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There are seemingly countless marketing software solutions available, so figuring out which is best for you is tough. You know you want to streamline various marketing tasks, including customer relationship management, email marketing, social media management, and analytics—but now need to figure out which tool is the best fit. I've got you! In this post, I make things simple, leveraging my experience as a marketing expert, and using dozens of different search digital marketing tools to bring you this shortlist of the best marketing software overall.

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We’ve been testing and reviewing marketing software since 2022. As marketers ourselves, we know how critical, and difficult it is to make the right decision when selecting software.

We invest in deep research to help our audience make better software purchasing decisions. We’ve tested more than 2,000 tools for different marketing use cases and written over 1,000 comprehensive software reviews. Learn how we stay transparent & our review methodology.

The 10 Best Marketing Software Selection Summary

Tools Price
Salesforce Pardot From $1250/month
Birdeye From $299/user/month
HubSpot Marketing From $18/month
Campaigner From $59/month
ActiveCampaign From $39/month
Google Analytics Free to use
CRM Creatio From $30/user/month
MailChimp From $13/month
Marketo From $895/month
Maximizer CRM From $29/month for small user organizations
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How to Choose Marketing Software

With so many different marketing software solutions available, it can be challenging to make decisions on what marketing software is going to be the best fit for your needs.

As you're shortlisting, trialing, and selecting marketing software, consider:

  • What you want to use it to do - Start by identifying the marketing software feature gap you're trying to fill to clarify the features and functionality the marketing software needs to provide.
  • Who will need to use it - To evaluate cost and requirements, consider who'll be using the software and how many licenses you'll need. You'll need to evaluate if it'll just be the marketing professionals, or the whole organization that will require access. When that's clear, it's worth considering if you're prioritizing ease of use for all, or advanced functionality for your marketing software power users.
  • What other tools it needs to work with - Clarify what tools you're replacing, what tools are staying, and the tools you'll need to integrate with, such as accounting, CRM or HR software. You'll need to decide if the tools will need to integrate together, or alternatively, if you can replace multiple tools with one consolidated marketing software.
  • What outcomes are important - Consider the result that the software needs to deliver to be considered a success. Consider what capability you want to gain, or what you want to improve, and how you will be measuring success. For example, an outcome could be the ability to get greater visibility into performance. You could compare marketing software features until you’re blue in the face but if you aren’t thinking about the outcomes you want to drive, you could be wasting a lot of valuable time.
  • How it would work within your organization - Consider the software selection alongside your workflows and delivery methodology. Evaluate what's working well, and the areas that are causing issues that need to be addressed. Remember every business is different—don’t assume that because a tool is popular that it'll work in your organization. 

Best Marketing Software Reviews

These are my essential top 10 picks for the best marketing software, each with a detailed overview, key features, pros and cons, and pricing information. I’ll outline some additional picks at the bottom of the article in case you need more options.

Best B2B marketing automation tool

  • Free demo available
  • From $1250/month

Salesforce Pardot is a robust marketing automation platform designed to streamline and automate B2B marketing processes. It empowers businesses to create, deploy, and manage targeted marketing campaigns, nurture leads, and align sales and marketing teams for more effective customer engagement. Pardot offers features such as email marketing, lead scoring, lead nurturing, and ROI reporting, allowing marketers to track and analyze the effectiveness of their campaigns.

Why I Picked Salesforce Pardot: Salesforce Pardot stands out with its B2B Marketing Analytics Plus, which offers advanced analytics capabilities specifically tailored for B2B marketers. This tool allows users to connect their marketing and sales data, providing deep insights into campaign performance, lead generation, and customer engagement. What makes this feature unique is its ability to correlate marketing efforts directly with revenue, enabling businesses to understand the true impact of their marketing initiatives on the bottom line. By offering detailed revenue attribution models and predictive analytics, B2B Marketing Analytics Plus goes beyond basic reporting, helping businesses optimize their marketing strategies effectively.

Salesforce Pardot Standout Features & Integrations 

Features include Pardot’s AI-powered lead scoring system stands out from competitors by leveraging machine learning algorithms to analyze lead behavior and engagement patterns. It goes beyond traditional demographic-based scoring, taking into account a prospect's online interactions, email engagement, and website behavior. This nuanced approach ensures that sales teams are focused on leads that are genuinely interested and more likely to convert, enhancing productivity and efficiency.

Pardot allows the creation of behavior-based triggers, where specific actions or patterns trigger automated responses. For instance, if a lead repeatedly engages with product-related content, Pardot can automatically trigger targeted follow-up emails or notify sales representatives, ensuring timely and relevant communication. This feature not only saves time but also increases the likelihood of converting leads into customers based on their actual interests and interactions.

Integrations include Mailchimp, LinkedIn Sales Navigator, Adobe Sign, Amazon Connect CTI, Zoom, Quickbooks, task-based specialty apps, and others.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • AI-Powered lead scoring & behavior-based triggers
  • Seamless integration with Salesforce CRM
  • Comprehensive marketing automation

Cons:

  • Landing page creation tool is feature-lite
  • API capabilities could use improvement

Best for local business reputation management

  • Free demo available
  • From $299/user/month
Visit Website
Rating: 4.8/5

Birdeye is a customer engagement and online reputation management platform. Local businesses can use it to monitor customer reviews, customer messages, and social media presence. This helps you to craft a more cohesive and positive bran image, ensuring a consistent experience for prospects and customers alike.

Why I Picked Birdeye: I chose this marketing software tool because of its specialized focus on review management and customer feedback collection. For local businesses that rely on word-of-mouth referrals and offering an exceptional customer experience, these are critical components of business growth.

Users can monitor their business's online reviews and customer feedback from over 150 different review sites, and request feedback from their existing customers. You're able to see where reviews are coming from and what they're saying. You can also compare yourself with competitors to see how your NPS holds up to theirs, and which areas of customer service you could work to improve.

Birdeye Standout Features & Integrations

Features include the ability to track trending topics related to your business on social media platforms. This is super helpful because you can then engage with the conversation, respond to customer inquiries, and create brand awareness for your company.

You can also create surveys through the software to capture real-time feedback and understand your customers better. Gathering this type of data can do wonders for not just your marketing tactics but your customer service approach, product and service offerings, and more.

Integrations include QuickBooks, Square, Zoho CRM, Zoho Books, Zoho Invoice, Pipedrive, Thryv, Keap, HubSpot, Lightspeed, and hundreds of other SaaS tools.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Has customer feedback management tools
  • Tons of integrations available
  • Automates surveys and reviews

Cons:

  • No free plan or trial available
  • Limited customer support

Best marketing software for agencies

  • Free plan available + free demo available
  • From $18/month

HubSpot Marketing is an all-in-one inbound marketing platform designed to help businesses attract, engage, and delight customers. It offers a suite of powerful tools for digital marketing, including email marketing, social media management, search engine optimization (SEO), content management, lead generation, and analytics. HubSpot's intuitive interface and user-friendly features make it accessible for businesses of all sizes, allowing them to create and automate targeted marketing campaigns, capture leads through customizable forms, and nurture leads with personalized content.

Why I Picked HubSpot Marketing: HubSpot offers a seamless integration of customer relationship management (CRM) and marketing automation in one platform, a feature that is relatively unique in the market. This integration ensures that marketing and sales teams have access to the same up-to-date customer data, allowing for a unified approach in nurturing leads and converting them into customers. This cohesion between CRM and marketing automation simplifies data management, enhances communication between teams, and provides a holistic view of the customer journey. By having both tools integrated into one platform, businesses can streamline their operations, reduce data silos, and create more personalized and effective marketing campaigns tailored to individual customer interactions and needs.

HubSpot Marketing Standout Features & Integrations 

Features include HubSpot Marketing's Content Optimization System (COS) is a unique feature that sets it apart from competitors. COS allows users to create highly personalized and contextually relevant website content based on visitor behavior, location, device, and other factors. This means that every visitor experiences a tailored website interface, enhancing user engagement and improving the likelihood of conversions. The ability to dynamically adapt website content in real-time based on individual user attributes is a sophisticated tool that goes beyond basic personalization, making HubSpot a go-to choice for businesses aiming to deliver a highly customized online experience.

One of HubSpot Marketing's key strengths lies in its inbound marketing methodology, focusing on creating valuable and relevant content to attract potential customers naturally. HubSpot also provides robust analytics and reporting, enabling businesses to measure the effectiveness of their marketing efforts and make data-driven decisions to optimize their strategies.

Integrations include Gmail, RollWorks ABM, Jira, briX, AdRoll, Twitter, Cradle, Dialpad, Zipwhip, Helpdesk Migration, Sakari SMS, Eventbrite, Automate.io, Mailchimp, LeadDyno, Instagram, Workplace by Facebook, GoToWebinar, and over 1000 more through Zapier.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • In-depth analytics and reporting
  • Powerful automation capabilities
  • All-in-one marketing solution

Cons:

  • Learning curve for advanced features
  • Limited customization in free version

Best for segmentation & personalization

  • 30-day free trial
  • From $59/month
Visit Website
Rating: 1/5

Campaigner is a comprehensive online marketing software tool that helps businesses design, monitor, and analyze their digital campaigns. Digital marketers can easily build successful email campaigns, manage customer relationships, optimize their SEO, and automate tasks like email list building.

Why I Picked Campaigner: Campaigner allows users to track the success of each marketing campaign with detailed reports on website visits, open rates, click-throughs, and conversions. This data can then be used to adjust strategies to maximize each campaign's effectiveness. Campaigner lets users create and customize email campaigns with ease. It provides access to hundreds of templates designed by professional graphic artists, which can be easily edited to match their brand aesthetic or used as-is. Its templates automatically adjust to fit any screen size—allowing content to look great no matter how people view it. Organizations can use Campaigner's drag-and-drop interface to quickly design emails with images, videos, and other content to engage customers and grow their mailing lists.

Campaigner Standout Features & Integrations 

Features include advanced automation tools that can be used for tasks like segmentation, lead scoring, and email personalization. The software offers autoresponders, which allow businesses to set up automated messages that are triggered when certain events occur like when someone subscribes to a newsletter or purchases a product from their website. These automated messages can help nurture leads and drive conversions by providing timely information and relevant offers after key actions have been taken by customers or prospects.

Campaigner’s segmentation and targeting features allow users to send highly personalized messages based on interests or demographics like geographic location or purchase history so that each message resonates with the recipient on a deeper level than a generic message would do alone. This helps ensure that each customer receives relevant content tailored just for them—increasing engagement with each campaign and improving overall ROI from email marketing efforts.

Integrations include Shopify, Magento, Adobe Analytics, Surveytown, and Google Analytics. More can be unlocked through Zapier but this requires an account and may incur additional charges. 

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Download/upload Excel spreadsheets for data clean-up
  • Customizable email automation flows
  • Advanced segmentation and targeting

Cons:

  • More custom reports welcomed
  • Sign-up forms don't support captcha yet

Best for marketing automation

  • 14-day free trial
  • From $39/month
Visit Website
Rating: 4.6/5

ActiveCampaign is a powerful and user-friendly marketing automation platform designed to help businesses of all sizes optimize their customer engagement strategies. Offering a wide array of features, including email marketing, marketing automation, sales automation, and CRM capabilities, ActiveCampaign enables businesses to create targeted and personalized marketing campaigns that resonate with their audience. What sets ActiveCampaign apart is its intuitive automation builder, which allows users to create complex automation workflows with ease, combining email marketing, site tracking, and lead scoring for more precise customer targeting.

Why I Picked ActiveCampaign: ActiveCampaign is a versatile marketing automation platform that excels in creating highly personalized and targeted marketing campaigns. Marketers can leverage its intuitive automation builder to design intricate workflows, integrating email marketing, site tracking, and lead scoring for precise audience segmentation. By analyzing customer behavior and preferences using machine learning algorithms, ActiveCampaign enables businesses to send timely and relevant messages, increasing the likelihood of conversions. The platform's robust email marketing features, combined with advanced automation, allow for efficient nurturing of leads, turning prospects into loyal customers. 

ActiveCampaign Standout Features & Integrations 

Features include a unique combination of site tracking and event tracking. While many marketing automation platforms provide site tracking to monitor user behavior on websites, and some offer event tracking for specific actions, ActiveCampaign seamlessly integrates both. This allows businesses to track not just which pages visitors view but also specific actions they take, such as downloads, video views, or button clicks.

ActiveCampaign incorporates machine learning algorithms for predictive sending, a feature that sets it apart from many competitors. This tool analyzes the historical engagement patterns of each contact to predict the optimal time for sending emails to maximize open rates and click-through rates. By automatically determining the best sending times for individual recipients, ActiveCampaign ensures that marketing emails are delivered when they are most likely to be seen and acted upon. 

Integrations include BigCommerce, Calendly, Magento Commerce, PayPal, Shopify, Stripe, Square, Typeform, WooCommerce, WordPress, and others.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Combined website and event tracking
  • Machine learning-driven predictive sending feature
  • Robust automation and segmentation

Cons:

  • Limited built-in reporting customization options
  • Learning curve for complex automations

Best for marketing analytics

  • Free to use
  • Free to use
Visit Website
Rating: 4.5/5

Google Analytics is a powerful web analytics service offered by Google that helps website owners and marketers understand their online audience and how users interact with their websites. By tracking website traffic, user behavior, and other key metrics, Google Analytics provides detailed insights into the performance of a website. It offers a wide range of features, including real-time analytics, audience demographics, user flow analysis, and conversion tracking. Website owners can gain valuable data on visitor demographics, popular pages, and referral sources.

Why I Picked Google Analytics: Google Analytics is a vital tool for marketers, offering deep insights into website performance and user behavior. Marketers can utilize it to track the effectiveness of their marketing campaigns by analyzing traffic sources, user engagement, and conversion rates. With Google Analytics, marketers can identify which marketing channels are driving the most valuable traffic, measure the success of specific campaigns, and optimize their strategies based on real-time data. By understanding user behavior such as the pages they visit, the time they spend on the site, and the actions they take, marketers can refine their content, design, and calls-to-action for better engagement and conversions.

Google Analytics Standout Features & Integrations 

Features include the User Explorer tool, allowing marketers to delve deeply into individual user journeys on their websites. Unlike many other analytics platforms, User Explorer provides a granular view of user interactions, displaying specific anonymized user IDs along with their behavior patterns, sessions, and conversion paths. This tool is particularly valuable for marketers seeking to understand the unique customer journey on a micro-level, enabling them to identify pain points, optimize user experience, and personalize marketing strategies effectively.

Plus, Google Analytics stands out with its robust customization options, allowing marketers to create highly tailored reports and apply advanced segmentation to their data. Unlike many competitors, Google Analytics enables users to define specific segments based on a wide array of dimensions and metrics.

Integrations include Shopify, WordPress, Facebook, Zendesk, and Marketo, plus others, as well as additional Google solutions like Google Ads, Google Cloud, Google Play, and Google Ad Manager.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • High degree of customization and flexibility
  • Comprehensive website data
  • Integration with other Google services

Cons:

  • Must be combined with other tools for a complete solution
  • Steep learning curve

Best affiliate marketing software

  • 14-day free trial
  • From $30/user/month
Visit Website
Rating: 4.6/5

Creatio, formerly known as bpm'online, is a comprehensive customer relationship management (CRM) software designed to streamline sales, marketing, and service processes for businesses. It offers a unified platform that combines powerful CRM functionalities with intelligent automation, allowing companies to manage customer data, automate workflows, and improve overall customer experiences. Creatio provides tools for managing leads, tracking opportunities, and analyzing sales performance.

Why I Picked Creatio: Creatio streamlines affiliate marketing efforts by providing a centralized platform where businesses can manage relationships with affiliates, monitor their performance, and optimize collaboration for mutual success. Creatio allows companies to track affiliate interactions, manage commissions, and automate payment processes, ensuring transparency and efficiency. With its robust analytics and reporting tools, businesses can analyze affiliate performance, track referral traffic, and assess the effectiveness of various marketing strategies. Creatio's automation capabilities enable personalized communication and targeted marketing campaigns to affiliates, fostering better engagement and driving higher conversions. 

Creatio Standout Features & Integrations 

Features include intelligent predictive lead scoring, a feature that utilizes advanced algorithms and machine learning to assess lead quality accurately. Unlike traditional lead scoring methods, this advanced functionality evaluates various factors, such as lead interactions, historical data, and behavioral patterns, to predict a lead's likelihood to convert.

Plus, Creatio has a low-code process designer, which allows users to design, model, and automate complex business processes with minimal coding knowledge. This feature stands out because it empowers marketing teams to create highly customized and intricate workflows without extensive IT involvement.

Integrations can be found in their Marketplace and include Process First, Make It TSI, Agovo, Amdocs, Evoqia, Meritus, Onmiline, Technology Advisors, Softline, ITS, Navicon, Orange Process, and other options.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Robust automation capabilities (no-code)
  • Predictive analytics and AI
  • Unified platform that integrates marketing, sales, and service

Cons:

  • Complexity for small businesses
  • Steep learning curve

Best free email marketing software

  • 30-day free trial + free plan available
  • From $13/month
Visit Website
Rating: 4.3/5

Mailchimp is a widely used marketing automation platform and email marketing service that enables businesses to create, send, and analyze email campaigns. Known for its user-friendly interface, Mailchimp offers a range of features including customizable email templates, audience segmentation, marketing automation, and detailed analytics. It allows businesses to target specific groups of customers with personalized content, track email performance metrics such as open rates and click-through rates, and automate marketing tasks to save time and effort. 

Why I Picked MailChimp: Mailchimp's multichannel marketing capabilities allow businesses to reach their audience through various channels, including social media, postcards, and digital advertising, in addition to email. Users can create Facebook and Instagram ads directly from the Mailchimp platform, target specific audience segments, and track the performance of their ads alongside email campaigns. The ability to manage multiple marketing channels from a single platform provides users with a unified and cohesive marketing strategy. This multichannel approach is unique, offering businesses the convenience of integrating their email marketing efforts with other online and offline channels, enhancing their overall marketing reach and impact.

MailChimp Standout Features & Integrations 

Features include its Creative Assistant, an innovative tool that uses AI to help users design visually appealing email campaigns. With Creative Assistant, users can input text and a basic idea, and the tool automatically generates various email templates tailored to the user's brand and content. This feature is particularly valuable for small businesses and entrepreneurs without extensive design skills, as it simplifies the email creation process and ensures professional-looking campaigns. The AI-driven design suggestions set Mailchimp apart from competitors by offering an intelligent and creative solution to users, enhancing the overall user experience.

MailChimp also has a free plan, making it a great choice for small businsses, indivduals, and startups. Their free plan includes up to 500 contacts, with 1000 email sends per month and a daily limit of 500 sends.

Integrations include APIANT, Accelo, Acuity Scheduling, AddThis for MailChimp, Advances RSS Email Automation, AgencyAnalytics, Airsquare, Attendstar, Attentive.ly, Automate.io, Autopilot, BEE Pro, Batchbook, Bloom Intelligence, HootSuite, and more.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Intuitive and user-friendly interface
  • Creative assistant and templates
  • Free plan available

Cons:

  • Automations are relatively basic
  • Limited design customizability without coding

Best for account-based marketing tools

  • Free demo
  • From $895/month
Visit Website
Rating: 4/5

Adobe Marketo is a comprehensive marketing automation platform that offers a wide range of tools for businesses to engage and nurture their leads, automate marketing tasks, and analyze marketing ROI. Part of the Adobe Experience Cloud, Marketo allows marketers to create targeted and personalized campaigns, manage customer relationships, and optimize marketing strategies. It provides features like lead management, email marketing, social media engagement, and analytics, enabling businesses to effectively capture, nurture, and convert leads into customers.

Why I Picked Adobe Marketo: Adobe Marketo stands out from competitors with its robust Account-Based Marketing (ABM) capabilities. ABM is a strategic approach that focuses on targeting high-value accounts as opposed to individual leads, making it especially valuable for B2B marketers. Marketo's ABM features allow businesses to create highly personalized and targeted campaigns tailored to specific companies, enabling marketers to engage key stakeholders within those organizations more effectively. This level of personalization and targeting at the account level sets Marketo apart, particularly for businesses with complex sales cycles and multiple decision-makers involved in the purchasing process.

Adobe Marketo Standout Features & Integrations 

Features include artificial intelligence (AI), offering predictive content capabilities that analyze vast amounts of data to predict which content is likely to perform best for specific audience segments. This predictive content engine goes beyond basic content recommendation systems, providing marketers with insights into which types of content are most likely to resonate with their audience, improving content relevance and engagement.

Additionally, Marketo's strength lies in its robust automation capabilities, allowing businesses to automate repetitive tasks, track customer interactions across multiple channels, and deliver personalized content to the right audience at the right time.

Integrations include SalesLogix, ACT!, Pipedrive, MailChimp, Zoho CRM, Teamgate, WordPress, Magento, TextPattern, and others. It can also connect to any other Adobe program, like Adobe Experience Manager, Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Seamless integration with Adobe ecosystem
  • Predictive analytics and AI-driven insights
  • Robust account-based marketing capabilities

Cons:

  • May not be price appropriate for SMBs
  • Complexity and learning curve

Best for customizable industry-specific solutions

  • Free trial available
  • From $29/month for small user organizations
Visit Website
Rating: 3.9/5

Maximizer CRM is a robust and user-friendly customer relationship management software designed to empower businesses with efficient tools for managing customer interactions and driving sales growth. With a focus on simplicity and customization, Maximizer CRM offers a comprehensive suite of features, including contact management, lead tracking, sales forecasting, and marketing automation. What sets Maximizer apart is its flexibility, allowing businesses to tailor the software according to their unique processes and industry requirements.

Why I Picked Maximizer CRM: Maximizer CRM serves as a powerful tool for marketing efforts by enabling businesses to create highly targeted and personalized campaigns while optimizing customer interactions. Marketing teams can leverage its comprehensive contact management features to maintain detailed customer profiles, ensuring a deep understanding of individual preferences and behaviors. With its industry-specific customization options, Maximizer CRM allows businesses to tailor marketing strategies to specific sectors, enhancing relevance and engagement. The integrated business intelligence and reporting tools enable data-driven decision-making, helping marketers analyze campaign effectiveness and customer responses in real-time.

Maximizer CRM Standout Features & Integrations 

Features include its ability to offer highly customizable, industry-specific solutions. Unlike many competitors, Maximizer provides tailored CRM solutions for various industries such as finance, real estate, healthcare, and manufacturing. These specialized solutions come pre-configured with industry-specific templates, workflows, and modules, designed to address the unique needs and challenges of each sector. 

Maximizer CRM stands out with its integrated business intelligence and reporting capabilities. The platform offers advanced reporting tools that allow users to create customized reports and dashboards based on real-time data. What sets this feature apart is its seamless integration with CRM functions. Users can not only analyze historical data but also derive actionable insights from current customer interactions and sales activities.

Integrations include Outlook, MailChimp, Quickbooks, Microsoft Excel and Word, Quilio, HubSpot, QuoteWerks, MYOB, VOIP & Telephony, SharePoint, Bing Maps, and over 1000 more through Zapier (may require a separate account and incur additional costs).

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Comprehensive contact management
  • Integrated business intelligence and reporting
  • Industry-specific solutions with pre-configured templates and modules

Cons:

  • Pricing structure can be complex
  • Some mobile app limitations

Other Marketing Software

Here are the rest of my best marketing software picks, including a best use case for each.

  1. Freshworks

    Best for customer data analytics

  2. Semrush

    Best content marketing tools

  3. Textmagic

    Best for two-way SMS marketing comms

  4. SharpSpring

    Best open API for easy integration

  5. Bynder

    Best video marketing software

  6. EngageBay

    Best all-in-one marketing suite

  7. SendinBlue

    Best SMS marketing software

  8. Funnel

    Best product marketing software

  9. Iterable

    Best behavior-based personalization

  10. SumoMe

    Best free email capture tool

  11. GetResponse

    Best landing page builder

  12. Act-On

    Best marketing content templates

  13. TargetBay

    Best SaaS eCommerce personalization tool

  14. GreenRope

    Best drag-and-drop customer journey builder

  15. Insightly

    Best marketing software CRM

If you still haven't found what you're looking for here, check out these tools closely related to marketing software that we've tested and evaluated.

Selection Criteria for Marketing Software

Selecting the right marketing software hinges on understanding the specific functionalities that align with your business's unique needs, pain points, and objectives. Through extensive personal trials and research, I've developed a set of criteria to evaluate marketing solutions, ensuring they meet the diverse requirements of different businesses.

Core Marketing Software Functionality: 25% of total weighting score

To be considered for inclusion on my list of the best marketing solutions, a platform had to support the ability to fulfill common use cases. These include:

  • Automated email marketing campaigns
  • Social media scheduling and analytics
  • Lead capture and management
  • Basic CRM functionalities
  • Performance analytics and reporting

Additional Standout Features: 25% of total weighting score

Innovative features that set a platform apart from its competitors are crucial. I look for:

  • Advanced AI-driven insights for predictive analytics
  • Unique personalization capabilities across channels
  • Integrated content management systems for seamless content creation and distribution
  • Comprehensive multi-channel marketing automation beyond email and social media
  • Cutting-edge SEO tools for keyword research and optimization

Usability: 10% of total weighting score

Key considerations include:

  • Intuitive interface design that balances power and simplicity
  • Drag-and-drop editors for email and landing page design
  • Clear, logical navigation paths that facilitate easy access to all features
  • Responsive design for mobile and tablet use

Onboarding: 10% of total weighting score

Effective onboarding processes are essential. I evaluate:

  • Availability of comprehensive training materials, such as videos and tutorials
  • Interactive product tours and chatbots for immediate assistance
  • Pre-designed templates to kickstart campaign creation
  • Community forums or webinars for deeper learning and engagement

Customer Support: 10% of total weighting score

Exceptional customer support is non-negotiable. Criteria include:

  • 24/7 live chat support
  • A robust knowledge base for self-service troubleshooting
  • Dedicated account management for personalized assistance
  • Quick response times to support tickets

Value For Money: 10% of total weighting score

Assessing value involves:

  • Transparent pricing models without hidden fees
  • Scalable plans that grow with your business
  • Free trials or demos to test functionality before committing
  • A clear ROI from using the platform, justified by its features and efficiencies

Customer Reviews: 10% of total weighting score

Genuine user feedback provides invaluable insights. I look for:

  • High overall satisfaction ratings
  • Positive comments on ease of use and customer support quality
  • Testimonials highlighting specific benefits and outcomes
  • Feedback on the platform's impact on marketing ROI and campaign effectiveness

By meticulously applying these criteria, businesses can identify marketing solutions that not only meet their immediate needs but also offer the scalability and innovation required to adapt to future challenges and opportunities in the marketing landscape.

What marketing software you use and how you use it will largely depend on industry trends. Here are some trends that I thought you might find helpful as you design your ultimate MarTech stack:

  • Integration of AI and Machine Learning: Tools like Marketo and HubSpot have enhanced their AI capabilities for predictive analytics and automated decision-making. These advancements allow for more personalized and efficient marketing campaigns, with AI-driven insights driving strategy and execution.
  • Rise of Voice and Conversational Marketing: Platforms such as Drift and Intercom have introduced advanced voice recognition and natural language processing features. This trend signifies a shift towards more interactive and engaging customer experiences, leveraging voice technology for enhanced user engagement.
  • Decline in Traditional Email Marketing Tools: A gradual shift away from standalone email marketing platforms, as seen in the reduced feature updates from providers like Mailchimp. This suggests a pivot towards more integrated, multi-channel approaches, as email becomes one component of a broader strategy.
  • Growing Importance of Content Marketing Platforms: The expansion of features in platforms like Contently and CoSchedule, focusing on content creation, distribution, and analytics. Content remains king, with an increasing emphasis on strategic creation and distribution to drive engagement and ROI.
  • User Experience (UX) Optimization: Adobe XD and Figma have introduced new features for creating more intuitive and user-friendly marketing interfaces. This highlights the critical role of UX in marketing, ensuring that campaigns are not only effective but also provide a seamless user experience.

What is Marketing Software?

What is marketing software, anyway? Marketing software is a suite of tools designed to help businesses execute and manage their marketing campaigns and strategies. The purpose is to encompasses various functionalities such as email marketing, social media management, customer relationship management (CRM), and analytics. This software streamlines the process of targeting and engaging with customers, automating repetitive tasks, and analyzing the effectiveness of marketing efforts.

Features of Marketing Software

Here are a few key features you may encounter with the software on this list, plus what they do/why they matter:

  • Social media marketing – Schedule, post, create, disseminate, advertise on popular social platforms.
  • Email campaigns – Email builder with small scheduling, drag-and-drop elements, and spam detection.
  • Reporting and analytics – We need to know if campaigns work and whether leads are coming in and staying within the ecosystem.
  • Lead management – Capture and nurture leads within your target audience.
  • Drip campaigns Send hyper-targeted marketing messages according to where the customer lands in the buying cycle.
  • Segmented/targeted promotions Smart, AI-powered audience segmentation for niche campaigns.
  • Database of customer information Keep track of customer data to better reach them with what they need, when they need it.
  • A/B Testing Ability to test two different ideas (ad copy, email headlines, page UX) and measure which performs better
  • Project Management Helps in organizing project timelines, assigning tasks, and keeping communication transparent with notifications and alerts

Marketing Software Benefits

There are many benefits to using marketing software, including:

  • Efficient Campaign Management: Marketing software streamlines the planning, execution, and monitoring of campaigns. This efficiency allows marketers to launch more campaigns in less time, significantly boosting productivity and campaign output.
  • Data-Driven Insights: With advanced analytics, marketing software provides deep insights into customer behavior and campaign performance. This enables businesses to make informed decisions, tailoring their strategies to better meet customer needs and market demands.
  • Enhanced Customer Engagement: Tools within marketing software facilitate personalized and targeted communication. This personalization leads to higher engagement rates, as messages resonate more effectively with the intended audience.
  • Cost-Effective Marketing: By automating various marketing tasks, software reduces the need for extensive manual labor and resources. This automation translates into lower operational costs and a better allocation of the marketing budget.
  • Scalability and Flexibility: Marketing software adapts to the changing needs of a business, supporting growth and expansion. This scalability ensures that marketing efforts can grow in tandem with the business, without the need for constant reinvestment in new tools.

Cost & Pricing of Marketing Software

Each marketing software plan comes with its own set of features and pricing, designed to match the specific needs and budgets of different organizations. Below is a breakdown of common plan options you'll encounter in the marketing software market.

Plan Comparison Table for Marketing Software

Plan TypeAverage PriceCommon Features
Basic$0 - $200/month- Email Marketing
- Basic Analytics
- Social Media Integration
- Limited Campaign Automation
Standard$200 - $500/month- Enhanced Automation
- Lead Scoring
- CRM Integration
- Advanced Analytics
- A/B Testing
Professional$500 - $1,000/month- Multi-Channel Campaigns
- Advanced Reporting
- Custom Integrations
- Team Collaboration Tools
- Advanced Lead Management
Enterprise$1,000+/month- Customizable Dashboards
- AI-Powered Insights
- 24/7 Support
- Advanced Security Features
- API Access
Free$0- Basic Email Marketing
- Limited Analytics
- Social Media Posting
- Contact Management


When considering which plan to choose, it's essential to evaluate the specific needs of your business. Remember, the right plan should not only fit your current needs but also accommodate future growth and expansion.

Frequently Asked Questions

I thought of a few basic marketing software questions while I was writing that I will try to answer here. Check out the rest of the site for more in-depth analysis on many of these topics:

What are the types of marketing software?

Marketing software encompasses a wide range of tools designed to assist businesses in various aspects of their marketing efforts. Each type of marketing software; caters to different marketing activities and objectives. Here are some of the key types of marketing software:

  1. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Software: This type of software helps businesses manage interactions with current and potential customers. It stores information on customer behavior, preferences, and history, enabling personalized marketing and sales strategies.
  2. Email Marketing Software: Used for creating, sending, and analyzing email campaigns. This software helps in segmenting audiences, personalizing messages, and tracking open rates and conversions.
  3. Social Media Management Tools: These tools assist in managing and scheduling posts on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. They also provide analytics to track engagement and performance across social networks.
  4. Content Management Systems (CMS): A CMS helps in creating, managing, and optimizing digital content. It’s essential for maintaining websites, blogs, and e-commerce platforms, often featuring SEO tools to enhance online visibility.
  5. Marketing Automation Software: This software automates repetitive marketing tasks such as email marketing, social media posting, and ad campaigns. It’s crucial for nurturing leads, personalizing content, and managing complex marketing campaigns efficiently.
  6. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Tools: These tools help improve the ranking of websites on search engines. They provide insights into keywords, backlinks, content optimization, and competitive analysis.
  7. Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Management Software: Used for managing and optimizing paid advertising campaigns on platforms like Google Ads and Bing Ads. It helps in keyword research, bid management, and ROI analysis.
  8. Analytics and Data Visualization Tools: These tools analyze data from various marketing channels and present it in an understandable format. They help in measuring campaign performance, customer behavior, and ROI.
  9. Influencer Marketing Platforms: These platforms connect brands with influencers to promote products or services. They help in identifying relevant influencers, managing campaigns, and tracking results.
  10. Affiliate Marketing Software: This software helps in creating and managing affiliate programs, where affiliates earn commissions for promoting a company’s products or services.
  11. Event Marketing and Webinar Software: Used for organizing virtual events, webinars, and conferences. These tools assist in event registration, audience engagement, and post-event analytics.
  12. Mobile Marketing Software: Focused on reaching customers through mobile devices, this software includes tools for SMS marketing, mobile app analytics, and location-based marketing.

What's the best free marketing software?

Yes, there are various free marketing software available that offer a range of functionalities to support different marketing activities. Some examples include Hubspot, Mailchimp, Google Analytics, and Buffer. You can also consider social platforms like Twitter, TikTok, Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest as great free marketing tools.

While these free marketing software options have limitations compared to their paid counterparts, they can still provide significant value for individuals and small businesses with limited budgets or basic marketing needs.

Which is the easiest marketing software to learn?

Determining the easiest marketing software to learn depends on individual preferences, familiarity with technology, and the specific functionalities required. However, some marketing software platforms are known for their user-friendly interfaces and intuitive workflows.

Examples include Mailchimp, which offers a straightforward and easy-to-navigate interface for email marketing and automation, and Canva, a graphic design tool with a drag-and-drop editor and a wide range of pre-designed templates. Additionally, platforms like Hootsuite and Buffer simplify social media management with user-friendly dashboards and scheduling capabilities.

What's the best marketing software for enterprises?

Determining the best marketing software for enterprise-level organizations depends on various factors including specific business needs, industry, budget, and the scale of operations. However, several marketing software solutions are widely recognized for their robust features, scalability, and reliability, making them popular choices among large enterprises. Here are some top contenders:

  • Adobe Experience Cloud: Adobe’s suite offers a comprehensive set of marketing tools, including analytics, advertising, and content management. Known for its advanced features, it’s particularly well-suited for enterprises that focus heavily on data-driven marketing and personalized customer experiences.
  • Salesforce Marketing Cloud: This platform is renowned for its CRM capabilities, but it also offers a powerful marketing suite. It includes email marketing, social media tools, advertising, and customer journey mapping. Salesforce is ideal for enterprises looking for a seamless integration of marketing with sales and customer service.
  • HubSpot Marketing Hub Enterprise: HubSpot is known for its user-friendly interface and comprehensive feature set, which includes content management, social media, SEO, and CRM tools. The Enterprise version offers advanced features like predictive lead scoring and custom event triggers.
  • Oracle Marketing Cloud: Oracle offers a suite of marketing tools that include email marketing, lead management, and a data management platform. It’s a strong choice for enterprises needing a robust marketing automation platform that integrates with other Oracle products.

What is the average setup time and ease of use for non-technical marketers?

The setup time and ease of use for marketing platforms can vary significantly, but generally, most aim to be user-friendly, especially for non-technical marketers. On average, setup times can range from a few hours to a couple of days, depending on the complexity of the platform and the extent of the features you plan to use. Many platforms prioritize user experience, offering intuitive interfaces, drag-and-drop features, and extensive support resources like tutorials and live customer service to help ease the onboarding process. The goal is to lower the barrier to entry for users of all skill levels, ensuring that even those without a technical background can effectively leverage these tools to drive their marketing campaigns

Are there any platforms offering AI-driven insights not covered in the article?

While the article reviews a variety of marketing software, there are certainly other platforms out there that emphasize AI-driven insights and are not mentioned. These platforms use artificial intelligence to analyze marketing data, predict customer behavior, and optimize marketing strategies. They can offer predictive analytics, customer segmentation, and personalized marketing at scale, enhancing campaign effectiveness and efficiency. The landscape of AI in marketing is rapidly evolving, with new tools and features being developed continuously. Marketers looking for cutting-edge solutions should keep an eye on industry news and forums for the latest in AI-driven marketing innovations.

How do these marketing platforms accommodate global marketing campaigns with multiple languages?

Marketing platforms designed to support global campaigns often include multi-language support, allowing marketers to create and manage content in various languages from a single platform. This functionality is crucial for businesses aiming to reach a global audience, ensuring that marketing messages are culturally and linguistically appropriate across different regions. Such platforms may offer automated translation services, though it’s generally recommended to use professional translation for accuracy. Additionally, these tools often feature localization capabilities, which go beyond mere translation to adjust content for local tastes and cultural nuances, ensuring that global campaigns resonate with their intended audiences on a more personal level.

Additional Marketing Software Reviews

Marketing tends to require different platforms working in tandem. Here are some other software lists you might find useful:

Conclusion

This comprehensive list has evaluated the capabilities, user-friendliness, and cost-effectiveness of the top marketing software contenders, equipping you with the insights to make an informed decision. Whether you're grappling with lead generation, email automation, analytics, or customer relationship management, the expertise distilled here aims to address those pain points with precision.

Marketing software trends change so rapidly, so be sure to sign up for The CMO newsletter. That way, you'll get insights delivered right to your inbox as the MarTech tide ebbs and flows.

By Stephanie Hood

Stephanie Hood is an experienced marketing professional and Editor of The CMO. With nearly a decade spent as Marketing Manager at Discover Holidays and Executive Editor at VIVA Lifestyle & Travel, she built her career leading editorial and marketing teams and strategies that turn six-figure budgets into seven-figure profits. She now enjoys connecting with the world's top executives to learn their secrets to business success, and shares those insights right here with her community of like-minded professionals. Curious what she’s uncovered? Be sure to sign up for The CMO newsletter.