Inbound Marketing Optimisation V Marketing Automation

When it comes to optimising your marketing, automating repetitive tasks is one of the first things to consider. There are many different software platforms that can help you do this, but it can be overwhelming deciding which one is the right fit.

For example, do you need marketing automation software, like Eloqua,  Marketo or Pardot? Or perhaps inbound marketing optimisation and a product like HubSpot?

How do you know which is right for you?

In this blog we look at the questions you should ask to decide whether inbound marketing optimisation or marketing automation software is right for you.

 

Is your approach to marketing traditional or inbound?

If your approach is inbound:

You will want a platform with the inbound marketing philosophy at its core as well as one that helps you generate inbound leads.

Inbound takes time to master, especially when it comes to optimising your funnel. Because of this, it’s best to choose a tool that helps guide you through the process. Ideally, it will also include a detailed help section and online support together with how-to guides and videos.

A platform like Hubspot, which is faithful to the inbound methodology, will provide these features. It will show you how to do on-page SEO, automate your social media posting and create converting web pages.

If your approach is traditional:

If on the other hand, your approach is more traditional, then you won’t need help with learning inbound and simply need a platform to automate your marketing.

Perhaps you use a range of different tools, like Hootsuite for social media scheduling, Mailchimp for email campaigns and Google Analytics for monitoring your website traffic and you simply want them all under one roof. If this is the case then a marketing automation platform should be your choice.

 

How closely do sales and marketing work together?

The next issue to consider is how your sales and marketing team work.

If they work largely independently, then automating time-consuming, repeatable marketing tasks is the right thing to do.

On the other hand, if you are trying to unite, align and integrate the sales and marketing teams, as per the inbound philosophy, as well as create an experience for your prospects that starts with marketing, transitions into sales and then continues with your services team, inbound optimisation software is probably better suited to you.

 

How important are analytics and dashboards?

Metrics are central to marketing and you need to be using numbers to drive your strategic decisions. Again, there are two camps.

If the data you get from Google Analytics and Google Webmasters Tools is sufficient, then marketing automation is probably going to provide you with the insights that you need to progress your marketing strategy.

However, maybe you want a much deeper insight into your prospects.

For example, you may want to be able to follow visitors all the way through the funnel. If so, then an inbound marketing platform like Hubspot is the right one to choose.

By using Hubspot, you can monitor all stages of the buying journey from website visitor, to lead and finally through to customer. Hubspot provides you with an overview that allows you to see which parts of the funnel are not performing as well as the others.

Hubspot’s dashboards are ready out-of-the-box and the data is at your fingertips, in real time. The more you use the platform, the better you get at understanding how to improve your marketing performance.

As you can see, when it comes to marketing optimisation v marketing automation, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution. You have to carefully examine the needs of your business and utilise the software that best fits your strategy.

Ask the above questions and you will be well on your way to maximising your marketing. If you have further questions or need any help in the meantime, contact us.