Building Powerful Digital Experiences with HubSpot and WP Engine
A Q&A with Salted Stone, a Global HubSpot Partner Agency
Salted Stone is a global full-service digital agency headquartered in Los Angeles. Founded in 2008, the agency has in-house teams around the world and has spent the last 10+ years designing and developing websites, crafting end-to-end business solutions for sustainable growth, and implementing data-driven marketing and sales strategies for hundreds of clients.
One factor that has helped Salted Stone engineer much of this success has been the agency’s embrace of HubSpot’s top-rated marketing, sales, and customer service software. Salted Stone is a Diamond Tier Global HubSpot Partner, and they have deep expertise in using the platform to achieve their clients’ digital marketing goals.
Salted Stone is also a member of WP Engine’s Agency Partner Program, which is designed to help agencies focus specifically on growth as opposed to WordPress management and maintenance. Combined with their in-house digital marketing expertise, Salted Stone’s membership in WP Engine’s APP has allowed them to grow even further, reach more clients than ever before, and help those clients build the types of engaging digital experiences today’s online audiences demand.
To find out more about the way Salted Stone leverages HubSpot, WordPress, and the combination of both through their partnership with WP Engine, we sat down with Director of Technology Michelle Chu to talk about the agency’s past work, its current focus, and plans for the future.
Let’s start with more about Salted Stone. What kind of businesses do you work with and what do you do for them?
We work with businesses of all sizes—everyone from small startups all the way to large enterprise companies—and we work with them in multiple capacities.
A client can come to us for HubSpot onboarding, meaning they just signed on with HubSpot and they need an agency partner to help train them on the platform. From there, we might help them architect their marketing and sales programs using HubSpot and build an inbound marketing program.
So we work with a lot of clients to craft strategic programs with custom marketing blueprints and quarterly creative campaigns, and then we do larger projects that include website redesigns or other full-scale engagements—everything from the early roadmapping process (via strategic consulting workshops) all the way through final development and optimization.
So you use Hubspot across the board, where does WordPress start to come in?
While HubSpot can be a great all-in-one solution for a CMS and CRM, we’ve also found that there’s a bit more flexibility from a development standpoint with WordPress. Any activities that require running server-side code, for example, are impossible to do on HubSpot.
Depending on a client’s needs, we’ll often recommend they leverage WP Engine for a number of things, whether it’s the development of a fully custom database or secure online forum or the peace of mind that comes from being able to revert to a previous site version with WP Engine’s automatic backup points.
How does being part of the Agency Partner Program help with leveraging WP Engine and WordPress?
As a member of the Agency Partner Program, we have direct access to a team at WP Engine that keeps us informed about certain features as they’re announced, and we have the opportunity to collaborate more closely with WP Engine on certain projects. We’re also listed in WP Engine’s Agency Directory, which provides valuable awareness to leads we might not have reached; clients looking for advanced website solutions.
What are some impressive client outcomes you’ve been able to achieve with the combination of HubSpot and WordPress, together with WP Engine?
One project we’re particularly proud of was a HubSpot client that needed a site redesign with a robust property search feature. It was important for them to maintain the lists and workflows we’d built for them on HubSpot, but they wanted a site that included a property search with advanced filtering and the ability to create a user account to save certain results.
Since the client’s old marketing site was on WordPress, our development team built the new templates and pages on WP Engine’s staging environment. That way, business could continue as usual on the old site while we created something brand new in staging. It’s a misconception that going live with a new site is as easy as pressing a button, but with WP Engine, it really does just take a click of a button to copy a site from staging to live. Of course, there are a few other steps as well, but this is about as close as you can get.
The final outcome was a more personalized experience where users could save custom filters, search for properties they liked, and see upcoming open houses in their area. In addition, we set up HubSpot CTAs and custom workflows throughout the site so it was a seamless transition to nurture campaigns and email marketing.
Visit Salted Stone to learn about all the ways the agency helps clients solve their marketing, sales, branding, and business challenges, and visit WP Engine to find out more about our partnership with HubSpot, our Agency Partner Program, and our other solutions for building amazing digital experiences with WordPress!
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