Top Rated Marketing SoftwareAs rated by the ComparisonX marketing expert panel

Salesforce Marketing Cloud

ComparisonX Rating 95%

Best for personalized marketing

  • Integrates with the marketing leading SalesForce CRM solutions
  • Strong data and personalization capabilities
  • Easy to use interface
  • Excellent user support community
Visit Salesforce

HubSpot

ComparisonX rating 95%

Best for small business

  • Free CRM database seamlessly integrates with HubSpot Marketing solutions
  • Extensive range of tools and features
  • Excellent value for money
  • Strong support and training offered
Visit HubSpot

Adobe Experience Cloud

ComparisonX Rating 88%

Best large enterprise solution

  • Enterprise level marketing solution and features
  • Strong creative and design functionality
  • Added functionality through Marketo
  • Best in class data security
Visit Adobe

Oracle Marketing Cloud

ComparisonX Rating 89%

Enterprise level solution

  • Strong paid media management across social and display
  • Access to the widely used Eloqua email marketing platform
  • Excellent data and targeting capabilities
  • Enterprise level security
Visit Oracle

Tips for choosing marketing software

Marketing automation technology has developed rapidly in the past few years. The right marketing software for your business will depend on the size of your marketing campaigns and the types of communications you carry out.

In this article we breakdown some of the key factors to look for when choosing a Martech solution for your business.

 

A specialized tool or a Marketing stack

Most marketing technology falls into two main categories:

Niche or vertical marketing tools

Niche tools are pieces of technology that specialize in performing one marketing function.

There are hundreds of niche tools on the market that are designed to perform one function. Some of the widely used niche tools include Canva for design, Hootsuite for social media and Reevio for video creation.

The advantage of choosing niche marketing technologies are:

  • You only pay for features you need
  • Niche products tend to perform one function very well
  • No long term commitments
  • Quick implementation
  • Low learning curve

The disadvantages are:

  • Lack of integration with other marketing functions, sales or CRM
  • Can be inefficient when running multi channel campaigns
  • Data and campaign results can be siloed
  • Costs can escalate if you use a lot of niche tools

 

Read our review of the Google Marketing Platform

A marketing stack

This refers to one main technology provider that has applications or features that perform multiple marketing functions.

A stack approach allows for customer data and marketing results to be shared across the organization. Implemented correctly a Martech stack has the capability to tailor communications down to the individual client.

Pros of choosing a marketing stack:

  • Company wide client data
  • Single interface and dashboard
  • Unified view of campaign results
  • The ability to implement campaigns across many channels

Cons of choosing a marketing stack:

  • You may end up paying for functions you never use
  • Longer term commitment
  • More training and support is normally required
  • The platform may not have all the features you need for your particular marketing campaigns

The choice of a marketing stack or purchasing independent tools goes down to your business and plans.  It is important not only to think about the marketing function you do now, but to anticipate the tools you may need in the future as your business grows.

A sensible approach is to align with one marketing stack and then use niche tools where you have a specific requirement.

Read our review of the Adobe Marketing Stack

 

The price of marketing technology: Expensive is not always better

The cost of software in this category varies dramatically. A credible solution such as Hubspot offers basic access for free, with paid tiers starting from $50 per month. In contrast, an enterprise level system from the likes of Adobe or Oracle can easily run into thousands per month.

The reason enterprise software costs so much is partly down to their focus on data security and the ability to be tailored for complex business organisations. For the vast majority of companies they do not need this level of data management or integration.

In many cases the functions available in the lower cost platforms are as good as their more expensive enterprise competitors.

 

Sales integration

When choosing a marketing software partner you will need to think about how the system impacts functions outside of marketing. The most obvious is sales.

One of the key strengths of marketing automation is the ability to integrate sales information on prospective or current clients. This is normally managed through a customer relationship management (CRM) system.  Check out the top rated CRM solutions.

When client data is managed in a centralized manner, marketing campaigns can be highly targeted and personalized.

Vendors such as Salesforce have built marketing functionality on top of their CRM systems to help marketers deliver personalized messages.

If your business has a sales team it would be advisable to choose a marketing stack with a CRM function. These include HubSpot and Salesforce.

Read our detailed guide to HubSpot

 

Integration with external systems

Each marketing stack has its limitations and no one system can perform all functions. It is likely that whatever solution you choose it will need to integrate or share data with other software.

These systems could include technology used in marketing such as website analytics or your companies own proprietary tools.

One of the biggest complaints about Martech vendors are frustrations around integrations. In some cases disparate systems simply cannot be integrated. This is often the case if a company uses its own legacy systems unique to its business.

In other instances there will often be large data discrepancies between platforms. This is normally down to different counting methodologies or data loss when systems pass information.

When selecting a partner identify the areas where it may need to share data and assess if an integration is available.

 

Training and support

The usability of marketing tools has improved rapidly in recent years. Most are intuitive and can be picked up with just some basic online training.
Companies such as HubSpot and Salesforce offer extensive training material online and have active support communities.

The enterprise level solutions are more complex to implement and manage. Often formal training or a product consultant will be needed, especially in the set-up stage. The cost of this training and implementation should be factored in when selecting a partner.

 

Conclusion

Each of the tools we recommend have their benefits, but none are perfect. Our advice is to document the features you need and map these against the functionality of each tool.

The companies that get the most benefits of using a marketing stack are the ones that run as much as possible through the platform. There is little point in implementing a marketing stack if only selected functions are run through it. The value comes in the form of tailored communications and a unified view of client data.

Read our detailed guide to marketing automation

 

 

Privacy Preference Center

Strictly Necessary

These cookies are necessary for the site to function properly.

gpdr, dynsrv

Performance

These cookies collect information about how you use and interact with our website, enabling us to improve the performance of our website and allowing you to find the content that you are explicitly looking for.

_ga, _gid, _gat