Demand generation is more effective if your company uses a marketing automation platform. Marketing automation helps get communication out, enables you to segment your audience, helps you get leads to sales and most importantly – lets you track efforts to get the highest possible return.
However, with so many platforms available, you might be wondering if it’s time for a change. Before you abandon the one you have (or get one for the first time), do some homework. Your success may have less to do with the tool you’re using than making sure you’ve carefully thought out what you’re trying to accomplish.
So, start by asking yourself these questions:
- What is the objective of my demand gen program? Lots of raw leads? Just a few really qualified leads? Consumer leads? B2B? Customer nurturing? Something else?
- How am I looking for marketing automation to change my life? What problems will it solve?
- Where is my company at right now? Are my demand gen and sales functions going to change over the next few months or years? Or are the marketing and sales environments stable? Do we need to be prepared to scale?
- What do my resources look like? Do I have someone pretty sophisticated who can manage marketing automation already? Or do I need something simple that takes very little technical knowhow and that everyone can use on their own? Am I willing to invest in a head count or training? Do I even have the budget to be competitive in hiring someone for marketing operations?
- Where are my leads going? Inside sales? Field sales? A nurturing program? Channel partners? All of the above? Once a lead is loaded, do I need a platform to prioritize leads and send them to the right place or is it pretty simple?
- How many leads do I need to house? How big is my database now and how big is it likely to be?
- What information do I need to follow up on a lead? What data do I want to gather at the beginning of a lead process? How much do I want to add in later?
- What automation does my sales team use? How about my channel partners? Should we link the marketing automation?
- What kind of reporting do I want to see? Just the basics? Am I looking for something sophisticated? Who else wants to see reports and what information do they want to see?
- Do I have some challenges like email deliverability, data security, regulatory compliance, etc. that need to be addressed?
Once you have those answers, you’re ready for the next step. Go over the answers with your existing vendor and any potential solutions that you’re researching. Or contact me and I’d be happy to help you out.