Of all HubSpot’s tools, its email marketing feature is one of the most widely-used by big and small companies alike.
Email remains an important element of a great marketing strategy, and HubSpot's interface makes it easy to craft customized emails and track performance effectively.
But of course, there’s always room for improvement.
Recently, HubSpot made three key improvements to its email marketing feature that enables marketers to execute email marketing campaigns with even more ease and efficiency than before.
What’s New in HubSpot’s Email Tool?
Ability to Send Emails Without a Company Domain
For small businesses, email marketing is just as important (if not more important) as it is for enterprise-level companies.
This one-on-one communication to share current promotions, company updates, new content, or just to follow-up with customers is essential for small businesses to engage their audience at all stages of the funnel.
Previously, due to DMARC policies, HubSpot required all email sends to come from a company domain-affiliated email address, blocking any free email providers like Gmail, Yahoo, or AOL.
However, many new small businesses don’t yet have a company domain email address – but that doesn’t make their need for streamlined email communication any less important.
To accommodate these small businesses, HubSpot updated its system to enable non-company domain email addresses to execute these campaigns.
In order to stay compliant with DMARC policies, HubSpot will have to alter email addresses from free providers slightly. For example, if your email address is “email@example.com” the “From” address will appear as “firstname.lastname@example.org” in a recipient’s inbox.
You’ll know if your address has been changed if you get the notification pictured in the image above after selecting your “From” address.
To make sure that email replies are still sent to the right person, HubSpot will add a new reply-to email address to the email@example.com address.
Updates to “From Name” and “From Address” Drop-Downs
Honestly, this is something that I didn’t even realize frustrated me about the HubSpot’s email tool until this update came out.
When you’re creating a new email in HubSpot, one of the first things you need to do is select the name and address you want the email to appear to be sent by.
HubSpot used to use a drop-down menu to select both of these options, but after hearing feedback that it was difficult to use, the company slightly redesigned this feature to add in core functionality the tool was missing or that was hard to find.
In the screenshot above, you’ll see the standard “From name” drop-down with three key elements added to simplify the user experience:
Option to Add a From Name: This seems so simple, but speaking from personal experience – this was much needed. Previously, you could only add a “From name” after you’d already added a new associated email address. This proved frustrating since the hierarchy of the template prompted many to want to add a new name first, only to find it wasn’t possible until you completed the step below it. Even knowing this, I’ve found myself having to back out of the “Add From Name” feature multiple times.
Moved Personalization Token to Drop-Down: If you want specific contacts to get different From names on their emails (potentially based on salesperson, contact owner, account manager, region, etc), you can use a personalization token to show this based on a contact property. This has always been an option in the email tool, but users had trouble finding it, so HubSpot placed it in the updated drop-down for easier use.
“Manage From Names” Option: Say you’re adding a new “From name” option and accidentally misspell the name. Previously, that error would remain an option forever, with no ability to delete it. For teams with multiple people in the email portal, this can easily lead to errors. To correct this, HubSpot has added this “Manage From Names” option, where you can go in and remove any custom names previously added. So simple, yet so important.
Improved Way to Manage Bounces & Unsubscribes
With any mass email send, bounces are inevitable – and there are a variety of reasons an email may bounce.
An email address could be typed incorrectly, an employee can leave an organization, causing a previous email address to become invalid, or there could just be server connectivity issues that result in a failed email send.
Because HubSpot customers pay by the number of contacts in the CRM, this distinction is important to make when cleaning up inactive contacts from the database.
However, there previously wasn’t a way to tell why an email bounced for a specific campaign. This can lead marketers to mislabel active contacts as hard bounces and risk deleting people from the portal entirely.
Now, HubSpot has added a new report feature that provides a clearer picture of why a contact bounced, making it easier to determine who can safely be deleted from the database.
Users can now download a CSV from the Email Marketing portal with customization options to help locate the right data more easily.
The report shows not just contacts that have bounced, but the reason why. If you want to get more specific, you can also choose to export based on bounce reason with any combination of the following: unsubscribed contacts, bounced contacts, or reported spam.
It also includes the option to exclude contacts that have already been deleted, or show all historical bounce data. Previously, the report showed both deleted and non-deleted contacts by default, which can skew perception of how many “bad” contacts were in the portal.
If you’re interested in testing out these new features, they’re currently live for all HubSpot customers today.
Some of these updates may seem minor, but they ease common pain points that come with using the email tool and smooth out the process significantly. This shows that HubSpot is actively listening to its customers and dedicated to continuous improvement.
If you have other suggestions or points of frustration with HubSpot’s tools, you can check out HubSpot’s community feature to let HubSpot’s team know or see if any other users feel the same way. Typically, HubSpot will pull update ideas directly from the most popular requests or questions on this forum.