in the before times), that's $39/hour. Suppose your junior person spends just ten hours a week monkeying with your cobbled-together tech stack, cleaning data, copying and pasting from one system to another.

Most likely, they are just not doing ENOUGH marketing programs because there's not enough time in the day. In that case, this is a smokin' deal.

Disagree? I want to hear about it!

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More Resources:

EBOOK: The Truth About B2B Marketing
FREE DOWNLOAD: The Website Messaging Template
CASE STUDY: SaaS Medical Startup Gets Polished, High Performing Website

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