Mastering HubSpot Workflow Goals: Strategies for Success

July 12, 2024

Understanding and setting workflow goals is crucial for any marketer aiming to measure campaign performance.

Introducing the concept of 'workflow's goal conversion rate' is essential as it helps in evaluating how contacts are automatically unenrolled from a workflow upon meeting the goal criteria, and how their actions contribute to the overall conversion rate.

This guide strips away the complexities, laying out a straightforward path to select, apply, and track conversions effectively, ensuring your contacts smoothly transition through your marketing funnel.

Granular marketing funnel with "Discovery," "Desire," "Evaluation," "Purchase," "Loyalty," and "Advocacy" stages

What are HubSpot Workflow Goals?

HubSpot workflow goals define the ultimate aim of a workflow. Once the enrolled contact meets the goal criteria, they are automatically unenrolled. This prevents them from receiving redundant or unnecessary actions.

This feature plays a fundamental role in measuring the success of contact-based workflows and refining marketing efforts.

By providing a clear measure of success, achieved workflow targets help steer your marketing strategies in the right direction within HubSpot.

Why are Workflow Goals Important?

The Importance of Workflow Goals

Workflow goals play a significant role in measuring the effectiveness of your marketing strategies. They provide insights that can help you refine your business approaches.

Defining precise, actionable, and measurable goals for workflows creates a more structured and focused marketing strategy in HubSpot.

Aligning Workflow Goals with Marketing Objectives

Well-defined workflow goals should align with your broader marketing objectives. This alignment aids in nurturing leads effectively through the sales funnel, ensuring that each step in your workflow contributes towards moving contacts closer to a conversion.

For example, if your goal is to increase lead conversion rates, your workflow should include steps that provide valuable information to leads, encourage engagement, and facilitate easy transitions through the buyer’s journey.

Optimize B2B : Buyer Journeys Map

Continuous Improvement Through Regular Reviews

Regularly reviewing and refining workflow goals is crucial to adapt to changing market dynamics and contact engagement levels.

By continuously monitoring performance and making necessary tweaks, you can ensure that your workflows are always aligned with your business goals and are contributing positively to your overall marketing strategy.

The Role of Workflow Goals in Contact-Based Workflows

Workflow goals in HubSpot form the backbone of contact-based workflows. They provide a clear focus for your objectives and allow for the effective monitoring of strategies used to nurture contacts.

These goals can be tailored to include progress indicators like migration to a new HubSpot lifecycle stage, engagement with targeted content through marketing emails, or achieving a specific number of interactions. This customization aids in advancing contacts through the sales funnel.

Defining Your Workflow Goal Criteria

Common Workflow Goals

Setting workflow goals that mirror the subsequent step in the sales process is crucial.

For instance, if the goal of your marketing strategy is to convert nurtured contacts into Marketing Qualified Leads (MQLs) or Sales Qualified Leads (SQLs), your workflow goals should reflect this objective.

Common workflow goals revolve around lifecycle stage changes, original source, engagements such as form submissions and clicks, and quantifiable interactions with content like page views or email clicks.

For example, in this workflow, contacts are enrolled after filling out a specific form. They are then nurtured with an email sequence, with the ultimate goal of getting them to schedule a meeting through the HubSpot meetings tool:

Solved: HubSpot Community - setting workflow goal - number of form submission per user as a goal

Think of these criteria as milestones in your contacts' customer journey. Each milestone marks a positive step toward conversion, and hitting these milestones should be seen as a sign of a successful workflow.

Setting Up Workflow Goals in HubSpot

Now that we understand what workflow goals are and their importance in contact-based workflows, it’s time to dive into setting up these goals in HubSpot.

Practical Steps to Set Up Workflow Goals in HubSpot

  • Define Clear Objectives: Start by identifying what you want to achieve with your workflow. Is it to nurture leads, increase engagement, or drive sales?

For this you can use the SMART goals methodology :

How To Write SMART Goals in 5 Steps (With Examples) |
  • Align with Business Goals: Ensure that your workflow goals are in sync with your overall business objectives. This alignment will help create a cohesive strategy that drives results.
  • Implement and Monitor: Once your goals are set, implement your workflow in HubSpot and monitor its performance regularly. Use the insights gained to make informed decisions and refine your approach.

Configuring Workflow Enrollment Criteria

Set Enrollment Triggers: Start by setting up workflow enrollment criteria to filter contacts. Define conditions for enrollment, such as contacts who haven't met the workflow’s goal criteria, ensuring they receive targeted marketing emails.

Set enrollment triggers in HubSpot

Utilize Goal Criteria: As contacts progress, use goal criteria as enrollment triggers, enrolling contacts based on achievements in previous workflows. This ensures that your marketing efforts are tailored to the contact’s journey.

Choose Enrollment Events: HubSpot provides various enrollment triggers based on specific events, such as contact interactions with ads or form submissions. Configure re-enrollment settings to auto-enroll contacts when trigger events reoccur, accommodating ongoing engagement.

Apply If/Then Logic: Use if/then logic to account for scenarios where enrollment triggers are based on the non-occurrence of an event. This adds flexibility and precision to your workflows.

HubSpot marketing automation software interface showing workflow options to add a if/then branch

Step-by-Step Guide to Setting Workflow Goals

  • In your HubSpot account, go to Automations > Workflows.
  • Create your contact-based workflow.
Mastering HubSpot Workflows Automation: Types & Best Practices - Steps to create workflows in HubSpot
  • Click on the name of your contact-based workflow.
  • In the top left, click Edit > Edit goal.
How to master HubSpot Workflow Goals - Edit workflow's goal
  • In the left panel, select the Contacts meet a goal checkbox.
  • Define your goal criteria based on actions such as email opens, clicks, or form submissions.
HubSpot marketing automation software interface showing workflow goal options
  • After setting the criteria, click Save.

Check out this step-by-step tutorial that walks you through the entire process, from creating a workflow to setting up the goal:

Monitoring and Evaluating Workflow Goal Performance

Monitoring and evaluating workflow goal performance is as crucial as setting the goals themselves. Understanding the workflow’s goal conversion rate is key to assessing how effectively contacts are moving through the workflow and meeting the defined goals.

Track Goal Conversion Rates

Goal conversion rates in HubSpot are calculated based on contacts that have been sent a marketing email in the workflow and are available with Marketing Hub Professional and Enterprise accounts.

HubSpot users can track and analyze the workflow’s goal conversion rate using reporting tools found in the Performance tab of a contact-based workflow, providing metrics and visual reports.

Goal conversion rate - workflows performance- HubSpot

Accurate Measurement: Contacts who meet the workflow goal after enrollment are counted towards the workflow’s goal conversion rate, while contacts meeting the goal upon initial enrollment are excluded to maintain accuracy.

Here’s a step-by-step tutorial on tracking the performance of your workflow goals :

Enhancing Marketing Strategies with HubSpot Workflow Goals

Benefits of Workflow Goals

Leveraging HubSpot workflow goals can significantly enhance your marketing outcomes by :

Workflows in HubSpot simplify lead generation and processing, improving marketing initiatives and saving time for teams.

What is Lead Generation: Definition, strategies, tools ...

By understanding customer journeys, HubSpot workflows align in-house initiatives with broader growth goals, enhancing overall marketing efforts.

Nurturing Contacts through Targeted Marketing Content

Workflow goals can be leveraged to nurture contacts through targeted marketing content.

Marketing content - definition

By tracking and automating actions triggered by specific contact behaviors, such as form submissions and email engagement, you can facilitate personalized content distribution.

Here, for example, you can customize the actions that occur once a visitor submits a specific form:

Customer marketing content with behavioral targeting.

Implementing separate workflows for different types of communications, such as transactional follow-ups and nurturing efforts, ensures contacts receive appropriate messages throughout their journey.

Screenshot of menu build a transactional email workflow

This targeted approach helps maintain engagement and supports contacts at every stage of their interaction with your brand.

Streamlining Sales Team Collaboration

Using HubSpot’s workflow goals to unenroll contacts once they become customers streamlines lead management by signaling the sales team to initiate targeted follow-up actions.

HubSpot prospecting workspace showing tasks

Sales teams can promptly identify and take action on leads that have met workflow goals, such as form submissions, by directly accessing this information within the workflow details page.

As workflow goals can monitor contacts’ engagement, such as form submission or click-through on calls-to-action, they help the sales team focus on the most promising prospects.

Workflows designed to trigger internal notifications and tasks within the HubSpot CRM support organizational functions and foster better collaboration between marketing and sales.

This integration ensures that leads are efficiently passed to sales reps at the right time, enhancing overall sales performance.

Adapting to Contact Trends and Lifecycle Stages

Adapting to contact trends and lifecycle stages is key to a successful marketing strategy.

HubSpot workflows can automatically upgrade or downgrade contacts between lifecycle stages, such as from Lead to MQL or SQL, based on their engagement, signifying either progression or regression in the buyer’s journey.

Defining Customer Lead Lifecycle Stages in HubSpot

Using geographic and lifecycle suppression lists within workflows ensures that contacts receive appropriate content, respecting their current stage and location.

This approach increases the relevance and effectiveness of communication.

Tip : With updates like Apple’s iOS 15 impacting email tracking, it’s recommended to adjust workflow goals to use alternative engagement indicators, such as clicks or replies, for more accurate measurement.

Overcoming Common Challenges with HubSpot Workflow Goals

While HubSpot workflow goals are beneficial, they can present challenges. Too many goals in a workflow can be hard to manage and reduce effectiveness.

Conflicting goal criteria is a common mistake, leading to confusion and inefficiency. Regularly review contact lists and workflow logic to prevent and correct errors, keeping workflows effective.

Outdated goals can miss opportunities and waste resources, so updating workflow goals to align with market trends and customer behavior is essential.

Balancing Multiple Criteria and Goals

Balancing multiple criteria and goals can be a challenging task. Here are some important points to keep in mind:

  • Updating workflow goal criteria or adding new filters does not reset the progress tracking.
  • Clearing all goal criteria resets the number of contacts that have met the goal and the workflow’s conversion rate to zero.
  • Using AND/OR logic within HubSpot’s goal setting allows for the management of multiple criteria, enabling precise and effective targeting for various marketing goals.

Avoiding Confusion between Suppression Lists and Workflow Goals

Understanding the difference between suppression lists and workflow goals is key to effectively managing your contacts.

While both unenroll contacts from workflows, goals measure success, and suppression lists exclude specific contacts.

Workflow goals count towards the goal conversion rate when a marketing email within the workflow is sent to the contacts, therefore goals should be used when the workflow includes marketing emails to measure nurturing success accurately.

Suppression lists are used to exclude certain contacts like competitors or existing customers from workflow enrollment and are especially recommended when no marketing email send is involved in the workflow.

Ensuring Active Contacts and Form Submissions

Accurately tracking active contacts and form submissions is crucial for a successful marketing strategy.

In HubSpot, workflow goals are particularly significant when a workflow includes sending marketing emails, as these goals measure success based on email interactions.

To effectively track form submissions, use a single form across various assets and leverage the URL of each asset as a unique identifier, ensuring efficient and accurate tracking of each submission.

For example, this displays the performance of a single form submission, enabling you to make informed decisions on whether to keep it or not:

Tracking data for a form submission in HubSpot

Tracking form submissions in HubSpot is essential for gaining valuable insights into customer behavior and engagement.

By accurately tracking submissions, you can collect comprehensive data that allows you to build detailed reports, analyze trends, and measure the effectiveness of your marketing efforts, enabling you to understand the customer's journey.

Here is an example of a custom report for form submission data :

Detailed report analysis on form submission in HubSpot

This data can inform strategic decisions, optimize marketing campaigns, and enhance lead nurturing processes, ultimately leading to improved conversion rates and business growth.

Watch this tutorial to understand how you can analyze your form submission data in HubSpot:

Real-Life Examples of Successful HubSpot Workflow Goals

To bring all these concepts to life, let’s look at some real-life examples of successful HubSpot workflow goals.

Handled, a company with 121 locations, provides an excellent example of the effective use of HubSpot workflow goals that contributed to their expansion, as detailed in a HubSpot case study.

Handled: Scaling from Zero to 121 Locations

Handled is a home services concierge company that uses HubSpot to automate its sales, marketing, and customer service processes.

They leveraged HubSpot workflows to manage their entire buyer’s journey, from lead generation to customer support, which was crucial in scaling their operations.

Key Achievements with HubSpot Workflows:

  • Efficient Lead Management: Handled used hundreds of workflows to automate tasks and processes, freeing up their concierge team to provide personalized service. For instance, workflows tied to tasks ensured that as soon as events happened, they triggered the next stage in the process, moving customers through the pipeline seamlessly.
  • Programmable Automation: To maintain efficiency while scaling, Handled utilized HubSpot’s programmable automation to connect with third-party services and enrich their CRM with valuable data. This flexibility streamlined processes, saved time, and maintained a high level of customer experience.
Mastering HubSpot Automation: A Comprehensive Guide
  • Unified CRM System: Having a single system of record for sales, marketing, and customer service gave every team member 360-degree visibility into leads and customers. This transparency empowered cross-functional collaboration and problem-solving, enhancing the overall customer experience.
  • Adapting to Market Demands: During the COVID-19 pandemic, demand for Handled’s services surged. The HubSpot platform allowed them to quickly develop a campus moving program, helping over 6,000 students move their belongings home. This rapid response to market needs was facilitated by HubSpot’s robust workflow capabilities.

Key Benefits of Workflow Goals:

  • Better Lead Qualification: Workflow goals help in identifying and nurturing sales-qualified leads, ensuring that sales teams focus on the most promising prospects.
  • Enhanced Customer Engagement: By automating personalized follow-ups and interactions, workflow goals increase customer engagement and satisfaction.
  • Improved Team Performance: Streamlined workflows reduce manual tasks, allowing teams to focus on strategic activities and improve overall performance.
  • Accurate Forecasting and Reporting: Leveraging workflow data enables better forecasting and reporting, which helps in making informed business decisions.
  • Cost Reduction: Efficient workflows reduce operational costs by automating repetitive tasks and minimizing errors.

Key Takeaways

  • Workflow goal in contact-based workflow effectively measure and refine marketing strategies by unenrolling contacts who meet specific criteria, thereby indicating the success of the workflow.
  • Setting up precise goal criteria and actionable workflow goal in HubSpot aids in tracking progress, nurturing contacts, and aligning marketing efforts with broader objectives.
  • Regular evaluation and adaptation of workflow goal are critical to address changing market trends and contact behaviors, ensuring the continued relevance and effectiveness of marketing strategies.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between suppression lists and workflow goals?

Suppression lists exclude specific contacts from a workflow. On the other hand, workflow goals measure success and automatically unenroll contacts from workflows once they reached the goal.

What is a HubSpot Workflow?

HubSpot workflows automate email sending and lead follow-ups, minimizing user errors like typos. They help businesses scale their marketing efforts efficiently by eliminating the need to repeatedly create processes for each contact action, streamlining operations and improving consistency.

What are the five types of workflows you can create in HubSpot?

HubSpot provides five types of workflows:

  • Contact-based workflows.
  • Company-based workflows.
  • Deal-based workflows.
  • Ticket-based workflows.
  • Quote-based workflows.

How do I track the performance of a workflow in HubSpot?

To track the performance of a workflow in HubSpot, navigate to the "Performance" section in the left-hand menu. Here you can access key engagement metrics like email opens, clicks, and goal criteria. Additionally, review the workflow’s history and performance on the workflow details page or analyze its effectiveness using the enrollment history in the workflow editor.

How do I set a goal for a workflow HubSpot?

1. Go to Automation> Workflows in your HubSpot account and click on the name of your contact-based workflow.

2. Navigate to the Goals tab, click "Set goal," and define your criteria.

3; Click Save tofinalize your goal.