In my experience, it’s not the lack of software that causes frustration for small business owners, rather the frustration stems from the over-abundance of software and features available.
That’s Bill Brelsford over at Small Business Marketing Tips & Strategies in his post last week, Software Alone Won’t Cure Your Marketing Blues. Bill looks at a list of marketing frustrations cited by small business in a survey published at Inside CRM.
- Too difficult to follow up with cold, warm and lukewarm leads consistently and efficiently
- Can’t properly track and manage prospects and customers
- Need to integrate online and offline marketing efforts
- Poor email deliverability
- Too much manual grunt work in the sales and marketing process, no automation
- Can’t track sales activity
- Lack of centralization, too many different programs and systems
- Too costly to maintain servers and IT staff
- Too difficult to manually manage multichannel campaigns
- One-dimensional marketing
Reviewing that list, Bill points out that process and strategy should come first, before the software. Items 1,2 and 6 on that list are issues of procedure, and discipline, not tools.
They can easily be handled with a Big Chief Tablet, a #2 pencil, and a consistently executed process.
Then there are the items that a software vendor would add to the list, and finally, Bill concludes:
I don’t want to sound like I’m anti-software, far from it. I have just found that a great source of frustration comes from purchasing marketing automation tools before there is a marketing plan or processes to automate. As I mentioned in this previous post, I think the right approach is to have a process first, and then pick the right tools to help you automate that processes.
Well said. And I think that same logic applies to other tools in business, not just marketing automation.