Marketing has many facets. It is staying on the frontline and facing people who have never had anything to do with a specific company or brand. The marketing department has the essential task of providing the sales department with leads and like a magician pulling a rabbit out of a hat, marketing is often needed to produce prospects and customers from unlikely locations. But when is the lead ready to be converted?
In eCommerce, it may be when someone actually lands on a website after clicking on an ad or a search result, or when someone responds to a CTA, or when a visitor browses a product or leaves a cart on a checkout. There is no one-size-fits-all solution. Leads poured into the sales funnel too quickly might not be ready or eligible, thereby wasting a lot of time for the sales team, while answering leads too late runs the risk of acquiring fewer conversions.
Fortunately, today's digital economy is more advanced than the old-school 'pipeline hot potato' approach for potential future clients. Thanks to CRM software, marketing and sales can work together even more seamlessly to attract visitors, nurture leads and turn them into sales. The key of CRM systems may have been with the sales team, but its other roles have been well incorporated into project management and marketing and customer support teams. This isn't your usual expansionary business practice. CRM is designed on the idea that cross-departmental collaboration is a powerful thing.
But every department—sales, marketing and customer service—still has its own particular tasks, and marketing's unique "front-line" issues may be those that other departments are least able to give a helping hand. Luckily, there are lots of email marketing-driven customer relationship management tools on the market that can help you establish meaningful relationships with your customers. In this article, I’ll introduce to you the best email CRM automation tools that you can use to maximize your marketing efforts. Let’s jump right into it!
What is marketing CRM?
Any effective customer relationship management framework is based on the concept of better business by overlapping interactions and centralization of tasks and data. In that spirit, marketing CRM helps by combining marketing functions with sales data and other parts of the business. It's all about getting all the knowledge and resources you need to run marketing campaigns more efficiently, get more leads, and close more sales.
This kind of CRM offers marketing teams the ability to personalize marketing, to achieve the kind of 'small-town familiarity' with consumers that will keep them coming back. Marketing campaigns are becoming more successful, with less work required.
Marketing solutions usually come in the form of SaaS cloud-based applications, although on-site solutions are also available. This means that you can access your details on various devices with a fast login or a quick browser extension update. Mobile applications come with the vast majority of CRM marketing apps, enabling you to do your work in the field as well.
This type of CRM solution includes a variety of marketing tools such as channel marketing campaign management and marketing automation, open/unopened mail status statistics and click-through rates, and A/B testing to find the best approach for your landing pages.
What to look for in an email marketing CRM automation tool
Email templates are the arrival touchpoints when your customers receive your email. They are also different from your website, since emails are more directly linked to the specific message you want your customers to know.
It can change on the basis of temporal or geographical coordinates. For example, if you own a women's online clothing store, your email can display swimwear to American customers in July and Australian customers in January.
Email marketing CRM software helps to create and develop new templates using no-brainer visual editors and customizable pre-made templates. Otherwise, front-end design and back-end coding can be sluggish and expensive when you need to create email templates with HTML codes on your own.
People who land on a website, or even fill out a form, may not be interested enough to be converted to sales. Cold or warm leads still need to be nurtured. Email marketing CRM segments lead to various categories for example: based on how much time they spent on the web, what links they clicked on, or how much personal information they shared on the form.
Based on segments, email CRM helps marketers plan various strategies so that their brand remains "top-of-mind" until the lead is ready to become involved. This usually takes the form of an email alert. Like pages and advertisements, writing and developing email campaigns is fast and simple with email marketing CRM. The drip email feature allows a scheduled series of emails to arrive incrementally over a certain period of time. Blast emails are useful for announcing big news, such as new items or promotions.
Just as people respond differently to social ads, so will they react differently to marketing emails. Marketing CRM monitors this action by noting open mail and counting click-throughs, which in turn produces a much more comprehensive image of each lead.
Daily checking of the effectiveness of emails is a valuable tool in the CRM marketing package. Features such as A/B testing show what improves interaction, and this data is constantly gone back into the planning and composing of the next round of marketing materials. Marketing needs data. All the monitoring and tracking means there's a splash of stuff that creates valuable analytics reports.
Workflows and automation
Finally, there are automated workflows. These are emails that are activated by events that CRM marketing allows you to set up. For example, you can create a trigger when someone visits your site without answering the CTA. The pre-composed email will be sent to the visitor as a reminder, maybe even providing an extra opportunity, to come back. Or if anyone drops out near the end of a transaction, their abandoned item can instantly show up in a live chat or appear in their email inbox.
Best marketing CRM softwares
AVADA Email Marketing
AVADA Email Marketing is well known for its ability to execute successful email marketing campaigns. Collect and organize data, transform audience data and observations into personally tailored communications, and create and refine multi-channel campaigns. AVADA Email Marketing provides a stack of automation features, sending emails based on prompts such as 'recent sign-ups,' wishing 'happy birthday' to subscribers, thanking them for making a purchase or telling them when they abandon their cart. AVADA Email Marketing is ideal for stores who are just starting their online stores and need a free email CRM tool with all the necessary features.
Lack of highly advanced features that more expensive apps offer.
Download on Shopify app store: AVADA Email Marketing
HubSpot was on the ground floor of the inbound marketing revolution (it's also a free CRM)—that is, attracting customers to your brand with great content, rather than selling stuff to people to get their cash. Their inbound marketing software is well developed, encompassing email, social media, analytics, marketing automation, lead generation, and more.
Marketing via blogs is also a big deal with HubSpot, as it is one of the key forms of original content that leads. The provider provides useful tools for publishing conversion-optimized and search-optimized content in a consistent format. Like several other CRM marketing solutions, HubSpot has codeless pages and an email builder with A/B testing modules. You can get basic features for free, or pay for up to four times as many features.
HubSpot does not offer a lot of customization options. Its emphasis on marketing automation and contact records may be restricted if you're searching for deeper relationship-based marketing.
- HubSpot CRM has a free plan, but the number of users is unlimited.
- The Marketing Hub add-on package costs $50 per user/per month; billed monthly.
- The HubSpot CMS costs $300 per month; billed monthly.
- The All-inclusive Starter Growth Suite costs $113 per user/per month; billed monthly.
As the name suggests, eCRM Drip focuses on two aspects. First, they specialize in drip marketing, where emails are sent to potential leads through a scheduled succession of emails. Second, their tool is targeted towards eCommerce.
Another selling point is that they are extremely affordable and thus are intended to support small and independent businesses. Their automated email modules can be distributed either as drip campaigns or as broadcasts, which are large blast emails to the entire mailing list or section. Drip also provides a dedicated Facebook ad builder.
Drip eCRM can be a little costly for small businesses. Often, customer service is not really attentive at times.
Pricing: A free 14-day trial plan is available, with all features included.
Drip is priced on a sliding scale based on how many people are using your account; starting at $49 per month per user; billed annually.
Like other applications reviewed here, Creatio does more than marketing, but it still has a core task to obtain, train and qualify leads in the marketing process of customer service before sending them to sales. Creatio helps organize and execute marketing campaigns with a simple graphic design tool. In addition, you can set up automated email triggers that take action, such as answering a CTA. There is also real-time tracking and analysis of the success of each campaign.
In the same way as marketing campaigns, their email marketing benefits from the built-in visual WYSIWYG (that's "what you see is what you get") email builder, which often comes with ready-to-use templates. Creatio also provides A/B split testing and click-stat software to gage the most popular emails, and all that data feeds into their broader analytics.
UI is a bit clumsy and could use a facelift. Customization of the platform can be time-consuming and there is a mild learning curve. The pricing structure is certainly in favor of enterprise-level clients.
The price is on a sliding scale, depending on the number of users and the number of active contacts. The cheapest monthly subscription costs $2,822 per account per year (limited to 10,000 active contacts).
Intercom is a networking network for all things customers: creating leads, monitoring customer interactions, customer engagement, and customer service. Intercom’s focus is on account-based marketing for all phases of the sales funnel, including customer onboarding, activation and testing conversions.
The platform helps you to recognise when target accounts appear on your website and to forward them to your sales team immediately. Track key performance metrics to get the message correct and see the median time it takes to close the deal. Intercom integrates with Pipedrive, Salesforce and several other CRMs and digital tools to make the most of your customer data and further incorporate marketing activities into the sales process.
There's an in-app report, but you can't export reports. Customer service is equipped with good knowledge, but response and resolution can take a bit long.
Pricing: A 14-day free trial is offered for all plans.
- The Essential plan costs $87 per month (2 users included and additional seats cost $19 per user a month); billed monthly.
- The Pro plan costs $153 per month (2 users included and additional seats are $39 per user per month); billed monthly
- The Premium plan is priced with Intercom in direct consultation.
Early-stage startups can have access to all Intercom products for only $49 per month. Essential and Pro plans incur extra expenses for the audience size of more than 200 active people (i.e. leads and consumers who have obtained, sent or signed in to your product in the last 90 days).
Keap provides a full-featured CRM with email marketing, marketing automation, small business digital marketing, contact management, and sales pipeline. It focuses primarily on small enterprises, self-employed professionals and eCommerce operations.
This email CRM tool provides a marketing campaign builder that allows you to create trigger-based email sequences and makes it easy to build a lead database and compile contact information from other CRMs, business cards, spreadsheets, and personalized forms on your website.
Keap provides a lot of features, many of which you do not end up using, and the number of integrations is limited. Relatively high price points (and a significant price jump between Grow and Pro plans) can make it unaffordable for some small organizations.
Pricing: A free trial is offered for the Grow and Pro plans.
- The Grow plan costs $49 per user per month; billed monthly.
- The Pro plan costs $149 per user per month; billed monthly.
- The Infusionsoft plan costs $199 per user per month; billed monthly.
Insightly is a full-fledged marketing and sales CRM with integration of G-Suite and Microsoft Office 365. Total contact management streamlines interaction with the customer base and helps salespeople and marketing team members to achieve maximum insight on leads, buyers and suppliers.
Insightly features Business Intelligence (BI) powered by Microsoft Power BI, which aggregates historical and real-time data and turns it into measurable metrics from which you can gain insight. The platform is integrating BI into its dashboards in a highly visual, easy-to-digest way.
Google Calendar's two-way sync can be tricky, with events not being correctly shown for other team members. Custom contact fields are limited to 25. The CRM UI does the job, but it looks old, which may be a challenge to get your whole team involved in using it.
Pricing: A 14-day free trial is offered for the Plus and Professional plans.
- The Plus plan costs $29 per user per month; billed annually.
- The Professional costs $49 per user per month; billed annually.
- The Enterprise costs $99 per user per month; billed annually.
CRM marketing with real-time business analytics designed to transform leads into sales. Act! Integrate sales practices and marketing efforts to deliver the right leads to the right sales agent and tracks vital KPIs through all business processes. Offers email marketing and a variety of high-quality email templates. Act! integrates with Outlook, Slack, QuickBooks Online and a host of other business applications.
Customer service response times can be slow, and you may be waiting a lot for phone calls. The nature of the professional support you will receive also varies slightly from agent to agent.
Pricing: A 14-day free trial is offered for all plans.
- The Starter plan costs $25 per user per month; billed annually.
- The Professional plan costs $50 per user per month; billed annually.
- The Premier plan costs $90 per user per month; billed annually.
- The Ultimate plan costs $200 per user per month; billed annually.
That’s it! I hope that you can find an email CRM automation tool that suits your needs from this list. Please feel free to leave comments below for further recommendations on this topic. :-)