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How HubSpot Built Its 
Channel Sales 
Organization
This is 
Brian 
Halligan.
This is 
Brian 
Halligan. 
He’s the 
CEO of
He likes to hire 
smart people 
with good ideas.
He likes to hire 
smart people 
with good ideas. 
If someone has 
an idea that falls 
outside of their 
normal job 
duties
He likes to hire 
smart people 
with good ideas. 
If someone has 
an idea that falls 
outside of their 
normal job 
duties...
If you can prove that your pet 
project can work
If you can prove that your pet 
project can work 
You get Halligan’s blessing to 
work on it full time.
This is Pete 
Caputa.
This is Pete 
Caputa. 
He started at 
HubSpot as an 
inbound 
marketing 
specialist.
This is Pete 
Caputa. 
He started at 
HubSpot as an 
inbound 
marketing 
specialist. 
And he had 
an idea.
Channel Sales.
Channel Sales. 
He was told it couldn’t 
be done
Channel Sales. 
He was told it couldn’t 
be done 
But he was 
determined.
Fast forward to 
today.
Fast forward to 
today. 
Channel sales has 
generated 40% of 
HubSpot’s customers 
as of June 2014.
Long story short: 
Pete succeeded.
Long story short: 
Pete succeeded. 
He’s now VP of 
Sales.
Long story short: 
Pete succeeded. 
He’s now VP of 
Sales. 
But let’s make a 
long story long.
Long story short: 
Pete succeeded. 
He’s now VP of 
Sales. 
But let’s make a 
long story long. 
How did he do 
it?
Pete recently 
shared his process with 
OpenView Labs.
Pete recently 
shared his process with 
OpenView Labs. 
Here are the 7 steps that 
built HubSpot’s channel 
sales program.
1 Don’t pitch agencies. 
Attract them using 
inbound marketing.
Free webinars targeted 
specifically to 
marketing agencies 
were used to attract 
potential partners.
Free webinars targeted 
specifically to 
marketing agencies 
were used to attract 
potential partners. 
The interest poure...
Free webinars targeted 
specifically to 
marketing agencies 
were used to attract 
potential partners. 
The interest poure...
Free webinars targeted 
specifically to 
marketing agencies 
were used to attract 
potential partners. 
The interest poure...
2 Help your partners first. 
Then help their clients.
At first, reseller leads 
were put into a lead 
queue, and called by the 
next rep in the rotation.
At first, reseller leads 
were put into a lead 
queue, and called by the 
next rep in the rotation. 
That didn’t work so w...
At first, reseller leads 
were put into a lead 
queue, and called by the 
next rep in the rotation. 
That didn’t work so w...
At first, reseller leads 
were put into a lead 
queue, and called by the 
next rep in the rotation. 
That didn’t work so w...
So the channel team changed the message.
So the channel team changed the message. 
“How can we help you solve your problems before 
we move on to your clients’?”
So the channel team changed the message. 
“How can we help you solve your problems before 
we move on to your clients’?” 
...
3 Sell a platform.
Over the years, 
HubSpot got bigger.
Over the years, 
HubSpot got bigger. 
The software’s 
functionality 
deepened.
Over the years, 
HubSpot got bigger. 
The software’s 
functionality 
deepened. 
And broadened.
Over the years, 
HubSpot got bigger. 
The software’s 
functionality 
deepened. 
And broadened. 
This was good for 
partner...
Over the years, 
HubSpot got bigger. 
The software’s 
functionality 
deepened. 
And broadened. 
They 
were 
happy 
with th...
4 Don’t make becoming a 
partner expensive.
Becoming a partner at 
many organizations 
isn’t necessarily hard.
Becoming a partner at 
many organizations 
isn’t necessarily hard. 
(But it does require one 
little thing).
Becoming a partner at 
many organizations 
isn’t necessarily hard. 
(But it does require one 
little thing).
But HubSpot took a 
different tack.
But HubSpot took a 
different tack. 
No additional costs outside of 
those paid by a traditional 
customer. 
No limit on s...
But HubSpot took a 
different tack. 
No additional costs outside of 
those paid by a traditional 
customer. 
No limit on s...
And HubSpot helped them scale.
5 Prove it out.
It might be profitable 
to bring on one 
partner.
But what about a few 
more?
And some more after 
that?
And 
then… 
well, you 
get the 
picture.
Crunch the numbers 
and make sure the 
economics work at 
scale.
Crunch the numbers 
and make sure the 
economics work at 
scale. 
(Otherwise you might be in a 
crunch).
Crunch the numbers 
and make sure the 
economics work at 
scale. 
(Otherwise you might be in a 
crunch). 
It took some tim...
6 Create a marketplace.
Reselling HubSpot 
didn’t just help 
partners.
Reselling HubSpot 
didn’t just help 
partners. 
The team realized 
channel sales could 
also benefit direct 
customers.
HubSpot sells 
software as a service, 
not services.
HubSpot sells 
software as a service, 
not services. 
HubSpot partners sell 
services.
So HubSpot customers 
who’d like marketing 
services…
So HubSpot customers 
who’d like marketing 
services… 
Meet HubSpot 
partners.
So HubSpot customers 
who’d like marketing 
services… 
Meet HubSpot 
partners. 
We’ll hook you up via the HubSpot Service ...
7 Reward partners for their 
clients’ success.
Partners do 
well when 
their clients 
do well.
Partners do 
well when 
their clients 
do well. 
So the team 
decided to 
reward partners 
based on client 
success.
Rewards 
include:
Rewards 
include: 
Invitations 
to events
Rewards 
include: 
Invitations 
to events 
Tier 
program
Rewards 
include: 
Invitations 
to events 
Tier 
program 
Additional 
support
And there you have it.
And there you have it. 
What was once an 
experiment
Is now an integral 
part of our business
Want to get inspired by more sales 
success stories?
Want to get inspired by more sales 
success stories? 
Subscribe to HubSpot’s Sales blog.
Want to get inspired by more sales 
success stories? 
Subscribe to HubSpot’s Sales blog. 
& stay up on the agency world at...
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How HubSpot Built Its Channel Sales Organization

  1. How HubSpot Built Its Channel Sales Organization
  2. This is Brian Halligan.
  3. This is Brian Halligan. He’s the CEO of
  4. He likes to hire smart people with good ideas.
  5. He likes to hire smart people with good ideas. If someone has an idea that falls outside of their normal job duties
  6. He likes to hire smart people with good ideas. If someone has an idea that falls outside of their normal job duties that’s awesome.
  7. If you can prove that your pet project can work
  8. If you can prove that your pet project can work You get Halligan’s blessing to work on it full time.
  9. This is Pete Caputa.
  10. This is Pete Caputa. He started at HubSpot as an inbound marketing specialist.
  11. This is Pete Caputa. He started at HubSpot as an inbound marketing specialist. And he had an idea.
  12. Channel Sales.
  13. Channel Sales. He was told it couldn’t be done
  14. Channel Sales. He was told it couldn’t be done But he was determined.
  15. Fast forward to today.
  16. Fast forward to today. Channel sales has generated 40% of HubSpot’s customers as of June 2014.
  17. Long story short: Pete succeeded.
  18. Long story short: Pete succeeded. He’s now VP of Sales.
  19. Long story short: Pete succeeded. He’s now VP of Sales. But let’s make a long story long.
  20. Long story short: Pete succeeded. He’s now VP of Sales. But let’s make a long story long. How did he do it?
  21. Pete recently shared his process with OpenView Labs.
  22. Pete recently shared his process with OpenView Labs. Here are the 7 steps that built HubSpot’s channel sales program.
  23. 1 Don’t pitch agencies. Attract them using inbound marketing.
  24. Free webinars targeted specifically to marketing agencies were used to attract potential partners.
  25. Free webinars targeted specifically to marketing agencies were used to attract potential partners. The interest poured in.
  26. Free webinars targeted specifically to marketing agencies were used to attract potential partners. The interest poured in. The team never had to contact an agency that hadn’t contacted them first.
  27. Free webinars targeted specifically to marketing agencies were used to attract potential partners. The interest poured in. The team never had to contact an agency that hadn’t contacted them first. (Inbound marketing FTW)
  28. 2 Help your partners first. Then help their clients.
  29. At first, reseller leads were put into a lead queue, and called by the next rep in the rotation.
  30. At first, reseller leads were put into a lead queue, and called by the next rep in the rotation. That didn’t work so well.
  31. At first, reseller leads were put into a lead queue, and called by the next rep in the rotation. That didn’t work so well. Sales reps spent a lot of time talking to marketing consultants who couldn’t buy the software.
  32. At first, reseller leads were put into a lead queue, and called by the next rep in the rotation. That didn’t work so well. Sales reps spent a lot of time talking to marketing consultants who couldn’t buy the software. They had too many problems to deal with.
  33. So the channel team changed the message.
  34. So the channel team changed the message. “How can we help you solve your problems before we move on to your clients’?”
  35. So the channel team changed the message. “How can we help you solve your problems before we move on to your clients’?” This resonated with agencies.
  36. 3 Sell a platform.
  37. Over the years, HubSpot got bigger.
  38. Over the years, HubSpot got bigger. The software’s functionality deepened.
  39. Over the years, HubSpot got bigger. The software’s functionality deepened. And broadened.
  40. Over the years, HubSpot got bigger. The software’s functionality deepened. And broadened. This was good for partners, as they could provide more bang for their clients on the same buck.
  41. Over the years, HubSpot got bigger. The software’s functionality deepened. And broadened. They were happy with the all in one platform. This was good for partners, as they could provide more bang for their clients on the same buck.
  42. 4 Don’t make becoming a partner expensive.
  43. Becoming a partner at many organizations isn’t necessarily hard.
  44. Becoming a partner at many organizations isn’t necessarily hard. (But it does require one little thing).
  45. Becoming a partner at many organizations isn’t necessarily hard. (But it does require one little thing).
  46. But HubSpot took a different tack.
  47. But HubSpot took a different tack. No additional costs outside of those paid by a traditional customer. No limit on support calls.
  48. But HubSpot took a different tack. No additional costs outside of those paid by a traditional customer. No limit on support calls. This meant even small agencies could become partners.
  49. And HubSpot helped them scale.
  50. 5 Prove it out.
  51. It might be profitable to bring on one partner.
  52. But what about a few more?
  53. And some more after that?
  54. And then… well, you get the picture.
  55. Crunch the numbers and make sure the economics work at scale.
  56. Crunch the numbers and make sure the economics work at scale. (Otherwise you might be in a crunch).
  57. Crunch the numbers and make sure the economics work at scale. (Otherwise you might be in a crunch). It took some time, but we were able to prove the model out.
  58. 6 Create a marketplace.
  59. Reselling HubSpot didn’t just help partners.
  60. Reselling HubSpot didn’t just help partners. The team realized channel sales could also benefit direct customers.
  61. HubSpot sells software as a service, not services.
  62. HubSpot sells software as a service, not services. HubSpot partners sell services.
  63. So HubSpot customers who’d like marketing services…
  64. So HubSpot customers who’d like marketing services… Meet HubSpot partners.
  65. So HubSpot customers who’d like marketing services… Meet HubSpot partners. We’ll hook you up via the HubSpot Service Marketplace.
  66. 7 Reward partners for their clients’ success.
  67. Partners do well when their clients do well.
  68. Partners do well when their clients do well. So the team decided to reward partners based on client success.
  69. Rewards include:
  70. Rewards include: Invitations to events
  71. Rewards include: Invitations to events Tier program
  72. Rewards include: Invitations to events Tier program Additional support
  73. And there you have it.
  74. And there you have it. What was once an experiment
  75. Is now an integral part of our business
  76. Want to get inspired by more sales success stories?
  77. Want to get inspired by more sales success stories? Subscribe to HubSpot’s Sales blog.
  78. Want to get inspired by more sales success stories? Subscribe to HubSpot’s Sales blog. & stay up on the agency world at The Agency Post.
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