How to Organize Contacts in HubSpot Lists for Maximum Efficiency

Key Takeaways:

  • Segment your contacts into active and static lists based on key criteria
  • Use folders and naming conventions to keep your lists organized and easy to find
  • Leverage lists across HubSpot’s tools to personalize marketing and sales outreach

As a HubSpot expert with years of experience helping businesses streamline their contact management, I’ve seen firsthand the power of well-organized contact lists. HubSpot’s Lists tool allows you to segment your contacts based on a wide range of criteria, enabling you to deliver targeted, personalized marketing and sales outreach. However, without a solid organizational strategy, your lists can quickly become cluttered and difficult to manage. In this article, I’ll share my top tips for organizing your HubSpot lists for maximum efficiency.

Understanding HubSpot Lists

HubSpot offers two types of lists: active and static. Active lists automatically update as contacts meet or fail to meet the list criteria. For example, you could create an active list of contacts who have visited your pricing page in the last 30 days. As new contacts visit the page, they’ll be added to the list, while those who haven’t visited in over 30 days will be removed.

Static lists, on the other hand, don’t automatically update. When you manually add or remove contacts from a static list, those changes persist until you make further manual updates. Static lists are useful for one-off segmentation, such as a list of event attendees or a group of contacts you want to suppress from a particular email send.

Segmenting Your Contacts

The key to effective list organization is thoughtful segmentation. Consider the various ways you might want to group your contacts, such as:

  • Lifecycle stage: Segment contacts by their current lifecycle stage (subscriber, lead, MQL, SQL, opportunity, customer, evangelist) to tailor your messaging and offers.
  • Buyer persona: Group contacts who fit a particular buyer persona to ensure your content resonates with their specific pain points and goals.
  • Engagement level: Create lists based on engagement metrics like email opens, click-throughs, or website visits to identify your most engaged contacts.
  • Product or service interest: Segment contacts based on the products or services they’ve expressed interest in, enabling you to deliver relevant content and offers.
  • Geographic location: Group contacts by geographic criteria like country, state, or city to localize your outreach and event invitations.

By segmenting your contacts based on meaningful criteria, you can deliver the right message to the right person at the right time, improving the effectiveness of your marketing and sales efforts.

Organizing Your Lists with Folders

As you create more lists, it’s essential to keep them organized so you can easily find and use them. HubSpot allows you to create folders to group related lists together. For example, you might create folders for:

  • Marketing lists: Group lists used for email marketing, lead nurturing, and other marketing campaigns.
  • Sales lists: Organize lists used for sales outreach, such as lists of SQLs or opportunities.
  • Suppression lists: Keep lists used to exclude contacts from certain communications in a dedicated folder.
  • Persona-based lists: Group lists by buyer persona for easy reference.

By using folders, you can keep your lists organized and make it easier for your team to find and use the right lists for their needs.

Naming Conventions for Lists

In addition to using folders, establishing a consistent naming convention for your lists can further improve organization and make it easier to find the lists you need. Consider including key information in your list names, such as:

  • List type: Indicate whether the list is active or static.
  • Segmentation criteria: Include the main criteria used to segment the list, such as lifecycle stage or engagement level.
  • Date created: Add the date the list was created to help track its age and relevance.

For example, a list name following this convention might look like: “Active – MQLs – High Engagement – Created 2023-03-22”

Leveraging Lists Across HubSpot

One of the most powerful aspects of HubSpot lists is the ability to use them across the platform’s various tools. For example:

  • Email marketing: Use lists to segment your email sends and deliver targeted content to specific groups of contacts.
  • Workflows: Enroll contacts in automated workflows based on their list membership, enabling you to nurture leads and drive conversions.
  • Ads: Create lookalike audiences for your ad campaigns based on your most engaged or high-converting contact lists.
  • Sales outreach: Use lists to prioritize sales outreach and ensure your reps are focusing on the most qualified leads.
  • Reporting: Analyze the performance of your marketing and sales efforts by list segment to identify what’s working and what needs improvement.

By leveraging lists across HubSpot’s tools, you can create a cohesive, personalized experience for your contacts and drive better results for your business.

Maintaining Your Lists

To ensure your lists remain accurate and effective, it’s important to regularly review and maintain them. Set a schedule to:

  • Review list criteria: Ensure your active list criteria still align with your segmentation goals and update as needed.
  • Clean up static lists: Remove contacts that are no longer relevant or engaged, and consider moving static lists to active lists where appropriate.
  • Archive unused lists: If you have lists that are no longer in use, archive them to keep your list view clean and clutter-free.
  • Update naming conventions: As your business evolves, ensure your list naming conventions still make sense and update them if needed.

By regularly maintaining your lists, you can ensure they remain a valuable asset for your marketing and sales efforts.


Organizing your HubSpot lists is essential for maximizing the efficiency and effectiveness of your marketing and sales outreach. By segmenting your contacts based on meaningful criteria, using folders and naming conventions to keep your lists organized, and leveraging lists across HubSpot’s tools, you can deliver personalized, targeted experiences that drive results. Remember to regularly review and maintain your lists to ensure they remain accurate and aligned with your business goals. With a solid list organization strategy in place, you’ll be well-equipped to make the most of HubSpot’s powerful features and grow your business.