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5 business objections to Marketing Automation - and our response to each

As a Marketing Automation team, we’ve scoped a fair number of projects across different regions, industries and company sizes. Of course objections arise in such an important business decision, and it’s part of our job to advise in a rational, consultative and honest way. So we decided to put together this list of common objections we hear when selling Pardot or Salesforce Marketing Cloud to new customers. Maybe you’re hesitant in making the investment in Pardot, trying to gain buy-in from the final decision makers in your company, or caught onto a whiff of negativity on the rumour mill. If you answered yes, you must read on - because this post was written with you in mind! Hopefully by the end you will have altered your point of view with our perspectives from the other side of the table.

“It’s too expensive”

Cost

Cost is one criteria that creeps up often. Sometimes budget is clarified at the start of the evaluation, giving both parties the chance to disqualify each other if the estimated price tag is simply too high. Occasionally, budget isn’t mentioned, like an ‘elephant in the room’ or a top secret. Regardless of how and when the conversation around budget occurs, the objection over cost is often cited.

So, how can we rationally debunk this objection? Firstly, remember that the Salesforce Marketing tools are superior products on the market. The result is that they can charge the price they do because of their fantastic track record regarding customer ROI. For instance, a company with an annual revenue of $1mil, closing 10 deals with an average value of $100,000, can increase annual revenue to $3,285,460 with the addition of Pardot marketing automation. This may seem far-reaching and ambitious, but these figures are based on scrupulous assessment from their customer data, and fed into the online Pardot ROI calculator. I would recommend inserting your own company statistics in and see the outcome.

The cost for Pardot and Marketing Cloud are ‘bucket licenses’, meaning that you pay per account, not per user as is the way with the majority of other Salesforce products. Although it is a monthly recurring cost, consolidation is that it’s a predictable cost. Plus, you are committed to an annual contract, not a multi-year contract.

Some people who feel uncomfortable about the cost, change their minds when they see the reporting capabilities in Pardot and Marketing Cloud. For example, the Lifecycle Report visualises potential and realised revenue at each stage of the Prospect journey, giving the process the transparency some buyers crave. For more information, here is a great infographic which explains it step-by-step.

“This is too complex for us to take on”

Complexity

Admittedly, the complexity objection is more frequent for the Marketing Cloud platform, but it’s also not uncommon for people to get overwhelmed by marketing technology as a concept. With all their features, intertwined data models and automation options, it’s no surprise these powerful marketing automation platforms come across this objection.

Let’s be upfront. The way marketing is going is omni-channel; this means that companies will communicate with their customers via multiple channels, but with an experience that appears like one - the seamless 1:1 customer journey. No business wants to fall behind on this; however, you’ll need a system that has the features required to effectively manage an omni-channel strategy. Seeking out a marketing automation tool that can handle this accelerated way of customer interaction will prevent hassle in the long term. One example of potential hassle you could encounter later on would be duplication of effort across each of you channels: setup, execution, and reporting.

If you fear your team’s bandwidth will be stretched too far, then outsourcing the implementation, maintenance and auditing to a 3rd party partner is a great option. The network of Salesforce Marketing consulting partners is vast and ever-growing - we know because we are part of it.

“Our leads are inbound”

Not chasing an outbound lead acquisition strategy

When I heard this from a potential client, I was more than a little perplexed. At the time I couldn’t pin pont whether this was strange complacency or a company strapped for cash.

Whilst it’s fantastic you are sustaining a good level of growth from a purely inbound approach, the potential is huge when combined with an outbound strategy (communication outreach). Who doesn’t want more pipeline?

Plus, even if a steady stream of leads are flowing inbound, are they properly qualified before your team take time to contact them? Is time wasted on leads that are not in the target group? Or would education (through content) and brand positioning accelerate the sale, or prevent them from being lost to a competitor? These are challenges that a lead nurturing program and automated scoring and grading model would alleviate.

“Our tool X works great for us, and it’s what the team are used to”

Happy with their Email Marketing Tool

I won’t make a sweeping statement that all Email Marketing tools are poor - indeed, there are a number of superb tools that I have used or trialled over time. However, I’m not an enterprise. I don’t have something to sell, a lead nurturing process, and I’m not interested in capturing vast amounts of metadata about my recipients.

Marketing automation, as I’ve mentioned previously, is feature heavy and capable of injecting automation across multiple channels that drive Prospects to the result you desire. It’s not enough these days to be a business that relies on a sole channel - such as email.

“Google Analytics is free and tracks visitors in more detail”

Reverence for Google Analytics

Google Analytics is a remarkable tool. The amount of insight you are able to derive from your website visitors is captivating, especially when drilling down into the behaviour, audience and acquisition sections.

This objection arose specifically in relation to Pardot. When you isolate the Web Tracking features on each respective tool, then yes - Google Analytics is padded out with a lot more functionality.

Pardot’s Visitor Tracking feature can capture page views, link clicks, company name and geographic location. The data remains associated to the Visitor’s IP address until the unknown Visitor converts into a Prospect, at which point any web tracking data is transferred to their newly created Prospect record to be further nurtured through the whole process - yes, right up until you close business with them. This is the key strength, that all tracked data is able to be ultimately linked to commercial impact, even at the pre-conversion stage.

Luckily, there is a Google Analytics Connector that is worth investigating too that will give you the best of both worlds.

Summary

In this run-down of typical objections to using Pardot or Marketing Cloud, I’ve covered causes of concern about cost and complexity, and shared some alternative perspectives relating to lead scoring, omni-channel marketing and Google Analytics.

I hope that the objections and responses have been helpful, like I said in the opening, it’s our job as consultants to advise in a rational, consultative and honest way.

If you or your team members are still hesitating about making the investment, and would like some guidance, then get in contact with us. We’d love to collaborate on your use cases and advise you on the best course of action.

Marketing Automation @ enxoo

We’re a tight-knit team of Pardot and Salesforce Marketing Cloud certified professionals who have been lucky to work with clients across different regions, industries and varying sizes. Staying true to our values of adaptability, transparency and knowledge sharing, we continue to add value to our client’s marketing operations with pride.


Lucy is a member of the team at enxoo who also runs fearlessmarketing.tech, a blog about Pardot, Salesforce Marketing Cloud and General Marketing Automation. Stop by and visit us to find more similar content!

About Enxoo

We are a Salesforce® Alliance Partner providing consulting, industry-specific solutions and implementation services to our clients. Our mission is to partner with our clients to solve business challenges by delivering meaningful Salesforce services. At Enxoo, we can fuel your business! Go to enxoo.com for more information on our solutions and customer stories.

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