How to choose the right marketing automation tool for B2B marketing
Marketing automation tools offer features that help you personalize your customer journey. Here is a guide for choosing the right marketing automation tool.
The kind of B2B content personalization and automation in marketing processes that marketing automation provides is magical. 80% of marketing automation(1) users saw an increase in the number of leads and 77% saw an increase in conversions. Thus, investing in a marketing automation tool is a wise decision, but which tool you choose is equally important.
For a digital marketer or somebody in charge of setting up a marketing automation tool for your business, here is a quick guide on tool selection.
Assessing the need for marketing automation tool
But before you get into the details of tools available on the market, assessing your need for the tool is crucial. Once you are clear on what benefits you want to derive from the tool, you can select the one that is the best fit for your organization.
Which company goals do you want to achieve using marketing automation?
What made you consider using marketing automation in the first place? What are your marketing automation goals? Maybe it is the need to generate more relevant and qualified leads or to have a long-term, personalized engagement with prospects and customers, that drives the need to have a holistic view of how customer engagement is happening across platforms. With clarity in goals, it becomes easy to opt for a tool that helps you achieve these goals.
Which features do you need?
Marketing automation tools offer features in bundles. You can choose a package that suits your needs. Some of the features you could be looking for based on your goals and objectives are audience segmentation, tracking website visits, email automation, creating lead generation forms and landing pages, lead scoring, contact segmentation, and so on.
Which integrations do you need?
You could have various data collection systems already in place. You will need a marketing automation tool that integrates well with these tools. This includes integrations with CRM, data analytics, CMS, email automation tools, ad managers, and so on. Once you have assessed your needs, you can refer to the following checklist.
5-Point checklist for choosing a marketing automation tool
Check user interface –
When going through a demo of the tool, keenly observing the user interface will help in the long run. Is the interface simple to use, or do you need to ask the presenter or consult the help section? Other than the initial learning period, the tool should be easy to operate and should not be too time-consuming.
Check the available features –
Once you know which company goals you are heading for and have defined SMART objectives, you will have an idea of the features you need. One of the important features is audience segmentation for sending personalized content. Another is lead nurturing and lead scoring so that your marketing efforts are focused on only those who are truly interested. Creating and publishing content from the same place is also an essential feature. Other features to think about are audience tracking, A/B testing, chat box automation, report generation, etc.
Check integrations –
The integrations make it simpler to manage things from one place and to get the whole picture all at once. Firstly, the tool should be able to integrate with the CRM you are using so that the sales and marketing teams are in sync. For example, Marketo integrates well with Salesforce. Other integrations could be with the email automation tool, content management systems (such as WordPress), contact and calendar-based tools (such as Google Calendar), analytics tools (such as PowerBI), or webinar tools (such as GlobalMeet).
Check subscription fee –
The amount you are ready to spend on the tool depends on how much you want to derive from it. What is your overall marketing budget? What is the volume of contacts you have (fee depends on the number of contacts), how many more you plan to generate, and how many cold leads you want to convert? These are some questions you can answer to decide on how much you should spend on the tool. At the end of the day, the cost per lead (CPL) must be justifiable.
Check availability of customer support –
In the beginning, you are going to need much more support in terms of getting through the complex features. Later, you will need readily available support to tackle some glitches. This can be in the form of customer care or resources such as tutorials and demos, or even offline resources such as the Help section. Having a reliable customer support system in place will make sure that you don’t get stuck while setting up campaigns and lose valuable time.
Popular Marketing Automation Tools
The aim is to have a tool that works for you, making your marketing efforts more streamlined, easy, and effortless. Here are a few popular tools and their best-known features.
- HubSpot – HubSpot’s marketing automation tool is quite holistic and has everything you need to attract, convert strangers to leads, and then track and report. It comes with email automation, content creation, integration with social media tools, A/B testing, lead scoring, and one-on-one technical support. Check out our landing page to know more about HubSpot Services we are offering.
- Marketo – Marketo is another leading marketing automation tool with excellent features such as cross-channel engagement, sales intelligence tools, and AI-powered content personalization. It is suited to companies of all sizes.
- Eloqua – Eloqua Marketing Automation by Oracle helps you deliver unique customer experiences at every stage of the customer journey. From creating content and engaging customers on their preferred platforms to quick sales hand-offs, the benefits are many.
- Pardot – Pardot, now known as Marketing Cloud Account Engagement, is an add-on for the Salesforce platform. It helps increase high-quality leads, nurtures lead, and empowers the sales teams through trigger-based emails and personalized messages.
Once you choose a tool, it will be good to learn some of the best practices for using marketing automation to derive maximum benefit from it. Also, take a look at how we used marketing automation to bring about a digital transformation of a medical device leader.
How does Ethosh help businesses streamline their marketing efforts with appropriate marketing automation tools?
At Ethosh, we have experts who evaluate, strategize, and implement marketing automation for our clients. We are supporting many companies in their marketing efforts, including a leading medical device company, for which we have a dedicated Marketo team. We are also a valued HubSpot implementation partner. Time to streamline your marketing initiatives and be in sync with sales to help prospects complete the buyer journey with successful results.
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