Strategy & Lead Gen, HubSpot

Hubspot Hacks: Queue up Smart CTAs for Lifecycle Marketing

Nothing tickles me more than having my work done for me. Like you, I got a lotta sh** to do, and as an inbound marketer sometimes I have to be a wearer of many hats, doer of many jobs.

So if there is anything I can do that helps me "set it and forget it," I'M IN.

Hubspot Hacks

One of the awesome things about inbound marketing with HubSpot is that every individual experience with your brand can (pretty) easily be personalized to your customer lifecycle stage—automatically *cue rainbows.* There are dozens of ways you can use the tools within the platform to do just that. Some ways are more obvious than others, which I'll touch on later.

With HubSpot, if you know your way around it, there are lots of ways you can maneuver the platform to do what you want, even if it doesn't seem possible right away. HubSpot isn't as rigid as it may seem at first. And if there's something I'm good at doing, it's using tools beyond its scope. For example, I once baked a cake in my rice cooker when my oven was broken and it was actually super good.

At SparkReaction, we all have our "rice cooker cake" moments with our favorite marketing automation platform, and that has lead to a lot of cool HubSpot hacks.

Today, I'll explain how we use smart CTAs for customer lifecycle marketing, from the basics to my favorite HubSpot hack.

Smart CTA Basics

Depending on where your visitor is in the customer lifecycle stage, you can show them the right CTA for the premium offer best suited for them. So a first-time visitor to your homepage might see the CTA for your awareness stage offer, or TOFU offer (top of the funnel, if you're old-school like me).

But if she downloads the offer and return back to your homepage, will she see the same CTA? With smart CTAs, she won't because you'll show her a different CTA that will lead her further down your funnel. Here's how:

Step 1: Choose a standard CTA

Navigate to the Calls-to-Action tool in HubSpot and choose a CTA you want to make smart.

Step 2: Select a rule

Click gearshift icon next to "Details," click "Make smart," and select a rule. For this example, we're choosing "lifecycle stage."


Step 3: Choose your Lifecycle Stage

Choose the customer lifecycle you want to make a smart CTA for. If you want contacts who are leads to see the new CTA, you would choose "lead."


Step 4: Add a CTA

If you already have a CTA in mind that you'd like to new lead to see, all you have to do is select that CTA which you've already made.


Once you select your CTA, you've created your first smart rule! You now have a default that you can show to any visitor, but once they become a lead, they'll see another CTA that leads them further down the funnel.

You can create new rules using the same steps above—whether you want to make rules for leads, MQLs, and SQLs, you'll be able the right visitor the right offer.

Next Level Smart CTAs

This is probably one of my favorite "rice cooker cake" HubSpot Hacks.

At the end of blog posts, it's always best to give your reader some next steps. Typically it will be a CTA to download/watch/sign-up for something you're offering.

But what if you want to mention it at the end?

Generic references like, "If you found this post helpful, check out our offer below!" is... fine.

It would be better if you could say, "If you found this post helpful, check out our free eBook Defining Leads: Master Your Customer Lifecycle at Every Stage of the Funnel. You'll learn how to identify and nurture your subscribers, leads, MQLs, and SQLs. Click below to get your copy!" Having it written in the copy to explain the value of your offer will make it more compelling to click your CTA.

Unfortunately, there's not a straight-forward way to do that for every single smart CTA. That's why you'll see many smart CTA users have generic blog post conclusions without referencing the specific offer in the preceding CTA.

There is a way you can change the copy of your content to best match your smart CTAs—with the use of smart modules. Here's how our friends at Ekklesia360 do it (<<and you can read their case study here).

Step 1: Add a rich text module

Add a rich text module at the end of your blog posts for your conclusion that you'll be able to make smart. Ekklesia calls their blog post conclusions their "Next Steps."


Step 2: Write as usual.

Write your conclusion as usual. Add your default CTA at the end, right within the rich text module. You'll see in the image below that where you can change your smart rules. Because the whole rich text module is smart, you can change everything within it to fit the customer lifecycle stage you're making rules for.


Step 3: Create smart rules

Create your smart rules just like we described in step 2 and step 3 under "Smart CTA basics" above. Once you do so, you'll see a window where you can write the conclusion and add the CTA that suits the lifecycle stage you're creating it for. At this point, HubSpot makes it pretty intuitive, and even explains how Smart rules work in this module.


Step 4: Experiment!

Experiment! Once you get the hang of this basic how-to, you'll find tons of new ways to make smart CTAs based on your customer lifecycle stages and your business's funnel. You can queue up as many smart CTAs as you need, and as you learn more about HubSpot's smart CTA tool, you'll find new ways to make rules—there are several ways to make them, in addition to making them based on lifecycle stage.

The more you experiment in HubSpot, the more hacks you'll find on your own. Your newfound understanding and further digging can help you stumble across your own rice cooker cake moments, too.

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