More and more commonly, businesses are working to integrate their CRM systems with a marketing automation platform.
Marketing automation is no longer a tool exclusive to just a few organizations. Its rapid growth and assimilation in organizations has been impressive, and this growth is continuing to improve customer relationships at all stages of the sales funnel. Indeed, in 2012, Gartner reported that marketing automation would be likely to continue to be the highest growth segment of CRM, and that it would continue with a 10.7% annual growth rate right through 2016.
Marketing automation may be defined as software that is utilized for the automation of a variety of marketing processes like campaign management, customer segmentation and customer data integration. It can also be used for lead integration, cross selling and up-selling, increasing customer retention, relationship marketing and understanding the return on investment of marketing.
Like most types of automation, marketing automation allows processes to be performed in a more efficient manner, and at the same times it opens up opportunities for new types of processes to be carried out. Marketing automation tools reduce the amount of manual processes that have to be carried out in the marketing department. Tasks that previously took up a lot of time can be executed far more simply and swiftly, freeing up marketing employees to carry out other activities. This means that marketing teams get more for their money when they invest in an automation tool.
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