Marketing software is sometimes viewed as a luxury, not a
necessity. While you can certainly accomplish marketing without
marketing software, marketing software lessens the time and
effort required for marketing and your marketing efforts will
generally be much more effective. There are various types of
marketing software, and numerous producers of marketing software.
Finding the right combination of marketing software for you is
The first step in preparing an effective marketing campaign is to
devise a solid marketing plan. When writing a marketing plan,
there are several things to consider. The main points are
defining your target market and identifying the characteristics
of that market, analyzing your competition, formulating your
unique selling proposition using a competitive advantage,
reviewing options for marketing mediums, preparing your marketing
budget, and setting milestones for your marketing campaign.
Marketing software, such as Marketing Plan Pro by Palo Alto, will
help you work through the details of these steps to create a
useful and powerful marketing plan.
If you intend to engage in email marketing via newsletters,
autoresponders, announcements, or mass email campaigns, you will
find that email marketing software is crucial. Of course, there
are online email marketing services such as gotcorp.com that
provide self-serve email marketing tools like Campaigner. Using
such tools for email marketing is an option, but there are
ongoing costs involved. If you choose to use email marketing
software instead, programs like Email Marketing Director and
Campaign Enterprise 9 by Arial are very good.
Good email marketing software enables you to personalize messages
and to manage your mailing lists through a database. A time
saving feature to look for in email marketing software is the
ability of the software to automatically process unsubscribe
requests. Most email marketing software packages have built-in
templates you can use to produce email newsletters, announcements
and marketing messages. Support for embedded images and
compatibility with web editing software programs may be of some
If you are really serious about email marketing, it is best to
get started with advanced email marketing software from the
beginning. Advanced email marketing software has features that
will enable you to personalize and track your email messages.
With tracking capabilities and built-in reporting functions, you
can determine the effectiveness of your email messages as well as
who is and who is not opening and responding to the messages.
These advanced email marketing software programs generally use
SQL, Oracle, or Access database technology. High quality email
marketing software also has automated features for managing email
lists. These automated, time-saving features usually include
handling unsubscribe requests and removing bounced or rejected
email addresses from the email lists.
Customized marketing software suites may be something to consider as well. With customized marketing software, you can often
integrate marketing into your sales and customer relationship
management (CRM) systems. Some features that are common to
customized marketing software include the ability to capture
leads, to forecast sales, to manage contacts, and to analyze data
that is collected through the integrated system. Project
management capabilities can even be merged with customized
So, the big question is, “Do I really need marketing software?”
Like I said before, many people view marketing software as a
luxury. However, marketing software makes the job of internet
marketing much easier, especially if it has automated features.
There are options to using marketing software. Online marketing
services are one of those options; however, unlike using
marketing software, marketing services generally have ongoing
fees that are charged monthly or per campaign. Using marketing
software you can devise and manage your own internet marketing
campaign which is a cost-effective solution to marketing online.
Copyright Christopher J. Enders. Are you at the end of your rope, fed up an