A while back I wrote about Forrester’s Laura Ramos report on the ‘lead management automation’ market. One of the companies that ranked high for lead scoring and nurturing was US-based marketing automation software vendor Marketo. Earlier this week Marketo announced that it has integrated B2B social media capabilities with its lead management solution.
In a press release the company says these capabilities, powered by integrations with third-party social media solutions such as Salesforce for Twitter and Helpstream’s Social CRM Suite, allow marketers to monitor conversations on social sites such as Twitter and to use that information in lead nurturing, lead scoring, lead segmentation and trigger-based email marketing.
A simple example: when a prospect tweets a request for more information, Marketo can now track the Twitter conversation as a Marketo activity, give it a lead score, augment the lead’s profile, and trigger the appropriate follow-up and lead nurturing campaigns.
Social media are becoming increasingly important for B2B companies as we see in various business applications (read our earlier posts) including CRM, SFA and recently in unified communications environments (where Siemens Enterprise Communications announced the integration of Twitter in Openscape, its unified communication solution).
Be where the customers are
In the lead management and marketing automation space in B2B environments, social media of course receive more attention too, as Marketo’s announcement again proves.
I quote Frank Eliason, Director of Digital Care at Comcast (from Marketo’s press release): ‘Organizations should incorporate social media as a critical piece of their marketing and support strategy. Social media forums like Twitter are a great listening tool, infusing a sense of immediacy to our customer interactions and enabling us to quickly respond to questions or comments from our user community.’
CRM is going social, marketing automation is going social, email marketing is going social, in fact everything is going social.
Is it a trend, a hype or really important for B2B companies?
Well, I quite like what Marketo’s VP Jon Miller had to say about it in the press release: ‘our mantra is to be everywhere our customers are’.