Choosing a marketing automation platform, either to transition to or adopt for the first time, is a scrupulous task. It’s important to choose the solution that best fits your needs. Many of the enterprise solutions on the market boast a variety of bells and whistles and it’s easy to get caught up in the magical promise that they often fail to deliver on. Cut through the noise to identify the core functionality and elements of a solution that you require to prove it’s a valuable investment.
Core Marketing Functionality:
In order for your marketing automation to be successful, you need the ability to create beautiful marketing assets quickly. Regardless of your experience or coding expertise, the right platform will offer email, landing page and form builders that are easy-to-use. You shouldn’t struggle to create marketing assets nor rely on code.
The days of email blasts are long behind us, but that’s not to say email isn’t valuable. In fact, it’s still one of the most important components of marketing. For every $1 you spend on email marketing, you can expect an average return of $32. Moreover, robust nurture campaigns triggered by prospect engagement with your website and marketing assets that are strategic and personalized are an integral part of any marketing automation solution.
Predictive lead scoring is the ability to foresee prospect engagement and the buyer’s journey depending on their interests and assign a value to their actions. With lead scoring working behind the scenes, marketers are tracking a prospect throughout their buyer’s journey. Upon reaching a set value, the prospect has then taken enough actions indicative of being actively interested. With automated alerts, Sales knows exactly when to engage, leading to a more aligned Sales and Marketing approach to the funnel.
Robust CRM Integration
A solution with a robust CRM integration is fundamental for success. Marketers with a CRM and MAP that play nice benefit from aligned Sales and Marketing teams, resulting in Sales enablement and a unified approach to the funnel. With approximately 70% of the buyer’s journey occurring prior to Sales engagement, an aligned strategy to reach prospects with relevant information that resonates is key.
Tracking and Reporting
There’s no excuse for anyone not to be a data-driven marketer. Analytics and reporting are the lifeblood of any modern marketer, thus choosing a platform with robust web tracking and analytics is critical to marketing success. Ensure you’re selecting a solution that provides you insight into the strengths and weakness in your efforts, in both your CRM and your MAP, to provide a full view of ROI.
Core Solution Elements
Many of the enterprise solutions available to marketers offer a large number of capabilities, but they are often unintuitive and come with a hefty price tag. Moreover, the basic functionality needed by marketers, such as those listed above, are pricey add-ons rather than included in the base price. Ensure your marketing solution provides you all that you need for one price.
Superb Customer Experience
This almost seems like a given, but it’s worth stating. Look at the customer experience ratings of the platforms you’re considering. If you don’t see customers raving about the service and support experience, tick the solution of your list of possibilities. Every solution comes with an onboarding process, and thus, a learning curve. From transitioning your assets, learning the platform or dealing with questions, you need a team that is available to you unlimited, at no additional cost and that provides you with a personalized approach.
If you’re seeking a platform to transition from a solution you’re unsatisfied with or are simply looking to adopt marketing automation for the first time, ensure you’re not getting caught up in the buzz. Understand not only the needs of your team, but also the given marketing-functionality a platform should provide in conjunction with the pricing and experience.