HubSpot South Africa: How to Choose a HubSpot Partner in SA
Who are the HubSpot Partners in South Africa?
Many agencies and consultants claim they represent HubSpot South Africa and can work effectively in HubSpot.
Unfortunately, only the five agencies below are tiered by HubSpot. This means they have the experience, the training, and use HubSpot for their own agency.
- MO Agency, Diamond. Located in Johannesburg and Cape Town.
- Spitfire Inbound, Platinum. Johannesburg.
- Uku Inbound, Gold. Located in Cape Town.
- Warbble Media, Gold. Somewhere in South Africa.
- Propdata, Gold. Located in Durban.
What is a HubSpot Partner?
A HubSpot Partner or HubSpot Agency is a company that has entered into an agreement with HubSpot to sell and service HubSpot software.
To do this they join the HubSpot Partner Program and are required to meet a set of training and implementation criteria.
HubSpot partners have experience with many different implementations of HubSpot software. This experience may be across many different industry verticals and different sizes of business.
Experience with multiple clients and HubSpot applications enables HubSpot partners to fast-track your success with HubSpot software.
HubSpot Partner Tiering
Although it is easy to join HubSpot’s Partner Program, moving beyond a non-tiered partner requires a commitment to HubSpot. Becoming a Gold, Platinum, Diamond and Elite partner requires a very focused effort.
Once approved by HubSpot as a partner, an agency’s HubSpot tiers is determined by two things.
- Managed Recurring Revenue (MRR): The $ value of all the HubSpot licences the agency manages on a monthly basis.
- Sold Recurring Revenue (Sold MRR): The $ value of the licences sold to net new clients by the agency in a rolling 12 month period.
Based on the MRR and Sold MRR you can expect a tiered HubSpot partner to be servicing roughly the following amount of clients, and it gives you an idea of the size of the agency.
Partner: 0 - 3 HubSpot clients managed
Gold: 3 - 12 HubSpot clients managed
Platinum: 10 - 25 HubSpot clients managed
Diamond: 35+ HubSpot clients managed
Elite: 80+ HubSpot clients managed
Two types of HubSpot Partner
1. Marketing Partners
HubSpot’s Partner Program is for agencies that want to grow their businesses by providing marketing automation, inbound marketing and campaigns to their clients.
HubSpot partners focused on marketing get exclusive partner resources and training. These pieces of training and resources are geared to help them deliver the best possible marketing services that are ROI-centric and improve client retention.
Each HubSpot partner gets a HubSpot channel account manager to provide in-depth business consulting. They also get a HubSpot channel consultant to train and make sure the agency is delivering services in line with HubSpot’s high standards. Remember they represent HubSpot South Africa.
2. Marketing, Sales & CRM Partners
A small percentage of partner agencies have decided that the intersection of CRM, sales and marketing is critical to their clients’ revenue growth.
These HubSpot partners believe marketing can not work properly without an integrated sales process. And equally, sales will not work efficiently without a marketing process that is tightly integrated with sales.
This percentage is growing as HubSpot starts to take on the established CRM vendors like Salesforce CRM.
These partners - in addition to HubSpot’s Partner Program - have adopted HubSpot’s Sales Partner Program. This program is for CRM implementation companies and sales consultants, coaches, or trainers who want to transform the way their clients sell.
Sales and CRM partners transform the way their clients sell with modern sales methodologies and technology that salespeople actually want to use. Working with a sales partner accelerates the evolution of clients' sales process in the short term. And shortens sales cycles in the medium to long term.
HubSpot South Africa: Should you work with a certified HubSpot partner?
We regularly come across businesses that have been using HubSpot for some time but are not using the full capabilities of the software.
Work with a tiered HubSpot partner
When working with a highly tiered HubSpot Partner, you are guaranteed to be up and running much faster. These HubSpot partners have proven inbound marketing, sales and CRM strategies and can tailor them to your unique business.
The higher tiered partners manage multiple instances of HubSpot across many different industries. This allows them to know the HubSpot platform intimately. Intimate knowledge of the HubSpot platform allows them to fast-track results.
Get more out of the software
In many cases, businesses want to get more from HubSpot, and just need a helping hand and to be pointed in the right direction. By engaging a certified HubSpot Partner, they keep full control of the software, but get advice on the right tweaks and methodologies that come with experience and sometimes hard-learnt lessons.
Almost always we find that when a business works alongside a HubSpot Partner, they get better results.
When we hold you accountable for the strategy we set out together, the end result is stronger. Everyone works better in a team.
The Pros and Cons of using a HubSpot Partner
- Access to a multidisciplinary team of HubSpot experts from inbound marketing strategists, content writers, integration specialists, to HubSpot CMS developers.
- Outsourcing HubSpot skills can be less expensive than keeping an in-house resource.
- Regardless of internal staffing, your company will always have access to HubSpot skills.
- HubSpot Partners make sure their staff are up to date on the necessary certifications and get additional partner only training.
- HubSpot Partners can train your staff.
- It can take time to build a relationship with a HubSpot Partner where they understand how you sell and how to market your services.
- HubSpot skills can be very specialised and can cost a premium.
- You may have overlap with your current digital marketing providers.
- Work may have a lead time depending on how busy your HubSpot Partner is.
- Selecting the right partner can be tricky. It's a fine balance between how long they've been in business, how large a company they are (Too big and you're just a number. Too small and they don't have all the skills in-house), the technical skills they have, and lastly a cultural fit. Can you work well with them?
Which HubSpot Partner should you choose to work with?
You want to be working with a Gold, Platinum, Diamond or Elite HubSpot Partner. Not all partners in South Africa are tiered.
A word of warning: Take note that an agency or consultant may tell you they are HubSpot certified when in fact they have only done the freely available HubSpot Inbound Marketing Certification. This training is very basic.
The really good HubSpot training is not publicly available.
The HubSpot partner certification is a process that takes time and investment on behalf of the HubSpot partner.
Most importantly, to be certified the agency must own and be running HubSpot Marketing and Sales software for their own agency. A non-certified agency will not have its own HubSpot software.
1. Opportunistic agencies
Some agencies are not focused on HubSpot but do resell HubSpot as an add-on to other services they are selling. They are opportunists when it comes to HubSpot. Be wary of such agencies. Better gains are made with a genuinely certified HubSpot partner.
Another partner type is the traditional PR agency, brand or web design agency that sells HubSpot on the side to add an additional revenue stream. They typically dip their toes in and then find the process too rigorous. A year later they've entirely forgotten about HubSpot and their HubSpot clients.
2. Sales focused generalists
There are also resellers that may be offering multiple marketing automation platforms, such as Marketo, Pardot and Infusionsoft. These organisations are typically very sales driven, they are not specialists and potentially only have their bottom line at heart.
We highly recommend a partner/consultancy that is focused on their chosen software.
3. Gold, Platinum, Diamond and Elite HubSpot Partners
And finally, there are the tiered HubSpot Partner agencies. These agencies come in many different sizes and different specialities. But in most cases, these partner agencies focus solely on HubSpot and Inbound Marketing and sales services.
They make a point of being the best in the business at one thing - HubSpot. Working with them guarantees success when you invest in HubSpot.
The HubSpot partner directory
Pop over to the HubSpot partner directory for South Africa and read some of the reviews for your shortlisted partners.
Just take note that the directory allows international HubSpot partner agencies to list in South Africa and state that they provide services in South Africa. This is entirely fine considering the new normal that is video meetings and remote work. Just something to be aware of.
Services a Gold, Platinum, Diamond and Elite HubSpot partner in South Africa may offer
Each HubSpot partner in South Africa is unique in the services they provide. Aligning with HubSpot software, they create different packages to help achieve business goals.
Below is a list of the most common services provided by HubSpot Partners. Some Partners may offer them all, and some only a handful. There is no correct combination and every partner will have their own methodology.
Search Engine Optimisation
Buyer Persona Development
Pay Per Click
Social Media Management
HubSpot Portal Audits
Business Process Mapping
Business Process Optimisation
Database Management & Segmentation
Resources for HubSpot
- Is HubSpot Worth the Cost?
- Why Go HubSpot? The Complete Guide from API to Workflow
- HubSpot CRM
- HubSpot Marketing
- HubSpot CRM
If you are reading this blog, you’ve probably made a decision to buy HubSpot or you've already bought HubSpot - well done! It’s incredible software that is particularly easy to use.
That said, it is also incredibly deep software that can take years to master in its entirety. We suggest working with a Gold, Platinum, Diamond, or Elite HubSpot Partner to get the most out of your investment.