Import Contacts from HubSpot to Active Campaign: A Step-by-Step Guide

Jason Gong
June 6, 2024

Export contacts from HubSpot, then import into ActiveCampaign as a CSV file.

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Moving your contacts from HubSpot to ActiveCampaign doesn't have to be complicated. Our step-by-step guide walks you through the process, from preparing your HubSpot data for export to importing it into ActiveCampaign. We'll also cover best practices and troubleshooting tips to ensure a smooth transition.


HubSpot and ActiveCampaign are both powerful marketing automation platforms, but they have distinct features and terminology. HubSpot is known for its inbound marketing, sales, and service tools, while ActiveCampaign focuses on email marketing, automation, and CRM.

Before transferring your contacts from HubSpot to ActiveCampaign, it's essential to understand the differences in terminology between the two platforms:

  • HubSpot uses "properties" to store contact information, while ActiveCampaign uses "custom fields."
  • HubSpot's "lists" are called "tags" in ActiveCampaign.
  • HubSpot's "workflows" are referred to as "automations" in ActiveCampaign.

By understanding these nuances, you'll be better prepared to map your data during the import process, ensuring a smooth transition from HubSpot to ActiveCampaign.

Additionally, utilizing sales prospecting tools can help you manage and enrich your contact data efficiently.

Understanding the Platforms: HubSpot and ActiveCampaign

HubSpot and ActiveCampaign are both powerful marketing automation platforms, but they have distinct features and strengths:

  • HubSpot is an all-in-one platform that offers a wide range of tools for marketing, sales, customer service, and content management. It's known for its inbound marketing methodology and its user-friendly interface.
  • ActiveCampaign focuses primarily on email marketing and automation, with a strong emphasis on segmentation and personalization. It also offers a CRM and sales automation features.

Before transferring data from HubSpot to ActiveCampaign, it's crucial to understand the terminology differences between the two platforms:

  • HubSpot uses "contacts" to refer to individuals in your database, while ActiveCampaign uses "contacts" and "leads."
  • HubSpot's "lists" are called "tags" in ActiveCampaign.
  • HubSpot's "properties" are referred to as "custom fields" in ActiveCampaign.

By familiarizing yourself with these distinctions, you'll be better equipped to automate sales prospecting and map your data accurately during the import process, ensuring a smooth transition from HubSpot to ActiveCampaign.

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Preparing Your HubSpot Data for Export

Before exporting your HubSpot contacts, it's essential to clean up and prepare your data to maintain its integrity. Here's how to prepare your HubSpot data for export:

  1. Review your contact list for any duplicates or incomplete records. Merge duplicates and update incomplete records to ensure data accuracy.
  2. Decide which contact properties you want to export. Consider exporting only the fields relevant to your needs in ActiveCampaign to simplify the import process.
  3. If you have custom properties in HubSpot, ensure they are correctly mapped to corresponding fields in ActiveCampaign to avoid data loss during the transfer.

When selecting fields for export, you have two options:

  • Export all properties: This option includes every contact property in your HubSpot account, giving you a comprehensive data set.
  • Export specific properties: Choose this option if you only need certain contact properties in ActiveCampaign. This can help streamline the import process and reduce clutter in your new database.

By carefully preparing your HubSpot data before export, you'll ensure a smoother transition to ActiveCampaign and maintain the integrity of your valuable contact information.

Exporting Contacts from HubSpot

To export your contacts from HubSpot, follow these steps:

  1. Navigate to your HubSpot account and go to the "Contacts" section.
  2. Click on the "Actions" dropdown menu located at the top of the contact list.
  3. Select "Export" from the dropdown menu.
  4. In the export dialog box, choose the file format for your export. HubSpot offers several formats, including:
  • CSV (recommended for ActiveCampaign import)
  • XLSX (Excel)
  • VCF (vCard)
  • Google CSV

For the smoothest import into ActiveCampaign, we recommend choosing the CSV format.

  1. Select the contact properties you want to include in the export. You can either export all properties or choose specific ones based on your needs.
  2. Click "Export" to start the export process. HubSpot will generate your export file, which may take a few minutes depending on the size of your contact list.
  3. Once the export is complete, download the file from the email notification sent to your HubSpot account email address.

With your HubSpot contacts successfully exported in a compatible format, you're now ready to build a prospect list or import them into ActiveCampaign.

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Setting Up ActiveCampaign for Import

Before importing your HubSpot contacts into ActiveCampaign, you need to complete a few preliminary steps to ensure a smooth transition:

  1. Create a new list in ActiveCampaign to store your imported contacts, or select an existing list you want to use. To create a new list, navigate to the "Lists" section and click "Add List."
  2. Review your exported HubSpot data and identify any custom fields you want to maintain in ActiveCampaign. Create corresponding custom fields in ActiveCampaign by going to the "Contacts" section, clicking "Manage Fields," and then "Add Field."
  3. Map your HubSpot custom fields to the corresponding ActiveCampaign custom fields. Take note of any field type differences (e.g., text, dropdown, date) and adjust your data accordingly.
  4. If you use tags in HubSpot to categorize contacts, create similar tags in ActiveCampaign. Navigate to the "Contacts" section, click "Manage Tags," and then "Add Tag." These tags will help you maintain your contact organization post-import.

By setting up your lists, custom fields, and tags in ActiveCampaign before importing, you'll be able to automate sales prospecting more effectively and minimize the need for post-import cleanup.

Importing Contacts into ActiveCampaign

With your ActiveCampaign account set up and ready, it's time to import your HubSpot contacts. Here's a step-by-step guide:

  1. Navigate to the "Contacts" section in your ActiveCampaign account and click the "Import" button.
  2. Choose the "Import from File" option and select your exported HubSpot CSV file.
  3. Once your file is processed, you'll be redirected to the import screen. Map the columns in your CSV file to the corresponding fields in ActiveCampaign by using the dropdown menus provided.
  4. If you need to create a new custom field during the import process, click "[Add New Field]" and follow the prompts.
  5. Double-check your field mapping to ensure accuracy. The "Field Values" column will display a sample of your data to help you confirm the mapping.
  6. If desired, select the list(s) you want to add your imported contacts to, and apply any relevant tags.
  7. Choose your import options, such as importing contacts as "Active" or "Unsubscribed," and decide whether to update existing contacts that match the email addresses in your import file.
  8. Review the "Advanced Options" to control whether to trigger webhooks or automations during the import process.
  9. Click the "Import Now" button to start the import process. The time it takes to complete the import will depend on the size of your CSV file.

After the import is finished, review your import results to ensure all contacts were imported successfully. If any errors occurred, you can download an error report to identify and resolve any issues. For more insights on data management, check out LinkedIn phone number extraction.

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Best Practices and Troubleshooting Post-Import

After successfully importing your HubSpot contacts into ActiveCampaign, it's crucial to follow best practices to manage your contacts effectively and troubleshoot any issues that may arise. Here are some tips:

Segmenting Your Contacts

Segmenting your contacts allows you to target specific groups with relevant content and offers. Use ActiveCampaign's segmentation tools to create lists based on criteria such as demographics, interests, or behavior.

Setting Up Automation

Automation helps nurture your contacts and save time. Set up welcome sequences, birthday emails, or abandoned cart reminders to engage your contacts at the right moments. Consider using tools to automate sales prospecting for even more efficiency.

Verifying Data Integrity

Ensure your imported data is accurate and complete. Spot-check a few records to confirm that fields mapped correctly during the import process. If you notice any issues, you may need to re-import your contacts.

Troubleshooting Common Issues

  • Import Failure: If your import fails, check that your CSV file is UTF-8 encoded, contains valid email addresses, and doesn't exceed your plan's contact limit.
  • Missing Contacts: If some contacts are missing post-import, ensure they have valid email addresses and aren't on your exclusion list or marked as bounced or unsubscribed.
  • Duplicate Contacts: ActiveCampaign automatically skips duplicate contacts during the import process. Remove duplicates from your CSV file before importing.

By following these best practices and addressing common issues, you'll be well-equipped to manage your newly imported contacts in ActiveCampaign and improve lead enrichment for your business.

Automate Your HubSpot Contact Management with Bardeen

While importing contacts from HubSpot to Active Campaign can be a manual task, Bardeen offers automation solutions that can streamline this process and enhance your workflow efficiency. Automating contact management tasks can save time, reduce errors, and ensure that your marketing and sales teams have access to the most up-to-date information. Here are some automation examples that can help you manage your contacts more effectively between HubSpot and other platforms:

  1. Copy all HubSpot contacts to Coda: This playbook automates the process of transferring all your HubSpot contacts to a Coda table, making it simpler to manage contacts across platforms.
  2. Copy all HubSpot contacts to Airtable: Similar to the Coda automation, this playbook enables you to effortlessly sync your HubSpot contacts with an Airtable base, streamlining contact management and accessibility.
  3. Sync LinkedIn Messages to HubSpot Contact: This unique automation captures LinkedIn messages and saves them directly to a HubSpot contact, enhancing your CRM with valuable conversation data.

By leveraging these automations, you can ensure that your contact data is always synchronized and accessible across your most important platforms. Get started by downloading the Bardeen app.

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