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What Is B2B Marketing Automation Plus the Best Software

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What Is B2B Marketing Automation Plus the Best Software


Marketing automation allows your team to increase productivity while simultaneously nurturing more leads.

Within the category of marketing automation tools are B2B marketing automation tools — software that’s ideal for the B2B marketer.

B2B Marketing Automation

B2B marketing automation allows you to streamline marketing tasks and role responsibilities through workflows and triggers. B2B marketing automation is meant to help your team stay productive and efficient while nurturing your leads.

B2B Marketing Automation Examples

Here are some examples of how you might use B2B marketing automation on your team.

  1. Trigger follow-up workflows after leads visit high-intent web pages (e.g. product page, pricing page).
  2. Create educational workflows to send to your new customers — included educational resources may include videos, how-to articles, and knowledge base articles about how they can accomplish basic tasks.
  3. Nurture leads with content that shows you’re a thought-leader in the industry and is also tailored to their specific needs and goals. This will help you show your prospects that you’re the right solution for them.
  4. Set up rewards for loyal brand advocates — for example, send a discount code to a customer after they successfully refer a new customer or complete a certain number of purchases.
  5. Set up email campaigns with lead nurturing so you can better understand which campaigns work best among your audience while also having the ability to manage a higher volume of leads.
  6. Trigger notifications to internal team members when a prospect takes a specific action.
  7. Set up workflows for webhooks, lead scoring, and lead rotation (to Sales).
  8. Automatically complete data fields and update current data to avoid the need for any manual entry.

B2B Marketing Automation Software

1. HubSpot Marketing Automation Software

b2b marketing automation: hubspot marketing automation software

Price

HubSpot Marketing Hub comes in a free-forever version. For omnichannel marketing automation, you’ll need a Professional plan ($800/mo) or an Enterprise plan ($3,200/mo).

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Key Features

With HubSpot, you can create and automate beautiful and customized email drip campaigns to help you nurture prospects. The tool will help you send the right type of email to the right prospect at the right time based on audience criteria.

Use the visual editor to easily create workflows and use advanced segmentation logic to determine which audience members should be enrolled in your workflows. HubSpot makes it easy to personalize emails for your recipients in those workflows by pulling contact information from your HubSpot CRM.

You can implement workflows and triggers for lead scoring, lead rotation, webhook creation, data entry, and internal notifications (e.g. notify your sales team when a prospect completes a certain action).

2. Versium Reach

B2b marketing automation: Versium Reach

Price

There are B2B Digital and B2B Direct plans that start at $300/mo/billed annually. There are also pay-as-you-go plans.

Key Features

Versium Reach makes it easy to visualize marketing data. As a B2B marketer, you can view a snapshot of leads so they can effectively tailor content and other marketing materials to them throughout the different stages of the buyer’s journey.

You can also create targeted B2B audiences that you can reuse across all of your digital marketing platforms.

Versium Reach also automatically manages your data for you — it surfaces your ideal targets for you so you don’t have to review multiple data sources.

3. Marketo Engage

b2b marketing automation software: marketo engage

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Price

Contact Sales for pricing.

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Key Features

Marketo Engage is a B2B marketing tool that allows you to segment your audiences and enrich your audience data with engagement information and integrated customer profiles.

Experience automation nurtures your audience and scores engagement throughout the buyer’s journey. It provides tailored content that feels personal for audience members at scale with the help of artificial intelligence.

4. ActiveCampaign

b2b marketing automation: activecampaign

Price 

There are four plans all ranging in price based on the number of contacts that you have and the features you need. Plans start at $9/mo.

Key Features

ActiveCampaign’s Marketing Automation tool gives you the ability to automate a number of tasks such as sending welcome email campaigns and tracking engagement (by using engagement tags, custom fields, and more). 

ActiveCampaign pulls in information about your audience from all of the channels they have access to including social media, live chat, web pages, and SMS. It automatically identifies your most engaged audience members 

Begin Using B2B Marketing Automation

B2B marketing automation has the power to save your B2B marketing team time, increase their productivity, and help them reach and resonate with more qualified leads. So, find the right tool for your team and begin using B2B marketing automation. 

Free Resource: How to Reach & Engage Your Audience on Facebook



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MARKETING

What Will It Take To Drive Content Marketing Forward?

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What Will It Take To Drive Content Marketing Forward?

You’re doing everything in your power to craft amazing content.

You sweat over quality, optimize everything to the last keyword, and feed those greedy channel beasts more and more and more.

But the results you get don’t match the effort you put in. What are you doing wrong?

The game has changed. Simply doing the once-right things – and more of them – won’t guarantee wins.

Doing more of the once-right things no longer guarantees #ContentMarketing wins, says @Robert_Rose via @joderama @CMIContent. #CMWorld Click To Tweet

Playing to win now means doubling down on strategy

“The content you create provides no sustainable competitive advantage for your business.”

Robert Rose kicked off Content Marketing World 2022 with that bold statement. Even the most exceptional work will be copied, remixed, reimagined, and reissued by other brands and consumers.

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But don’t take that statement as a eulogy for our beloved practice. Instead, celebrate new and different ways of looking at your work, Robert said, starting with your strategy and structure.

Having the right resources (including the strategic roles, teams, and repeatable procedures) lets you fluidly change and evolve all the time.

And that’s where you’ll find your new competitive advantage.

Invest in a remarkable (and human) voice

Take Netflix, for example. The streaming giant made the strategic choice to invest in real, live humans to write the closed caption subtitles for its smash-hit Stranger Things. That choice paid off with the kind of online buzz no brand can buy.

Woman with brown hair and glasses in a floral suit on stage.Marketing Profs Ann Handley brought the backstory to the keynote stage:

Most streamers use automated transcriptions to help people with hearing difficulties follow what’s happening on screen. But Netflix assigned marketing writers to craft vivid descriptions of the sounds accompanying the Stranger Things action.

The evocative and unsettling words they used (wetly squelching, tentacles roiling) caught the attention of younger viewers – a segment that watches shows with captions on regardless of their hearing ability. Earned media mentions skittered across the web, entangling viewers in a whole new viewing (and reading) experience.

The lesson, Ann said, is that voice can carry your brand’s unique personality, even when your brand isn’t mentioned. Investing in it is a strategic choice that sets your brand apart.

“A warm, relatable brand voice is increasingly crucial. It’s how we need to start developing relationships with our audiences, especially in this world of content abundance,” Ann said.

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A warm, relatable brand voice helps develop relationships with your audiences in a world of #content abundance, says @annhandley via @CMIContent. #CMWorld Click To Tweet

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Do what others don’t dare

Black man with a mustache and beard wearing a black shirt, sport coat, and black pants on stage.Before Netflix broke the closed-caption mold, marketing visionary Bonin Bough broke publishing conventions.

While writing a book about how mobile phones transformed communication, he hit on a unique idea. Why not put his phone number on the cover, so readers could reach out and continue the dialog?

His publishers balked. So, Bonin purchased the rights from them and published the book his way. Since 2016, more than 50,000 readers of Txt Me: Your Phone Has Changed Your Life. Let’s Talk About It have called to create a personal connection with him.

A co-founder of Group Black – a media collective and accelerator focused on advancing Black-owned media properties ­– Bonin built his groundbreaking marketing career by thinking differently about what others consider impossible.

Bonin offers advice on how to challenge convention into meaningful marketing actions:

  • Aspire, but have a plan to see ideas through: While aspiration is a significant first step, you must develop the muscle memory to see your ideas to completion. Allocate the time, resources, and effort to execute the ideas.
  • Operate in real-time: The set-it-and-forget-it mentality doesn’t work anymore. Think about how you can change your business to deliver products in real time.
  • Be resourceful: Experimenting with content is not about how much money is available. It’s about how well you use the assets, talent, and resources you have.
  • Operationalize innovation: Look for models you can reverse-engineer to guide the development of your ideas and create guardrails and structures that make innovation more manageable.
  • Be curious: If you build the skill of curiosity, you can foster environments that create change.
  • Don’t give up: A no from stakeholders doesn’t mean your idea is bad. It just means it’s not the right fit under the current situation. Keep workshopping it. If all else fails, consider developing it elsewhere or on your own.

How you use the assets, talent, and resources you have matters more than the size of your budget, says @boughb via @joderama @CMIContent. Click To Tweet

Advocate for a clear content career path

People remain the most valuable (and expensive) content marketing assets. So cultivating content marketing careers is one of the most strategic choices an organization can make.

Upcoming CMI research shared at the conference shows most content marketers are at least somewhat satisfied with their current roles. Yet few feel sure about how they’ll grow in those roles. And of those who do have a clear career path, 20% say they’ll have to leave their employer to get there.

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“We have to build a career path into what it is we do. There’s no way content becomes a strategic function in the business if we don’t look at this. It will always be just a content factory,” Robert said.

White woman with blonde hair wearing a navy blue shirt and green and navy pleated skirt on stage.Jessica Bergmann shared how Salesforce did this. Working with the employee success team, Jessica and colleagues documented a career path for content team members to follow to progress from individual contributors to executive management.

Each company should build a path that suits its structure and culture. But Jessica shared some ideas any brand can use to start seeding opportunities and laying a professional path for content team members:

  • Advocate for integrated content teams: “It’s important that you show up as one company with one voice. We can’t have all different teams creating content everywhere and showing up with different voices and perspectives,” she said.
  • Define content roles and responsibilities clearly: Understand how content-centric teams across the organization collaborate and align their efforts to help content strategy get a seat at the decision-makers’ table.
  • Create democratized performance dashboards: Empower company leadership to see each content asset’s performance without asking for it.
  • Automate the ordinary: Using your automation tools to reduce time spent performing mundane tasks will allow content teams to focus on creating extraordinary and impactful content experiences.

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Set your vision on meaningful change

Perhaps the most urgent strategic question today is this: How will you create content that leads to a meaningful change in the world?

With trust declining in government and other institutions, audiences now expect brands to work toward something beyond their balance sheet. Robert Rose pointed out in his talk that the subhead for Edelman’s 2022 Trust Barometer is this: “Societal leadership is now a core function of business.”

Light skinned black man wearing a black shirt and black pants on stage. Content Marketing World 2022 on screen in the background.

Mark Harrison brought home the role of content (and individual content practitioners) in this function. A volunteer and entrepreneur who founded sponsorship agency T1 to work exclusively with impactful brands, Mark is committed to making a difference.

“I have a simple personal vision, and that is to create a world of belonging,” he said. “No matter what you look like, what you sound like, or where you come from, you will feel that you belong.”

Mark executes his mission by building what he calls the above-ground railroad, giving the nod to the underground railroad that helped thousands of enslaved people escape to freedom in the United States. The above-ground railroad activates networks of people to bring greater equity and opportunity to those who have been marginalized by society.

Part of that work involves amplifying their struggles and their strengths to those who have the power to increase inclusivity.

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“Amplifying voices is not giving your social pages over to somebody that doesn’t look like you. It’s about showing real courage,” Mark said.

Amplifying voices is about showing real courage, says @MarkHarrison3 via @joderama @CMIContent #CMWorld Click To Tweet

Mark shared a brand example that shows how powerful courageous content can be. When Harry Met Santa, a video from Posten Norge, tells the story of a developing relationship between a man (Harry) and Santa Claus. The video ends with a romantic kiss between the two, followed by this closing line: “In 2022, Norway marks 50 years of being able to love whoever we want.”

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How will you make content better for everyone?

These and other Content Marketing World conversations make one thing clear: You have your work cut out for you.

But you also have an opportunity to rethink your content strategy to create something remarkable. That strategy might include investments in:

  • Talented creators who help develop your brand’s distinctive voice
  • A clear career path that helps you keep your talent
  • New and different approaches to content possibilities
  • Making a societal impact

What takeaways resonate with you? Where do you plan to focus your strategy for the rest of the year and into 2023? Let us know in the comments.

Want more insight from these and other Content Marketing World speakers? Register for an on-demand pass to get access to session recordings through Dec. 31, 2022. Use code BLOG100 to save $100.

 Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute

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