Choosing the Right Marketing Automation Tool

For many companies one of the most important components of the makeup of the organization is the marketing team. This is why a good marketing automation tool could be crucial for the organization. The big question many companies find themselves asking: what marketing tool should I choose? With so many marketing automation tools on the market this may seem like an overwhelming decision. All marketing automation applications have a couple of things in common in terms of usage. A few of the key commonalities include batch email marketing, custom forms, lead nurturing, marketing database and the ability to sync to CRM systems. Lets look at a tool like Salesforce native Marketing Cloud. Here is a tool that has a ton to offer with new features such as Journey Builder which allows for cross business segment marketing allowing the user to reach across sales, services and marketing. You also have tools such as Pardot and Hubspot which offer a host of functionality for your B2B marketing needs. Some of the questions that should be asked when trying to determine the right marketing automation tool are:

What is your business model—B2B or B2C?

  • The reason this is important is because the tool you choose may be geared to favor one over the other. A marketing automation tool that is geared to the B2B sales process has built-in features such as customizable templates for the detailed content typically required in a B2B model, along with more automation capabilities to help with nurturing leads in a more long term capacity. In a B2C model, the tool may be a bit more social-media based with avenues such as Facebook and Twitter so the tool can be geared toward that type of marketing.

Will integration with CRM be required?

  • Choosing a marketing tool that seamlessly integrates with your CRM can be a challenge. It is important to choose a tool that not only easily integrates with your CRM, but also allows you to easily access the information you need from within your CRM. The ability to not have to jump from one system to another is important when it comes to user adoption.

What does the CRM integration process look like?

  • The question that should be asked here would be does the marketing automation application have a native adapter for your CRM? The easier the process the more cost effective it will be and the less maintenance will be required in the long run. If the marketing automation tool has a native connector that has easy field mapping and minimal coding required, this will make for a much better experience.

What are key features required for your business?

Marketing Automation
Marketing Automation
  • The first step here would be to evaluate the sales and lead generation process, then decide on what key features will help grow your lead database and help your marketing team effectively and efficiently do their jobs. Here are some examples of key features that most marketing teams would be interested in:
    1. Online Behavior Tracking
    2. Lead Nurturing
    3. Lead Scoring
    4. Event Marketing
    5. Social Media Integration
    6. Campaign Management
    7. Basic Reporting
    8. Web Analytics

What type of support does the vendor offer?

  • When choosing a vendor take a look at the support packages they have to offer. It is important that after the implementation and go-live that your marketing team has some one they can reach out to. Even when it comes to simple questions that need answers, those simple questions are still important. The better the support is, the better the adoption will be.

These key questions are to be used as a stepping-stone in selecting your marketing automation tool. While going through the selection process, the organization may uncover adjustments to the overall sales process or the need to cleanse data. When choosing a tool, data should be a factor along with process. Cleansing the data prior to implementing the tool will help with producing more qualified leads and not overwhelming the sales teams with dead or duplicate leads. Marketing automation has seen huge growth over the past few years and can have great benefits for any organization. The key is to ensure that the marketing automation tool is implemented to fit the business model and is easy to use and update whether you choose a tool like Marketing Cloud, Pardot or Hubspot.

For more information on marketing automation tools and what we recommend, contact us!