Marketing automation has been a hot topic recently for small business marketers, and major marketing automation platforms are slowly shifting their attention to these new potential customers. What began as vanity tools for large companies with large marketing teams has now become a manageable way for one-marketer businesses to keep up with their existing customers and nurture new ones.
Customer attitudes have changed. Gone are the days of cold calling, complimented lunches, and friendly rounds of golf. Due to more choices, more information, and more marketing in general, the average customer is privy to the signs of an agenda-touting salesperson. Most messages hawking product benefits are met with preconceived notions of “looks like spam to me,” and that’s if they’re even looked at to begin with.
Marketing automation platforms (MAP) are great and are gaining popularity with small and medium-sized businesses. (In case you’ve not heard of the technology before, click to read my post about what is marketing automation.) Unfortunately, many of the leading MAP providers understand how useful their tools are and price their solutions accordingly.
Here’s is my cookie cutter answer: A marketing automation platform (MAP) is a campaign management tool that allows companies to automate responses when a prospect interacts with a brand, measures success metrics of marketing programs, and delivers prospect information to sales representatives through e-mail or a CRM system.