Over the past 10 years, Marketo, Eloqua, HubSpot and others have built major platforms around Marketing Automation. These platforms have standardized ways for marketing teams to acquire leads from various sources and nurture them through a series of drip-campaign emails to help them navigate through the buyer journey.
Over the past 3 years, there’s been a new rise of Sales Automation software (such as the Campaigns feature on the ToutApp platform) that also allows organizations to send a series of drip-campaign emails to help prospects discover and navigate through the buyer journey.
One question we often get from our customers is: do we need both? When do you use one vs. the other? What are the best practices for each?
Recently, as part of of our marketing efforts, we purchased Marketo to help in our lead generation efforts. Over here at ToutApp, we use both systems depending on where a particular Contact is in the buyer’s journey.
The next time you’re figuring out whether to use a Marketing Automation system or a Sales Automation system to generate pipeline, here are some simple rules to follow:
- Rule #1: Use Sales Automation if you’re looking for the prospect to reply. 99% of marketing automation emails are designed to get the user to click on another link or come back to the website. They’re almost never about getting a reply.
- Rule #2: Use Sales Automation to personalize. While marketing automation has complicated flows, custom branching points to personalize, it’s still an automated email that’s being sent and it doesn’t look very well… personal. Sales Automation software allows and almost requires you to personalize emails as you’re dealing with each prospect.
- Rule #3: Use Sales Automation if you want to utilize multiple channels. Humans don’t buy purely over email. B2B buyers today connect over LinkedIn, follow on Twitter, — in certain B2B2C verticals I’ve even seen chat applications being used. Sales Automation software allows custom steps to be defined to connect and nurture over multiple channels in personalized and unique ways. Marketing automation does not.
- Rule #4: Use Sales Automation if you want to connect with your buyers at a human level.
- Rule #5: Use Sales Automation for middle and bottom of the funnel leads. If what you have a is more of a name and an email rather than a true lead, and you’re not quite sure if they’re remotely interested or a fit, then use Marketing Automation to educate and nurture them first before you get a human being to spend time on it.