Top 20 Marketing Automation Tools and Platforms

Before we go to that famed list, let us revisit the term automation. In simple terms, automation means finding a way of simplifying a task that needs repetition – which can not only save time and effort but also make the whole process less stressful.So what does marketing automation imply? Marketing is the process of selling products and/or services. So, marketing automation obviously means automating the process or actions involved in marketing.

Marketing activity involves many repetitive tasks such as sending out bulk emails, managing campaigns, social media marketing, website analysis, and more. Managing these tasks manually is not only tedious and time-consuming but can also create scope for manual errors. Marketing Automation can help in making these tasks much easier and this, in turn, can help business prosper. It is a part of Customer Relationship Management or CRM.

There are many marketing automation tools and platforms available for automating the processes of marketing. It is important to opt for the right ones to maximize the benefits.

The global marketing automation market size was valued at $4.06 billion in 2019 and is expected to witness an impressive compound annual growth rate of 9.8 percent from 2020 to 2027.

The rising reach of the internet, increase in the digitalization of industries, and a huge surge in the use of mobile devices has resulted in a growing demand for automating marketing solutions. Also, the proliferation in adoption of IoT devices, more use of big data, the huge dependency on data analytics solutions, and the growing popularity of business automation, are all expected to push the market growth.

The industry is not yet settled with new marketing automation tools and platforms being added at a ferocious pace. Of course, users can enjoy the luxury of choice but the questions remain:

Which One To Choose And Why?

It is not an easy task as there are several things that must be considered. Your choice of marketing automation tool will depend on the size and spread of your brand. While some platforms do a great job with emails, others excel in social media management and analytics. You will also have to take into account user-friendliness and the simplicity of the interface while handling the seemingly complex software.

Despite its growing popularity and demand, there are many misconceptions floating around about the role of marketing automation tools and how it works in a specific business situation. Also, the glut of choices makes it difficult for technologically challenged professionals to make the best choice. It is important to understand what precisely these tools offer and what are the key features that differentiate one from the other.

Many users also have issues about the compatibility of some of these automation tools their CRM. There are performance issues too being reported on some fronts. That can be painful. Companies that do not carry out a detailed research and miss out the fine print can end up burning their fingers by the sliding scale pricing structures and unexpected additional costs.

What are the things you should look out for when comparing marketing automation software providers?

Usability

If you think marketing automation is an easy tool to handle, you are off the mark. In fact, it can be quite complex to handle. That’s why it is extremely important to look at the usability and determine if the tool will serve your purpose.

Integrations with Existing Software

One aspect of marketing automation software that’s very critical but often overlooked is integration with your existing software. Some marketing automation tools only allow only limited integrations and that too with a small number of third party apps and systems. Top ones such as Dynamic 365 Marketing is designed for easy integration into nearly all types of existing software systems.

Pricing

Research shows that a large number of marketing automation tools come with a sliding scale pricing model that can come saddled with extra costs for add-ons and training. The overall costs can skyrocket if you choose a product with these pricing specifications.

Now that you have identified the features you want in marketing automation software, you will have to look at other aspects:

Email Capabilities

Nearly all marketing automation tools have email marketing but with varying features and capabilities. Your choice would depend on what your email needs are – A/B testing, drip campaign, and demographic segmentation are some of the features offered.

Social Media Capabilities

Then there are marketing automation tools that can integrate with Facebook and Twitter. They are useful in carrying out social advertising, building social apps, social media monitoring, and even for pulling comments from SM into your CRM.

Content Capabilities

Most marketing automation tools allow you to create content in the form of webinars and landing pages. Some of these tools are user-friendly while others demand deeper knowledge of technical skills. Choose the one that you find convenient to work with.

CRM and Sales Competencies

Preference should be given for marketing automation tools with in-built CRM system and offering lead scoring and tagging abilities. Keep away from tools that have no in-built CRM. You will have to connect your existing CRM to the software.

Ecommerce Capabilities

There are some marketing automation platforms that can act as your product database. These tools are ideal for companies that sell products online as they come with features such as affiliate programs and coupon codes.

Ease of Setting Up and Training

You will have to take into account the time and cost involved in implementing the marketing automation software. You must make a point to ask for details as these facts are sometimes not very clearly mentioned by the services.

Now that we have a fairly deep idea of what to look for in marketing automation software, we can look at the various options available and make a real, apple to apple comparison of their features.

Here are the top 20 marketing automation software currently available on the market:

HubSpot

HubSpot is a product designed specifically for small and medium businesses.

The inbound software comes with advanced marketing tools for a variety of online marketing processes and tasks, such as web analytics, social media marketing, creating a powerful landing page, content management, search engine optimization, and more. You can launch your campaign quickly and effectively with this marketing automation software.

HubSpot excels in capturing lead information and organizes everything efficiently. The tool is not only highly flexible but user-friendly as well. The interface is simple and the support is of the highest quality. It’s the best fit marketing automation system for small and growing companies wanting to use inbound marketing to increase traffic, convert leads, and boost ROI.

Highlights

  • You can edit content and change designs effortlessly.
  • The software can format the content and ensure its publication as well.
  • It can create an email template and also automate the content and subject line for an individual
  • Can optimize content and landing page according to keywords
  • 24/7 support available

Pricing

Starts at $50/month. There is a free version also available.

Ontraport

Ontraport solution is best for entrepreneurs and small businesses as it is a friendly automated business software. The services offered include email and SMS marketing, content management, CRM, billing and online payments, and others.

Companies can make use of the flexible campaign builder to automate critical functions efficiently. Almost any channel can be automated using endless integration options offered by OntraPort.

Highlights

  • It not only automates marketing efforts but also combines offline and online campaign to provide a fully integrated campaign strategy.
  • Campaign builder incorporates email, SMS, landing page, and digital ads.
  • You can send unlimited automatic emails and texts.
  • Can be integrated with CRM, e-Commerce, and marketing automation tools.
  • You can build an ecommerce page using the software tools and capabilities.
  • You can get both online and offline results using the visual campaigning performance reporting tool.
  • Can tracks customer behavior in great detail across many parameters.
  • Online support is available.

Pricing

Basic plan starts at $79/month. Pro is available at $297 and Enterprise at $497/month. 14-day free trial is available.

Marketo

Marketo is user-friendly and can be used by sales and marketing teams to boost revenue and achieve higher sales.

Marketo automation software for marketing is recommended for use in small to medium size business setups but it can be used in large enterprises as well. The company has been updating the product features on a regular basis to improve the effectiveness of the software.

The customer support team is very responsive and goes out of the way to resolve customer’s problems in the quickest possible time.  The dashboard and report features also outperforms other more popular brands.

Highlights

  • Provides a web-based email marketing platform
  • Offers a string of features such as landing pages, web analytics, email marketing, social media, and others
  • Has the ability to create highly automated campaigns and personalize customer engagement processes
  • 24/7 available online

Pricing

Starting Price: $1026.00/month or EUR 895 – 3195

ActiveCampaign

ActiveCampaign is ideal for use in businesses with contacts driven purposes.

ActiveCampaign offers email marketing service with third-party integration and auto-responses of various types.  ActiveCampaign can create and send out emails for different activities and purposes. The software is also designed to track website activities and events and provide real time analytics based on the results. ActiveCampaign is also useful for garnering customer data in an organized manner.

The ActiveCampaign marketing automation tools are fully customizable and allow users to create campaigns that can easily meet their marketing goals. The services include free implementation, migration, online training, and support.

Highlights

  • Makes it easy to find existing contacts and automatically add new contacts from various platforms like CRM, e-commerce, and others.
  • Send emails to customers on any preset date
  • Creates dynamic data based on customer behavioral analysis, social data, and interests
  • Various monthly plan packages available
  • Comes with a 14 days free trial period
  • Online and live chat support available but on-call support absent

Pricing

The Lite Plan starts at $9/month, The Professional at $129/month and The Enterprise at $229/month.

SendPulse

SendPulse enables you to reach your customers through multiple channels be it automated emails, web push notifications or SMS. Targeted at small and midsize businesses SendPulse offers one of the most affordable solutions on the market with up to 2500 subscribers free plan and free web push notifications. Capture leads with subscription forms and nurture them with automated messages triggered by your customers’ behaviour.

With SendPulse, you can improve your open rates using features such as Personalization, Segmentation, and A/B testing. Sending notifications, tracking campaigns, and accessing statistics is easy with SendPulse.

Highlights

  • Customize your emails with an inbuilt drag and drop editor or choose from a collection of pre-designed templates.
  • Reliable SMTP server with 12,000 free messages per month.
  • Free web push service with monetization feature.
  • A/B tests and campaign statistics.
  • 24/7 customer support.

Pricing

$8/month for up to 500 subscribers.

Omnisend

Omnisend is an ecommerce marketing automation platform with an omnichannel approach.

Omnisend is oriented towards creating a seamless customer experience over several channels – email, Facebook messenger, SMS, Web Push notifications, Google and Facebook retargeting ads, and more. Its strong integration with ecommerce platforms means you can collect important data about your customers’ shopping behavior and use it for better personalization and segmentation. Without any programming skills, you can setup Omnisend automation workflows, contact forms, and landing pages for easy email capture and list building.

Omnisend has some great templates. The marketing automation is easy to setup while the results are also easy to view and understand. Best-suited for ecommerce marketers looking for advanced marketing automation tools.

Highlights

  • Omnichannel features – SMS, Facebook Messenger, Web Push notifications.
  • 24/7 support and account manager
  • Dynamic segments and precise targeting
  • Predefined email automation workflows
  • 14-day free trial period

Pricing

Starts at $16/month. A free version is also available.

Pardot

Pardot is a marketing automation suite perfect for boosting your revenue.

Pardot is popular because of its ability to provide exceptional services, ease of use, and the availability of interface guides that can assist in creating powerful campaigns easily. Pardot works best for small to midsize companies looking for software tools to boost the efficiency of sales and marketing processes.

Pardot is designed for B2B marketers and comes with support tools such as B2B analytics and account-based marketing solutions. It now partners with Salesforce to offer a more robust group of products that can be used by sales and marketing teams to work in close synchrony.

Highlights

  • You can use the software to create a truly comprehensive marketing campaign.
  • Customizable board is available for measuring and tracking campaign outcomes.
  • Has the ability to find gaps and fix them before the campaign is rolled out
  • Is effective for launching email campaigns with its automated email sending feature
  • Compatible with Salesforce, SugarCRM, NetSuite, Microsoft Dynamic CRM, and others

Pricing

Starts at $1,250/month and goes up to $4000/month based on depth of automation and analytics.

Infusionsoft

Infusionsoft makes work easy in the areas of follow-up, billing, contact management, and others.

Infusionsoft is an email marketing company that offers automation software for small and medium businesses, and is focused on helping companies achieve their growth objectives through the use of powerful technologies and an automated marketing platform.

Infusionsoft is now a part of the Keep brand and is the best marketing automation software for streamlining communication between the company and potential leads and customers. Small businesses can use this tool to build emails, manage workflows, create landing pages, and more using pre-build templates.

Highlights

  • You can create a customized campaign to achieve your marketing goals.
  • Can do deeper website tracking in terms of the first visit, purchase details, number of online customers, average time spent on a page, and others
  • Its marketing solution combines CRM, e-Commerce, and marketing automation
  • Online and 24/7 live support available

Pricing

Starts at $199/month and ranges from $499 to $1999 based on contacts and features.

LeadSquared

LeadSquared is the preferred marketing automation software for businesses dealing with real estate, education, travel, health, and finance. The software offers service in B2C business model areas where products and services are sold to the end consumer directly.

LeadSquared is chiefly focused on the lead nurturing phase and can help move leads through the funnel at an accelerated pace. The tool allows users to set triggers, conditions, and actions for automating drip marketing.

Highlights

  • It is regarded as one of the best tools for lead management. It is designed to capture leads from email, campaign, phone calls, and many other sources.
  • You can easily prioritize leads and tasks with LeadSquared.
  • Features can be accessed through the website as well as mobile apps.
  • It sends automated sales notification to the salesperson.
  • Diverse email templates are offered to support different types of devices.
  • Free trial offered for 30 days.

Pricing

Starts at $150/month per user. Free version not available but they offer a free trial.

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Netsuite

Netsuite is an advanced marketing automation software capable of automating various marketing specific processes, flows, and tasks. You can use the platform to create multiple campaigns and align the same with your sales team. The execution of multiple marketing campaigns driven by email, social media, event management, and others can be streamlined effortlessly using Netsuite.

Generating highly qualified leads that are ready for sales engagement is easy with this powerful automation tool. You can easily track and measure prospect activity, identify when a lead is ready to convert, and let the sales know as soon as the prospect meets the pre-defined criteria.

Highlights

  • You can create landing pages using the drag and drop interface.
  • You can make a number of high quality reusable forms and templates.
  • Give your revenue a serious push by creating a targeted mass email campaign and email personalization marketing
  • Sales collaboration can be improved and sales cycle shortened.
  • Comes with round the clock support

Pricing

Starts at $129/month

There are many quality marketing automation software solutions available for businesses but the ones we have covered above are among the most popular of them all. Comparing marketing automation tools is not an easy thing to do because almost every one of them has that one feature that becomes their USP. What we have summarized above are the best for all types of companies in terms of sizes and the sectors they operate in.

Mailchimp

Mailchimp is popular and respected as one of the earliest email marketing tools. It has grown rapidly to become a full-fledged marketing automation tool. Mailchimp makes it easy for businesses to collate all their audience data, marketing channels, and insights to hit their marketing goals faster. Mailchimp also makes it easy to promote any business across email, social media, and landing pages from a single user-friendly platform.

With Mailchimp, marketing campaigns can be built quickly with its pre-built templates and one-click automations. The intuitive design tools have helped many businesses create powerful campaigns to put their brand ahead.

Highlights

  • Hosted, embedded, or pop-up forms are available to get new contacts
  • Makes creating of landing pages easy and effortless
  • Helps create a new fan base on social media with ads and postings
  • You can send the right message to the right people at the best time
  • Real-time reports, built-in analytics tools, and personalized recommendations available

Pricing

The Essential Plan starts at $9.99/month. Premium plan costs $299/month. Free basic subscription is available.

Automizy

Automizy is the email marketing software your business needs to boost open rates. The user-friendly automation tool is a fully integrated automation builder that can help create email automations that can help you achieve greater efficiency.

Automizy is intuitive and makes life easy for users with its attentive and well-informed customer support team that aims to resolve requests as quickly as possible. The templates are also thoughtfully designed.

Highlights

  • Create high performing emails using the drag and drop email editor
  • The smart and intelligent AI can predict the performance of subject lines
  • Allows you to write multiple subject lines for automated emails
  • Helps send out timely, targeted and personalized emails
  • Makes team work easy

Pricing

Starts at $9/month for 200 contacts. Free trial available

SendInBlue

This digital agency got transformed into a powerful email marketing tool and soon progressed to a popular and effective marketing automation software. SendInBlue scores high on the lead scoring and reporting areas of marketing. The marketing tool is also designed to allow businesses run a flawless SMS campaign.

SendInBlue is best suited for automation needs of small and medium-sized businesses. Its cloud-based digital marketing tools serve the needs of many growing companies around the globe.

Highlights

  • Design and send out email messages quickly
  • Launch FB ads from accounts itself to target new audiences from the contact list
  • Get detailed stats with the open and click-through reports
  • Real time stats available to help you stay in control of processes

Pricing

Starts at $25/month. You pay only $22.50 for annual payment. Free basic plans available.

Autopilot

Autopilot is gaining in popularity rapidly and is touted as one of the most user-friendly marketing automation platforms on the market. It also has a high visually appealing. Autopilot makes a host of things easy to manage for marketers. The platform can be used not only for creating a simple auto-responder according to a time sequence but also for advanced messaging and targeting tasks.

With Autopilot you can automate the entire customer by simply by dragging and dropping text, images, stickers, and emojis. It is the best automation software if you want to build your own journey from scratch.

Highlights

  • You can manage and collect your leads in one place
  • Allows you to create a marketing stack of all the apps for better customer engagement
  • You can send out emails according to customer interest and behavior and at the right time
  • Monitor company performance by integrating your CRM into the platform

Pricing

The basic silver plan starts at $49/month. 30-day free trial is available

GetResponse

GetResponse is a sophisticated marketing automation software with multiple layers and features. The user-friendly platform can be trusted to deliver great results and can be the best-fit for features such as email newsletters. It also does a great job with contact records and potential clients list.

The exceptionally efficient email editorial manager is the key USP of this platform. You can find contacts that satisfy specific conditions and then allow the system to direct the appropriate actions.

Highlights

  • You can save time and resources with the pre-built automation workflow
  • Capturing and converting new leads is now easy
  • You can send out personalized messages and create specific customer paths for better results
  • Advanced segmentation makes it easy to reach the right people at the right time

Pricing

The basic plan starts at $15/month. Free trial is available.

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Constant Contact

If you marketing efforts are focused more on social media, then Constant Contact can be the right choice. SMBs can use this platform to boost their digital marketing outreach. The features include template building, list management, and audience segmentation.  The campaign setting process is easy and quick and can be handled even by those who are not very tech-savvy. There is a video tutorial that explains all its features in a very simple manner.

Constant Contact’s reporting tools, and integrations have become more sophisticated with its recent upgrades. It now ranks high among its peers and is becoming the favorite of many small and medium businesses.

Highlights

  • No cap on the messages you can send in a month
  • Users can benefit from recent additions in-app FB and Instagram ad creation
  • It can generate a Google My Business entry
  • Offers an SEO tool for optimization of keyword usage
  • Makes creation of CTA landing page easy

Pricing

Basic pricing begins at $20/month for up to 500 contacts. There is a 30-day guarantee on performance satisfaction.

Campaigner

Campaigner is another top-performer in the marketing automation tools domain and offers a host of valuable features at a very competitive price. Marketers can embed read-time display ads in newsletters, and target their subscribers according to their location using the geo-location tool.

Campaigner also offers integrations with Adobe Analytics, Facebook, Google Analytics, Salesforce and Twitter. The auto-responders can be used for building a subscriber list. Setting up a campaign is also simple and quick with Campaigner.

Highlights

  • Offers a user-friendly and intuitive interface for a better experience
  • A wide choice of templates and integrations available
  • Advanced features makes business management smoother on many fronts

Pricing

Starts at $40.95/month for up to 5K contacts. You can get started on the lighter plan of $19.95 with basic features. Free trial available for one month.

Act-On

Act-On is not just another marketing automation tool. It stands apart because of its strong performance and range of features. If you are looking for a business automation platform that can help connect email operations to other aspects of business, this one is the best choice.

Act-On offers as many as eight automated program templates that can be customized to meet your unique needs. Lead scoring and integrations becomes easy with Act-On. This platform also offers one of the most comprehensive social media and SEO-based automation tools.

Highlights

  • Act-On can be trusted to do everything a top-class marketing automation is expected to do
  • It’s the best choice for developers wanting an open API to experiment with
  • Pricing is not exactly low but the features offer good value for money

Pricing

Professional Plan begins at $900/month for 2500 contacts. The Enterprise plan begins at $2000/month

Drip

Drip has emerged as the marketing automation tool of choice for businesses looking for primarily on ecommerce automation. It is an open platform that works well with nearly any type of marketing strategy that users may want to implement.

Drip has email as one of its core strength but it also performs well in other areas which require powerful and smooth automation. The personalization and analytics features also stand apart from other similar tools.

Highlights

  • Helps brands to close the gap between what consumers expectation and what ecommerce delivers.
  • The sophisticated tools helps use customer data in the best possible manner
  • Seamless multi-channel touch points makes it possible to deliver message across all channels

Pricing

Starts at $19/month for 500 contacts. Free trial available for 14 days.

Mautic

This popular open-source marketing automation tool is slowly becoming a favorite of high-tech companies with over 200,000 users. The tool can be used for various business purposes and can fit almost every budget.

Mautic is simple to use and is a definite time saver as it takes far less time to implement the automation tasks into your business processes. It can be installed on the website or server. Ideal for those looking for cutting-edge technology within a small budget.

Highlights

  • The platform has collaborated with Acquia to deliver the only open digital experience platform available.
  • Offers the power of open-source not available in the industry to date.

Pricing

Free to use open-source technology

There are many quality marketing automation software solutions available for businesses but the ones we have covered above are among the most popular of them all. Comparing marketing automation tools is not an easy thing to do because almost every one of them has that one feature that becomes their USP. What we have summarized above are the best for all types of companies in terms of sizes and the sectors they operate in.

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