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As a marketer, have you ever felt that you are doing a lot of little things that are extremely important for your marketing activities to go smoothly but you end up spending too much time on it? Well, if the answer is yes - then you have probably not looked at marketing automation at all.

So, what is marketing automation? Simply put, it is the process of automating your routine marketing tasks and measuring them, thereby reducing manual work and saving plenty of time. According to reports, 49% of marketers use at least one tool or app for marketing automation in 2019 and this industry is only set to grow further.

There are several parts of the marketing ecosystem that you can automate and here are a few:

Email and SMS Marketing

Email and
SMS marketing

Social media automation

Social media
automation

Lead management

Lead
Management

Analytics and data visualisation

Analytics and
data visualization

Workflow automation

Workflow
automation

Large project management

Large project
management

Content management

Content
management

Marketing automation

Why marketing automation is critical to business success:

why marketing automation

Why marketing automation is critical to business success:

Better targeting

Generating high-quality leads is the ultimate goal for most businesses and this is only done if you are targeting the right people. With marketing automation, you get a better understanding of your potential customers and their behavior. You can also track the path of your potential customers on the website to understand their interests and use that in your communication and targeting. For instance, if a user is researching the pricing of your product, this might indicate that he is in the consideration stage of the buying process. You can use this information to send them offers to help them make the decision quickly.

Nurturing leads to turn them into customers

In today’s competitive world, there are numerous businesses offering what you are offering. It is becoming increasingly difficult to stand out from the crowd. There are multiple ads thrown at customers and the choice of choosing your product or you as a service provider really comes down to a few things - great product, better pricing or just understanding them really well! Well, while marketing automation may not be able to help you with the first two, it can certainly help you with the last one. With marketing automation tools, you can understand and segment your customers and send them personalized messages that are of interest to them. This automatically increases open rates and engagement. It also improves the chances of the lead becoming a loyal customer sooner rather than later.

Understanding the effectiveness of your marketing

What determines whether or not a campaign is a success is the data! We have all heard of this famous phrase - 'numbers don't lie’ right? That is exactly what you need to be looking at to understand the effectiveness of your marketing strategy. It gives you a single platform and a dashboard that has all the data about your campaign. This tells you what is really working and what is not so you can tweak and move your budgets accordingly.

Benefits

Benefits of using marketing automation software

Benefits of marketing automation

Benefits of using marketing automation software

Better efficiency

Time is money, right? Automating routine and manual tasks saves you a lot of time and thereby saving you incredibly valuable money.

Improved marketing ROI

From understanding the user behavior to personalizing messages, marketing automation really lets you build a strong relationship with your customers. This not only increases the lifetime value of the customer but also nurtures potential customers better and shortens the lead cycle. Additionally, it also gives valuable insights about your audience and improves the performance of marketing strategies

Happy customers

Have you always noticed that when you log onto Netflix, you most likely see things that you are interested in? From the banner to the shows they recommend is highly customizable to your interest and preferences based on your behavior on the app. This is not just convenient but also makes most customers feel good and stay on the platform for longer. Personalizing every aspect of your marketing activity helps you build a strong equation with both your existing and potential customers

Happy teams

When your team is not spending time on repetitive tasks, they are more likely to be thinking creatively. Working on high-level strategy and creative projects not only improves the efficiency of the business but also increases the overall happiness of your team members.

Picking the right tool

Picking the right marketing automation tool

Picking the right tool

Picking the right marketing automation tool

User experience

First things first, while choosing a marketing automation tool for your company, it is important to see how easy and simple it is to use. Check how intuitive it is before taking the call. Imagine, trying to set up a complex email funnel and the tool has all the steps hidden. It makes the process difficult and you end up spending too much time. The first time set is always going to be hard, don't make it harder by choosing a tool that does not have an easy interface.

Price

There are multiple tools that offer similar services and functionality. So always list down what you need and check the price of multiple tools before you take a call. Most automation tools have three or four plans to choose from.

Customer support team

When you are setting a new tool, you will always end up having multiple questions. So having a strong customer support team that can help you navigate through is essential. Most companies offer some technical support, but be sure to ask if the support is available 24/7 or if there is a dedicated account manager for your business.

Features and integrations

Most marketing platforms have different features (we have covered this as well in the section below) and it is important to understand them before you choose one. Put down what you need before you make a decision. It is also advisable to check if the tool integrates with all your existing technologies.

Our top picks, considering all the above factors, would be WebEngage (for B2C) and Hubspot (for B2B)

Top B2C marketing automation tools

Top B2C Marketing Automation Tools

Top B2C marketing automation tools

Top B2C Marketing Automation Tools

Webengage
Webengage

WebEngage is a tool that lets you develop contextual and customised campaigns to engage with your target audience through SMS, email, WhatsApp, or even push notifications on your app. With this tool, you can segment your audience based on their behavior and/or demographics and nurture them with the interesting content that will help them convert into a loyal customer. The tool’s most important feature is the personalization one which lets you hyper personalize interactions.

Key Features:

Analytics - WebEngage gives you insights on your users’ behaviour and the level of engagement

Engagement - Lets you send customized and engaging content to users through multiple channels including WhatsApp, Facebook Push notifications, etc.

Segmentation - Segment users according to their personas to get maximum ROI

Journey Designer - Map your users journey across channels and link the communication

Personalization - Convert your potential customers into customers by sending them personalized messages keeping their likes and dislikes in mind.


Channels:

The channels include:

 Web Push notifications

 Mobile push notifications
     Email marketing

 Mobile push notifications
Email marketing

 In-app messages

 Surveys

 SMS marketing

 Whatsapp marketing

 Facebook remarketing

 Web overlays

Pricing:

The company provides multiple pricing models which is based on the number of active monthly users you can add. Once you choose a plan that suits you, you can set up a live chat with a WebEngage executive to get the exact pricing.

Moengage
Moengage

MoEngage is a smart marketing automation platform that analyses user behavior and personalizes all your messaging. It helps increase brand loyalty with existing customers and convert leads to customers.

Channels

App and Web
Push notifications

SMS

Messaging
on the page

In-app
messaging

Email
campaigns

App and Web Push notifications

SMS

Messaging on the page

In-app messaging

Email campaigns

Pricing:

MoEngage offers different plans for its users and the pricing varies depending on the usage and number of monthly tracked users.

Smartech
Smartech
Key Features:
Omnichannel Personalization:

Netcore can help you give each consumer a personalized experience across all marketing touchpoints. Right from building a dynamic website, personalized for each user, to personalized push notifications, ads, and recommendation widgets, Netcore allows you to do it all.

Single-View of Your customer:

Netcore helps you to unify your customer data and derive detailed insights into their demographics, interests, behavior, and interactions across channels

Customer Journey Orchestration:

Using the platform, you can build customer journeys through their intuitive interface. You can then create automated workflows to engage with your customers by sending them the right message at the right time and in the right context.

App Analytics:

If your brand has a consumer-facing app, then app analytics can help you uncover invaluable insights. Netcore comes with most of the key features that are part of app analytics tools like Appsfyler and Clevertap like cohort, retention and uninstall analysis


Channels:

The channels include:

  App Push Notifications

  Web Push Notifications

  In-App Messages

  WhatsApp Notifications

  SMS

  Email

  Voice

Pricing:

For B2C startups with less than 100K Total Monthly Active Users; less than 4 years from founding and less than $1M in funding, they have a free plan with a lot of features.

For other businesses, pricing is customized basis features you pick and starts at USD 999/month.

Active campaign
Active campaign

ActiveCampaign is more than just an email marketing tool, it is a marketing automation and CRM tool that can help you create personalised customer experiences.

Key Features:

Email marketing - Allows you to segment and split test along with adding dynamic content

Marketing automation - from event tracking to attribution to split action, the tool allows you to automate many parts of the user journey.

Sales and CRM - ActiveCampaign is a central platform to manage all your leads. Depending on the engagement levels, the tool also gives a score so that your sales team will know which lead to prioritize.

Messaging - From email marketing to SMS marketing, ActiveCampaign lets you send personalized messages across platforms.

Machine learning - With advanced analytics, the tool gives you win probability and better insights from multiple data sources such as calls and emails to convert the user from potential customer to a full-fledged one.

Pricing

One of the best features of ActiveCampaign is that it provides a 14-day free trial. Once you decide that you are going with the tool, you can choose from a plan starting at 9$.

Auto pilot
Auto pilot

AutoPilot is a marketing automation tool that helps you capture leads on your website and send them personalized messaging. It has the added benefit of integrating with several apps such as Facebook, Salesforce, Google ads, Typeform, etc to make automation easier. The tool allows multichannel automation including multi-channel marketing capabilities including email marketing, in-app messaging, SMS, online, and snail-mail communications. It has an easy to use interface where you can customize user journeys based on their behavior. Moreover, you can also get reports on ROI and optimize the revenue funnel based on performance.

Key Features:

Marketing Automation - Create effective customer journeys to convert leads to customers.

Email marketing - An easy to use, drag and drop platform, AutoPilot lets you send personalized emails to your leads.

Multi-channel marketing - Reach our customers through multiple channels such as SMS, Facebook retargeting, in-app messaging, etc.

Lead Management - From CRM integration to lead scoring, this platform is ideal to keep a track of all our leads.

Pricing:

The tool offers three packages starting from 49$ and goes up to 249$. The prices vary depending on the number of active users you have. However, you can try any of the plans for one month for free without adding your credit card.

Mail chimp
Mail chimp

Though Mailchimp is traditionally known for its email marketing solution, it has now evolved into an “All-In-One integrated marketing platform for small businesses”.

If you’re a small business, their power-packed features below would make them a great choice for your marketing automation needs.

Key Features:
CRM:

The platform comes inbuilt with a great CRM, specifically designed for small business needs

Segmentation:

Mailchimops segmentation features make it easy to send personalized communication to specific segments asked on their past interactions with your brand

Cross-platform campaign management:

Mailchimp helps you create and manage campaigns across various channels - email, Social Media and digital ads

Analytics and Reporting:

You can keep track of all your marketing campaigns from one dashboard, making it to monitor trends, track performance, and measure ROI

Pricing:

Pricing is suited to small businesses, with plans starting for as low as INR 770 per month. They also have a free plan with all the basic features included for businesses that are just getting started.

Notify visitors
Notify visitors

Notify Visitors is one of the simplest and most widely used marketing automation software to send personalized push notifications and messages to users. It is one of the best multi channel customer engagement softwares for small and medium businesses.

Key Features:
Customer Engagement Software:

The platform offers a wide range of solutions like web push, app push, PWA, chatbots, web banner and survey, lead form etc to engage your web and app users

Conversion Rate Optimisation Software:

Notify Visitors allows business to track and analyze user behaviour to enhance your conversion rates by means of A/B Testing, Heatmaps, Personalisation, Form analysis etc.

Analytics:

The platform enables you analyze and optimize as you go via analytics softwares to drive real results

Pricing:

Pricing starts at around INR 40,000 per month for Email/SMS & push notifications for upto 100K visitors. Businesses looking to leverage personalisation and in-depth A/B testing and popups etc should expect packages at around INR 2,00,000 per month for upto one million users.

Top App marketing automation tools

Top App Marketing Automation Tools:

Top App marketing automation tools

Top App Marketing Automation Tools:

clevertap

Clevertap

Clevertap is a mobile app marketing platform that allows marketers to check the performance of their app and retain customers more effectively.


Features

Automated segmentation - Segment your audience real-time based on their interests, likes and dislikes to create effective marketing strategies

Audience Analytics - With Clevertap, you can get real-time insights about your audience that are actionable. From tracking uninstalls to customer behavior, it gives you all information you need in a custom dashboard to boost engagement.

Campaign Optimization - Want to get a better ROI from your campaigns. With clevertap RFM model (recency, frequency, and monetary analysis), you get real-time life cycle changes and build better campaign strategies

Omnichannel Engagement - Clevertap lets you create personalized messaging across 12 different channels, making retention and acquisition easy.

Pricing

Clever tap gives you a base plan you can choose and you can then add add-ons based on your needs so the plan you choose and the pricing is customized to what you need.

appsflyer

Appsflyer

AppsFlyer is a leading app attribution tool in the market that lets you understand where your traffic is coming from. It helps you understand your data and make better decisions to improve your ROI.


Features

Marketing analytics - You can measure the engagement and your ad spends under one dashboard to improve ROI. Get retention reports, custom dashboards, raw data for all your activities. It also has a live reporting section that tells you what is going on at this very minute.

Attribution - With AppsFlyer, you will know exactly where to attribute every single install. They also provide people-based attribution that gives you insights about your audience and creates new approaches to reaching your TG. AppsFlyer also tracks uninstalls and attributes it effectively. The key feature of its attribution model is the TV and OTT attribution that gives your detailed insights on in-app events on OTT and television that allows you to understand the effectiveness of your cross channel advertising.

Fraud protection - Ad fraud is one of the biggest threats in the advertising industry and AppsFlyer gives you well-rounded protection with state of the art attribution database.

Deep Linking - Whether it is an ad or an email, send your customers directly to the right page on the app and to the page that is in line with your messaging.

Pricing

AppsFlyer has a free plan which has some basic features such as OneLink - deep linking, Referrals & user invites, etc. This plan is free and does not require a credit card. The second plan is the pay as you go plan ideal for small enterprises which helps with better attribution and live alerts. The third plan is the enterprise plan ideal for large businesses which is a custom plan based on your usage.

branch logo

Branch

Branch is leading app measurement and deep linking platforms in the market that helps improve your app’s performance drastically. From referral programs to welcome messaging and best in class analytics, Branch improves the customer lifetime value and stickiness while also increasing ROI on your media spends. The biggest highlight of this tool is the deep linking feature. When the customer clicks on a certain link, with Branch’s deep linking tool, they are directed to the content they expect rather than a generic page on the app. This boosts engagement and retention on the app.


Features

Attribution - Know exactly where your customers convert through Branch’s unique ‘People-based attribution’ which lets you understand your customers at every touchpoint.

Universal ads - Track ad performance on both web and app in one single platform and maximize your ROI.

Universal Email - Send promotional emails to your app users and lead them to the right in-app content to increase conversions.

Deep Linking - Sending the users to the right link in your app is extremely important to improve conversions and retain customers. Branch does just that.

Cross channel personas - Understand your users’ app and web behavior and personalize the user experience

Cohort Analysis - Understand your users’ behavior across devices and platforms and segment them into cohorts. Using this data, you can drive better ROI and engagement.

Pricing

Branch has three plans; for up to 10K MAUS, the marketing tool is free of cost, for up to 50K MAUS, the price is $ 59 /mo. The features include deep linking, attribution, customer segmentation, etc. For a larger user base requirement, you can customize the plan by contacting the Branch team.

B2B Marketing automation tools

Top B2B Marketing Automation Tools

B2B Marketing automation tools

Top B2B Marketing Automation Tools

Hubspot

Hubspot

A leader in the marketing automation space, Hubspot offers marketing sales and customer support all under one tool.


Features
Ready Landing Pages and Email Templates

Hubspot offers a landing page and email templates to convert website visitors into leads. With a plethora of templates, you can build your landing page without a developer using this tool.

Robust Lead Nurturing Systems

Send personalized emails to each and every prospect and set up a custom drip campaign. Depending on their interaction, the next steps will be sent automatically to your potential customers.

Real-time SEO suggestions

Make your brand more visible with Hubspot’s real-time SEO suggestions and create a foolproof content strategy that works for the search engine.

CRM Integrations

Integrate to Hubspot or salesforce CRM and track your leads and attribute them to the right channel to improve ROI.

Efficient organizational structure and team management

You can also create hierarchy and structures for your team and assign them your marketing assets. This helps your team become more productive.

Pricing

Starter - starts at 1000 contacts at $40 a month
Professional - starts at 1000 contacts at $800
Enterprise - starts at 10,000 contacts at $3200

Marketo

Marketo

Marketo Engage is a lead management software that is ideal for a B2B marketer. Marketo Engage allows you to personalize, optimize, and measure your campaign effectiveness across platforms.


Features
Personalization

Send your potential and existing leads the right communication using predictive personalization that suggests communication-based on audience insights.

Revenue attribution

Understand which channel is performing and giving you the maximum ROI through Marketo’s powerful attribution that tracks every touchpoint.

Engage across channels

Reaching your audience using multiple channels? No problem - send engaging content across multiple channels from emails to social media and display ads at ease.

Set up journey flow

Using Marketo’s in-depth and intelligent behavioral data, set up journey flows, and customize your messaging to increase engagement.

Pricing

Branch has three plans; for up to 10K MAUS, the marketing tool is free of cost, for up to 50K MAUS, the price is $ 59 /mo. The features include deep linking, attribution, customer segmentation, etc. For a larger user base requirement, you can customize the plan by contacting the Branch team.

oracle logo

Oracle Eloqua

Eloqua by Oracle is a B2B focussed marketing automation solution. It has features to help automate processes and consumer engagement across the entire customer lifecycle.


Features
Segmentation of Prospects and Contacts:

Effective data collection is the first step to effective segmentation and personalization. Oracle Eloqua allows you to collect both online and data, as well as connect to external data sources to collect data about as many customer interactions as possible. It also integrates well with Oracle Data Cloud to enhance the collected customer data.

Cross-Platform and cross-channel campaigns:

With Eloqua, you can create and map customer journeys across all your paid, owned, and earned media channels. And all this can be done with a simple drag and drop interface, with little to no support required from the tech team. Campaign messaging can be made dynamic and personalized for each user segment, basis their interests and behavior to enhance their experience

Lead Scoring Framework:

Eloqua’s lead scoring model takes into account both explicit factors (customers and prospects profile data - job title, experience, etc.) and implicit factors (quality and recency of engagement across different marketing touchpoints). It also incorporates predictive analytics into the scoring model.

Breaking the Sales-Marketing silo:

For any business to succeed, sales and marketing teams need to break silos and work together. Eloqua helps do just that by unifying sales and marketing activity data. The lead scoring methodology ensures that leads can automatically be qualified and passed on to sales.

Marketing Measurement:

Eloqua has an excellent reporting system with cross-channel and cross-platform data rolled into a single dashboard

Pricing

Eloqua has different customized pricing tiers based on your requirement. You can reach out to them for a quote here.

Act on logo

Act-On

Act-on is a popular B2B marketing automation platform that lets you nurture your leads and convert them effectively. The platform is intuitive and adapts to your campaign as it goes along.


Features
Email nurturing

Segment your audience and send them personalized email communication to convert potential clients and retain existing ones. Combine all the marketing data and let Act-ons “if-then” logic and personalization to win clients.

Automated messaging

With lead cycles being long, it is important to constantly stay in touch with your potential customers and send the right messages at the right time. Act-on not only lets you do that but also gives you an idea about the behavior so that you can customize your message and increase your chance of lowering the lead time.

Data management

In order to effectively manage your campaigns, you would need to optimize it well. Act-on lets you do that by understanding your audience and giving you the right data thereby increasing the quality of leads and the campaign overall. From showing you which platform is working better in letting you analyze the effectiveness of new marketing initiatives, this platform has it all.

Pricing

Professional - Starting at $900 per month. Price varies based on the number of active contacts you have. This has complete automation features along with support during business hours.
Enterprise - Starting at $2000 per month. Price varies based on the number of active contacts you have. Enterprise is more advanced and integrates to multiple CRMs.

Sales force logo

Salesforce Pardot

Pardot is one of the older and powerful marketing automation tools for B2B. Pardot can understand your audience and create a better pipeline for your sales team.


Features
Smart and streamlined lead generation and management

With Pardot’s smart lead generation tools, your business will have a steady inflow of leads by providing landing page builder, smart forms, etc. Additionally, you can increase engagement and decrease lead time. Not only does Pardot let you send personalized email campaigns but it also gives you which leads are the hottest for you to follow up on. This is based on the potential lead’s interaction with the brand.

Email Marketing

Pardot’s email builder tool lets you choose from a variety of templates making your email communication visually appealing. The email marketing feature of Pardot also allows for personalization based on the customer’s profile and interests.

Reporting dashboards

Track and measure the campaign effectiveness and the ROI with the Pardot reporting dashboard. The reporting dashboard also helps you understand how your customers move down the funnel.

Sales alignment

The tool allows the sales and the marketing team to work together seamlessly which improves the lead quality and loyalty drastically. From tracking the prospect’s history to real-time alerts, equip your sales team with marketing data that can win clients easily.

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