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HubSpot Sales Enablement Impact Award WINNER: How We Helped a Client Use Automation to Nurture Leads Digitally and Physically

4 mins read

This blog post was submitted for a HubSpot Impact Award for Sales Enablement. It tells the story of how Digital 22 used HubSpot and Sales Enablement Services to increase a client's turnover from £3.8M to close to £5M.

The submission was the quarterly winner for Q4 2018 and the overall Grand Prize winner for 2018.



Digital 22 B&B Press intro (3:24)


“I’m just phoning to let you know that, I’m sorry, but I might be a little bit late for the Manchester HUG,” was the first thing that I remember Dave Stones saying to me.

Before each HUG, we build in 30 minutes of catching up time for people to get a brew and get to know each other. Here was Dave, phoning up two days in advance, apologising that he wouldn’t be there for all of that but he would be with us in time for the first talk.

Normally, people who can’t attend the HUG just simply don’t show up. Not Dave.

His manner and enthusiasm are infectious. A few months later, we’d be speaking to him every other day about all the great ideas that he had for marketing the print company he works for. And we got a few of them built into our inbound campaigns.

Over time, our marketing was bringing in plenty of leads for their sales team. The B&B Press marketing team was fully on board with the inbound methodology. This was partly because website views have gone from circa 300 to 7,000 per month, since starting working together.


sessions were up


We soon realised, however, that this wasn’t going to be enough.


Dave’s Challenge

The print industry is super-focused on traditional sales techniques and most customers make a decision based on price or have a super-pressing deadline so whoever can deliver by 12 o’clock gets the job. It’s therefore a race for sales teams to get there first. “It’s archaic and difficult to manage,” Dave told us.

For context, before HubSpot, the B&B Press team didn’t even have a CRM and relied on cold-calling or customers getting in touch with B&B Press out of the blue.

So, when somebody downloaded an Awareness Stage eBook, they were quite often scared away by a cold call. Dave and the rest of the B&B Press team knew this problem all too well.

At this point, we knew inbound marketing wasn’t going to be enough. It was time to call in the big guns. We needed to look into the sales tools on HubSpot and give the sales team some collateral of their own.

We got to work removing friction from the B&B Press customer Flywheel.


bb press ebook spread


We found out what the sales team wanted on-hand to give to prospects in terms of eBooks (above) and produced it for them as part of their inbound marketing campaigns. Two birds with one stone.


deal amounts trending up

We could see that the value of deals was trending up, but it was still volatile and there was a lack of proper insight.


As head of sales, Dave said: “We’re putting in loads of effort, the team are doing all the things they’ve always done, but it’s getting harder and harder to get our printed stuff in front of people.”

The “printed stuff”, the stuff that really wins people over, is the high-end, super-luxury printed materials that B&B Press produce. But the trouble is, sending these out to cold contacts is costly in terms of time and money (besides the other obvious drawbacks of spamming people). We needed to get this impressive material out to people at the right time and we knew automation was the way to do it. 

There was initially reluctance from a traditional sales team to embrace inbound marketing and the use of a CRM. But sales were up, commission increased and B&B Press saw growth go from £3.8M turnover to close to £5M.


Introducing Automation and Helping the Sales Team...

Like all of us, when Dave and his team saw how inbound marketing and inbound sales worked, the penny dropped. After some strategy sessions and bringing colleagues to a few HUGs, we began working together on more than marketing.

During the strategy phase, whilst we were planning his first inbound campaign and getting his personas researched, we got to work on making sure HubSpot was helping the B&B Press sales team do the following:

  • Spend less time contacting people who weren’t interested in print.

  • Find out if contacts were currently doing print-based marketing.

  • Whether B&B Press could do it better.

  • Only send printed materials when the time was right.

  • Know when it was worth picking up the phone.

As a sales team, B&B Press struggled with seeing how successful their efforts were at converting contacts into customers and what the true state of the sales pipeline actually was.

This was an issue because as a manufacturing firm, forecasting is majorly important. Unreliable sales channels made it hard to predict shift patterns and ordering of supplies for the print rooms.

Battering the phones until you land a mega-order is great, but if the printers are tied up that day or staff are unavailable, you can’t fulfill the order.

By providing this level of insight and freedom to work on other things, the number of deals closed by the B&B sales team increased by 82 percent within the first six months, production was up, more people were hired and profits increased.

So, another strategy day was booked and we sat down with Dave to build a meaningful sales dashboard and reporting system within HubSpot. This helped to:

  • Give earlier warning on impending orders to allow better management of delivery resources.

  • Helped the sales team stay on top of where leads were up to.

  • Helped Dave and the other members of the leadership team see a whole team view of the sales pipeline.

By using the CRM and reporting tools, we created visibility and easy-to-reach data for the B&B Press sales team. This helped the team see precisely where leads were at in the Buyer’s Journey so they knew when the time was right to try and close the deal. We set it up so that the sales team were told when it was safe to get in touch and Dave could see how his team were getting on.

The effect was more worthwhile conversations happened with less effort and more sales closed as a result.

deal dashboard with example figures

The deal management dashboard allowed the sales team to see how likely they were to win a deal.

By providing this level of insight and freedom to work on other things, the number of deals closed by the B&B sales team increased by 82 percent within the first six months, production was up, more people were hired and profits increased.

Dave had a few internal hurdles to deal with, however, “When we first put HubSpot in, there was a bit of a ‘Big Brother’ mentality and reluctance… but after 2-3 months, they all really saw the value in it.”

What helped with this, of course, was sales increasing and the team’s commision rising as a result. For the company itself, B&B Press saw growth go from £3.8M turnover to close to £5M.

The Secret Ingredient was Blending Print and Digital


While things seemed to be looking pretty good for B&B Press, we wanted to go the extra mile. We knew from day one that the most impressive USP was the quality of the printed products. So, we decided to try something a bit different - combining email and printed mail messaging via an automated workflow.

We used emails and forms to get postal addresses from leads who were interested in seeing the eBooks they’d just read in a printed format. This allowed the sales team to know exactly who was at the bottom of the sales funnel and hit them with the best print products that B&B Press have to offer.

B&B Press’ inbound content and traditional networking was getting the Flywheel spinning by bringing in early stage leads. Our automation was engaging the leads with helpful advice loosely connected to print and HubSpot was letting the sales team know when people were engaged enough to talk and become a customer. At that time, prospects could be sent truly outstanding printed versions of the eBooks they’d found so helpful.

It was all so seamless and timely to the customer that they were delighted and… you know the rest.

Once B&B Press’ printed material was in the prospect’s hands, then their business was in the B&B Press sales team's.





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