Save 20% — Sign up today to get 20% off our Pro plan for your first three months. Click here.

Share article:

A beginner’s guide to creating SMS workflows in HubSpot

As your business grows, you’ll need to find new ways to scale your tasks, streamline resources and meet customers where they want, when they want.  

That’s where automated workflows come in.  

With automation, you can optimise your time by making the management of operations automatic, sequential and customisable thereby leading customers through a journey towards a pre-set outcome.  

Using HubSpot’s automation tool Workflows is a great place to start.  

HubSpot Workflow image example

How HubSpot’s Workflows can help your business grow

Workflows is exactly like what it sounds – you build an automated ‘journey’ of tasks and data that helps you and your customers achieve a certain outcome. 

This automated journey is triggered by a set of enrolment rules, i.e. an initial action, behaviour or condition that you decide. Or it can be done manually, where you can submit each contact directly into the journey.  

 Once enrolled, the workflow then completes a series of predefined actions  and built out in a certain sequence of your choosing. You can delay actions until specific dates or create follow up actions which branch off into different pathways depending on how a contact engages with your brand. 

Workflows are a great way to help you execute different goals and tasks for your business while easily scaling with your growth. In addition, it can be on at all times – even when you are sleeping – meaning customers, anywhere, can access these journeys in their own time and without your supervision. 

It can also help you tie and combine many different areas of your business and offers from marketing, sales, customer service and support. Convenience and ease is key for sustained success, and this is where Workflows soars. 

Why add SMS to my HubSpot Workflows

The number of actions and journeys you can create with Workflows is enormous.  

Where to start? 

Consider your goals first. Is it to nurture more relationships? Meet customers on the channels they prefer? Follow up sales leads (and your agents with reminders) faster? 

In all of these cases (and many more), sending text messages can greatly benefit your Workflow automations. Not only do 90% of SMS messages get read within 90 seconds, it has one of the highest open rates imaginable at 98%. And it works, unlike other communication tools. And as our own research has found, customers prefer it. 

RELATED: Find out how one of our customers, leading online wine retailer Vinomofo, used SMS as part of their Workflows to drive 120X ROI and 21% uplift in conversions

Even better, combining SMS marketing with other communication channels – all within one automation journey, can dramatically increase the effectiveness of your customer’s experience as a whole and generate even greater returns. 

Is it time you take a ride on the SMS train? Add our SMS for HubSpot integration to your Workflows today.  

Getting started with HubSpot Workflows – the essentials

First, make sure you’ve added SMS for HubSpot to your HubSpot account. 

When you go to create a new workflow [Create Workfow], there are three things you’ll need to understand before building out your very first SMS-based workflow: 

  • Workflow type  
  • Enrolment triggers 
  • Actions

1. Workflow type

This helps you determine what kind of automation journey you are creating. There are 2 kinds within HubSpot you can add SMS to:

  • Contacts – based on individual contacts in your CRM and works across all 3 HubSpot hubs. For example, if you want to send a thank you for contacting us message after a customer has submitted a form on your website. 
  • Deals – Related to sales Hub in HubSpot and focused on sales and deals pipeline workflows. 

2. Enrolment triggers

These dictate the type of workflow you’re building and the initial behaviour or condition that will trigger the launch of the journey. 

RELATED: Learn from HubSpot’s in-depth guide to enrolment triggers 

3. Actions

These are the subsequent events you program to happen after a customer is enrolled into a journey.  It is also within actions where you can add text messaging to your customer’s journey. 

RELATED: Learn more from HubSpot’s in-depth guide to Actions.

Now, let’s look at an example.  

Creating a single-step HubSpot Workflow

Let’s say you just want to record specific queries through your website with a specific property type – say as deals. In order to do this, you can create a simple single-step workflow: 

  • Workflow type – Contact-based (not Deal-based as they came through a contact form) 
  • Enrolment trigger – Form Submission  
  • 1x action – Assign property value 

Because this workflow deals with an individual contact registering their details, you choose a Contact-based workflow with a Form Submission enrolment trigger (as the workflow is based on a contact form that the customer submits).  

HubSpot Workflows enrolment trigger image

Top tip: Contact-based workflows have a large variety of enrolment triggers spanning from privacy consent (agreeing to cookies on a website) to views on a website page, or behavioural events like that they did (or did not) complete an order from your online store. Best to familiarise yourself with all of the types in HubSpot’s guide to enrolment triggers

You will need to define which form from your website has been filled out as well as what website page the form originates from. Let’s say in this case, the registration page appears on all of your pages (any page), not just a set one such as Contact Us. There are also further options to set submissions by certain dates or times a contact has submitted the form. 

Next, you will need to choose your action! 

HubSpot Workflows Set Action image

In this case, you want to assign a new property value as a deal property. Remember earlier when we assigned the workflow type as Contact-based rather than Deal-based? This means that not only are you updating the record (from contact to deal) you are updating all associated records of that type too. 

Creating multi-step HubSpot Workflows

Now that you’ve created your first Workflow, what if you want to additional steps? 

Now that one of your customers has registered their details and interest, and their record has been updated in your CRM, the customer is still expecting some type of follow up or confirmation that their query has been received. You already have a ready-to-go email template that thanks customers and assures them that they will be followed up shortly. 

Here’s how you can add this email to her automation journey: 

  • 1x action: Send new follow up lead email 
multi-step action image

When you go in to add an action, simply select ‘Send an email’ which will send an automated marketing email to any contacts enrolled in the workflow. From here, you can select the email template (if it has already been uploaded into the hub) or create a new one from scratch. 

RELATED: Learn how to set up automated marketing email templates in HubSpot

Your multi-step workflow should now look like this! 

Full multi-step HubSpot Workflow image

See how easy it is! 

Adding SMS to your HubSpot Workflows

Now it’s time to add SMS! Make sure you’ve opened an account with us and added our SMS for HubSpot integration before you begin. 

Where SMS can really boost your communications is when you need cut-through quickly or in combination with other communication tools. 

You’ve noticed that customers expect or want follow ups on different platforms and devices. You could add an SMS follow up as well as an email confirmation in quick succession. Here’s how to do it: 

  • Action: Send SMS 

Add an action following your ‘Send new email’ action from our integration SMS for HubSpot.  

HubSpot Workflow adding SMS image

From here, add the contact token for their phone number, most likely their mobile number. Click the drop down on Contact Token, and search for mobile phone number – this means that the record’s phone number will be used when sending a follow up SMS. 

Type in your text message. Use contact token properties to personalise your message if necessary such as their first name. You can also add in Sender ID (your name that appears when they receive the message) as well as Workflow reply ID, Contact Owner and Country Code as further options. Your journey should now look like this! 

HubSpot Workflow adding SMS image

Adding SMS is easy, and there are so many more ways you can add SMS to enable greater performance out of your current workflows such as in: 

  • If/Then – if a customer hasn’t behaved a certain way (i.e. opened an email), you can send a follow up text. 
  • Time delays – sending a follow up text or SMS reminder after a certain amount of time 
  • Internal notifications– alerting internal staff to follow up a lead quickly 
  • Marketing campaigns – set or series of automated texts to keep customers in the know about deals or a specific campaign 
  • And so much more! 

We will explore these in our more advanced SMS Workflows series. 


Want to start building SMS workflows in HubSpot?

Download SMS for HubSpot today!

Get it now

Start building your own HubSpot Workflows today

More and more businesses are building automation journeys with text messaging every day. Is it your turn too?  

Now, with the basics under your belt, you can start building better customer experiences that will help scale your business, and enable customers to achieve what they want, faster and more effectively. 

Have more questions around using SMS in your Workflows? Get a FREE consultation with our messaging specialists now or install SMS for HubSpot today .