HubSpot is an excellent platform for managing your sales pipeline, communicating with your existing clients, and managing your customer support emails.

But, can you send cold emails on HubSpot?

In this guide, we’ll dig into the platform to find out whether or not sending cold emails is allowed, or if you need to be using another tool to manage your outreach.

  1. What is HubSpot?

  2. Why use HubSpot?

  3. Can You Send Cold Emails with HubSpot?

  4. What Type of Software Do You Need to Send Cold Emails?

  5. Sending Cold Emails That Get Replies with QuickMail

What is HubSpot?

HubSpot is an all-in-one CRM designed for businesses of all sizes. It’s designed for sales teams, marketing, customer service, and you can even run your blog on the platform.

Home page of HubSpot CRM

You start on a free plan, and over time, you can upgrade your plan to fit your organizational needs.

There’s no doubt that it’s an excellent platform, and there are some compelling reasons to use it.

Why use HubSpot?

HubSpot’s main strength is helping you with inbound sales and marketing.

As people visit your website, you can set up HubSpot workflows to capture email addresses and contact details through lead magnets, forms, or live chat. Those leads are added to the HubSpot CRM and you can then follow up with them via email – either automated or handwritten.

There are also features to help with areas of your sales and marketing operation such as:

  • Analytics into your website visits

  • Automating your marketing emails for pre-planned campaigns

  • Built-in meeting scheduling app to help schedule more demos

  • A complete CRM to manage your pipeline and deals

There are also integrations with almost any sales tool.

For example, HubSpot has a two-way integration with QuickMail. That means you can send cold email campaigns using a dedicated cold email tool like QuickMail and sync leads directly into HubSpot.

As well as integrating with QuickMail directly, you can connect HubSpot with Zapier and create workflows for almost anything you need in your business.

Popular HubSpot workflows

HubSpot is a platform with extensive capabilities, and if you need a central CRM to manage your sales and marketing, it’s a good choice.

Can You Send Cold Emails with HubSpot?

The simple answer: no. You can’t use HubSpot for cold email marketing.

Let’s take a look at the main reasons why.

1. You Can’t Send Emails to Cold Prospects

Sending emails to prospects you’ve never engaged with is against HubSpot’s Acceptable Use Policy.

Acceptable Use Policy of HubSpot

Every prospect needs to have given consent to receive your email, and if you’ve never talked to someone before, it means it’s off-limits.

You can still send sales emails to sales leads if they’ve shown intent. 

For example, if you met them at a conference and they told you to send them a follow-up email, that’s acceptable. 

If someone puts their details into a lead magnet on your site and checks a box giving you permission to contact them, that’s acceptable too.  

However, if you scraped someone’s contact details from LinkedIn and then sent them an email before they’ve given you consent, that’s off-limits.

2. Not Designed to Work with Cold Email Domains

When you’re sending cold emails, you need a cold email domain that’s separate from your primary business email.

This is for deliverability purposes. If your cold email domain gets flagged by email service providers like Gmail or Outlook, your emails risk being sent to the spam folders.

If this happened on your main business email address it would affect communication across all parts of the business: customer service, marketing, and intra-team communication.

A cold email domain removes the risk of being flagged by spam filters.

However, HubSpot is best for teams, and while you can set up individual inboxes, it’s going to leave cold email domains disconnected from other team accounts.

If one member of your sales team wants to monitor another inbox, they won’t have access to the private inbox.

Cold email tools like QuickMail are designed to work with multiple cold email domains and email addresses, and your whole team can track the activity and performance of a campaign, making them a better option for your cold email needs.

3. HubSpot's Email Deliverability Isn't Suitable For Cold Email Campaigns

Deliverability is a critical part of any cold email campaign, and Hubspot's email deliverability tools don't match the needs for those. In fact, HubSpot doesn’t have any specific email deliverability tools included in their email marketing or sales platforms. 

Because HubSpot is designed for teams reaching out to inbound sales leads, email deliverability won’t be a significant issue for most regular users. 

If email deliverability is a priority for your cold emails (as it should be,) you need to use an email warm-up tool, such as MailFlow, which natively integrates with a cold email service provider, QuickMail.

You’ll connect your cold email inbox, for your email, as well as any team member inboxes that you’ll be using to send your cold outreach.

The MailFlow's Auto Warmer will automatically send emails from your address to other real inboxes in the Auto Warmer network. As you send and receive emails, it shows positive signals to ESPS like Gmail and Outlook.

Over time, the volume of emails being sent will slowly increase, and email providers will trust that your email activity can be trusted, and your emails won't land in spam folder. 

You’ll see reports on where your emails are landing, and know if it’s safe to send cold emails.

You can use the MailFlow Auto Warmer for free on your email accounts, even if you're using HubSpot for your day-to-day email activity, such as following up with your sales leads and sending emails to existing customers.

It’ll give your emails the best chance of always landing in the primary inbox and never encountering a problem that could lead to your important emails not being received by customers.

What Type of Software Do You Need to Send Cold Emails?

You can’t send cold emails with tools designed for email marketing towards opted-in subscribers, like Mailchimp, Zoho Mail, or HubSpot.

To send cold emails, you need to look for a dedicated cold email platform.

We created a guide with the best cold email software recommendations here, however, we’re biased towards our own: QuickMail.

Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why QuickMail is the ideal platform for sending your next cold email campaign.

Sending Cold Emails That Get Replies with QuickMail

You can’t send cold emails with HubSpot, but you can send them with QuickMail. It’s designed specifically as a cold email platform.

1. Building a Prospect List

To get replies, you need to be reaching out to the right people. 

You need to create a qualified list of prospects. There are a variety of prospecting tools you can use to speed this process up, and once you have a list of people that you want to reach out to, you can start the import process into QuickMail.

Your list needs to be formatted as a CSV, or in a Google Sheet, which you can automatically connect with QuickMail.

When you import your prospect list, you can verify each detail is correct.

You can map your spreadsheet columns to attributes that you can use in your cold email templates (which we’ll look at in the next section). 

When the import is done, you’ll see your list of prospects ready in QuickMail, and you can then add them to campaigns or buckets for sending.

2. Writing Personalized Email Templates to Every Prospect

Now, it’s time to write your personalized email templates. Each email you send needs to be personalized to potential customers.

You can’t cut corners and send generic templates to your email cold contacts. To ensure you're sending out personalized emails, you’ll need to take advantage of the attributes you included in the import.

As an example, one of the easiest personalizations you can do is to add attributes to your subject lines. Instead of sending a generic "Quick question for you", you could make it moe personalized with "Quick question, {{prospect.first_name}}". 

Add any details to the email template you need, such as:

  • First name

  • Company name

  • Job titles

  • A personalized opening line

  • A personalized subject line

  • A custom P.S. note

To add these details to your template, click on the “Attributes” button and add them.

You can also import any custom attributes you need to include, and they’ll show up here.

Personalization is a vital part of any effective cold email campaign. You need to ensure you don’t cut corners here.

Attributes make it fast to personalize emails at scale, and your prospects will feel like they’ve received a handwritten email from you, which will build trust and increase the chances of a reply.

3. Send Automatic Follow-Ups to Boost Your Reply Rate

It’s not unusual to get a 10-20% reply rate to your first cold email – in fact, that’s a good bar to aim for. Unfortunately, that still means a majority of your prospects aren’t replying. 

To increase the reply rate to your campaigns, you need to send follow-up emails. Our data from millions of campaigns show that 55% of replies come from a follow up so if you’re leaving them out, it’s revenue left on the table.

To follow up automatically in QuickMail, you’ll need to add a new ‘Wait’ step in the campaign. 

Typically, 3-4 business days is enough time between emails.

Then add a new email step, and save it.

When writing your follow-ups, reiterate how you can help your prospect and what you’re offering, but find a new angle.

There's no limit to the number of follow-ups you can schedule; however, if you don't receive a reply after five to six emails, you may want to end the campaign because sending cold emails without receiving replies could harm your domain’s email deliverability.

4. Tracking Your Cold Email Metrics

To understand if your cold email campaigns are moving the needle in your business, you need to track your metrics.

You can see all of this in your QuickMail dashboard, with metrics on:

  • Total open rates

  • Reply rates

  • Number of unsubscribes

  • Bounce rate

If the results aren’t what you wanted, you can test new emails and campaigns to find what works.

If you run an agency and need to track the results for multiple campaigns for different clients, you can get an easy overview of those too.

When a client asks for results, you can quickly get back to them with the current data or dive into the campaign metrics for a more granular understanding. With the campaign metrics, you and your clients can better understand what successful cold email campaigns involve.

5. HubSpot Integrates With QuickMail

Staying organized is imperative to cold email success. You need to keep leads moving through your sales pipeline and engaged.

The best way to do that is to sync your prospects with your CRM, such as HubSpot.

The native two-way sync between QuickMail and HubSpot means you can feed your sales leads directly into HubSpot from QuickMail whenever someone replies.

As well as having the lead contact information synced, you can bring in any data that’s useful to your team, such as tags or context from the reply they sent.

If you update a lead’s CRM record in HubSpot, that information will also be sent back to QuickMail.

You and your team will always have all of the information you need on your leads and never miss an opportunity.

Frequently Asked Questions

Let's look at a few Hubspot cold email and email related questions!

1. Can You Send Mass/Bulk Emails With HubSpot?

Yes, and no. If you met your prospects at a conference, for example, and want to send a mass/bulk email to them, it's acceptable. However, if you have never interacted with the prospects and you want to send a mass email to them, it's against HubSpot's Acceptable Use Policy. For this, you have to use a dedicated cold email platform, like QuickMail.

2. Can You Send Automated Emails With HubSpot?

Automated emails, aka email sequences are when you send multi-step email campaigns without needing to manually send each one. HubSpot offers the capability to send out automated emails, but to comply with HubSpot's Acceptable Use Policy, you must have had some prior interaction with the prospect. If you want to send automated emails to "cold" prospects, you can integrate cold email software with HubSpot.

Wrapping Up: Can You Use HubSpot for Cold Email?

HubSpot is a powerful platform that can help with many parts of your sales and marketing function. However, you can’t use it for cold email. It’s a CRM designed for engaging with prospects who have already consented to receive emails from you. If they haven’t agreed to receive your email, it’s a breach of the Acceptable Use Policy, which risks having your account banned.

To send cold emails at scale, you need a dedicated cold email tool, like QuickMail (Get started with a free 14-day trial).

You can reach out to cold prospects with personalized cold emails and follow-up if they don’t reply. 

As well as that, you can ensure your contact data in your CRM with the native 2-way integration between HubSpot and QuickMail, so you and your team always know exactly where a lead is in your pipeline.

Learn more about using HubSpot for sales here, and start your free trial of QuickMail here to start reaching out to prospects with cold email.