As a marketer, you want to ensure that every tool you’re using has an essential function and can work well with the others. If even one of those tools isn’t able to coexist with everything else, the results can be messy. Therefore, when selecting marketing automation software, you need to make sure that it has the ability to integrate with other programs.
Marketing automation integration is the ability of a marketing automation program to connect, operate, and sync with other programs. Providers that sell marketing automation tools incorporate integration features to help promote a friendly software ecosystem. Most marketing automation tools have the ability to integrate with other platforms, and being able to utilize their ability to integrate is essential in maintaining a successful marketing funnel. Read on to learn more about what marketing automation integration is, what it can be used for, and how it helps companies work better together across multiple branches.
What can marketing automation programs integrate with?
There are several different tools that marketing automation is able to integrate with. The most common – and most essential – is with customer relationship management (CRM) software. This is helpful for marketing and sales teams to pool resources your company has on leads and opportunities together and collect them in an area that everybody can access. Marketing automation tools can gather information on leads and convert it into a profile that CRM tools can use to help manage interactions with those leads. This integration bridges the gap between the marketing and sales department, allowing them to share the same information and avoid miscommunication.
You can pair marketing automation with other systems as well. Some enterprise resource planning (ERP) tools are able to work with marketing automation software. ERP tools are used by companies as a dedicated location for all the company’s data; if a marketing automation program syncs up with it, that program can gather information from that data. This is important for companies who want to make sure all the data they gather can be accessed by all departments, as it ensures that your marketing automation program isn’t operating on separate data and information.
How do I set up an integration?
Some vendors, such as HubSpot, offer all-in-one tools that have features for both marketing automation and CRM, meaning you don’t have to set up the integration yourself. Otherwise, you need to configure the integration manually. The specifics of each system integration will vary depending on what software you’re using, but the general setup involves setting all your programs to observe and track the same set of data points and allowing them to communicate with each other if one of them receives an update to the data.
This shouldn’t be a one-way communication; both tools need to be able to share information with one another. If your marketing automation tool receives enough information on a lead that they become opportunity-worthy, then it should be able to inform the CRM tool of the information. Conversely, if your CRM program converts an opportunity into a sale, it should tell your marketing automation software to change that person’s status.
Integration may seem like a headache at first, but the benefits of setting it up are too important to ignore. As we mentioned above, CRM integration helps marketing and sales teams come together and not operate independently of each other. While marketing and sales are separate entities, integrating the two systems together allows both sides to develop strategies that don’t conflict with each other, helping to ensuring smooth operations.
In addition, integration simplifies the sales process by helping the sales team determine leads that are worth trying to sell to. Most marketing automation programs have lead scoring capabilities which assign points to leads that rank how likely they are to buy. If your CRM tool integrates with your marketing automation tool, it can automatically receive top-scoring leads that the sales team knows is worth chasing. This gives the marketing team incentive to search for qualified leads and saves time and effort for the sales team that would be wasted going after lesser leads.
Integration also prevents duplicate or incorrect information from messing up either the marketing or sales process by having both teams draw from the same set of data. If a lead reaches out to the sales team when the marketing automation program already has their information, the CRM tool can cross-check the records and notice that the lead has already been added to the list,.
The ability of marketing automation tools to integrate with CRM systems is one of their most useful features. It helps marketing and sales teams work together instead of independently, and allows for a more streamlined transition of leads between the two. It also promotes a healthy application framework and creates a shared network of information for your company to work with. These benefits are what makes marketing automation integration so important; they create a better environment for marketing teams to operate in the company alongside everyone else.