Customer Experience

How HubSpot Used Appcues to Make its Users More Successful


 Appcues is so powerful because it allows us to build our product marketing campaigns into a user’s natural workflow. When they’re in our product and at a relevant time, the Appcues message displays, which makes the user more likely to take action. With email, the user could get distracted or be working on another priority and forget to take action.

-Jeffrey Vocell

HubSpot | Product Marketing Manager


Over a year after replacing its standard CMS with its new Content Optimization System (COS), HubSpot still had thousands of customers that hadn’t made the switch. They knew the COS was a big improvement, and it would make their customers more successful. But given HubSpot’s focus on providing an excellent customer experience, they wanted to ensure each customer was comfortable making the switch at a time best for them and their business.

HubSpot tasked Product Marketing Manager Jeffrey Vocell with getting over 4,500 customers that were still using the legacy system to migrate to the COS. It was a daunting assignment. But Jeffrey was up for the challenge, and decided to use Appcues to create in-product campaigns about the COS without having to change any code or make requests of their already busy engineering team.


JeffreyHubSpot customers using the COS were far more successful with the HubSpot product than those on the CMS. They had a higher likelihood of being a happy customer for a longer period of time.

But migrating customers from the CMS to the COS was not easy. HubSpot technicians do a lot of custom work to recreate websites and landing pages on the HubSpot COS and ensure the site’s responsive design looks great across different mobile devices.

Even after the user files a migration request, they should review to ensure that everything looks ok. They had to opt-in to the migration, check to ensure that everything looks okay, and relearn a new platform.

Jeffrey Vocell HubSpot Product Marketing

“We would send emails out to thousands of HubSpot CMS users, and only get 15 or 20 migration requests.” Vocell said.

Jeffrey and HubSpot’s product marketing team wanted to migrate users to the COS faster. If they continued to only use email and sent one campaign per week, it could take over 4 years to get every account onto the improved system.


HubSpot used Appcues to publish relevant messages inside of their product to entice users to make the migration request.

HubSpot uses Appcues in their product

A step in an Appcues flow that emphasizes the COS keeping users up to par with Google’s algorithm.

By using Appcues, Vocell and the product marketing team were able to build these experiences themselves. “It’s so simple to build, publish and track flows with Appcues. Before, if I wanted to get something in the product I’d have to make a request of our engineering team. It could take weeks for them to get to it. But with Appcues, I could have something published within 10 minutes.”

Because of this, the HubSpot team was able to test different messages.

HubSpot only show these messages to HubSpot accounts still using the CMS. They had tens of thousands of users who either bought HubSpot after the COS was already in place or had already made the migration. With Appcues’ targeting, Vocell was able to ensure only the right users saw the experience.

HubSpot Product Marketing Uses Appcues


After running a few Appcues campaigns, the pace of the COS migrations increased dramatically. “We were getting approximately 70 migration requests per month from our email campaigns,” said Vocell. “And then we started using Appcues, and started getting an additional 120 migrations per month”.

Using Appcues increased the rate of the migrations by 171%.

In addition to improving the adoption rate of the COS, using Appcues has saved HubSpot a lot of time. “If we didn’t have Appcues, we probably would have staffed our customer success team on this project to manually reach out to every customer and get the migration process started”, said Vocell. “Appcues allows us to get the same results with an approach that is great for customers as well.”

Beyond this migration, HubSpot is also using Appcues to make feature announcements, onboard existing users to trials of higher product tiers, and much more. “It’s become one of our team’s essential tools,” Vocell added.

Building @appcues, startup that will improve your user #onboarding | Learned @BucknellU & @HarvardHBS | Proud St. Louis native | Explorer | Made in the 80s

Try out Appcues