Understand marketing contacts
Last updated: March 14, 2023
|Marketing Hub Starter, Professional, Enterprise|
When purchasing a Marketing Hub subscription, you select a contact tier to set a limit to the number of contacts you’ll engage with through HubSpot’s marketing tools each month (e.g., marketing emails, ads). The contacts included in this tier are called marketing contacts, which are the only contacts that affect the cost of your subscription. Any contacts you don’t plan on marketing to are called non-marketing contacts. Non-marketing contacts don’t count towards your contact tier, and you’re not charged for these contacts.
Below, learn more about how to use marketing contacts, update contacts’ marketing status, and navigate contact billing cycles.
Please note: the following information applies only to Marketing Hub Starter, Professional, and Enterprise accounts with marketing contacts. Older Marketing Hub accounts may not have marketing contacts. Learn how to check if your HubSpot account has access to marketing contacts or request marketing contacts for your account.
Check your access to marketing contacts
All new Marketing Hub accounts include marketing contacts. If you purchased your Marketing Hub subscription prior to the introduction of marketing contacts, you may not currently have access. To check whether your Marketing Hub subscription includes marketing contacts:
- In your HubSpot account, click your account name in the top right corner, then click Account & Billing.
- Under Products & Add-ons, check whether your Marketing Hub subscription shows Marketing Contacts.
- If your subscription says Marketing Contacts, you can use marketing contacts.
- If your subscription doesn’t say Marketing Contacts, you don’t have access to marketing contacts. If you’d like to gain access, reach out to HubSpot support (Starter), or your Customer Success Manager (Professional or Enterprise only).
Monitor your marketing contacts
The number of marketing contacts in your account affects your account's billing on a monthly basis. HubSpot sends you notifications when the count of marketing contacts approaches your contact tier limit, but you can also monitor your count of marketing contacts at any time. Below, learn more about what happens if you exceed or stay below your contact tier, and how you can keep track of your account’s marketing contacts.
- If your number of marketing contacts exceeds your current contact tier, you'll automatically be upgraded to the next contact tier and you'll receive a prorated charge the following day. Learn more about automatic upgrades and how to prevent a contact tier upgrade.
- When the number of marketing contacts goes below your current contact tier, your account will not automatically be downgraded to a lower tier. Once you've been upgraded to a new contact tier, you'll be billed for that contact tier and cannot decrease your tier until your renewal. Reach out to HubSpot support (Starter) or your Customer Success Manager (Professional or Enterprise only) for more information about your contact tier.
- You can view your count of marketing contacts at any time in your Account & Billing page or with a dashboard report. Learn more about contact tier notifications and how to monitor your marketing contacts.
Learn more about marketing contacts billing.
Set contacts as marketing and non-marketing
To manage your contacts, you’ll need to be aware of when contacts are automatically set as marketing or non-marketing, and understand how and when you can manually update a contact’s status. Below are resources to help you understand and update marketing statuses.
- Default marketing statuses: depending on how a contact was created, their marketing status is automatically set to marketing or non-marketing. Certain defaults cannot be changed and will always set the same status, but other tools can be customized to automatically set your preferred marketing status.
- Set contacts as marketing: you may decide to market to a contact that was previously set as non-marketing. Learn how to set them as marketing so you can use HubSpot marketing tools with them. Once you set a contact as marketing, they’ll count towards your contact tier.
- Set contacts as non-marketing: when you don't intend to market to a certain contact, learn how to set them as non-marketing so they don't count towards your contact tier. If a contact was already set as marketing in a given month, you can update their status to non-marketing the same month, but it won’t take effect until after the next update date.
- Prevent users from updating marketing status: if there are users you don’t want to make changes to contacts’ marketing statuses, you can prevent users from setting contacts as marketing.
Tools that only work with marketing contacts
The following marketing tools in your HubSpot account will only work for contacts set as marketing:
- Marketing emails, including follow-up emails after form submissions.
- Contact list audiences in the ads tool.
- Marketing actions in workflows, such as Send email and Add to or Remove from ads audiences.
Please note: other types of emails can be sent to your non-marketing contacts, including sales one-to-one emails, sequences, chat transcript emails from conversations, registration emails, ticket kickback emails, transactional emails, and customer feedback surveys.
Marketing contact properties
There are a set of contact properties that tell a contact’s current status, when the status was updated, by which user or tool it was updated, and how the contact’s status will change upon the next update date. Learn how to check a contact's property value.
- Marketing contact until next update: indicates if a contact will be considered a marketing or non-marketing contact upon the next update date.
- When it is Yes, the contact is currently a marketing contact, but will be set as a non-marketing contact on the next update date.
- When it is left blank, the contact’s current status will remain the same after the update date.
- Marketing contact status: indicates if the contact is currently a marketing or non-marketing contact.
- When it is Marketing contact, the contact is a marketing contact and does count towards your contact tier in this period.
- When it is Non-marketing contact, the contact is a non-marketing contact and doesn’t count towards your contact tier in this period.
- Marketing contact status source type: indicates the tool that set the latest value in the contact's marketing contact status.
- Marketing contact status source name: indicates the ID of the specific user, activity, or tool that set the latest value in the contact's marketing contact status.
Learn more about HubSpot's default contact properties.
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