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marketing automation - MarketingRev - Tech News for Marketers

Archive for the 'marketing automation' Category

November 24th

Eloqua Launches SmartXchange t Connect Marketers

Christopher Kenton

Eloqua recently announced SmartXchange, an on-demand resource that gives marketers access to marketing best practices, programs and assets from within the Eloqua platform.

Eloqua SmartXchange, which is currently in beta, is intended to facilitate the exchange and rapid deployment of best practices among marketers. SmartXchange appears to offer three categories of marketing assets and support:

  • Program templates are available to jumpstart campaign creation, including templates for email, newsletters and landing pages.
  • Online collaboration and asset management tools ease coordination of campaign development across distributed marketing teams.
  • Eloqua partners—presumably agencies—can provide program assets to their clients through the SmartXchange system.

In essence, the system appears to be an augmentation of asset management, populated with templates for kicking off quick creative. You can find a short overview and datasheet describing the application on Eloqua’s site.

Sourced by: Sandip Patil

Category: marketing automation | 38 Comments »

November 19th

LotusJump Automates SEO Tasks for Marketers

Christopher Kenton

For many marketers, search engine optimization is one of those items on your todo list that seems to roll over every cycle and never get addressed. Unless you have a heavy-hitting marketing budget and SEO is critical to keeping your pipeline full, chances are your online traffic isn’t well optimized. It’s like yardwork. It’s something you know needs to get done, but there’s always something else more important to do at the moment.

So I was intrigued when I saw what LotusJump is doing. They offer a $99/month on-demand service that tees up SEO tasks for someone on your team to execute. It’s an interesting position. They’re not providing an SEO service per se–which would be a whole lot more than $99/month. Instead, they’re automating the messy legwork that prevents most marketers from getting SEO done on their own, such as:

  • Identifying directories where your site can be listed
  • Finding places where you can submit articles with links back to your site
  • Finding existing articles and blog posts where you can write comments, and link back to your site
  • Finding competitive backlink opportunities, where your keyword competitors are already linked

It’s a pretty simple concept. If you had all of these opportunities teed up and ready to execute with the click of a mouse, you could farm out the work to people on your team to get it done–and everyone would be the smarter about SEO and your marketing strategy.

So I asked LotusJump for a demo account to see how easy it is. And yes, it is easy. Once you subscribe, you simply enter your web site domain and a list of three keywords or keyword phrases around which you want to optimize. Within minutes, your task list starts to fill with the directories and sites to which you might want to submit your own web site and articles. Most of these directories and sites are indexed in LotusJump’s database, and they have explicit step-by-step instructions for how to submit to each directory, so even an intern could pick up some slack. Within hours, or at least over night, the buzz links and competitive backlinks opportunities start coming in. These are collected as LotusJump scans the Web to find content related to your keywords, and your keyword competitors, that you can leverage by submitting your own comments or posts with links back to your site.

The interface is easy to use, and has basic workflow features for viewing and managing your task list. It’s hard to imagine how it wouldn’t be worth $99/month if you’re one of the many marketers who neither has the budget for outsourcing SEO, or the time to manage in-house SEO tasks. I don’t yet know how the net results would compare to outsourced SEO since we just ran through the setup, but if you’re doing nothing now, it’s not hard to benchmark. Just take a snapshot of your traffic today, run LotusJump for a month, and compare your traffic then.

I definitely like the concept, and I think it’s an interesting market position that likely has a critical mass of prospects. I’m thinking of asking LotusJump to keep our demo account open for a couple of months so we can benchmark traffic and report back on results.

Category: Optimization, marketing automation | 13 Comments »

November 6th

Marketbright Gains Momentum in On-Demand Marketing Automation

Christopher Kenton

Marketing automation is a big and complex space. There are a host of traditional on-prem application vendors, and a growing number of impressive on-demand providers, like Eloqua and Marketo, all competing for market share in a space that has often gotten short shrift behind CRM and SFA. So it’s interesting to see a startup like Marketbright earn Series A investment this past summer–especially in the the difficult early-stage VC environment we’ve seen this year–and go on to start earning some market share of its own, primarliy in the B2B space.

The Marketbright team comes out of marketing ops at large enterprise technology companies, so it’s not surprising their focus as an early stage venture has been building the tools and systems necessary to streamline large-scale demand generation programs. Marketbright offers the essential basics of marketing automation, including campaign execution, lead scoring and qualification, closed-loop marketing analytics, and integration with CRM/SFA tools. But addressing the more complex challenges of larger scale marketing programs, Marketbright also provides channel marketing support, enabling marketers to syndicate channel campaigns and push leads out to partners; event management with support for managing event registration and event content; and content management support for corporate Web sites. Marketbright also pays the obligatory obeisance to Marketing ROI and performance accountability with a dashboard for program metrics.

While Marketbright has been building their customer base among companies like Business Objects, VMware and Serena, they have on-demand solutions for SMB as well, with pricing based on number of seats. They have a link on their solutions page that says “click for an online demo”, but there’s no link. Guess you have to call for a demo. I did call just to check it out, and after one click through the phone tree, they had a real live knowledgeable person answering the line. So if you’re shopping for marketing automation solutions, Marketbright is worth putting on the vetting list.

Category: marketing automation | 4 Comments »