CMS – Marketing Automation Reviewed – Part 1

When is the right time to scale your marketing activities? When do you move from your free email subscription service onto a software platform which is purpose built to automate and streamline your sales funnel? Which is the best marketing automation software for your organization?

If you are as dedicated as we hope, you would have already done copious amounts of research on your potential customers buying persona’s, mapped out your buyers journey (we have a handy toolkit – download here).

You would have completed keyword research and set which messaging framework would work best on each platform like a whitepaper download on a webpage, or a Facebook campaign targeting your audience who has previously engaged with you. You would have created a list of content and arranged a program of how to get this distributed and worked out which format it would be most digestible to your audience.  You would have budgeted for Google Adds appearing when a topical search is done by a prospective consumer or even just having your brand being reviewed by a former customer.

Once the leads start flowing in the easiest way is to track them is with a Content Management System (CMS). Your contact records will need to be segmented to ensure that your leads turn into opportunities,  then are converted into sales and finally distil down to a listing of happy customers who can provide you with case studies, reviews and ongoing opportunities to provide you with an upselling of a future service or product.

There are many CMS solutions out there, but what should you consider before even looking at platform reviews. What are your deal breakers?

Pricing – Most marketing automation tools are priced on a sliding scale by number of contact records or subscribers, with additional costs for training and add-ons. They can become ridiculously expensive very quickly if you’re not careful. I’d recommend taking a 3-5 year perspective when weighing up your options.

Integrations with your existing software – This is extremely important as some marketing automation tools only allow integration with a small number of third-party apps / CRM systems. You will need to ensure that you can carry on processing your sales, pos, forms, social media platforms and continue to use your email provider.

Usability – Marketing automation is innately complex, thus usability is extremely important as it will determine how much value you can extract from the tool. The less intuitive the software is, the more you will pay for training, and creating work-arounds to make the system work for you – not you working for the system.

Time – How much time can you dedicate to your new system, it will require routine management and maintenance. You can pay someone to routinely come and cleanse/ update/ renew but ultimately this is another cost to your business.

For an overview of more capabilities to consider when thinking of selecting a marketing automation solution, click here.

We have created a comparison list of the most popular marketing automation tools that we currently use and have driven ourselves. You can download this spreadsheet for a more indepth look at Hubspot, ActiveCampaign, Mailchimp and Infusionsoft platforms.

If you would like to know more about CMS or discuss an automation system, make contact and we will gladly take the time to discuss with you the best system for your situation.

CTA – Download The CMS Comparison

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