In this article, we take stock of the questions to ask when choosing marketing automation software. Then discover our comparison of the five best software for SMEs: Webmecanik, SendinBlue, Plezi, Hubspot and Active Campaign.
Choose your marketing automation solution
What is marketing automation software for?
Marketing automation is an important issue in any marketing team. Indeed, it is thanks to marketing automation tools that we can significantly improve lead generation from our website.
These tools allow you to set up different scenarios that trigger the sending of emails or SMS each time a condition is met (what are called “workflows”) in order to guide prospects to an action.
On this software, it is also possible to manage your contact base and score your leads, publish on your social networks, cross-sell or analyze your performance.
But not all of these marketing automation features will be useful to you! How to get a Wikipedia page approved so start by asking yourself the right questions to measure your real needs.
How to choose your marketing automation software?
First of all, know that the tool does not do everything and that no marketing automation solution will blow your marketing automation strategy. It may be useful to get support to work on this strategy upstream and integrate it perfectly into your overall digital marketing strategy.
In choosing the perfect marketing automation tool, you need to ask yourself these essential questions:
- What is the size of your contact base?
- How many emails (or SMS) do you want to send per day?
- Do you need an integrated CRM tool? If not, will you be able to connect with your own CRM software?
- Do you have any idea of the complexity of the marketing campaigns you are going to build? Will you have different scenarios? Do you need optimization options like A / B testing?
- Do you have a specific newsletter design or would you like to have the choice between several templates?
- Do you express other needs such as the possibility of creating landing pages or contact forms?
- Would you like to connect other applications you use (social networks, answering machines, etc.)?
The best marketing automation solutions for SMEs
Webmecanik, the best automation platform for SMEs?
Webmecanik presents itself as the first French marketing automation publisher based on open source technology Mastic. The code is accessible and belongs to the entire tool community.
Why go through webmecanik rather than directly through the open source mastic solution? Because webmecanik has considerably enriched the experience offered by its tool. In addition, webmecanik greatly simplifies the implementation of the solution and offers data hosting in France with maximum security (#RGPD).
The tool offers all the features you may need in terms of marketing automation, including:
- The tracking visitor behavior on your site, which is associated with the contact once identified (after downloading of a resource, for example). This allows you to have a real knowledge of who interests your visitors and greatly refine the customization of your automation sequences.
- The tool is completely multi-channel. You can create landing pages, forms, emails but also manage SMS campaigns from the tool.
- You can implement a strong scoring and segmentation strategy to create super effective personalized campaigns.
Our favorite? The email builder.
We use it regularly for our newsletter or our workflow emails.
The interface is in drag and drug and allows you to easily personalize your e-mails and your newsletter in the colors of the company.
The sender used by webmecanik is Mail jet and the result is final. The open rate is excellent for both newsletters and resource download emails. As an indication, we obtain an open rate of more than 50% for our newsletters (24% on average in B to B), our automation sequences exceed 80%.
The icing on the cake? The value for money is unbeatable!
You will understand that we love it, we have tried and implemented a lot of automation tools but if we had only one left…
The advantages of Webmecanik:
- The interface of the solution is easy to use and very fun
- Support is very responsive and usually gets back to you within an hour
- The tool is compatible and connectable with many other solutions (Sales Force, Pipe drive, Eventbrite …)
- Open source technology that is scalable
- Very good email deliverability
- Certifications: ISO 27018, ISO 9001, ISO 27001, ISO 22301, RGPD
- The data is secure and hosted in France
Here is a recap video of what you can do with the tool for your sales and marketing strategies.
- Company offer: from € 400 per month. It includes all the functionalities, sending unlimited emails as well as advice and support on request. The price varies depending on the number of contacts you have in your database.
SendinBlue, the marketing automation tool accessible to all
SendinBlue presents itself as the relationship marketing solution for VSEs and SMEs. Very complete, it also includes a CRM, a tool for designing landing pages or Facebook advertising campaigns.
When creating your scenarios on SendinBlue, you have the choice between many recorded examples
- The interface is in, resources and customer service also
- The rate is very affordable and billing is done according to the number of emails sent
- A large number of email templates and scenarios are available to launch your campaigns
- Free version to start limited to 300 emails sent per day (included: no contact limit, template library, sending emails or SMS, advanced segmentation, customizable forms, CRM, API & plugins, email support )
- € 19 per month Lite plan (additional features: no daily quota)
- € 29 per month Essential package (additional features: no “Sendinblue” logo in your campaigns, advanced statistics and A / B test)
- 49 € per month Premium plan (additional features: Facebook Ads, landing pages, marketing automation, multi-user access, chat)
Plaza, the content first automation platform
Plaza is a marketing automation and inbound marketing platform suitable for very small and medium-sized businesses or even mid-sized companies.
The particularity of Plaza? The tool centralizes ALL your content on the web that is useful for your inbound marketing strategy. Your content will go up in the platform and you will be able to follow the statistics important for your development: number of downloads, number of visits…
With Plaza, you can also connect your social networks and publish from the platform and of course, create emailing campaigns with different workflows.
Note: the CRM is not included in the solution but you can easily connect yours to it.
View of the Plaza dashboard: here you can follow the opening statistics of your marketing automation campaigns
The advantages of Plaza:
- The interface is available in English and French
- Very suitable tool for getting started in inbound marketing
- Plaza has created the Happiness Factory: support to help you succeed in your marketing automation
- The “intelligent campaign” creation system: the interface provides alerts if any of your content is missing or needs to be improved.
- € 299 per month Stark formula limited to 1000 contacts (included: content management, publications on social networks, contact management, email campaigns, scoring, reporting)
- € 499 per month Iron plan (access to all platform functionalities)
Hub spot, the American giant pioneer of inbound marketing
Hub spot is one of the references in the field of marketing automation. The solution is aimed at SMEs and mid-cap companies.
The tool is designed as a platform to help businesses grow with many options:
- CRM Hub
- Sales Hub
- Hub Services
- Marketing Hub
- CMS Hub
Thus, the marketing automation tool, ideal for developing your marketing strategy, is paired with other useful options for controlling your sales process (CRM and management of your sales flow).
Among its features: you have the possibility to build automated workflows and manage your contacts very simply. Wikipedia page creators but also to create “freemium” or “premium” offers, or even focus on content so that it reaches its targets.
Overview of Hub spot to create A / B testing campaigns and thus know the emailing that records the best open or conversion rate.
The + Hub spot:
- Platform available in several languages
- The many options of Hub spot allow you to centralize all the services that different applications could offer you (ranging from CRM to survey tool)
- Intuitive and easy-to-learn solution
- To train you in the tool and inbound marketing,
- Alert system and follow-up of your prospects (thanks to cookies) to determine the most visited pages of your website
- A 14-day trial is offered to anyone wishing to test the tool
- € 46 per month Starter plan with a maximum of 1000 contacts (including: CRM, landing pages, advertising management, chat, destination forms, list segmentation, email marketing, advertising targeting)
- 740 € / month Pro plan with a maximum of 1000 contacts (additional features: marketing automation, blog, SEO recommendation and optimization, social networks, A / B Testing, call-to-action, video hosting and management, web traffic analysis, custom campaign reports)
- € 2,990 / month Enterprise plan with a maximum of 10,000 contacts (additional features: brand and user management, adaptive tests, personalized event triggers,
Active campaign, the versatile and accessible American
Active campaign is marketing automation software for small and medium businesses. This tool offers to automate the customer experience through the categorization of marketing emails, marketing automation, sales automation and CRM.
It is a versatile tool, similar to Sendinblue. It is a little more expensive because it has additional features such as the CRM tool.
This solution is ideal because it meets the needs of very small businesses.
The + Activecampaingn:
- Advanced automation functions
- A / B Testing Tools
- Very good deliverability
- Efficient email template generator
- Responsive support (including live chat)
– The Lite offer at $ 9.99 per month for 3 users: it gives you access to newsletter sending, marketing emails, marketing automation, drag email editor / file, free email templates and other “basic” features.
– The Plus offer at $ 49 per month for 25 users: in addition to the features mentioned below, this offer allows you to create landing pages, integrate your CRM tool, automate sales, and score your leads.
– The Professional offer at $ 129 per month for 50 users: This offer includes all the previously mentioned functionalities and others such as: predictive sending, more access to integration and to the assistance service.
- The business offer at $ 229 per month for an unlimited number of users:
You have all the main functionalities, integration, support and training. You can benefit from personalized support to set up your marketing automation strategies.