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Marketing Software Reviews, Features, Pricing & Compare
Running a small business can be challenging when faced with limited resources and almost no marketing budget to work with. Some conventional small businesses still use outdated marketing techniques such as pamphlets, one-dimensional newsletters, and yellow pages.
Most small businesses have luckily moved on to more innovative ways of marketing their business and have turned their sights to marketing software. This yielded tremendous results as marketing software can attract new customers and turn leads into sales.
We’ll take a look at some of the key features and functions small business marketing software offers & we’ll help you pick the right one to meet your business needs.
The Functions of Marketing Software for Small Business
Marketing software for small businesses should ultimately perform these important functions in your business:
- It must be able to attract new visitors and customers to your business
- The ability to turn customers into positive leads that can be cultivated through the sales channel
- It should be able to construct and run marketing campaigns across a range of channels
- It must deliver promotional and marketing material via social media & email campaigns
- It should extract valuable insights regarding customers to advance marketing efforts
- The ability to automate a repetitive task that consumes a lot of time
Fundamental Considerations To Reflect On
There are some key factors to consider when selecting the best marketing software for your small business needs. Let’s look at them individually.
Assimilation with Other Systems
Ever heard the saying, "no man is an island"? The same is true for marketing. Marketing cannot thrive on its own but must work in conjunction with other departments and systems within your business. You can invest in the best marketing software and still not increase your sales.
Why? Simply because any marketing campaign and software must be able to integrate seamlessly with your other systems such as CRM software or any sales software. Information extracted from your marketing software should be available across all divisions of your business.
Cloud or On-premise Software
Deciding between cloud-based software and hosting your marketing software in-house is a key consideration. The start-up costs of hosting it on-premise and having the space to store your hardware & IT assets are huge. This is mostly an option for bigger businesses with large marketing departments.
Small businesses find more value through cloud-based solutions as they can avoid heavy start-up costs. It also makes it possible to continue enjoying the benefits of marketing software anywhere without having to make space for hardware or other IT resources.
Qualities of Small Business Marketing Software
Here are some common characteristics of small business marketing software:
- Marketing automation: This should be the most important task that your marketing software performs. It must assist your business to initiate, execute and follow marketing campaigns. It should also qualify leads and automate workflows.
- Generate leads: It should speed up the sales cycle by segmenting leads and improving your marketing communication. It should automate the capturing and assignment of valuable leads to improved efficiencies.
- Managing leads: Generating leads can be relatively easy. Managing leads effectively from the initiating stage to the conversion stage is a fine art to master. Your marketing software should be able to automate the movement and track all your leads.
- Email marketing: Email is a tried and trusted marketing tool. Your marketing software should compose, send and track your email campaigns effectively.
- Managing social media: It must be able to create and successfully launch social media campaigns. Added to this your marketing software should be able to manage any creative assets on all social media platforms.
- Monitoring social media campaigns: It should be able to recognize words used in connotation with your brand. Then locate on which platforms these words are being used to leverage off those platforms.
- Marketing analytics: Marketing software should measure all marketing activities across numerous online and offline platforms. It should gauge the return on investments across all these channels.
Kick start your small business marketing software with these easy steps to get your business thriving:
- Pick the most suitable marketing software for your business needs
- Make sure it can integrate seamlessly with your CRM and sales software
- Select a service provider that delivers outstanding onboarding and coaching during the implementation
- Import all your important contact details and data
- Organize your email templates to prepare marketing to your leads
- It’s time to run your first marketing campaign
- Critically evaluate your results to see how successful your campaign was
- Continue to measure and test your activities
The Costs of Marketing Software
Which features you would prefer included in the plan will determine the price of the package. If you opt for a fully-featured plan with every single feature included you will pay a premium price.
If you decide on a basic plan with only the core features included, pricing becomes less expensive. Competitive pricing starts from as little as $39 per month from providers such as Hatchbuck. It can increase to $2000 monthly from marketing gurus such as Oracle Marketing. It all depends on what your business needs are.
To save on some of the pricing plans, you can select annual billing instead of a monthly payment plan. Significant discounts are included with these types of payment arrangements.
Getting your business known and generating leads that can turn into sales is at the heart of every business. Using small business marketing software is no longer a question of should I or should I not. It’s an invaluable tool that should be part of any successful business.
In today's competitive environment where technology has completely disrupted the way you do business—you need all the help you can get. Decide on a small business marketing software today and let us know in the comments section how it has changed the way you do business.