About two-thirds of respondents to a recent study [download page] from Regalix indicate that it takes at least 6 months from the time of implementation to realize the benefits of using marketing automation. What are those primary benefits? The survey – fielded among 348 senior marketing executives, practitioners and business leaders from around the world – finds that improved lead management and nurturing (86%) is the most commonly-cited benefit, with many also pointing to enhanced targeting and personalization (66%).
Other key benefits include seamless campaign execution and tracking (64%), increased efficiency and productivity (61%) and marketing and sales alignment (50%).
Almost three-quarters indicated measurable results to be a key benefit – and respondents also noted the metrics they use to measure marketing automation ROI. Most common among those by a sizable margin are response metrics (such as open rate, click-through rate, etc.), used by 87%. A majority also use value metrics such as revenue generated and pipeline value (61%) as well as efficiency metrics such as cost per lead and conversion rate (58%).
Not surprisingly, given the prominence of response rates as a metric, email marketing (89%) topped the list of respondents’ most important marketing automation features, followed closely by lead nurturing (84%), campaign management (82%) and integration (80%).
In a recently-released survey conducted by Software Advice among marketing automation software buyers, though, respondents indicated that their most requested feature is lead nurturing, cited by 80.7% of buyers, ahead of reporting/analytics (69.8%) and lead scoring (64.3%), with email marketing (47%) of lesser import.
- Some 73% of the Regalix survey respondents said they are using marketing automation tools, with another 15% evaluating or considering them. Among those who have implemented a marketing automation solution, 82% said they are using a hosted solution.
- 7 in 10 respondents use or have evaluated Marketo’s automation tool in the past 12 months, trailed by Eloqua (41%), Pardot (32%) and HubSpot (19%).
- The top factors respondents consider when evaluating platforms and vendors are ease of use (86%), price (82%), product integration (77%) and analytics and reporting features (75%).
- The most commonly-cited roadblocks to effective use of marketing automation are lack of resources (55%) and time (53%).
About the Data: The survey was fielded from March 7-14, 2014. 70% of respondents are from North America. 6 in 10 respondents are from companies with $100-$500 million in revenue, one-quarter are from companies with $500 million to $1 billion in revenue, and 15% are from companies with at least $1 billion in revenues.