Lately the bulk of our work has been around marketing automation, specifically in the area of integrations — as marketing automation and daily operations relate to other platforms and operational initiatives.
It should be obvious that marketing doesn’t stand in a corner by itself; it must work in accord with other platforms, other departments, other priorities and goals in an organization. As a Marketo trainer, this was part of the message we brought to clients during their onboarding process: that marketing and sales must have accord at the outset in order for the platform — and the organizations running it — to do its best work. What does the ideal customer look like? You need historical data from successful sales to build the predictive profile for the marketing team.
But it goes even beyond the accord between sales and marketing. The success of our last several major engagements have been not only centered around marketing and sales team buy-in, whether we were implementing Marketo or ActiveCampaign or other platforms; they all also required a great deal of work with IT and, believe it or not, accounting, HR, and legal teams (especially during GDPR implementation!).
Your marketing efforts can’t work in a vacuum. GDPR in particular turned a lot of organizations on their ear. In an effort to comply, they began to understand that their entire arsenal of marketing techniques had to change, and compliance required an understanding of both the letter and the spirit of the new law.
And even for those organizations where GDPR was not a core consideration, other factors contributed to the success or failure of a new marketing automation initiative. If the client had an even slightly evolved IT department, for example, implementation of a new marketing automation platform required intensive work to discover how it would affect — and be affected by — existing data flow and workflow processes. Any customizations already in place needed to be uncovered and discussed.
Getting started on a new marketing automation initiative is not just an investment of money, but also of time and many different resources within a company. It requires commitments and buy-in at all levels in order to realize its full value.