As a marketer, you probably agree that there are too many expenses chasing after your limited marketing budget. Maybe you’ve even had to shelve projects or revisit marketing investments such as new software, ad spend or employees later due to budget.
There are two ways to increase ROI, raise revenue or reduce costs. Open source marketing automation can help you accomplish both. Read on to find out how.
To begin, let’s take a look at the cost side. With traditional marketing automation software, you have to pay a monthly licensing fee whether you are running any campaigns or not. The typical fee for tools like HubSpot, Pardot and Marketo range between $2,000 – $4,000/month with HubSpot geared towards small-to-medium businesses and Marketo towards the higher end. Even with HubSpot, the cheapest plan will set you back $200/month and it’s limited to a paltry 100 contacts. There’s also a $3,000 setup fee you have to take into account, which includes on-boarding and training.
Also, consider that it takes 60 to 90 days to ramp up an inbound marketing strategy even for a smaller team. It takes time to get everybody trained up on the platform, comfortable with the tools and stick to a regimen for content creation. That’s two to three months that you’ll be paying for a commercial tool with little to no results on the bottom line.
Mautic is an open-source marketing automation platform (MAP) with no monthly fees, if you opt for the self-hosted option. Support is via the community forums, Slack channel or you can hire a Mautic consultant. We’ll concede that the “big guys” throw in support and hosting with your monthly fee, but the prices they charge mostly go to software development and profits.
Hosting nowadays is inexpensive, and Mautic will run on a shared hosting account or VPS. Even if you sign a retainer with a Mautic consultant and/or use “Mautic-as-a-service”, you’ll come out well ahead in terms of monthly costs, since the software itself is free. A consultant will also likely provide much more personalized service than a “customer success” staff member, including help planning, executing and evaluating campaigns for the individual needs of your business.
Overall, Mautic is no less powerful than its competitors. You can see a feature-by-feature comparison chart here. Mautic is designed to be a no-compromise solution, whereas users of Marketo and Pardot often wish they had the robust social media tools that HubSpot boasts, and HubSpot and Pardot users envy Marketo’s powerful Triggers and Filters for segmenting leads.
In many ways, Mautic is much more flexible. It’ll give you no fuss if you want to use a third-party tool in place of its built-in functionality. Many users keep a more robust CRM such as Salesforce, even though Mautic has a simple CRM that’s tied into contact profiles. If you grow beyond Mautic’s A/B testing functionality for example, you can easily bring in a tool like Optimize.ly or Unbounce and embed your existing Mautic forms.
Why switching to open-source marketing automation will increase your revenue is simple. Because you’ve cut out the licensing fees going to your MAP, your first digital marketing dollar every month goes directly towards campaign production and promotion. A couple thousand dollars of overhead can go a long way towards design, copywriting, SEO and digital ads. If you were previously launching one major content asset a month (e.g. eBook, case study or whitepaper), you could easily hire additional help to double or triple your pace, and see increased results in terms of contacts, engaged leads and customers.
You only have so much time in your day, so one of the best investments you can make is bringing on outsourced marketing support to accelerate your efforts. If you are a small business owner, running your business is already your full-time job, so it’s certainly worthwhile considering a professional marketing service for your company. Finding budget is hard, whether you’re the one who holds the pursestrings, or you need to make the business case to your boss, or even your boss’ boss to secure funds.
That’s why switching to Mautic goes hand-in-hand with bringing your marketing performance to the next level. Once you’ve freed up the budget that used to go to [insert MAP of choice], it’ll be easier to justify redeploying that capital towards producing more campaigns, more quickly.