How to send HubSpot Workflow Internal Notifications to external people with the Pocketknife HubSpot Add on

Johan Vantomme
Johan Vantomme
04 December 2023



Here's a query that sometimes echoes through HubSpot partner discussion groups: How to send internal notifications via HubSpot Workflows to individuals who are not HubSpot users?

We all know that HubSpot is a powerhouse for managing customer relationships, marketing campaigns, and sales processes. But what if you need to shoot off an 'internal notification email to someone beyond the confines of your CRM records or outside your usual system users? What if your intended recipient is a valued partner, a key distributor, or not part of your HubSpot users?

The question arises: can you, sans the Operations Hub, construct a workflow that gracefully dispatches emails to specific external addresses without needing a HubSpot user account for them? These emails could be personalized, marketing-oriented, or transactional. 
Let's explore this scenario in this article. 

Enter PocketKnife

After a decade and more of close collaboration with clients, leadstreet realized the demand for a versatile tool that extends beyond the standard HubSpot offerings.  

This realization resulted in PocketKnife, a HubSpot add-on developed to enhance your portal and streamline business processes. PocketKnife is a multi-functional tool offering features like deal cloning, owner rotation, and the "External Emailer" workflow action.

Managing HubSpot External Email Notifications 

The "External Mailer" is a workflow action in PocketKnife that enables you to send external text emails to individuals who don't possess a HubSpot user account. This dynamic functionality unlocks possibilities for reaching out to people from other departments, intermediaries, partners, clients, or any external stakeholders who play a pivotal role in your business processes. 

What are its key functionalities?

Learn what drives the workflow action to keep HubSpot external connections looped in. We share two features below.

  • Seamless External Communication - You can send text emails to individuals outside the HubSpot ecosystem, bridging the communication gap between HubSpot users and external stakeholders and facilitating smooth collaboration.
  • Workflow-Driven Notifications - Leveraging this feature, you can create automated notifications triggered by specific events or milestones within your workflow. These notifications can be directed towards external entities who may not have HubSpot accounts. 

Uses Cases for the External Emailer

Let's look at some scenarios where being able to notify HubSpot external connections can be useful. We've based many of these use cases on what happens in some of our client's sales and operations teams.

  • Intermediary Notifications - Imagine a scenario where a deal progresses through various stages with the involvement of intermediaries. The "External Mailer" action lets you automatically notify these intermediaries whenever the deal reaches a new stage, ensuring you keep them in the loop without requiring them to be HubSpot users.
  • Client Updates - When dealing with clients who aren't HubSpot users, this action lets you send project updates, order confirmations, or essential information directly to their inboxes, ensuring effective client engagement.
  • Partner Collaboration - For partner organizations like distributors that support your processes, the "External Mailer" action facilitates real-time collaboration by notifying them of critical developments as they occur.
  • Supplier Communication - Keep your suppliers informed by sending timely updates regarding orders, inventory, or production status, strengthening your supply chain relationships.
  • eCommerce Transaction Updates - For those in the retail space, you can send automated purchase confirmations, shipping notifications, and tracking details to customers' email addresses without an eCommerce website integration.
  • Service Status Alerts - For service-based businesses, you can use the action to send outage alerts, service updates, or maintenance notifications to clients or users. 

How to use the External Emailer

Let's use a practical example of how to send Hubspot email notifications to external contacts.

In this case, I would like to notify an external law firm each time a contract is sent. I can do this without creating a HubSpot user for each lawyer in the firm using PocketKnife. 


  • Step 1: Create a deal property. This can be a drop-down or a text property.  
  • Step 2: Add the property to the deal. 
  • Step 3: Create a deal workflow and trigger the contract sent stage. 
  • Step 4: Add the workflow action from PocketKnife called "Send external text mail."
  • Step 5: Configure the mail and add personalization. 
  • Step 6: Your workflow is ready!

Why get the External Emailer and PocketKnife? 

A decade of collaborating with clients has shown us the pressing need for a comprehensive tool that could bridge the gaps left by standard HubSpot functionalities.  

The "External Emailer" workflow action in PocketKnife seeks to address frequently asked questions about how to close the loop between Marketing, Sales Operations, Service, and a business’s wider community of vendors and partners. Our interactions with businesses highlighted common issues like:   

  • Limited Functionalities in HubSpot: Many clients discovered they had requirements beyond HubSpot’s standard offerings. As their businesses grew, so did their need for specialized tools to cater to their unique needs. These functionalities, like the External Emailer, were not readily available within the HubSpot ecosystem, prompting them to seek external solutions.
  • Functionalities Available but on Pro or Enterprise Licenses: While HubSpot offers advanced functionalities, they are accessible only through more premium licenses. Small and medium-sized businesses could not easily justify this, making it a challenge to leverage the potential of HubSpot fully. 

But what makes PocketKnife the preferred choice for businesses seeking enhanced functionalities like the External Emailer for their HubSpot portals? 

  • User-Friendly Experience: PocketKnife has an intuitive design and user-friendly interface. Unlike complex solutions that require custom coding or the involvement of developers, it simplifies the entire process. Its seamless integration into HubSpot ensures businesses can harness its power without needing intricate technical knowledge or specialized expertise.  
  • No Custom Coding, No Developer Dependency: PocketKnife offers accessibility and democratizes advanced functionalities. Businesses, predominantly led by marketing teams, can now expand their capabilities without custom coding or developer dependence constraints. This accessibility empowers marketers to take the reins, unleashing the full potential of HubSpot without the complexities associated with traditional software integration. 
  • Empowering ALL Teams: We crafted PocketKnife to empower sales, marketing, service, and operations teams and even their external stakeholders with a fundamental understanding of HubSpot's core features. By seamlessly integrating with HubSpot, it augments the toolkit available to marketers. With it, you can move past the limitations of basic functionalities, exploring new horizons and executing sophisticated marketing strategies with ease. 

Ultimately, our goal with PocketKnife is to allow small to medium businesses to adapt, innovate, and thrive in the competitive digital landscape. 

Easier External Emails with HubSpot's Ultimate Add-On 

Whether you’re a B2B or B2C organization, you can bridge the communication gaps, irrespective of the HubSpot user status of your partners and vendors. Install PocketKnife today and experience the seamless automation of external emails in HubSpot.  

Incorporating PocketKnife into your HubSpot portal is a transformative step toward optimizing your business processes. With its diverse features, you can work smarter, not harder. Leap and experience the efficiency, productivity, and flexibility that PocketKnife brings to your HubSpot experience. 

Ready to enhance your HubSpot portal? Install PocketKnife today and revolutionize the way you manage your business processes. Take it for a spin:

  Take PocketKnife for a spin

We're here to assist you with any inquiries, technical support, or feedback. Connect with us directly. Let's transform your HubSpot experience together!
Johan Vantomme

Johan Vantomme

Managing partner leadstreet ✪ Diamond HubSpot Partner ✪ Top 50 HubSpot Agency worldwide