What is Marketing Automation?
Marketing automation is the process of using software to automate marketing activities such as email marketing, social media, lead generation and lead nurturing among others. It is a way of reallocating resources from those routine tasks that can be handled by automated processes, allowing businesses to be more efficient and save different costs. Marketing automation is not just effective for the sake of efficiency, but to provide personalized experiences to customers throughout their journey. In this way, actions are taken automatically increasing the chances of generating more leads, making sales and allowing the marketing team to focus on others tasks.
Marketing automation can benefit the marketing department of all size companies across a wide variety of industries. At the beginning, startups are able to have 1 to 1 conversations with customers but once the firm starts growing it might be difficult to continue having this close contact with each one of them. Thus, marketing automation starts playing an important role that allows scaling marketing operations.
Finding the right tools
Choosing a marketing automation tool is a decision that must be made carefully. However, there are too many marketers buying the first all-in-one tool that pops into their head. The first step is to identify the needs that your team and organization has and then, consider if it is really necessary to buy a marketing automation solution. It is important to mention this since there are plenty of businesses over-investing in all-in-one solutions instead of focusing on what is really truly indispensable.
Nowadays, marketing automation is not considered anymore as a luxury for big enterprises but something feasible for any business. The following list aims to provide you with some popular tools that can be really helpful but do not forget to consider your goals and needs when selecting which one fits better with your company:
Hubspot is a very popular software, not only for the tool itself but for the valuable content posted in their blog and social media that is the result of their successful inbound marketing strategy. Nevertheless, this powerful marketing automation software can be sometimes overvalued by companies that could use cheaper options with similar features resciding to company branding. The main disadvantage of this tool is undoubtedly its price, which is justified mainly for the brand prestige and popularity.
On the other hand, HubSpot is really intuitive, easy to use and provides other benefits like free lessons and valuable content. Moreover, HubSpot has outstanding analytics features and includes several templates and advanced features that are significantly better compared to its competitors. In addition, they also offer the Sales and Service Hubs, which facilitates synergies between departments.
Pardot, which is now part of Salesforce, is another popular marketing automation tool mostly focused on B2B companies. It is considered as a perfect tool for boosting revenues and it also includes excellent features, services and assistance. Pardot perfectly matches the needs of the B2B marketers by offering them support and help to carry out several analytics features and marketing solutions.
Like HubSpot, Pardot is also a very expensive option but is very intuitive, complete and easy to use. It is specially recommended for those small and midsize organizations looking for improving sales and marketing performance.
Marketo is a well-known marketing automation tool that goes beyond basic marketing automation. It is considered as one of the most comprehensive platforms with features like lead management, keyword analysis, customer engagement metrics, nurturing, ad targeting and mobile engagement among others.
On the other hand, it is not the most expensive tool compared to others and it is used both for medium and large businesses. They also offer marketo education in order to help users to become experts and generate more revenues.