Choosing Between HubSpot Sequences vs Workflows

Bastien Paul
Bastien Paul
May 22, 2024

If you’re deciding between HubSpot Sequences vs Workflows for your marketing or sales efforts, it’s crucial to know their distinct functions. Sequences are ideal for personalized, scheduled email chains to nurture leads, whereas Workflows facilitate broader marketing and service automation. This article will outline their unique features, use cases, and how to harness each for your team’s maximum efficiency without overselling either option.

Key Takeaways

  • HubSpot Sequences are tailored for sales teams to manage one-on-one engagements and follow-ups with prospects using personalized, scheduled email sequences, while HubSpot Workflows are designed for automating a wide range of marketing tasks like bulk email campaigns, lead management, and updating contact data.
  • Sequences require manual contact enrollment and are a good fit for nurturing relationships with individualized attention, leveraging tasks and email templates to keep prospects engaged. Workflows allow for automatic enrollment based on specific triggers, facilitating a hands-off approach to nurture leads and manage contacts efficiently.
  • The choice between Sequences and Workflows depends on the specific needs of your sales and marketing processes, with Sequences being ideal for personalized lead nurturing and Workflows serving best for large-scale automation of marketing and contact management tasks.

Understanding HubSpot Sequences and Workflows

HubSpot Sequences and Workflows might seem similar at first glance, but they serve different purposes. Think of HubSpot Sequences as the perfect ally for your sales reps, enabling them to engage with sales qualified leads through personalized, targeted email campaigns. Unlike automated bulk email campaigns, Sequences bring in the human touch, making your messages feel more personal and less like a mass marketing strategy.

In contrast, HubSpot Workflows are the backbone of your automated marketing strategy. They are ideal for managing large-scale contact engagements, such as:

  • bulk email campaigns
  • lead nurturing
  • customer onboarding
  • event registration
  • sales follow-ups

From sending marketing emails to streamlining internal processes, Workflows are your go-to tool for automating a plethora of tasks.

The decision between Sequences and Workflows is not about which is better, but about which is more appropriate for your specific marketing and sales processes.

Sequences in a Nutshell

HubSpot Sequences are designed to ensure that no inbound lead is overlooked. It’s a tool that helps your sales reps maintain engagement with customers by sending personalized messages in a scheduled manner. These sequences offer personalization through the use of pre-made email templates, which means your sales reps don’t have to spend time rewriting messages for each lead.

The beauty of Sequences lies in the fact that they are often sent manually. This amplifies the potential for meaningful one-on-one email conversations, making your outreach more effective and personal. It’s like having an extra sales rep on your team, ensuring that your leads are continuously engaged and nurtured towards a sale.

Workflows Unwrapped

Workflows are the Swiss Army knife of HubSpot’s automation tools. They automate a variety of tasks for users, far beyond just sending bulk emails. From automating sales and service processes to sending internal notifications, Workflows are designed to make your life easier and your team more effective as a service hub professional.

The utilization of Workflows significantly reduces the need for manual administrative work, freeing up your team to focus on more strategic tasks. Imagine not having to manually send out every marketing email or update every contact record - that’s the power of Workflows. By automating these tasks, your business can focus on growth rather than getting caught up in the minutiae of administrative tasks.

Diving into HubSpot Sequences

Crafting personalized sales emails in HubSpot Sequences

HubSpot Sequences are a sales engagement tool designed to automate personalized outreach to prospects. They comprise of up to 10 email templates and unlimited task reminders, making sure your sales reps never miss a touchpoint with prospects. The sequence settings in HubSpot can be customized to define follow-up email send times and task creation times. There’s also an option to restrict sending to business days, ensuring that your emails don’t end up buried in your prospect’s inbox over the weekend.

Sequences facilitate nurturing contacts over time with a series of targeted, timed email templates and automated task creation for effective follow-ups. This feature is a boon to sales reps who want to keep their leads engaged without having to manually track and manage each touchpoint.

Crafting Personalized Sales Emails

HubSpot Sequences empower your sales reps to craft personalized sales emails using predefined templates. The platform allows them to:

  • Send emails from a connected personal inbox, giving a human touch to every interaction
  • Add a new automated email to a sequence by clicking the orange plus icon
  • Select the appropriate step option
  • Create or utilize an existing template to customize the communication

The power of personalized sales emails is not to be underestimated. Studies have shown that marketing campaigns employing email sequences generate 320% more revenue compared to campaigns that do not use automated emails approaches.

The ability to craft personalized sales emails using sales email templates is a game-changer in the world of sales and marketing.

Manual Enrollment and Follow-Up

Despite the automation of emails, Sequences in HubSpot require manual enrollment of contacts. This is in sharp contrast to workflows, which can automatically trigger based on various criteria. Within a sequence, sales reps can schedule a mix of actions such as sending emails using sales templates, creating tasks, and conducting LinkedIn InMail.

Sequences offer a structured and consistent engagement approach, providing a roadmap for up to 9 connection attempts which integrate various activities. Sales teams leverage sequences to manage the full spectrum of the prospecting journey. Engagement is monitored through sequences, and contacts are unenrolled if they book a meeting, reply to an email, or are manually unenrolled by sales reps. This ensures that your follow-ups are always relevant and timely, reducing the chances of irritating your prospects with unnecessary messages.

Mastering HubSpot Workflows

Automating marketing tasks with HubSpot Workflows

HubSpot Workflows are a powerful tool for automating a variety of tasks, including:

  • Sending marketing emails
  • Sending internal notifications
  • Automating the assignment of lead owners and distribution of leads, improving lead management
  • Automating the updating of lifecycle stages, ensuring that contacts receive the most appropriate content based on their stage in the buyer’s journey

These workflows can help optimize processes and save time and effort.

Organizing workflows in a dedicated dashboard helps teams better manage their automated processes and track their creations from various tools. Additionally, workflows can standardize data within the CRM through format data actions, ensuring that your contact data is always clean and updated.

Streamlining Marketing Efforts

Creating a HubSpot workflow is as easy as:

  1. Navigating to ‘Automation’
  2. Clicking ‘Workflows’
  3. Choosing to create from scratch or use a pre-made template
  4. Defining the workflow type and conditions

Before you know it, you’ve got a powerful automation tool at your disposal.

Within HubSpot’s workflows, marketing teams can execute actions such as assigning contacts, managing data entries, setting reminders, sending bulk emails, and sending internal notifications. For example, a workflow might be set up to automatically send an email and notify the sales team when a prospect completes a contact form. This eliminates the need for manual follow-up and ensures that no lead falls through the cracks.

Automatic Enrollment Triggers

One of the key features of Workflows is the ability to enroll contacts automatically based on set criteria such as form submission, contact property updates, or deal stage progression. This means that your marketing team can set up triggers to automatically send personalized emails to qualified leads whenever they engage with your brand in a specific way.

Automatic workflow enrollment is driven by enrollment triggers that might be filter-based or event-based, serving to enroll records into workflows according to predefined criteria thereby enhancing team efficiency. Moreover, contacts can automatically unenroll from a workflow email series when a specific goal is achieved, such as a contact’s action like clicking a call-to-action or scheduling a meeting. This ensures that your communications are always relevant and timely, contributing to a more personalized customer experience.

Key Differences Between Sequences and Workflows

While both Sequences and Workflows offer powerful automation capabilities, they are suited for different situations. Workflows are more suitable for scenarios that require automation of marketing tasks, such as sending bulk emails, updating contact data, and sending internal notifications. On the other hand, Sequences are preferred in scenarios that necessitate a personal touch. They are more tailored to individual follow-ups, making them ideal for nurturing leads with personalized, one-on-one communications.

In terms of measuring performance, Workflows offer a variety of goals that provide a wide array of reporting capabilities. For Sequences, performance is typically measured by metrics such as meeting booking rate and reply rate, providing a more direct form of engagement tracking.

User Accessibility and Subscription Levels

User accessibility and subscription levels also vary between Sequences and Workflows. HubSpot Sequences are available with Sales Hub Starter, Sales Hub Professional, and Sales Enterprise subscriptions. On the other hand, access to Workflows is included in HubSpot’s Marketing Hub Professional and Enterprise subscriptions. For optimal use of Sequences, a paid HubSpot seat in Sales or Service with a connected email and calendar is recommended.

Actions and Engagement Tracking

Workflows offer a variety of actions, including:

  • Sending marketing emails or SMSs
  • Updating contact data
  • Creating new records
  • Spawning tasks
  • Sending internal notifications

Sequences, on the other hand, track engagement by monitoring when a contact replies to a sales email, providing a direct form of engagement tracking.

When a contact replies to an email or books a meeting, they are automatically unenrolled from the Sequence. This aids in segmentation and reduces the chances of irrelevant follow-ups. Without specific actions like replies or meetings, all contacts go through the Sequence steps they are enrolled in without deviation, ensuring consistent follow-up.

Choosing the Right Tool for Your Team

Choosing the right tool is crucial to the success of your marketing and sales efforts. Workflows can manage deal stage automation for the sales team, ensuring each sales opportunity is efficiently advanced at the right time. Meanwhile, Sequences are ideal for sales reps dealing with individual leads, providing a structured yet personal approach to nurturing these leads.

The choice ultimately depends on your team’s needs and the nature of your sales and marketing processes.

Real-World Applications: Sequences vs Workflows

Nurturing cold leads with Sequences and Workflows

In the real world, Sequences and Workflows have diverse applications in nurturing leads and contact management. Sales teams use sequences to send a series of targeted, personalized emails to nurture cold leads into warm prospects. Sequences can be set up to automatically send a follow-up email if a prospect does not reply within a certain period, ensuring that no opportunity is missed.

On the other hand, marketing teams employ workflows to automate the process of segmenting leads based on interactions, such as email opens or form submissions. Workflows enable the automatic updating of contact properties and facilitate the transfer of leads between different lifecycle stages, making lead management a breeze.

Nurturing Cold Leads with Sequences

Personalized email sequences are effective in nurturing cold leads by delivering content that is tailored to their specific industry and recognitions. Sales reps utilize sequences to send targeted follow-up emails to re-engage leads after initial contacts did not result in a conversion.

Additionally, the integration of LinkedIn Sales Navigator with HubSpot Sequences allows sales reps to add manual tasks such as sending InMail or connection requests, which can further personalize the lead nurturing process. This multi-channel approach ensures that your message resonates with your leads, wherever they are.

Automating Contact Management with Workflows

Marketing teams can utilize workflows to deliver relevant content that nurtures contacts and advances them through the stages of the buyer’s journey. By automating these tasks, your team can ensure consistent and timely communication with your leads.

For instance, event promotion and reminders can be meticulously scheduled through workflows. This means that your team doesn’t have to keep a manual track of every event and reminder, freeing them up to focus on more strategic tasks. The automation of contact management through workflows not only improves efficiency but also enhances the overall customer experience.

Optimizing Email Automation for Sales and Marketing

Enhancing sales outreach with personalized Sequences

Optimizing email automation can significantly enhance your sales and marketing efforts. By utilizing advanced personalization tokens in emails, you can:

  • Craft highly tailored communications that resonate better with each recipient
  • Customize email content based on the recipient’s stage in the buyer’s journey
  • Significantly increase the relevance and effectiveness of your email outreach

Segmentation tools within email automation can facilitate the delivery of content that aligns with specific customer profiles, enhancing engagement rates. Tracking engagement metrics allows teams to refine their messaging and timing, improving email performance. By analyzing data from email responses, teams can continuously optimize follow-up strategies for both warm and cold leads.

Enhancing Sales Outreach with Sequences

Sequences can significantly enhance your sales outreach efforts. Sales teams can increase their outreach effectiveness by employing personalization tokens in HubSpot sequences, tailoring communication to each recipient. Incorporating personalization tokens such as those for contact properties like first name, last name, and email can enhance the relevance of sales communications.

Sales and marketing teams can optimize their email automation by implementing personalization tokens which adapt the content to the recipient’s CRM data to boost engagement. This level of personalization can significantly increase the effectiveness of your sales outreach, leading to higher conversion rates and better customer relationships.

Maximizing Workflow Efficiency

HubSpot’s drag-and-drop editor enables easy manipulation and organization of workflow elements to streamline marketing campaigns. Workflows can be created from scratch or using templates, with templates offering structured guides for specific automation goals.

Users can activate workflows to start automation, including the option to enroll existing contacts that satisfy the predefined triggers. This ensures that your workflows are always working for you, whether it’s nurturing leads, managing contacts, or sending out marketing emails for enterprise users.

With such a level of automation, your team can focus on more strategic tasks, maximizing efficiency and productivity.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which tool should I choose for my team - Sequences or Workflows?

Choose Sequences if you want a tool more tailored to individual follow-ups, or choose Workflows for scenarios that require automation of marketing tasks. Both tools cater to different needs within a team.

What are some real-world applications of Sequences and Workflows?

Real-world applications of Sequences and Workflows include nurturing leads with personalized emails and automating lead segmentation based on interactions. This can significantly improve lead conversion and customer engagement.

Can I send automated emails with Sequences?

Yes, you can send automated emails with Sequences using predefined templates.

How are HubSpot Workflows different from Sequences?

HubSpot Workflows automate a variety of tasks beyond sending emails, including updating contact data and sending internal notifications, while Sequences mainly focus on email sending. This gives Workflows a more comprehensive automation capability for a wider range of actions.

What are HubSpot Sequences?

HubSpot Sequences are a tool that allows sales reps to send personalized messages to prospects or leads through targeted email campaigns, helping them engage with sales qualified leads.

Bastien Paul
Bastien Paul
Bastien is the CRO of Hublead. With over 5 years in marketing and sales, using Hubspot, Bastien has written several studies and marketing guides based on data, many of which are well-known in the industry. Bastien likes to question standard marketing and sales beliefs and aims to make things simpler and more efficient.
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