The software and platforms that your teams use to do their jobs and deliver top-notch experiences for your customs are critical to your company's success. So, adding new software or changing the platforms you use is a big decision that shouldn't be taken lightly.
Your marketing automation platform (MAP) is one of the most important components of your marketing, sales and success team’s tech stack. It is at the center of alignment and true synergy between those teams, which directly affects how your business services and delights your customers.
So, choosing a MAP that your teams truly love using and can depend on is important. Whether you are choosing a MAP for the first time or considering switching to a new one, understanding what to look for during the process is a good first step.
Here are six reasons why you should consider switching marketing automation platforms:
1. Your MAP is Difficult to Use or Adoption is Suffering
Your marketing automation platform is at the center of your sales and marketing tasks every day. The key to a successful software for any team is that they see value in it and truly use it. If you aren’t seeing the full adoption of your marketing automation platform across your teams, it could be a massive indicator that there are problems with the platform.
If you feel confident that you are properly training your teams and giving them a real opportunity to succeed with your marketing automation platform, then maybe you’re not using the right platform.
There are two different groups of people at your company that matter when thinking about adoption and usage: admins and end-users.
Your admin-level employees need to feel confident in the platform in terms of set-up, training and management. If the admins aren’t adopting the platform your teams are never going to adopt it either. Additionally, your admins are going to be the ones managing and maintaining the platform; if they aren’t on board, the platform has little hope to succeed. You want to choose a marketing automation platform that everyone sees true value in and enjoys using to ensure that it really provides the value it should and makes it worth the effort and cost.
On the other hand, if your team members aren’t using the software you have rolled out to your company in their everyday job or you find them not making the software a part of their daily routine as you had hoped, it could be that the software itself isn’t the right fit for their needs and process. Your teams should feel like not using your marketing automation software isn’t even an option. It should be such an integral and essential part of their daily tasks and processes that it’s a necessity. If you aren’t seeing that happen across your teams after rolling out a new software or worse, after having a MAP at your company for a while, you may want to switch to a platform that better suits your needs and that your teams will truly adopt.
2. Your Platforms Aren’t All Integrated
Integrations are often overlooked when considering a new platform of any kind for your company. It’s easy to get so focused on the platform you are considering adding that you forget to think about the other platforms you’re already using. But, you have to think bigger and more long-term than just one platform.
All of the technology at your company should work together as seamlessly as possible. If you want your teams to work together in order to delight your customers and prospects, then they need to be connected around technology as well so that all information is shared and accessible.
If your teams are all operating on separate platforms that don’t at least integrate with each other to share information across teams, then there may be duplicate work being done. This can also lead to team members from marketing searching for information in platforms they don’t really understand or your customer success teams missing vital information that could have been easily shared if they were on the same platform as the sales team.
If your marketing automation platform doesn’t integrate with your CRM system, your customer success tools, your reporting system or your conversational marketing tools, you may want to consider looking into a MAP that does. You will save time, reduce effort, eliminate duplicate work and be able to serve customers faster and more efficiently in the long run.
3. The Features Aren't What You Need
It can seem like there are an endless amount of marketing automation features available, but don’t be fooled by the bells and whistles. If you are currently on a platform that offers a ton of functions and features that your team is never using, then they may just be getting in the way.
While it can be good to grow into certain features, you don’t want them to become a nuisance to team members who are trying to navigate the platform. If you find that you are getting lost in your marketing automation platform or are overwhelmed by the number of tools and features, maybe it’s time to downgrade or choose a platform that specializes just in the features your teams do need.
On the other hand, if you feel like there are a lot of features that your teams could be using today, but they don’t have the option in your current MAP, you may also want to consider changing platforms. If you are constantly adding on additional function-specific software to your tech stack, you may benefit from choosing a MAP that is larger and more all-encompassing.
Additionally, if you can find one platform or software that offers all of the features you need in one place, rather than connecting or integrating multiple software, you will have a much easier time with adoption, maintenance and cost.
4. Your MAP Requires Too Much Maintenance and Updating
Any time that your software is down or not performing at its best, it’s costing your teams, your company and ultimately your customers.
We believe that companies should all have someone in charge of your technology. But, even if you don’t have a specific team to handle all of the tasks like software adoption, documentation, process development, implementation and evaluation, there will still need to be someone at your company owning these tasks.
If you have someone owning these processes but you are still having issues with managing your marketing automation platform in terms of functionality, updates and training, you may want to consider choosing a different platform.
You could consider a platform that offers better tech support in the platform itself which can help with workload and downtime of the platform overall. Or, you can get a platform that offers a more user-friendly experience to eliminate the need for so much maintenance in the long run.
5. Your MAP Doesn't Align with Your Goals
If your marketing automation platform doesn’t align with the goals of your company and isn’t actively helping your teams achieve them, then consider a different platform that does. Every company is different, and the tactics and strategies they use to hit their goals will be different.
For example, If your company has major success with a conversational marketing strategy but your current marketing automation platform doesn’t offer the features that you need to build and succeed with conversational marketing, then it’s not helping you reach your goals.
If your goal is to have your sales and marketing teams work in sync to serve prospects, but your current CRM doesn’t share information well with your marketing automation platform, then your marketing and sales teams won’t be able to work together seamlessly and your goals will suffer.
Your entire company should be working toward shared goals. Each team has their own piece of those goals and their own methods to attain them, but the software at your company is a key component of ensuring your teams are equipped to hit those goals. And your marketing automation platform is at the center of that tech stack.
6. Your MAP is Not Cost-Effective
This is the most common barrier and cause of reconsidering your marketing automation platform. If you are paying for the best-in-class software that has all the bells and whistles but your company really only uses 30% of the platform, then you are wasting money.
On the other hand, if you are currently paying for multiple software add-ons because your marketing automation platform doesn’t offer you everything you need, then you still may be wasting money.
There are a lot of considerations to take into account when you are making a decision as big and as important as changing your marketing automation software.
To help make that decision easier, we are sharing with you our own software evaluation matrix. We use this document to decide when to change or eliminate software in our own tech stack. Click below to access the scoring matrix.
Weslee Clyde is an inbound marketing strategist at New Breed. She is focused on generating results using inbound methods and is driven by the customer experience. When not at the office, you can find her binging a docu-series on true crime or perfecting her gluten-free baking skills.