9 min read

Episode 295: Strategy takes time, Paid seat deactivation, Deal close gotcha on app, Notification profiles, Security Centre, Non-fit personas, Xero sync, ChatGPT inefficiency

Episode 295: Strategy takes time, Paid seat deactivation, Deal close gotcha on app, Notification profiles, Security Centre, Non-fit personas, Xero sync, ChatGPT inefficiency

Welcome to HubShots Episode 295: Strategy takes time, Paid seat deactivation, Deal close gotcha on app, Notification profiles, Security Centre, Non-fit personas, Xero sync, ChatGPT inefficiency


This edition we dive into:

  • Who forgot to plan out their 2023 - it’s not too late
  • Deactivating a user now releases the paid seat they were consuming
  • Chat and Slide-in popups competing for attention on the bottom right
  • Deal close behaviour on Desktop versus in-app
  • ‘Last email received from contact’ HubSpot ticket property
  • Notification profiles are so handy
  • HubSpot Security Centre - is it confusing for you too?
  • Non Fit personas
  • Xero invoice sync
  • Avoiding the ChatGPT inefficiency temptation
  • 11 Things you’re probably not using in HubSpot that you should be

You can watch this episode on our YouTube episodes playlist (or just listen to it on our YouTube audio channel)

Are you a subscriber to the HubShots YouTube channel?

We’re also available on Spotify or Soundcloud if that’s easier for you.

Did a colleague forward this episode to you? Sign up here to get yours every Friday.

Please forward this on to your work colleagues.

Recorded: Wednesday 08 February 2023 | Published: Friday 10 February 2023

Table of Contents


🌱 Shot 1: Growth Thought of the Week

Take time to step back and plan

The start of 2023 has been kinda strange… by February you’d expect to be back into full swing, the year planned out and strategy confirmed.

Perhaps surprisingly, we’re finding that’s not the norm in our larger clients. Many took extended breaks (to make up for not being able to take breaks in previous covid affected years) and after returning have spent the last week or two just catching up.

Only now are they setting aside time to think strategically.

And that’s fine. Strategy needs space. Space (ie time) to think critically and proactively. It’s hard to squeeze it in, in between meetings…

Don’t rush it - even though you are feeling the pressure of a quarter that is almost half over.

Think about your business goals. Be clear on those.

Break these down into sales, marketing and service outcomes.

Then map those against your available resources (and tech stack).

And then prioritise based on resource availability against the impact of the outcomes.

The biggest challenge we are seeing in companies is the lack of resources to actually implement the components of business strategy.

Key takeaway:

  • Don’t rush
  • Consider business goals and resources available (this requires creative thinking)
  • Prioritise as appropriate (this requires discipline)
  • Make a start

BTW, some wise advice from a customer:

“Version one is better than version none.”

- Justin from Red Tomato

So test and measure.

P.S. We used to guide companies through an annual marketing review (we called it an AMR). We no longer offer this service to new clients, but the Google doc we link to on the page is still a useful guide to use - free to access (no signup required).

[Back to Top]

✨ Shot 2: Quick Shots of the Week

Deactivating a User now removes their paid seat

A nice update to the Deactivate a user process - it will now prompt to remove a paid seat licence (if that user has one assigned to them).

This feature rolled out a few days after we mentioned it on the last show as a gotcha.

It would be nice to think HubSpot were listening and rolled it out in response to the show (lol), but I’m assuming this is a coincidence and they actually had this planned for months, and it just happened to roll out around that time.

Thank you HubSpot!

Here are a few other quick items of interest we noticed:

  • You can now clone static lists and make filter updates before saving them as a new list.
  • New service playbook templates, only 2 at the moment but a good start (Customer onboarding playbook  and a Business review playbook)
  • View and Add Comments on the HubSpot iOS App

[Back to Top]

🚀 Shot 3: HubSpot Marketing Feature of the Week

Chat interferes with Slide-in on the right hand side

If you have a chat widget on the right side of the screen and you have a slide in form on the same side it will not work.  So be aware of this!

The two will compete and cause issues.

Here’s our general guidance for placement:

  • Chat to show bottom right
  • Slide-in popups to show bottom left

You set this when creating the popup form:

Unfortunately there’s no way to change an existing form type or placement, you’ll need to create a new form.

You’ll notice that all our popup forms on HubShots and XEN all slide-in from the bottom left now, for this very reason.

Note: the new Popup CTA Beta that some portals have, only allows targeting bottom right ie can’t show in bottom left :-(

[Back to Top]

💰 Shot 4: HubSpot Sales Feature of the Week

Deal Close Behaviour - different between App and Desktop

When closing a deal on the mobile app the close date does not automatically update like if you were to do it via the browser/desktop!


In saying that, here is a sales feature discussed with a sales team that we work with when they are completing a sale.  

They mentioned that getting photos of completed projects were difficult and we had an idea of making it a significant moment.  

So we decided to prepare the client and have the photo of that significant moment framed and sent to them as a memento of the occasion.

Sales idea for client photos

[Back to Top]

👨‍🔧 Shot 5: HubSpot Service Feature of the Week

HubSpot Ticket ‘Last Email received from contact’ property

Have you ever wanted to trigger a Ticket workflow based on a contact replying to that ticket?

Not sure which ticket properties to check?

Here are the two properties you will be looking to use:

  • HubSpot ticket property: Last email activity
  • HubSpot ticket property: Last email date

But when you search for them in the workflow trigger criteria you can’t find them.

Turns out the only way (that we’ve found) that you can access them is by using an automated ticket workflow that HubSpot creates in the background when you enable this option in the Automation settings of a ticket pipeline:

Enabling this tickbox will create an automatic workflow in the background, that you can find in the ‘Created in other tools’ category of workflows:

These are the automatically generated workflows HubSpot created, based on that tickbox in pipeline settings.

Simple edit one of them and clone to a new workflow - you can then use those same properties for your own workflows.

If all the above seems like a messy workaround, then trust your instincts - my gut is telling me there’s an easier way to do this and I’ve missed.

Please let me know if you have a better way. 

[Back to Top]

🔧 Shot 6: HubSpot Admin Feature of the Week

Notification Profiles

A few episodes ago we discussed a gotcha relating to annoying notification emails being sent out to all users (and how to turn it off).

Little did we know that Notification profiles were just about to be released.

Notification profiles allow an admin to set up the default notifications that all users will receive.

You can set these up from Settings:


For example, as a default you could all notifications to be turned:

Or you can control just the default email notifications that everyone will receive when they are added as a User (they can always override their settings to their personal preferences):

override settings to personal preferences

Plus, bonus, these can be incorporated into Presets, another new feature in HubSpot - more on this in a future episode.

Tara has a good walkthrough on the HubShots YouTube channel covering both Notification profiles and Presets:


[Back to Top]

🔧 Shot 7: HubSpot Gotcha of the Week

HubSpot Security Center has Launched

Security Center is a new page for getting an overview of how you are doing security wise. But I find it confusing - here’s Ian’s portal:

Welcome to the Security Center

The above screenshots is from Ian’s portal, here’s ours:

Welcome to the Security Center

I find this confusing, for example it indicates we have 6 Super Admin users (which is correct) but indicates we have 11 Partner users who are Super Admin. I’m assuming this is because some of our team - who don’t have Super Admin access in our own portal, do have Super Admin in some of our client accounts…? In which case, the Resolve link doesn’t offer any help…

I was surprised to learn this is actually released (I had assumed based on the above it was still in beta). I’m struggling to recommend this to anyone just yet as I think it will raise more questions than it answers… will review again in a few weeks.

As a general note though - I do strongly recommend making 2FA mandatory for all accounts - that’s something I’m tracking down in our portal - we have a few older generic user accounts that don’t yet have 2FA.

More to come on this once we have a clearer understanding of what this all means… 

[Back to Top]

💡 Shot 8: Insight of the Week

Non Fit Personas

We’ve covered this on the show a few times (even way back in 2016 in our chat with Varun in episode 26), but after a conversation with a customer earlier this week, thought it was worth revisiting.

I know the topic of personas can be as simple or as complex (perhaps even controversial) as you want to make it, but for the purposes of this shot, let’s just agree that personas are a nice way to capture the attributes and behaviours of your contacts, and group them into appropriate buckets.

The ways of defining your personas is endless, and there’s been many books written on the topic (this one is a classic).

But, at the risk of oversimplifying, consider some examples:

If you are in B2B you might have personas for:

  • C-Suite execs, versus operations or finance (ie responsibility based)
  • Job titles (ie role based)
  • Jobs-to-be-done (ie outcome based)
  • etc

If you are in retail you might have personas for:

  • Spending behaviours (repeat, affluent, etc)  
  • Demographic based (age, location)
  • etc

And many personas will combine a mix of these.

With all that preamble out of the way, we can now consider the concept of a Non-fit persona.

Simply put, Non-fit personas are a way of grouping together contacts who aren’t a fit for your business, either because:

  • You don’t want to work with them (ie protects you)
  • You don’t think you’ll provide value for them (ie protects them)

As many a wise person has said, learning to say No is a skill (see also our quote of the week below).

Clearly defining your non-fit persona allows you to easily identify who you should be saying No to as early as possible. Better for you, better for them.

In HubSpot you can then use your personas to automate workflows for emails, internal notifications, advertising audiences, etc. 

[Back to Top]

🏈 Shot 9: Listener Question of the Week

Xero invoice sync

We added this new feature in the HubSpot build Xero sync to now get invoices into HubSpot.

Gotcha here is that you cannot see it on the contact record.  



[Back to Top]

📚 Shot 10: Thought of the Week

Avoiding inefficiency with ChatGPT and other tools

Scenario: using ChatGPT to prepare your emails to contacts and then the receiver using ChatGPT to summarise the email.

It’s like Twitter inefficiency all over - Twitter limits to 280 characters, so tools are created to prepare threads, and then Twitter has a feature to allow reading threads easily. Summary: Twitter creates a feature (read as thread) to overcome an issue it created in the first place. Inefficiency magnified.

Anyway, my point is simply this - don’t get carried away doing noisy ChatGPT activities (ie padding out emails) that don’t actually add value to your audience or recipients.

Instead focus on the high value activities that provide both efficiency and effectiveness.

Here’s a few simple examples of useful things to do:

  • Prepare email subject line variations so you can quickly prepare A/B tests for email subject lines
  • Prepare social updates in the voice of a specific persona
  • Prepare landing page variations in the style and voice a specific audience segment will find the most relevant

BTW when I think of where ChatGPT is going, I consider it to be this generation’s spell-check. A tool/feature we take for granted in everything we do. The ChatGPT experience is going to be integrated everywhere. Just as we have a generation that don’t know what life was like before mobile phones, we’ll soon have a generation that doesn’t know what life was like before ChatGPT (or whatever it ends up being branded as in our collective minds).

[Back to Top]

✍️ Shot 11: Quote of the Week

 “Hell Yeah or No”

- Derek Sivers


[Back to Top]


🏋️ Shot 12: Training of the Week

11 Things You're Probably Not Using In HubSpot That You Should Be

Last year Ian and I ran a private Masterclass for our clients, where we went through a ton of tips and new features using HubSpot.

We’re making the event recording available to our HubShots subscribers - you can access the slide deck and recording using the link in the show notes (not a subscriber yet? - you can sign up at hubshots.com/subscribe )

In the masterclass we go through 11 areas of HubShot across the hubs, highlighting the tools and features that we see most people miss.

11 things you're probably not using in HubSpot  that you should be

We’re planning another online masterclass in the coming month - look out for a separate email with details soon.

[Back to Top]

🦮 Shot 13: Need help with your HubSpot Portal?

HubShots HubSpot QuickCheck

  • Have you inherited HubSpot and not sure what is in place?
  • Are you coming up to renewal and not sure if you are getting the most out of your HubSpot portal?

Our HubSpot QuickCheck service has been popular with companies who are looking for a quick review of their HubSpot portal to understand these kinds of situations.

You can view more details and book in your session here.


[Back to Top]

🧲 Shot 14: Follow Us on the Socials

Connect with HubShots here:

Connect with Ian Jacob on LinkedIn and Craig Bailey on LinkedIn 

[Back to Top]

HubShots, the podcast for marketing managers and sales professionals who use HubSpot, hosted by Ian Jacob from Search & Be Found and Craig Bailey from XEN Systems and XEN Solar.

HubShots is produced by Christopher Mottram from Podcastily.

We record using Riverside.fm (<= affiliate link)

Please share this with colleagues - it helps us improve and reach more marketers.

Episode 295: Strategy takes time, Paid seat deactivation, Deal close gotcha on app, Notification profiles, Security Centre, Non-fit personas, Xero sync, ChatGPT inefficiency