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Episode 296: The HubShots Framework

Episode 296: The HubShots Framework

Welcome to HubShots Episode 296: The HubShots Framework


This edition we dive into:

  • Are you in a state of overwhelm using HubSpot?
  • Introduction to the HubShots Framework
  • The 5 stages of the HubShots Framework
  • Focus areas of the HubShots Framework
  • Sneak peek into the HubSpot specific details
  • 3 real world examples of the HubShots Framework in action
  • How you can download the HubShots Framework as an A3 Poster PDF
  • How to get started using the HubShots Framework

You can watch this episode on our YouTube episodes playlist 

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Recorded: Thursday 23 February 2023 | Published: Thursday 09 March 2023

Table of Contents


🌱 The Problem: Overwhelm

A slightly different episode this week, as we tackle a common problem we’re hearing from HubSpot users, and our suggestions for solving it.

What we’re hearing  

When we chat with marketing, service and sales teams - especially new clients - one of the common comments we hear is a feeling of overwhelm. They know HubSpot has so much to offer and yet they feel overwhelmed by it all - not sure what to focus on, or which area to investigate next.

If that’s you, then you’re not alone.

There’s a number of reasons why this can happen, some of the main ones being:

  • You inherited HubSpot - it was set up by someone who has since left the company, and you’ve been handed responsibility for ‘making it all work…’
  • You’ve been so busy just getting the basics in place (eg email marketing) that you haven’t had a chance to explore the other parts of the platform
  • You’ve lost resources (e.g. staff leaving) and now have added items to cover - of which HubSpot is just one…

On top of these pressures, there are also questions from senior management about costs - are you getting real value from your HubSpot investment?

HubSpot common problems

We see this regularly in companies, and it’s not getting any easier.

In response to these demands on clients, we’ve put together a plan for bringing order to the overwhelm - via a tool we call the HubShots Framework.

It’s based on our years of experience working with clients of various sizes, across numerous industries.

It provides clarity on what to focus on next.

We’ve been using this with our clients over the last few months, and now it’s time to make it available publicly.

In this episode, we’re going to explain the HubShots Framework at a high level and start diving into some of the details.

In future episodes, we’re going to flesh out particular areas of focus.

Let’s jump in…

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✨ The Solution: Introducing the HubShots Framework

A 5-Stage plan for getting the most out of HubSpot

The HubShots Framework is a 5-stage plan that guides you through an optimal implementation of HubSpot in your business.

At its heart it is a maturity model that you can work through, to take your business from basic survival through to continuous improvement.

An overview of the 5 stages

5-stage HubShots Framework

(Click here for a hi-res version of this)

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🚀 The 5 Stages

Stage 1: Foundation

Stage 1: Foundations

A focus on: Basics

This is the starting point.  Setup your HubSpot portal and make sure the basics are in place and everyone has access.

Stage 2: Enablement

Stage 2: Enablement

A focus on: Activity

Track all the key interactions including page views, email opens, ad clicks, social media engagements, sales activities and support conversations.

Stage 3: Efficiency

Stage 3: Efficiency

A focus on: Automation

Get all your key marketing, sales and service processes automated, with the right people notified and your contacts nurtured.

Stage 4: Effectiveness

Stage 4: Effectiveness

A focus on: Attribution

Be able to confidently identify what is working and why so you can do more of it.

Stage 5: Empowerment

Stage 5: Empowerment

A focus on: Continuous Improvement

You are freed up to proactively use the latest tools and grow your business results.

That’s a high level look at the 5 stages.

Next we start fleshing out each stage in terms of some focus areas…

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💰 The Focus Areas

Breaking down the 5 Stages into focus areas

Next we consider the framework in terms of focus areas.

Consider the table below.

If you look down the left hand side of the table, you’ll see the focus areas:

  • Activity (ie tracking everything)
  • Assets (ie pages, forms, emails, reports)
  • Automation (ie converting manual processes into automated processes)
  • Attribution (ie identifying what is working and why)
  • Administration (ie all the ‘boring’ settings and defaults)
  • Strategy (ie how your business goals are being met)
  • Training (ie how your team are being empowered to use the tools to implement your strategy)

You’ll see how each of these focus areas aligns with the stages of the framework at a high level:

The HubShots Framework

 (Click here for a hi-res version)

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👨‍🔧 The Details in Hubspot

Download the A3 poster of the framework

Now that we know the high level plan, and have considered some focus areas, it’s time to take a peek at the full framework and how it applies to HubSpot items.

You can download a full A3 PDF poster of the framework from here.

The table includes everything in HubSpot, neatly organised into the Stages, broken down by focus areas, and even grouped by Hub (Marketing, Sales, Service).

Whilst the table is quite detailed, after reviewing for a minute or two you’ll quickly see how it all fits together.

You can start ticking or marking off areas you already have in place, and strike out any areas that aren’t applicable yet (eg perhaps you’re not using Service Hub yet), and then focus on the next items to work on.

The framework guides you as to what is the next most appropriate item for you:

The HubShots Framework

(Click here for a hi-res version)

Next we look at some simple, typical examples of using the Stages to guide you

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🔧 An example of Stages 1 to 5

Assets: Landing page

  • Stage 1: Simple out of the box template
  • Stage 2: Proper template and brand styling
  • Stage 3: SEO optimisation
  • Stage 4: Personsonalisation or smart content
  • Stage 5: Adaptive testing (including A/B testing)

Activity: Working with contacts

  • Stage 1: Simple views on contacts
  • Stage 2: Having views (with the correct data visible) based on how your working to be more efficient
  • Stage 3: Advanced views on contacts and deals
  • Stage 4: Record customisation of tabs, sidebars and cards
  • Stage 5: Use of Playbooks to capture data

Training: Using the tools

  • Stage 1: Understanding views for segmenting your contacts
  • Stage 2: Using the Outlook or Gmail plugin to easily log all activity
  • Stage 3: Customising your layout
  • Stage 4: Using reports
  • Stage 5: Using latest features (eg Inbound calling into HubSpot)

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💡 How to get started

[1] In your business

First step is to download the A3 PDF poster of the framework.

Review where you are currently - is it stage 2 or 4 or a mix etc. (As a general comment, most of our clients tend to be a mix of Stages 3 and 4, with the exception of a few new clients who are just getting started in Stage 1 and 2)

Once you know where you are, then you can identify the next priorities to focus on. Build a plan for the next month or two and then make a start.

[2] Already working with a HubSpot Partner

If you are already working with a HubSpot Partner, please feel free to share this with them. You are welcome to use it in your business, regardless of whether you are working with us or any other HubSpot partners.

Our only request - keep the links to us - don’t remove us from the documents and assets.

[3] If you are a HubSpot Partner

If you’re a HubSpot Partner and would like to use the HubShots Framework with your clients - that’s fine (and welcomed) as long as you don’t remove our name from it (ie don’t take it, tweak some of the wording, and rebrand it as your own - give us credit).

We want this to be an asset the whole HubSpot community can use - we’re not going to compete with you for your clients - our goal is for all HubSpot customers to get the most out of their HubSpot investment, regardless of which partner or agency they use.

We’re also keen for feedback from the Partner community - this is a ‘living’ framework - we’re constantly improving it, and we’d love your feedback on how to make it better in your engagements as well.

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🏈 Future Weeks: Deep Dive

Over the next few episodes we will go deep into each of the 5 stages based on

  • Activity
  • Assets
  • Automation (+ Integration)
  • Attribution
  • Administration
  • Strategy
  • Training 

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📚 The Result: From Chaos to Clarity

From Overwhelm to Organised

The goal of the HubShots Framework is to take you from a feeling of overwhelm to a feeling of control - by knowing what to focus on next.

From Overwhelm to Organised

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✍️ Quote of the Week

“The journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step”

  • cliché quote that gets used far too much, but is actually very appropriate in this instance

Even if your steps are small

Photo by Dominika Roseclay

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🏋️ Download the HubShots Framework A3 PDF Poster

HubShots Framework Poster

Download a copy of the HubShots Framework A3 PDF poster.

Download The HubShots Framework


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🧲 Follow Us on the Socials

Connect with HubShots here:

Connect with Ian Jacob on LinkedIn and Craig Bailey on LinkedIn 

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HubShots, the podcast for marketing managers and sales professionals who use HubSpot, hosted by Ian Jacob from Search & Be Found and Craig Bailey from XEN Systems and XEN Solar.

HubShots is produced by Christopher Mottram from Podcastily.

We record using (<= affiliate link)

Please share this with colleagues - it helps us improve and reach more marketers.

HubShots Episode 296


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