The most recent Marketo white paper, Using Marketing Automation to Increase Your ROI on CRM, describes the key features offered by marketing automation systems as well as the various benefits of CRM systems and Marketing Automation systems can provide your organization.  I thought I would share a summary of the paper and get your ideas, too.  Is this what you have experienced?

Why do I care about Marketing Automation?

In many cases Marketing Automation adds another layer of value on top of your CRM system. A common issue in organizations it that there is no process for managing leads other than saving them to the CRM system. Forward-thinking marketing organizations recognize the need to follow up with leads until they are qualified enough to hand over to a salesperson. this lead management process is one of the key responsibilities of Marketing Automation.

Here is how I define the features offered by Marketing Automation systems:

  • Email marketing: Allows for unlimited emails optimized for deliverability
  • Lead nurturing: Includes trigger-based emails and multi-step campaigns
  • Landing page builder: Includes a form builder to capture leads
  • Lead scoring: Both demographic and behavioral activity
  • Activity tracking: Based on email and web activity
  • Sixth-sense lead intelligence for sales
  • Bi-directional integration with the CRM database
  • Comprehensive marketing reporting and analytics

…But what does this have to do with CRM?

Here is how I believe Marketing Automation Increases ROI.

Marketing Automation not only helps you deliver more, and better qualified leads to the CRM system, and provides real-time information on leads, it helps your sales team improve close rates, deliver more predictable revenue and makes sales reps more successful. To get better ROI on CRM, Marketing Automation helps you:

  • Convert: Marketing Automation allows you to prioritize the leads in your CRM system. It will clearly identify which leads need to be followed up with right away, and which still need more time to be nurtured.
  • Automate: Marketing Automation extends CRM’s support for manual campaigns with fully automated campaigns, allowing you to save time and money in marketing and sales. With automated processes, you can do more with less, and be more agile at the same time.
  • Nurture: In companies with long sales cycles, it’s often hard for sales people to adequately follow up with each and every lead until they show an active interest. Automated lead nurturing solves this issue by developing leads who are not ready to talk to a salesperson yet.
  • Prioritize: Marketing Automation adds a lot more information to each lead profile. Full activity and social media history are available to let the salespeople to learn more about the prospects before they make their first call. Because this information is available in real-time, the sales rep can be sure that the prospect an be reached at his or her desk.
  • Consolidate: Marketing Automation includes tools that increase data quality, including prevention of duplicates by appending information to the existing record, as well as identifying and merging duplicate records. As a result, salespeople can be sure that the information in the CRM system is actually correct.
  • Prove: Marketing Automation provides the information to manage the revenue cycle by the numbers. Based on metrics, marketing and sales effectiveness can increase, revenue is more predictable, and it’s possible to see how marketing and sales activities contribute to the company’s bottom-line.

To learn more, download the white paper, Using Marketing Automation to Increase Your ROI on CRM today.