To Top
Salesforce Marketing Cloud


Publish date:

Comparing HubSpot and Salesforce Marketing Cloud is similar to comparing two major brands in any industry, like popular car manufacturers or telecom providers. There are always loyal supporters on both sides who will argue that their choice is superior, even though both options address the same needs. Often, the deciding factor comes down to personal preference and how each brand resonates with us individually.

While we are aligned with HubSpot and find their tools to be a perfect fit for our operations, we understand that this might not be the case for everyone. Therefore, instead of presenting a biased opinion, we wanted to offer an honest and transparent comparison of these two marketing platforms.

To achieve this, we turned to what others have said about both platforms—highlighting the positives, the negatives, and the neutral points—to provide a balanced view without injecting our preferences.

Make an Informed Decision between Marketing Hub & SFMC

A recent Allied Market Research study estimates that the global digital marketing software market will reach $181 billion by 2030. The surge in businesses offering consulting services for Marketing Hub and SFMC is a testament to their popularity and effectiveness. This discussion will compare their capabilities and guide you on which platform makes the most sense for your business.

Both Marketing Hub and SFMC have established impressive credentials over the years, making either a reliable choice. However, choosing between them requires an informed decision. While both platforms offer similar features, certain core functions can serve as differentiating factors.

SFMC excels in comprehensive email marketing and user journey tracking functionalities. On the other hand, Marketing Hub acts as the central hub for your marketing activities, with features like automation, customer journey tracking, and a collection of tools to execute, manage, and monitor various customer relationship management activities from a single platform.

HubSpot Marketing Hub vs. Salesforce Marketing Cloud: What Are They?

While most marketers are familiar with these platforms, it's helpful to define them simply to understand their fundamental differences. At their core, both are customer relationship management platforms designed to streamline activities that help acquire, nurture, and retain customers. This is achieved through various interactions integral to strategic marketing and sales activities, which can be executed and monitored through both platforms.

The key distinction lies in the features and functionalities they offer, their comprehensiveness, and how users can leverage these capabilities. Think of Marketing Hub as an all-in-one customer relationship management engine, encompassing all the tools needed to build and strengthen customer engagement, with the flexibility to choose from multiple hubs.

In contrast, SFMC is a marketing automation platform focused on enhancing marketing efficiency and outcomes. It also offers additional options like sales and service clouds, providing a broader scope beyond just the marketing cloud.

Pricing Considerations for HubSpot Marketing Hub vs. Salesforce Marketing Cloud

When there is little to differentiate between two platforms, pricing often becomes the most significant factor in the decision-making process. HubSpot stands out in this regard due to its freemium model, offering free tools across its marketing, sales, service, CMS, and operations hubs. These free features include reporting dashboards with some limitations, Facebook Messenger integration, conversational bots with limitations, email reply tracking, and more. On the other hand, Salesforce primarily offers a free trial.

HubSpot's pricing structure makes it more accessible for businesses operating within a specific budget. The entry-level pricing for the Marketing Hub is competitive, and similar pricing applies to its other hubs. For businesses looking to use the entire suite, HubSpot offers professional and enterprise editions at different price points.

Salesforce requires you to choose from various marketing packages, with prices varying based on the edition and features selected. The Sales Cloud, for example, starts at a lower price point but increases with the addition of more advanced features and higher-tier editions. The total cost of ownership will vary depending on the number of users, desired features, and level of customization needed.

From a pricing perspective, Salesforce Marketing Cloud is often more suitable for larger businesses with substantial budgets allocated to CRM platforms. In contrast, HubSpot's pricing model is designed to accommodate companies of all sizes, making it a viable option regardless of budget constraints.

SFMC Components
1. Journey Builder

Personalized messaging is crucial for effective customer interactions across various channels, including websites, social platforms, and email. Journey Builder provides visibility into these interactions and guides customer journeys based on specific actions, such as purchases or downloads. This journey mapping allows you to align your messaging with customer actions, ensuring timely and relevant communications that drive desired outcomes.

2. Email Studio

Email Studio focuses on email marketing, leveraging marketing intelligence and automation to engage your target audience. It simplifies email marketing by automating the sending of dynamic and personalized emails tailored to each stage of the customer journey. The tool offers templates and automation features to enhance email efficiency and response times. Additionally, you can track email campaign performance through the Tracking Report functionality to make necessary improvements.

3. Social Studio

With the growing number of social media users, managing social media as a key promotional channel is essential. Social Studio is a comprehensive tool that helps you manage, schedule, create, and monitor your social media posts. It supports businesses with geographically distributed operations by allowing the creation of region-specific workspaces for tailored social media presence. The tool also enables you to create engaging social content and Facebook ads, acting as a central hub for managing your social media presence.

4. Data Studio

Data is essential for driving your customer relationship strategy. Data Studio offers tools for audience discovery, providing deeper insights into both existing and potential customers. You can connect it with other data providers for enhanced data analysis and control data access securely for customers and partners. The focus is on using data to generate ROI, whether through better customer understanding or revenue generation by sharing data with trusted partners.

5. Mobile Studio

Mobile Studio enhances your mobile marketing efforts by enabling personalized mobile messaging to your target audience. Features like GroupConnect, Mobile Connect, and Mobile Push allow you to send messages via messaging apps, SMS, MMS, and push notifications, encouraging app usage and tapping into the mobile marketing potential.

6. Salesforce DMP

The Salesforce Data Management Platform (DMP) provides detailed insights into your customers, allowing you to create and deliver personalized, outcome-focused messaging. It offers real-time intelligence by responding to new data signals, enabling marketers to continually refine their strategies based on the latest available information.

7. Advertising Studio

Successful advertising is built on robust customer data. Advertising Studio allows you to utilize data from your marketing, sales, and service platforms to make informed advertising decisions. It ensures you can reach your audience on their preferred channels, including Google, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, and more. By aligning advertising with your lead generation strategy—such as lead scoring, email marketing, and sales activities—through connections with lead management and sales platforms, Advertising Studio brings precision to your campaigns. Consider it the central hub for maximizing your advertising budget.

8. Interaction Studio

Interaction Studio provides real-time updates on customer experiences resulting from your engagements. You can visualize, track, and manage these experiences, tailoring engagement to the specific moment in the customer journey. The features of this studio enable real-time cross-channel personalization, enhancing the relevance of customer experiences throughout their journey.

Marketing Hub Capabilities

It's important to note that Marketing Hub offers all the capabilities found in other leading marketing platforms. This popular CRM can address all your customer relationship-building needs. Here are some of its standout features:

1. Segmenting Lists

Customer segmentation is one of Marketing Hub's greatest strengths. You can segment customers across various models, including demographic, geographic, technographic, and more. By combining these with detailed behavioral segmentation, you can send highly customized messages to engage customers further into the buying funnel.

Segmentation lists are crucial for this process. You can deliver personalized emails to contacts based on various criteria like content downloads, deal size, age, geography, and more. These lists can be integrated into your email marketing automation strategy to ensure you send the most relevant emails to your contacts. Timeliness is critical; improving your marketing performance depends on quickly tapping into a customer's mood or inclination. Time-based lists help you send emails at optimal times, increasing their chances of success.

Another key to improving email marketing outcomes is knowing your customers' current lifecycle stage and sending emails accordingly. Constantly updating lists with new data is essential, and Marketing Hub's lists are powered by CRM data. Any actions, such as clicks or views, are updated automatically, ensuring you always have accurate information.

2. Email Marketing

Global email marketing revenues are projected to hit significant figures in the coming years. Effective email marketing remains crucial, and Marketing Hub provides the tools to maximize its potential. Your business's emails compete for attention in crowded inboxes, so crafting messages that work and achieve your goals is essential.

Marketing Hub simplifies and optimizes this process with a user-friendly design tool that includes drag-and-drop functionality. You can customize layouts, calls to action, and more. Choose from goal-based email templates or explore various options in the marketplace to find emails designed to convert. Working with robust CRM data ensures that your personalization is always based on relevant and accurate information.

Creating an email is just the first step; ensuring high open rates is next. Personalizing emails based on the subscriber's lifecycle stage is vital. With Marketing Hub, you can use various customer data to create compelling subject lines and content that encourage action.

These emails can be integrated into your automated workflows and scheduled for delivery at optimal times based on the lifecycle stage. Real-time reports from the CRM's email tracking and monitoring features allow you to assess campaign performance and quickly make any necessary adjustments.

3. Account-Based Marketing (ABM)

Account-based marketing (ABM) is a highly effective strategy for targeting specific accounts and delivering significant value. Marketing Hub can be the central platform for executing and monitoring your ABM strategy. Use CRM workflow templates to target accounts effectively. Tag accounts with default properties and buyer personas to enhance targeting, enabling marketing and sales teams to work together seamlessly.

Successful ABM requires personalized content for individuals within the account who have specific buying roles, whether influencers or key decision-makers. You can integrate your LinkedIn ad campaigns with account-level targeting based on tiers, contacts, contact subsets, or account status. By connecting LinkedIn Sales Navigator and Marketing Hub, you gain deeper insights into target organizations, allowing you to create an ABM strategy focused on building and nurturing meaningful connections with key individuals within an account.

4. Social Media Campaigns

The social media landscape is vast and ever-evolving, requiring an optimal presence on multiple platforms for successful campaigns. HubSpot's social media management software allows you to publish content across various social networks from a single location. This centralized approach integrates your social strategy seamlessly with your broader marketing activities. Features like keyword monitoring help you track all mentions and interactions with your target audience, feeding this data into the CRM. This enables you to create contextually relevant social content and engage in conversations that enhance social media ROI.

Additionally, you gain valuable insights into campaign performance through social reports, identifying which platforms yield the best ROI and the characteristics of the most effective social messages.

5. Automated Workflows

HubSpot's automated workflows enhance efficiency across your marketing activities, improving both the quality and quantity of your campaigns. You can automate lead nurturing with email drip campaigns, sending emails based on specific triggers and actions to ensure timely and relevant communication with prospects. Custom workflows can be tailored for specific accounts or contacts, such as setting up an automated follow-up campaign after sending a case study to stakeholders.

Other time-consuming activities like lead scoring, follow-up, data management, and lead sharing with sales can also be automated, freeing up your marketing team to focus on strategy and execution.

6. Lead Segmentation, Tracking, and Scoring

HubSpot serves as a central hub for managing leads. The CRM’s lead management software allows you to handle cold leads, warm leads, hot leads, MQLs, and SQLs efficiently. With all data consolidated and updated in one place, you have clear visibility into lead interactions and can score leads based on criteria relevant to your business.

By transitioning from manual to automated lead management processes, workflows ensure leads are scored automatically, placed in relevant buckets, shared with appropriate users, and included in segmented lists for personalized campaigns.

7. Reporting

Data is crucial for the success of business functions like marketing and sales. HubSpot acts as a central data repository, offering comprehensive and insightful reports. The CRM integrates with other essential business apps, providing a single source of truth for data from multiple sources. You can create custom dashboards to showcase various reports, combining data to offer a holistic view of performance.

What’s Good for You?

Consulting with CRM experts will reveal that both platforms are viable options, but the choice depends on your specific business challenges, budget, learning curve, and required features. While both CRMs offer similar features, they differ in pricing models and usability. SFMC may have a steeper learning curve than HubSpot, but it depends on your team's ability to adapt quickly. Consider whether you need the full suite of features or can select specific modules. Also, evaluate the total cost of ownership (TCO) over time, ensuring the platform provides growing returns while reducing TCO.


To gain a thorough understanding of a CRM’s features and functionalities, working with an expert marketing technology consulting partner is invaluable. Choosing the right platform can be complex, given the similarities in CRM capabilities. It's crucial to map your needs to specific platform functionalities and assess their tangible benefits.

Ready to make the right CRM choice for your business? Contact Codleo Consulting today for a personalized consultation and expert guidance. Let us help you navigate the complexities and select the perfect CRM solution for your unique needs.

Get in Touch with Codleo Consulting Now!

About the Author

Vineet Rana

Vineet Rana is the digital marketing manager in the #Awesome team at Codleo. He is passionate about all things branding, and his mission is to get amazing content out to everyone as much as possible. When He is not online, he loves cooking, lifting weights, and hiking in the Himalayas with his friends.

Talk To Us