The Real Cost of a Legacy Marketing Automation Package

pexels-photo-75083Have you ever considered the real cost of a “spaceship” marketing automation platform (MAP)?

All too often we look at the subscription price of software as our “total investment.” You might even be willing to spend an extra $10,000-$30,000 on the software itself because a friend or sister company has had experience with it. But let’s dig deeper.

The bells-and-whistles companies that tout large user conferences and an abundance of consultants usually have secondary costs which are rarely investigated.  For example, I saw a recent posting for a “Marketo Expert.” The pay is $100,000+ per year (plus benefits). This tells me three things:

  1. The company is no longer looking for the best marketing mind. They are looking for a robot that knows how to use a complex software package that is already an anchor tied to their ankles.
  2. There probably isn’t a back-up resource with the expertise to use this software, meaning that they are in limbo as a result of lacking this resource.
  3. I would bet you dinner at a nice steak house that when the budget was submitted (and ROI was calculated) that a figure north of $200,000 was not presented to the CEO to buy this software. I’m also going to bet that this decision was driven by an employee that was looking to increase their personal value/salary as opposed to making the recommendation that was truly in the company’s best interest.

What’s even more upsetting is how discriminatory such rocketship systems are. If you need to be an “expert” in the software, it makes you wonder how the rest of your sales and marketing team will be able to collaborate and improve upon the value of such software via execution. How will the maximum number of our employees be able to benefit if the marketing automation platform that you’ve chosen needs someone solely dedicated to that particular brand?

Here is the good news: Even at a price point of $200,000+, and even after leaving untold thousands (or millions) of dollars on the table, this company’s marketing automation program is still likely to be profitable. What we should be asking ourselves is this: Why did we make this decision, when there are so many other programs out there that could have a greater impact on our bottom line. Why didn’t we demand ease of use over functionality that is difficult to use? Why are we willing to place our marketing execution program on the head of a single person, when we should rather be looking at things on a much broader scale?

There’s a better answer. Choose a marketing automation platform that is easy to learn, and doesn’t come with a bunch of hidden, extra costs for it to function properly. Choose a marketing automation platform that has a Support Team that will bend over backwards to help you achieve your marketing and sales goals, which simultaneously automating your lead scoring, segmentations, campaigns, and more. Choose Lead Liaison. 

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