All CRMs have marketing automations but not all marketing automations are part of CRMs.


The primary purpose of a CRM is to track the effectiveness of a sales funnel.

A CRM follows a potential inquiry through the lead process – from its initial engagement all the way to its opportunity stats (won or loss).

CRMs also allow sales teams to work on two fronts, while a sales associate is providing one-on-one touches (follow-up calls, meet-ups, text conversations) and notating those efforts in the contact’s records, the warm lead may also be a part of a nurturing sequence or a marketing automation.

CRMS vs. Marketing Automations

Marketing Automations

A marketing automation, on the other hand, may be represented in a site pixel for tracking an action, a web form, social messages, or as a series of emails, texts, and in some cases – automated call follow-ups that direct the potential lead to a call to action.

The goal of the marketing automation is to track the engagement of the lead in terms of opens, clicks, and potentially tags via third party actions (purchases a product via a sales page). Its primary directive is not to directly sell but to assist with selling.

Working Together

CRMs and Marketing automations work together to provide an all encompassing experience for an inquiry.

The Marketing automation sets up the ability for the potential lead to inquire about services.

Once inside the system, the automation may have tasks/duties to assign the lead to a sales associate for personal follow-ups.

At the same time, the lead is also in an indoctrination campaign, receiving soft emails to learn more about the company, what it has to offer – in other words, they are passively being fed information on their own time until the sales associate can connect.

The Marketing automation also allows the sales associate to see the interest or lead score of a potential lead – are they opening and clicking on emails, what are their interests, are they visiting the site, where are they going on the site, etc.

Best of all, if the sales associate is unable to connect or successfully create a sale from the prospect, the interaction does not stop there. The warm lead simply transitions to a nurturing campaign, allowing the company to continue their efforts while the sales associate moves on to qualifying the next potential lead.

Some of the best CRMs with marketing automation features are Keap Max Classic (formally Infusionsoft), ActiveCampaign, Ontraport, and HighLevel.

Photo by Hello Lightbulb on Unsplash

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