13 Jul

5 Reasons Why Your eCommerce Site Needs Marketing Automation

One of the most versatile arenas for marketing automation is eCommerce. You can use automation on your eCommerce site to do everything from optimizing conversion rates to predicting customer behavior to increasing repeat sales.

In this post, we’ll take a look at 5 of the most productive ways your eCommerce site can get a big boost from automation.

1. Manage Cart Abandonment

The average cart abandonment rate nowadays is around 68% (Baymard).

If your own abandonment rate is anywhere close to that figure, that means that you’re losing sales from about two thirds of your wallet out, ready-to-buy store browsers.

Cart abandonment is an epidemic that’s hit eCommerce hard. Just imagine how much more revenue you would be pulling in if even half of those potential customers end up completing the sale.

There are several ways you can start reducing abandonment — simplifying the checkout process and adding multiple payment methods are great places to start — but one way that marketing automation can help is with abandonment emails.

Abandonment emails help you to reach out to leads that have left products in their cart untouched for a specified duration.

If you don’t have the faintest idea of what should go in such an email, I’ll direct you over to Shopify, where Dan Wang has curated an awesome list of 13 amazing abandoned cart emails.

Right here, though, I’ll highlight one of the best abandonment emails I saw in Dan’s post.

Abandoned-Cart-Hello-Nomad

First of all, note the catchy subject line. It’s not one of those monotonous, ultra-boring “Reminder: You Haven’t Completed Your Order” subject lines that nobody actually wants to click on. Instead, this one piques the reader’s interest by asking a question and also personalizes the email by using the first name of the lead.

Down below in the email body, notice how the names of the products left in the cart are bolded and centered so Dan can instantly see what products he’s left in his cart.

Finally, there’s an added incentive to complete the purchase: the 15% discount code (this increases the perception of value). It’s also time-sensitive, which also helps to create urgency: a powerful conversion tactic.

2. Detailed Analytics

Another important aspect of running a successful eCommerce business is using analytics to track everything. Most marketing automation tools will integrate with platforms like Google Analytics and KISSmetrics to track a whole host of traffic & conversion statistics that you’ve probably never even considered before.

These analytics will give you actionable advice as to what you can improve on your site: no matter if it’s something as small as changing the design of your social buttons or even something as big as eliminating free shipping.

You can view metrics like the avg. number of products each visitor views, bounce rate on specific pages, cart to checkout conversions, traffic sources by avg. order value, and much more.

Ecommerce-Analytics-Measuring-Traffic-Sources

A snapshot of analytics data from Hubspot.

Let’s take a pretend example (fictional data, but it illustrates the point nonetheless). Say that your eCommerce website implements an email marketing campaign that does the following:

  1. Sends an email to 5,000 leads promoting products personalized to each lead’s browsing history.
  2. 2,000 of those leads open the email.
  3. 200 click through and visit the site.
  4. 100 add a product(s) to their cart.
  5. 20 end up purchasing a product(s).

If you just look at the overall picture, your email had a 0.2% conversion rate. But when you use detailed analytics, you’re able to drill down much deeper and see exactly what went right and what went wrong.

Let’s look at this example again, but now let’s take notice of each individual metric.

  1. 5,000 leads are sent personalized emails.
  2. 2,000 leads open your email (40% open rate — great job: more than double the average)
  3. 200 click through (10% click through rate — pretty good, but can be improved: consider changing around the placement of links and retesting how relevant the promoted products are to your contacts)
  4. 100 add a product to their cart (50% view to cart conversion rate — very good!)
  5. 10 end up purchasing a product (90% cart abandonment rate — definitely needs improvement: consider using abandonment email like we discussed or streamlining the sales funnel)

See the difference in information? The 0.2% conversion rate just gave you a broad view of your email’s effectiveness, but these detailed metrics have revealed 2 key aspects of your marketing & sales funnels that have room for improvement — cart abandonment and email click through rates.

3. Investigate Customer Demographics

Another one of marketing automation’s most powerful capabilities is to investigate the demographics of your eCommerce website’s visitors, leads, and customers.

With features like geo-targeting, you’ll be able to drill down into the specific countries and regions that give you the most engaged traffic. You can then use this information to change traffic & advertising channels as appropriate.

Once your visitors have turned into leads and customers, you’ll have even more information at your disposal. By segregating and scoring conversions according to factors like purchase value, number of repeat sales, etc. you’ll discover where your best conversions come from (highest value customers with the lowest acquisition cost) and adapt your marketing strategy accordingly.

Here’s an example of an email campaign for a site that sells contract templates for music companies.

Each country, though, has different legislation regarding protection of artists’ rights. That means that the emails promoting a pack of contracts must be targeted to specific geographies, so each visitor has the right country-based contract promoted to it.

The screenshot below shows you how one specific email is segregated so that a specific content block is revealed only to contacts who are based in Australia and who have already bought a pack of 40 contracts.
Geolocation-Campaign

So an Australia-based visitor sees this content block.

Geolocation-AUS2

The same segregation can also be applied for contacts in the UK.

Geolocation-UK2

4. Post-Transactional Email Marketing

The idea of post-transaction email is basically self-explanatory: it’s email marketing after the transaction (sale). Take a look below at an email I recently received from eBay after I bought some audio equipment on the site — it’s a great example.

Post-Transactional-Email

We’ve discussed repeat customers and increasing customer lifetime value in detail at the MAI blog before. The number one strategy we talked about was post-transaction product promotion.

Here, the main idea to remember is to only promote products that are relevant to what the customer has already ordered. If a customer has just bought a BB gun from your site, a logical next step would be to try to sell bullets to him/her.

If you reverse the order in which those two products are bought & promoted, you’ll see why relevancy matters.

Customers that buy BB bullets probably already own a gun. Chances are slim that they will be interested in purchasing a new one. The product promotion isn’t a natural upsell and probably won’t covert nearly as much.

5. Optimize Product Pages for Maximum Conversions

Every eCommerce business owner understands the value of good copywriting. Good copywriting is concise, clear, and written in easy-to-understand, everyday language.

Great copywriting, on the other hand, is all those things and the result of a lot of testing.

If you aren’t continually test your product pages and copywriting, you’ll never come close to hitting maximum conversion potential.

Marketing automation tools like Ontraport make A/B testing super easy. Just create two versions of the same page (e.g. a serif font vs a sans serif font) and then the tool will automatically direct equal volumes of traffic to each variation. Once a meaningful amount of data has been gathered, you’ll have a clear view of which version produces the higher conversion rate.

Michael Aagard from Content Verve once ran a split test for a major European eCommerce site that sells porcelain items with hand-drawn designs. By changing the add to cart button from a cool blue to a bright green, Michael produced a 35.81% increase in conversions (that’s an increase in sales, not just in click throughs).

That’s the sort of impact A/B testing can have on your e-store. 
Split-Testing-Call-to-Action-Color

Here are a few basic things you can start testing right off the bat:

  • call-to-action button color and text (e.g. “add to cart” vs. “buy now” vs. “purchase now”, etc.)
  • product descriptions: paragraphs of text vs. bullet-points
  • different product images
  • removing navigational menus from landing pages
  • the number/type of fields in sign up forms

Wrapping Up

We’ve only discussed a small sample of the benefits automation has to offer to the eCommerce industry. The list of possible marketing automation features and campaigns is truly too long to discuss in any single post.

If you’re ready to start using marketing automation to decrease abandonment, increase repeat sales, and make your products convert better, then see which software fits your eCommerce business here.

Got any experience using automation? Please share in the comments below!

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06 Jul

6 Case Studies of Businesses Killing it With Marketing Automation

Marketing automation has the potential to boost content ROI, increase customer lifetime value, streamline lead generation, reduce support response times, produce better customers, and much more.

In this post, we’ll take a look at seven different businesses that used marketing automation to give their bottom line a significant boost. We’ll break down the problems they faced, the solutions they employed, and the awesome results they obtained.

1. Salon Success Strategies Triples One-Year Revenue

Infusionsoft's lead tracking.

Tool used: Infusionsoft

Salon Success Strategies is a marketing agency that caters to salons and spas. The founder, Heather Lemere, started this business six years ago in 2009. She was sick and tired of 16+ hour workdays at her day job, and decided to leave it in favor of her entrepreneurial spirit.

The problem: For the first few years of running the business, Salon Success Strategies had significant trouble generating leads. Not only that, but the leads they were able to attract to attract were very rarely qualified or targeted to their business.

Furthermore, because their shopping cart software, email marketing system, and other marketing solutions were all on different platforms, administration was a huge burden.

The solution: Salon Success Strategies used Infusionsoft’s broad range of features to get their act together. They started by organizing all of their important marketing systems into a single platform, resulting in instant productivity gains.

The company also took advantage of segmentation tools to tailor marketing campaigns to each prospect that went through the system. This allowed for better lead nurturing, increasing the quality of each lead that made it to the end of their sales cycle.

SSS also used lead scoring to focus efforts on their most conversion-ready leads.

The results: The personalized marketing campaigns, combined with their expansion into more varied content formats and distribution channels, created significant results for SSS. Within months they saw:

  • 30% reduction in expenses
  • 150% growth in subscriptions
  • 300% growth in revenue from $200K in 2013 to $600K in 2014
  • 40%+ decreased advertising spend

Heather is also reaping the benefits of more streamlined administration, as she now rarely works more than eight hours a day.

Link to full case study.

2. The Foundation Sees 500% Revenue Increase and 10% Better Customer Retention

Tool used: Ontraport

Dane Maxwell is a serial software entrepreneur, having started four digital companies even before reaching 27 years of age. With a ton of business experience under his belt, Dane began a coaching program for budding software entrepreneurs. Soon, he had already reached $150,000 in revenue with only 80 clients.

The problem: Dane was already making 6-figure revenue from his 80 clients without even a website. The only platform he used was a basic Google web form. If he was already banking that much without a website or any automation systems in place, imagine what could be done if he implemented a more comprehensive marketing program!

The solution: After taking the plunge and deciding to rely on Ontraport for his lead management, Dane launched The Foundation.

The Foundation uses Marketing Automation to increase revenue and customer retention.

Dane used Ontraport’s concierge done-for-you service to get an automated lead management system installed for him. Shopping carts, payment gateways, and even affiliate marketing for a quick sales boost were all set up.

The results: 12 months from when Dane started using marketing automation, The Foundation grew to three employees and saw the following results:

  • 500% increase in revenue to $750,000/year
  • 380% increase in number of customers
  • 10% more customers retained

The Foundation has recently been getting some buzz in the investor world, and has also been featured on Forbes, Smart Passive Income, App Sumo, and other popular business publications since.

Link to full case study.

3. McAfee Quadruples Conversion Rate

Tool used: Eloqua/Oracle Marketing Cloud

We’re all familiar with McAfee — the multibillion computer security company responsible for some of the world’s most popular virus scan and removal tools. It’s hard to imagine that such huge corporations have the same marketing & sales problems we experience, but they do nonetheless.

The problem: Unlike Salon Success Strategies, McAfee already had a huge number of leads. So many, in fact, that sales started complaining that the marketing department focused too much on quantity and too little on quality. Sales was right on the money, too: conversion rates were worryingly low.

The solution: McAfee turned to Oracle Marketing Cloud (now known as Eloqua) to help align their marketing and sales departments and reach the common goal of more customers.

So instead of just handing over any and every lead off to sales, marketing began to segmenting leads into personalized follow up campaigns. They tracked the progress of the nurtured prospects with lead scoring, and only forwarded the most conversion-ready leads to sales.

The results: Initially, the automated lead management was limited only to the North America department. As time went on, McAfee eventually rolled out the strategy changes worldwide. The data proved their choices to be the right ones:

  • 4x increase in conversion rate
  • 35% less leads (but because each lead was more qualified than before, the time invested in each lead decreased and the value of new customers increased)

A less tangible but nonetheless important result was increased cohesiveness between the sales and marketing departments. Thanks to marketing automation, the two were able to begin working in tandem to achieve the common goal of more revenue.

Link to full case study.

4. Thomson Reuters Decreases Lead Conversion Time by 72%

Tool used: Eloqua/Oracle Marketing Cloud

Thomson Reuters is another billion plus dollar company that’s been able to use marketing automation to its advantage.

The problem: Similar to others on this list, Thomson Reuters failed to target their marketing campaigns to specific leads. As a result, their marketing strategy consisted more of a “batch-and-blast email approach”. Needless to say, this doesn’t cut it when it comes to generating quality leads.

The solution: Like McAfee, Thomson Reuters chose Eloqua to give their lead nurturing strategy a boost. They used lead scoring to see how close each lead was to the sale, which allowed marketing to personalize messages sent to leads based on how far along they were in the sales cycle.

Each lead was fed a steady stream of targeted content until its score was high enough to be passed on to sales. Thomson Reuters even created special sales teams to move the most qualified leads at a faster pace through their pipeline.

The results: Also like McAfee, Thomson Reuters saw both intangible and tangible results. Not only did they get the numbers you see below, but their marketing and sales departments also began working as two complementary parts of a smooth, well-oiled machine.

  • 72% lower lead-to-conversion time
  • 175% increase in revenue from marketing dept.
  • 23% increase in high quality leads transferred from marketing to sales

Link to fully case study.

5. Azuqua Streamlines Reputation Management

Tool used: Azuqua

This case study is particularly interesting because it involves a company that used its own product to effect results.

That’s right. The company in question, Azuqua, is actually a marketing automation software vendor themselves. It’s not often that you see companies writing case studies about their own use of their product online, which is why it’s so awesome to see Azuqua doing so.

The problem: Probably the worst feeling in the world as an entrepreneur is when someone speaks ill of your business. Although it’s hard to prevent negative mentions on social media, there is a way to fix them.

Whenever Azuqua discovered a negative mention about their company online, they saw an opportunity: an opportunity to turn a displeased customer into a loyal supporter.

The solution: Azuqua started to put their own automation tool to use. A feature inside the tool, named Flõs, allowed them to create a cloud process that automatically tracked down negative Twitter mentions. This allowed their customer support team to prioritize better and respond to unhappy customers very quickly.

Manage your online reputation using marketing automation.

The results: The results of this automation flow were twofold. One, because the speed at which they were able to resolve problems was so fast, the company was put in a positive light that bolstered their reputation & connection with customers.

Secondly, the fact that most of the process was completely hands-off freed up time for the company to focus on other aspects of their business, like marketing and lead generation.

Although there are no tangible metrics to be seen here, this case study is nonetheless significant.

Link to full case study.

6. Lean Logistics Doubles Marketing Productivity

Tool used: Marketo

The last case study we’ll look at in this post involves one of the most important aspects of running a business: productivity. The more you’re able to produce with a given amount of time and resources, the more your business will grow.

One business that’s been using marketing automation to literally skyrocket their productivity is Lean Logistics, a provider of transportation management systems. They’re the guys who help large companies to manage and organize supply chains, shipping, and product distribution.

The problem: Lean Logistics never had a problem with the effectiveness of their marketing strategy — that was going fine. Their real issue was the amount of time it took to actually create and execute campaigns.

Email campaigns would take 3 days to set up and the webinars & trade shows took six weeks to prepare for. Not at all an acceptable level of productivity.

The solution: Marketo’s user-friendly interface (something we’ve highlighted in our review of the tool) was what did the trick for Lean Logistics. The company moved all their marketing systems to one platform, and were able to use the email & landing page templates and campaign builder to work faster and see instant productivity gains.

Use marketing automation to boost productivity.

Everything — from repurposing content assets to monitoring the progression of their trade show registrants — became so much more streamlined.

The results: The productivity gains for LeanLogistics’s marketing team were enormous.

  • 100% more campaigns created & executed in the same amount of time
  • webinar & trade show preparation went from taking six weeks to 1-2 days
  • email marketing campaigns took two days; now, they take two hours

That’s a huge amount of time recovered; just think of the growth you could spark in your own business if you were able to save as much time.

Link to full case study.

Wrapping Up

None of the companies we’ve profiled above are exceptional or unusual cases. These are not extraordinary or super-special results in any way. 

These are results that you could be seeing with your business if you used marketing automation. You could be the one with 500% revenue increase, the 400% conversion rate boost, or the huge productivity gains, if only you too turned to marketing automation.

Ready to take the plunge? See what automation tool is best for your business here.

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22 Apr

The Rise of Marketing Automation (Infographic)

Over the past few months, we’ve uncovered a lot of data and insights on the marketing automation industry, which we’ve shared in posts like this one.

After noticing quite a few of the charts and diagrams from these posts were generating a lot of interest, I decided to turn these insights into the following infographic on The Rise of Marketing Automation.

The Rise of Marketing Automation Infographic

Feel free to share this infographic on your website or blog. All we ask is that you credit us by linking to Marketing Automation Insider in the article. For your convenience, you can copy and paste the following embed code into your website.

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21 Apr

8 Best Marketing Automation Blogs to Follow

When I was first introduced to marketing automation several years ago, I was surprised by the lack of blogs and communities dedicated to sharing marketing automation campaign ideas and helping marketers learn from one another.

This was the primary reason we decided to create Marketing Automation Insider. Fortunately, there are now many great blogs on marketing automation – mostly run by the vendors. Below are eight of the best blogs, in my opinion, to learn about marketing automation.

#1 Infusionsoft’s Blog

While Infusionsoft’s content is relatively basic and aimed at entry-level marketers, they do feature a lot of interesting case studies written by Infusionsoft users and consultants. On top of their (almost) daily educational content, they also feature a campaign of the month which tends to be quite insightful.

Infusionsoft Blog

One thing that I do quite like about the Infusionsoft blog is that their content is categorised into four categories; attract, sell, wow, and success mindset. This makes it easy to get inspiration and ideas on the areas that you need the most help with.

Go to the blogGet the RSS feed | Follow on Twitter

#2 Customer Experience Matrix by David Raab

While David’s website may look like a relic from 1995, his content certainly makes up for the garish design. David Raab is the author of the popular B2B Marketing Automation Vendor Selection Tool (VEST) report, which publishes interesting data on the industry each year.

david-raab-customer-experience-matrix

Go to the blogGet the RSS feed | Follow on Twitter

#3 OntraBlog

Ontraport’s blog is another great one for small business owners to subscribe to. While similar in style to Infusionsoft’s content, I generally find Ontraport’s blog posts a little bit more insightful and advanced.

Ontrablog

They have a good balance on content related to their software, and general content, so whether you’re a customer or not you’ll find plenty of interesting articles on their site.

Go to the blogGet the RSS feed | Follow on Twitter

#4 Oracle’s Modern Marketing Blog

Given Eloqua’s dominance in the enterprise marketing automation market, it should come as no surprise that their blog (now called the Oracle Modern Marketing Blog), is one of the best sources of information on enterprise marketing automation.

Eloqua blog

With a wide range of articles covering everything from data management, to marketing automation and cross-channel marketing automation, the Eloqua blog is a great place to keep up to date with the developments in online marketing for large corporations.

Go to the blogGet the RSS feed | Follow on Twitter

#5 Act-On’s Blog

The Act-On blog has a wide variety of posts that are ideal for smaller businesses and entrepreneurs. They share a lot of insights specifically on the Act-On Software, but the advice is generally objective enough to be useful to most small businesses and entrepreneurs.

Act-On blog

With content ranging from productivity tips, to specific marketing automation sequences, their blog has a good balance of articles aimed around growing your business.

Go to the blogGet the RSS feed | Follow on Twitter

#6 Silverpop Blog

With a dozen or so contributors, the Silverpop blog has a good variation of content around marketing automation and digital marketing in general. Their content is generally aimed towards marketing managers in medium-large businesses.

Silverpop Blog

Silverpop generally post a few times per week, with the occasional guest expert interview. You can learn more about their blog using the links below.

Go to the blogGet the RSS feed | Follow on Twitter

#7 Marketo’s Blog

Marketo have one of the most popular blogs in the marketing automation industry. With over 250,000 followers across their social media profiles, you can be sure that their content is well-received.

Marketo blog

Marketo’s content writers are great at taking larger and more complex marketing concepts and break them down in easily understandable posts.

Go to the blogGet the RSS feed | Follow on Twitter

#8 Pardot’s Blog

With daily content from the Salesforce team, Pardot’s blog is another great source of marketing automation insights with a strong bias towards increasing sales efficiency and effectiveness.

Pardot blog

Go to the blogGet the RSS feed | Follow on Twitter

Finally… Marketing Automation Insider

I’m a little bit biased here, but with lots of fantastic insights from experts in the marketing automation field, to case studies by companies using marketing automation software, Marketing Automation Insider is becoming an interesting collection of insights on marketing automation.

As one of the only independent (non-vendor) blogs solely dedicated to marketing automation, we promise to keep you updated on the best tips and tricks for getting the most out of your software.

If you’d like, you can subscribe to our blog using one of the following:
Get the RSS feed | Follow on Twitter

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20 Apr

The History and Timeline of Marketing Automation

Marketing automation first came into existence in 1992. Yet, it was until the late 2000’s when the marketing automation industry began to grow exponentially from a $225 million industry to a $1.65 billion industry in just five years.

It was in those five years that the industry saw over $5.5 billion worth of acquisitions being made by the likes of Salesforce, IBM, Adobe, and Microsoft.

While the early systems were primarily revolved around email alone, the marketing automation tools of today have become significantly more powerful. American Express, Intel, LinkedIn and many others now use marketing automation to send tens of millions of personalized emails, text messages, direct mail, and social adverts to their users based on their actions.

You might be wondering, how did this industry grow up, and when did it take its first steps? In this post, we’ll look at the evolution and history of the marketing automation trend.

The First Marketing Automation Vendors

Most feel that marketing automation first burst into the scene when Unica was founded in 1992. However, this was merely scratching the surface; most businesses were not present online and the Internet was still in relative infancy.

Marketing automation vendors timeline

All of this changed in 1999 with the establishment of Eloqua. Over the next seven years, Eloqua’s success inspired a number of competitors to enter the market. These included companies such as Pardot, Infusionsoft and Marketo.

The success of these companies was compounded by several simultaneous trends that emerged throughout the 90’s and early 2000’s. Not least of all was the increasing speeds at which the Internet could be accessed. Another was the ability for computers to handle such software.

With the increasing penetration of Broadband Internet between 2004 and 2009, more marketing automation tools began to be built or migrated to the cloud. So, we likewise saw the birth of many cloud-based tools such as Ontraport (2006), Hubspot (2006) and Act-On (2008).

Becoming All-in-One Sales & Marketing Software

The rise of social media caused marketing automation vendors to think beyond email marketing. With the number of social media users rising to just under one billion in 2010, it comes as no surprise in hindsight that companies such as Hubspot and Infusionsoft jumped onto this opportunity to integrate social marketing software into their systems.

At roughly the same time, other trends such as mobile commerce, cloud-based A/B testing, cloud-based landing page development, and webinars increased in popularity. With all of these different marketing tools and channels increasing in popularity, many marketing automation tools developed, integrated, and acquired their way to becoming all-in-one marketing and sales services.

The Acquisition Years (2010 – 2014)

In the four years between 2010 and 2014, there was over $5.5 billion worth of acquisitions made in the marketing automation industry. The largest of which was Salesforce’s ‘Russian doll’ acquisition of ExactTarget for $2.5 billion, after ExactTarget acquired Pardot for $95 million.

Marketing automation acquisitions

This market consolidation has led to the enterprise market being dominated by a small number of parent companies, such as Salesforce, Oracle, IBM, and Adobe.

Meanwhile the small business market has yet to see any major consolidation. While both Infusionsoft and Hubspot have made a few acquisitions, most of these appear to have been featured-led acquisitions, rather than to acquire market share.

This makes sense given the vastness of the small business market, and the fact that both companies are probably wiser focusing their efforts on expanding the size of the overall market, rather than increasing their share of what currently exists.

2015 & Beyond For Marketing Automation

I think it’s fair to say that we’ve reached a point where mass-penetration of marketing automation software is no longer a probable event, but an absolute given.

Over the next few years, I think we’ll see a few things happen. First of all, and most likely, the cost of marketing automation software will drop to a point where it’s highly accessible to all businesses.

Declining cost of marketing automation software

This will be due to the increased competition, in particular from the email marketing service providers edging into the market. While I’m limited in what I can say without breaking NDAs, I’ll leave it at this: the next big wave of change in marketing automation is very likely to come from the ESP market.

Secondly, I think tool vendors will increasingly target niches within niches. Currently, there are two broad categories of marketing automation tools: small business tools, and enterprise tools. As more competitors have entered the space, we’ve started to see more targeted tools aimed at specific sectors within the small business market.

With the exception of a few leaders, like Infusionsoft, Hubspot, and Eloqua, many tools will have to pick their corner of the market and become extremely good at it.

Finally, we’ll see more and more tools tackling the trends that are emerging in the wider digital landscape. Whether that’s predictive analytics, mobile commerce, or wearable device marketing, the best prepared vendors will be those with active partner marketplaces. as the development partners will rise to the opportunity presented by building integrations and extensions.

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16 Apr

5 Best Marketing Automation Conferences to Put in the Calendar

Despite the fact that many of the most popular marketing automation tools have been around for almost 15 years, it’s only in the past few years that a large community has formed around the marketing automation industry.

Given the complexity and opportunity of what can be done with marketing automation, it’s incredibly valuable to learn from other marketers, and see what tactics you can apply to your business.

Needless to say, conferences are one of the best places to sharpen your axe, meet like-minded individuals, and hear about the latest innovations. If you’re wondering which conferences you should you try to attend, here’s our list of five of the best marketing automation conferences coming up in 2015 and 2016.

Ontrapalooza

Ontrapalooza rightfully deserves to be on any list of marketing automation conferences. Hosted by Ontraport in a gorgeous old theatre in Santa Barbara, it’s an event that brings together small businesses from a number of varied business sectors to learn about marketing automation.

Ontrapalooza

With 24 fantastic speakers lined up, this year’s event is set to take place from the 21st until the 23rd of October in Santa Barbara, California.

There are dedicated rooms demo’ing basic and advanced automation features and there is even the ability to have one-on-one training sessions. If you’re a small business looking to get more out of marketing automation, this conference is not to be missed.

Infusionsoft ICON

Given Infusionsoft’s prominence in the marketing automation industry, it’s no surprise that their annual ICON conference is one of the most important dates of the year for anyone involved in marketing automation.

Infusionsoft ICON

With keynotes from best-selling authors, business leaders, and their CEO Clate Mask, the quality of information at ICON is second to none for small business owners.

On top of ICON, Infusionsoft hosts a number of other eventss, ranging from PartnerCon (their annual event for Infusionsoft partners) to smaller conferences and training sessions designed to help you get the most out of their software.

All are hosted by qualified instructors from Infusionsoft University, so they’re an excellent place to ask questions and learn how to implement specific marketing automation techniques for your business.

Inbound by Hubspot

Hubspot are one of the most respected names within the online marketing community and their Inbound conference is certainly not to be passed up if you have the chance to attend.

Inbound conference

With speakers including the likes of Seth Godin, Dan Pink, and Malcolm Gladwell, you know that you’ll be learning from some of the brightest marketers on the planet. While not specifically about marketing automation, Inbound covers all of the various disciplines that are important for creating effective automation sequences.

The Inbound conference takes place on September 8th – 11th in Boston, Massachusetts.

Silverpop Amplify

Hosted by IBM, Amplify is a conference taking place between 11 and 13 May at the San Diego Convention Center. This event is primarily focused upon the role of client engagement within the B2B world. One of the most impressive aspects of this event is its sheer size.

IBM Amplify

It is expected that more than 2,800 industry leaders, professionals and executives will be attending. Attendees will also be able to experience some of the latest marketing innovations envisioned by IBM. In total, there are more than 200 different sessions and workshops, including new approaches to e-commerce, customer analytics, marketing and merchandising.

In terms of marketing automation, their curriculum will include mobile engagement, email marketing, enhancing the client experience and omni-channel marketing. These will all be presented by some of the most respected names in the industry.

MozCon

Hosted by Moz, this conference takes place between the 13th and 15th of July in Seattle, Washington. MozCon is one of the best US conferences to sharpen your skills in social media, marketing automation and the changing world of SEO.

Mozcon

Some of the keynote speakers will include Courtney Seiter (Buffer), Dana DiTomaso (Kickpoint), Dave Mihm (Moz) and Adam Singer (Google). There are also dozens of other respected speakers who will be giving seminars throughout the conference.

The Three day event will cover multiple marketing-oriented topics. These include data-driven sales, CRO, marketing analytics, the increasing role of m-commerce and much more.

These five conferences are some of the best events to keep up with the fast-moving marketing automation industry. All are hosted by extremely respected organisations. For anyone who is looking to keep abreast of all of the latest developments in a changing world, these conferences are certainly not to be missed.

Did we miss any off? Let us know which marketing automation events you’re attending this year in the comments below.

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09 Apr

Marketing Automation Market Size & Vendor Market Share

As of 2015, over 142,700 business are now using marketing automation software. Yet, only 369 of the top 10,000 websites have implemented it.

The marketing automation industry is now worth approximately $1.62 billion per annum, and Hubspot are the most popular marketing automation vendor, with a 36.3% share of the total automation market.

These are just some of the highlights from our recent analysis of the marketing automation industry, which we’ve published in our 2015 marketing automation industry report & buyer’s guide.

In this post, I thought I’d share some of the insights that we uncovered on vendor market share and on the industry in general.

Which marketing automation tool has the most users?

First of all, let’s look at which marketing automation vendors have the largest share of companies using marketing automation software.

2015 marketing automation market share1. Hubspot (36.3%)
2. Infusionsoft (24.3%)
3. Marketo (11%)
4. Pardot (8%)
5. Eloqua (7.8%)
6. Act-On (6.5%)
7. Silverpop (2.8%)
8. Ontraport (1.9%)
9. Sharpspring (1.3%)

The astute among you might have noticed that this market share overview incorporates two very distinct markets: small business marketing automation software, and enterprise automation software.

Separating the two isn’t easy, given that companies like Hubspot and Marketo cater to both markets. For the sake of simplicity, if we assume that 85% of Hubspot and Marketo’s users are small businesses, and 15% enterprise, we can create a more realistic picture of which vendors are likely to be leading each market. Let’s start by looking at the small business marketing automation market.

Which marketing automation tool has the highest market share among small businesses?

For the small business market, Hubspot are the clear leaders in customer volume with a 41.6% market share, followed by Infusionsoft with 32.8%, and Marketo with 12.6%.

small business marketing automation market share

Which marketing automation tool has the highest market share among large businesses?

For the enterprise market, Pardot and Eloqua (now ‘Oracle Marketing Cloud’) are neck-and-neck with 31.2% and 30.2% market share.

enterprise marketing automation market share

It’s important to remember, however, that this is based on the number of companies using each vendor, and not customer revenue or number of individual users.

While we did not collect revenue data in our study, a report by Mintigo found that despite only having a relatively small share of total users (7-8%), Eloqua received 26% of all marketing automation revenue. This is unsurprising given that their platform starts at $2,000 per month, and is used by the likes of American Express and Sony.

marketing automation market share by revenue

Which marketing automation software do the top 10k websites use?

All of the stats above are based on automation software used by over 309 million websites (approx. one third of the whole Internet). But what if we were to only look at the top 10,000 websites?

To our surprise, we found that only 369 of the top 10,000 websites were using marketing automation (3.69%).

Used by 85 of the top 10,000 websites, Marketo was the most popular vendor among the top 10,000, representing 23% of the 369 marketing automation implementations. Hubspot, Eloqua, Pardot, and Silverpop were all found to be used by at least 50 of the top 10,000 websites each.

marketing automation used by top 10k websites

What can we expect over the next 2-3 years?

Over the past three years we’ve seen exponential growth in marketing automation adoption, causing the industry to grow from being worth $225m to $1.6bn in a matter of five years.

Given the following truisms, it’s highly probable that this exponential growth will continue into the foreseeable future:

  1. Marketing automation is becoming more accessible, with new players reducing the cost and accessibility of software to smaller / niche businesses. Over the next twelve months we will see the major email marketing providers becoming more aggressive in their marketing automation offerings, which will create a surge in adoption.
  2. Marketing automation has reached a credibility tipping point. As it’s now used by everyone from American Express, Sony, Chrysler, and Intel to many of the most influential bloggers and online businesses, it’s becoming harder to be a skeptic.
  3. Despite the massive growth in marketing automation adoption, the overall penetration is still incredibly low. As we found in our study, with only 3.69% of the top 10,000 websites using marketing automation, there is still a huge number of businesses yet to adopt the software.

As far as market share is concerned, I predict that Hubspot and Eloqua will continue to engulf their respective corners of the market. Given the external growth of the market, though, it’s likely that most major vendors will continue to grow with the expansion of the market.

Whatever happens, it’s going to be a very interesting and exciting few years for the marketing automation vendors.

How this data was collected:
It’s important that we mention the limitations of our data: as not all vendors make their current usage numbers public, our conclusions should be interpreted as ‘a close estimate’, and not as gospel.

Our data was collected by combining data from BuiltWith®, a tool that monitors the technology used by over 309 million websites, with published usage figures, we were able to create two separate calculations based on each of these data sets.

When both numbers were very close (in almost all cases), we used the BuiltWith statistics, as they are likely to be more up to date. In the case that the two numbers were very different, we used the company’s reported figures.

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