By the time you choose a marketing automation platform, you’re a veritable expert. You’ve gathered requirements, analyzed G2 and Capterra reviews, perused case studies, completed checklists, and probably lost track of how many hours you’ve spent on software demos. You’ve done the legwork, and you have full confidence in your chosen solution, but there’s one more step before you can start realizing more of the benefits of marketing automation technology.
Who else do you have to convince at your company? In many companies, there are multiple layers to vetting any software. If you’re doing the work to find the perfect fit for your marketing automation needs, it’s worth considering how you’ll share your choice internally.
You’re the expert on the tools that will work best for your marketing team, and you already have the information you need to persuade every decision-maker to follow your recommendation. But if the right decision-maker is still on the fence, or you just need a signature to cross the finish line, the tips in this article can help.
If you’ve already chosen Act-On, thanks! We’re here to help you communicate, educate, and answer questions that come up as you sell your marketing automation solution internally.
Lean on Your Sales Rep
Your solution’s sales team is your best bet for support in selling your choice internally. They can be your greatest ally, because they’re knowledgeable, experienced, and motivated to help you get the right tool in place. You just need to let them know that you’ve selected their software as your top pick, and ask for their help in securing approvals from your internal team.
If you’re working with an established marketing automation software, they have likely helped hundreds of people in your exact position. While every company is unique, they can clue you in to the most frequently asked questions or objections you may encounter along the way.
Help them help you! Let them know who you’re talking to and what types of internal questions you may need to answer. Many salespeople will be armed with talking points and even content you can use or adapt to help you make your case.
Communicate the Benefits of Adopting Your Marketing Automation Software Choice
Depending on your organization’s familiarity with marketing automation, you’ll run into different kinds of questions about why this new software is necessary, or why it’s the best choice to replace your existing solution.
If you’re implementing marketing automation software for the first time:
Speak to the overall benefits and expected results from marketing automation. At the highest level, you should expect this new platform to help grow the business by improving efficiencies and leading to improvements in lead generation, lead nurturing and setting up the best opportunities for sales with all the rich information they need in order to get that close every time.
If you’ve already chosen Act-On for marketing automation, feel free to reference these stats from our ebook The Business Case for Marketing Automation:
- Out of top-performing companies, 87% have adopted marketing automation.
- Among organizations that use both marketing automation and CRM as part of an integrated technology stack, 77% meet or beat their revenue goals.
If you’re switching from another marketing automation platform:
Be prepared to get into the details of how your current provider isn’t meeting your needs. Have specific answers about how you expect this new tool to deliver better results. Some common reasons teams switch marketing automation providers include ease of use, a need for more automated and robust targeting, and a lower overall cost.
You’re not alone if you haven’t found runaway success with automation just yet. In our recent State of Marketing Automation Report, only 20% of B2B marketers believed they were utilizing their marketing automation tools to their fullest potential. That’s precisely why having the right platform with the right support team is so important, and why it’s worth the investment to switch to a solution that will better meet your business needs.
Target Your Communications With Different Stakeholders
You may have several stakeholders to convince, so think of your audience first, and share how your chosen marketing automation solution will help your company succeed in the ways that matter most to them.
Be ready to answer three main questions for each of your key stakeholders:
- What’s in it for me?
- What is required of me, my team, and my time to get this benefit?
- When will I see results, and what will they look like?
As you think through these questions for each stakeholder, here are a few areas to focus on:
- Your CMO: Share how your preferred tool will improve segmentation and targeting, scale omnichannel marketing, deliver more robust reporting and analytics, improve lead acquisition, drive conversions with personalized content, and save time with automated sequences. Be ready to address side-by-side comparisons with other tools your CMO may be familiar with, and share your reasoning for choosing one over another. This is especially important if your chosen platform isn’t the cheapest option.
- Your CTO: Highlight security features and privacy protections, how your solution will lead to fewer requests for engineering resources, and how this new tool will integrate with the rest of your tech stack (more on that in a minute). Be prepared to answer questions about the implementation process, developer documentation, and what kind of support you may need from engineers to get the platform up and running.
- Your Head of Sales: Focus on how your chosen solution will integrate with your existing sales platform, generate more inbound leads, and surface consumer insights that your sales team can use to help close deals. Sales leaders will likely ask about the platform’s ease of use, onboarding and training requirements, and any impact on lead scoring, attribution, or other workflows the sales team is currently using.
- Your CRO or Head of Growth: Zero in on how your marketing automation platform drives overall revenue across the customer lifecycle by improving onboarding processes, driving customer adoption, and increasing repeat purchases and upsells through automated engagements. Address the expected time-to-value and overall estimated ROI of your chosen platform.
- Your CFO or budget owner: Have clear numbers ready around the total cost of the platform, including how the number of users or live customers you’ll pay for will scale over time. Share contract and renewal timelines, any discounts you may be receiving, and how this new tool will deliver a positive return on investment and clearer budgeting transparency.
Your Marketing Automation Choice Must Integrate With Your Current Tech Stack
Your marketing automation platform won’t be nearly as effective as it could be if it doesn’t integrate well with the rest of your tech stack. Segmenting and targeting will suffer, reporting will be unreliable, and your team will waste precious hours manually moving data or content from one tool to another.
Every business leader will want to know how your chosen marketing automation platform will connect with their preferred tools, so be prepared to speak to the following integrations:
CRMs like Salesforce or Microsoft Dynamics are essential to customer acquisition and lifecycle engagement. Understand how your chosen tool will integrate with your existing CRM to support combined funnel metrics, customer behavior analytics, and nurturing prospects.
Business Intelligence (BI) tools, such as PowerBI or Microsoft Azure, need to capture and include data from your marketing automation solution to enable robust reporting. Be ready to speak to data pipelines or exporting processes in your chosen tool, and how data will move from your chosen platform to your current BI tools.
Webinar platforms like Zoom or WebEx are more crucial in our remote-first environment than ever before. Have a good grasp on how your marketing automation platform will integrate with and support webinar workflows in your current platform, including pre- and post-event engagement and data management.
API access allows your engineering team to create applications and customize integrations with your chosen marketing automation platform. Be ready to answer questions about whether your recommended tool offers an API, provides developer accounts, and where to find their developer documentation.
Being the internal champion for a new software solution is an exciting responsibility. As your teams adopt, implement, and see value from your chosen platform, you should receive recognition and appreciation for your contribution to the company’s long-term success. Securing approvals is an important step in the process, and gets you one step closer to implementing the types of automated marketing programs you’ve been dreaming about. Your meticulous research is about to pay off, now go sell it, and let us know if you need our help.