In an ideal situation, every company has a marketer or two behind the helm of a sizable, sales-enabling budget and department. Many tech companies in Austin, however, are operating on slim dimes with lean infrastructure, and where they put those dimes counts.
In this blog post, we size up two marketing automation tools made to optimize the slim sales and marketing budgets of small- and medium-sized companies: Marketo and HubSpot. More specifically, we’ll be addressing what contexts each works best in.
The great thing about these tools is that, when used well, they quickly pay for themselves. Depending on the human capital within reach, one or the other may suit you best.
If you don’t have a lot of room to hire an automation expert or bring on a consultant to help walk you through the process of setting up and utilizing a marketing automation solution, HubSpot may be the best way to go. HubSpot, while limited in its capabilities when stacked next to Marketo, is comparatively easy to self-learn. Their tutorial video library is extensive and designed to walk someone from having no knowledge of marketing, to being proficient in using HubSpot and using it well.
If you have room in the budget to hire someone proficient in upper-end automation solutions, you may want to consider Marketo, which has a more extensive repertoire of capabilities.
If you’re wondering if someone on your team would be well-suited to train in automation, the people we see do best in automation are: detail-oriented, data-driven, left-brained more than right-brained, and like to figure things out on their own.
Do you have multiple product lines and/or a lengthy buying cycle? It’s important to consider if the marketing solution you implement can easily handle the complexity of your business.
Marketo has nurture capabilities in its feature called Engagement Programs that make it capable of adapting to every level of complexity we’ve run into as a team. Engagement programs are set up in such a way to help you market to different segments based on what’s important to you, be it lead stage, product, area of interest, business line, geography, or anything else.
While it doesn’t have a feature specifically created for segmented streams of content, HubSpot can be adapted to answer this challenge. It may not be as simple a solution, but it can be done. For the complex business, though, we recommend Marketo.
CRM & Social Integrations
HubSpot integrates with other CRMs, but also has its own user-friendly sales module. Using it keeps marketers and salespeople in the same tool, which is nice for team alignment and communication. Adding to HubSpot’s ease-of-use is its seamless integration with social platforms. You can use HubSpot not only to post on the major platforms, but also track and score interactions.
Marketo integrates seamlessly with a number of CRMs, but does not integrate with social platforms. However, if your main concern is tracking traffic and leads sourced from social media, Marketo is completely capable of this.
Marketo provides in-depth reporting on almost every feature. Its Select version includes Advanced Revenue Analytics, which has the ability to show you ROI of specific campaigns, lead sources, events, etc.
The enterprise version of HubSpot comes with an excellent reporting dashboard. You can build your own custom reports, complete with visuals and a variety of statistics: email stats, sales funnel, lead source, and more. In all other versions, reporting is limited and gets manual pretty quickly. It can be done, but it’s not fun. HubSpot Pro and up have a neat feature called Campaigns, which pulls together performance of different pieces of a single campaign into one place, including emails, social media posts, and calls-to-action.
While HubSpot boasts a number of capabilities outside of marketing automation (doubling as a CRM and social media suite), Marketo is focused and finely tuned on automation. This means its capabilities go much deeper into automation. It is the preferred solution for lead scoring, lead stages, and lead nurturing because once these are set up, they are truly automated and run on their own. You have the capability to tweak and optimize as needed, but you won’t be required to continually make changes to your existing programs.
Ultimately, which tool you select will depend on what your business goals and needs are. Also, consider who within your organization will be using the tool and make sure they have an understanding of what you’re wanting to accomplish as an organization.