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Top 5 B2B Marketing Automation Platforms for 2024

B2B marketing automation platforms are essential tools designed to automate repetitive marketing tasks, allowing businesses to focus on strategic activities. These platforms manage critical tasks such as lead generation, customer segmentation, data aggregation, and campaign management, which are crucial for targeting the right audience with the right message at the right time.

In this article, we explore the key features, benefits, and top B2B marketing automation platforms to help businesses make informed decisions.

How Do B2B Marketing Automation Platforms Work?

B2B marketing automation platforms utilize a combination of data analytics, machine learning, and integrated software systems to streamline and enhance marketing processes. Here’s a detailed look at how these platforms function.

1. Data Collection and Integration

The first step in marketing automation is the collection and integration of data from various sources. This includes website analytics, CRM systems, social media platforms, email marketing tools, and third-party data providers. 

Improvado is a marketing analytics and data management platform that provides over 500 pre-built data source connectors.
Improvado data extraction capabilities

Advanced platforms, like Improvado, support the extraction of over 48,000 metrics and dimensions across 500+ data sources, ensuring comprehensive data coverage​​.

2. Data Processing and Normalization

Once collected, the data is processed and normalized to ensure consistency and accuracy. Normalization involves transforming raw data into a standardized format that can be easily analyzed. This step is crucial for integrating data from disparate sources, as it eliminates discrepancies and makes the data analysis-ready. Platforms use sophisticated algorithms to perform these tasks automatically, significantly reducing the time and effort required for manual data handling.

Improvado provides pre-built data pipelines tailored for specific marketing scenarios, such as analyzing ad spend or attributing sales revenue
Improvado provides pre-built data pipelines for marketing use cases enabling automated data processing without any data engineering and SQL

Improvado streamlines the transformation process by cleaning, normalizing, and mapping data without the need for manual intervention or custom scripts. The platform provides two options: 

  • Pre-built data pipelines from multiple marketing use cases spanning from data extraction to visualization for various use cases. For instance, if you select a paid ads analytics recipe, the platform will extract the needed data from the ad platforms, automatically map the platform's unique spend structures, and present a dashboard with data on daily campaign performance down to adset, ad level, creative, or placement level.
  • Self-service data transformation engine that has a spreadsheet-like UI and supports over 300 features and funct

3. AI and Machine Learning Enhancements

Many modern platforms incorporate AI and machine learning to enhance their capabilities. AI can be used for predictive analytics, identifying trends and making recommendations for optimizing campaigns. Machine learning algorithms can continuously improve lead scoring models and personalization efforts by learning from new data.

4. Lead Generation and Management

B2B marketing automation software solutions help in generating and managing leads. They capture leads through various channels such as websites, social media, and email campaigns. Tools like HubSpot are often used to collect lead information. Once captured, leads are automatically entered into the system for tracking and nurturing.

5. Segmentation and Targeting

These platforms allow for detailed segmentation of leads based on criteria such as industry, company size, job title, and behavior. This segmentation enables more targeted and personalized marketing efforts. For example, a B2B company can create segments for different verticals or stages in the buying cycle, ensuring that each group receives relevant content.

Top 5 B2B Marketing Automation Platforms

Selecting the right B2B marketing automation platform can significantly impact your marketing strategy's effectiveness. Here’s a closer look at some of the top platforms available.

1. Improvado

Best for: Automating marketing data management and complex marketing intelligence and reporting. 

Improvado is an AI-powered marketing intelligence and data management platform.
Improvado paid search dashboard

Improvado is an AI-powered marketing data management and analytics platform. It gathers, organizes, and untangles marketing and sales data to deliver instant insights through BI and AI.

Key Features 

Improvado automates the entire process of marketing reporting:

  • It automated data collection, offering 500+ pre-built API data connectors and flat data sources, meaning capabilities to gather data from a spreadsheet. Improvado further facilitates data integration and automation by offering data extraction templates, up to 5 years of historical data load, and hourly data sync.  
  • Improvado streamlines the transformation process by automatically cleaning, normalizing, and mapping data without the need for manual intervention or custom scripts.
  • It offers advanced reporting and visualization tools, including pre-built dashboards, seamless integration with any BI solution, and dashboard customization services.
  • Additionally, Improvado automatically validates the consistency of your data and alerts you of any issues and data discrepancies. 

Unique Offering

Improvado’s strength lies in its ability to unify disparate data sources into a single, cohesive view. This capability is particularly beneficial for large enterprises that need to consolidate data from multiple channels and platforms. 

The platform’s AI Agent provides instant intelligence and automates insights discovery. 

Improvado AI Agent is an AI-powered, search-driven analytics platform.
AI Agent can answer the majority of questions you typically ask your data team. 

AI Agent is an AI-powered search-based analytics tool that is connected to your database and has a chat UI where you can ask performance questions, build dashboards, and explore data using natural language queries. 

Additionally, the agent constantly analyzes your data and notifies you of any opportunities and issues. It can also send out weekly or monthly reports to help you keep track of every aspect of your marketing campaigns. 

Pricing

Improvado offers customized pricing based on the specific needs and scale of the business. This approach ensures that clients get the features they need without paying for unnecessary extras.

Turn Data into Growth Opportunities with Improvado
Improvado empowers enterprises and agencies to automate complex marketing reporting, make data-driven decisions, and leverage AI Agent to optimize performance and drive ROI. Book a demo call to see how the platform works and get one step closer to automating your marketing data management and intelligence.

2. HubSpot Marketing Hub

Best for: Streamlining inbound marketing efforts and automating email campaigns, lead nurturing, and customer engagement.

HubSpot Marketing Hub is an all-in-one marketing platform for email marketing, SMM, SEO, content creation, and analytics.

HubSpot offers a comprehensive suite of marketing automation tools designed to cater to businesses of all sizes.

Key Features

HubSpot's Marketing Hub includes email marketing, lead management, CRM integration, social media management, and advanced analytics features.

  • Email marketing automation allows users to create and manage sophisticated email campaigns with personalized content based on user behavior and lifecycle stage. 
  • The workflow automation feature enables the creation of complex, multi-step workflows that automate various marketing tasks, such as lead nurturing, follow-ups, and segmentation. 
  • The platform's lead scoring automation helps prioritize leads based on their interactions and engagement levels, ensuring sales teams focus on the most promising prospects. 
  • HubSpot's integration capabilities with CRM and other tools further enhance B2B marketing automation, enabling seamless data synchronization and more effective marketing strategies.

Unique Offering 

HubSpot is known for its robust inbound marketing capabilities, allowing businesses to attract, engage, and delight customers through content-driven strategies. The platform also supports seamless integration with HubSpot's other Hubs, including Sales, Service, and CMS, providing a unified experience across all customer-facing functions.

Pricing

HubSpot offers a range of plans, starting with a free version that includes basic features. Paid plans for businesses start at $800 per month billed annually.

3. Adobe Marketo Engage

Best for: Driving personalized engagement and automating multi-channel marketing campaigns and lead management.

Marketo Engage, part of Adobe Experience Cloud, is tailored for enterprise-level businesses with complex marketing needs.

Marketo Engage, part of Adobe Experience Cloud, is tailored for enterprise-level businesses with complex marketing needs.

Key Features 

Marketo Engage offers comprehensive automation features designed to enhance marketing efficiency and drive engagement:

  • Email marketing features allow marketers to design and execute personalized email campaigns that respond to user behaviors and lifecycle stages. 
  • The platform's lead nurturing feature automates the process of guiding prospects through the sales funnel with targeted content and interactions. 
  • Additionally, Marketo Engage provides advanced lead scoring, which automatically ranks leads based on their engagement and demographic data, ensuring that sales teams focus on the most promising prospects. 
  • The platform also supports automated workflows for multi-channel campaigns, integrating email, social media, and web actions into cohesive marketing strategies. 

This level of B2B marketing automation enables marketers to deliver personalized experiences at scale, optimizing both customer engagement and campaign performance.

Unique Offering 

Marketo's deep integration with Adobe's suite of tools allows for a highly sophisticated marketing strategy, particularly beneficial for companies already using Adobe products. 

Additionally, Marketo’s account-based marketing features are particularly strong, making it ideal for targeting high-value accounts. It provides personalized account-based campaigns, allowing marketers to deliver tailored content and experiences to key decision-makers within target accounts. 

Pricing

Marketo’s pricing is tailored to enterprise clients. Specific pricing details are provided upon request, based on the organization’s needs and scale.

4. Salesforce Marketing Cloud Suite

Best for: Creating personalized customer journeys and automating cross-channel marketing campaigns.

Salesforce Marketing Cloud Suite is a comprehensive platform that enables businesses to automate customer engagement across multiple channels.

Salesforce Marketing Cloud Suite focuses on automation of account-based marketing and personalized customer interactions.

Key Features

Salesforce Marketing Cloud Suite offers powerful automation features designed to streamline and enhance marketing activities. Key automation tools include Journey Builder, which allows marketers to create personalized customer journeys with automated email, mobile, social, and web interactions. 

The platform's Email Studio automates email marketing campaigns, enabling personalized and timely communications based on user behavior and preferences. Additionally, Advertising Studio automates the management and optimization of digital advertising campaigns across multiple channels. 

Salesforce Marketing Cloud's integration with AI-driven insights from Einstein further enhances automation by providing predictive analytics and recommendations, enabling marketers to deliver highly personalized and effective marketing strategies.

Unique Offering 

Salesforce Marketing Cloud is renowned for its seamless integration with Salesforce CRM, providing a comprehensive view of customer interactions and enabling more personalized marketing strategies. The platform’s detailed campaign reporting and analytics help businesses measure success and optimize their marketing efforts.

Pricing

Pricing starts at $1,250 per month billed annually for the Growth plan, which includes essential features for up to 10,000 contacts. More advanced plans with additional features are available at higher price points.

5. ActiveCampaign

Best for: Automating email marketing, sales engagement, and customer relationship management with personalized workflows.

ActiveCampaign is an integrated email marketing, automation, and CRM platform.

ActiveCampaign is known for its powerful email marketing automation and user-friendly interface, making it suitable for small to mid-sized businesses.

Key Features

ActiveCampaign is a B2B marketing automation software solution designed to enhance marketing automation, customer relationship management, and email marketing.

  • Its robust automation tools enable businesses to create personalized customer journeys with automated workflows that manage email campaigns, follow-ups, and lead scoring.
  • The platform's CRM integrates seamlessly with these automation capabilities, allowing for efficient contact management and sales pipeline tracking.
  • ActiveCampaign also provides advanced segmentation and targeting, ensuring that messages are tailored to specific audience segments based on their behavior and preferences.
  • Additionally, the platform includes features for SMS marketing, site tracking, and social media integration, making it a versatile tool for driving engagement and optimizing marketing efforts.

Unique Offering

ActiveCampaign’s strength lies in its flexibility and ease of use. It provides extensive automation capabilities without requiring extensive technical knowledge, making it accessible to smaller marketing teams. The platform’s built-in CRM allows for seamless management of customer relationships and marketing efforts.

Pricing

ActiveCampaign offers a Starter plan starting at $15 per month for 1,000 contacts, with additional features available in higher-tier plans. The Enterprise plan, which includes more advanced features, starts at $145 per month.

It All Starts with Data

B2B marketing automation fundamentally begins with automating data management processes. Without a robust data management system like Improvado, marketing teams cannot trust the insights, targeting, and strategies derived from their data.

Automating data collection, cleansing, and integration ensures that the information used for decision-making is accurate, up-to-date, and reliable. This foundational step is crucial because all subsequent automated processes—lead scoring, personalized marketing campaigns, and customer journey mapping—depend on the integrity of the data.

By prioritizing the automation of data management, B2B marketers can build a trustworthy and efficient framework that supports more effective and impactful marketing efforts.

Book a demo call with Improvado to maximize ROI through timely and accessible performance insights.

FAQs

What are B2B marketing automation platforms?

B2B marketing automation platforms are software solutions designed to automate repetitive marketing tasks such as lead generation, customer segmentation, and campaign management, allowing businesses to focus on strategic activities.

How do B2B marketing automation platforms work?

These platforms use data analytics, machine learning, and integrated software systems to streamline marketing processes. They collect and integrate data from various sources, process and normalize it, and use AI to provide insights and automate marketing tasks.

What are the key features to look for in a B2B marketing automation platform?

Key features include lead management, email marketing, integration capabilities, reporting and analytics, and scalability. These features ensure the platform meets business needs and enhances marketing efforts.

Why is lead management important in marketing automation?

Effective lead management allows businesses to prioritize high-potential leads, nurture relationships, and guide prospects through the sales funnel until they are ready to make a purchase.

How do integration capabilities benefit a marketing automation platform?

Integration with other tools like CRM systems and social media platforms ensures seamless data flow, enhances efficiency, and provides a unified view of customer interactions.

What role do AI and machine learning play in marketing automation?

AI and machine learning enhance platform capabilities by providing predictive analytics, improving lead scoring models, personalizing marketing efforts, and offering proactive insights for campaign optimization.

How should businesses choose the right marketing automation platform?

Businesses should assess their specific marketing needs, compare platform features, and consider scalability and flexibility. Evaluating these factors helps in selecting a platform that aligns with business objectives and supports growth.

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