Do Stars (or top lead automation vendors) Partnering Equal On Court Success?

Many thought the trio of Lebron James, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosch would guarantee success on the court this season in the NBA. As history has proven, it takes more than just talent to win a team sport as the Miami Heat often struggled this season and failed to bring home the championship so many predicted when they joined forces last summer. Past activities do not forecast the future, so fully expect that Miami will be back strong again next year and will compete and win a championship in the next year or two as these amazing individual talents further mesh, and a deeper supporting team is built around them.

Today, leading marketing automation vendors, Marketo and ExactTarget, have announced a strategic partnership to integrate Marketo’s Revenue Performance Management solution with ExactTarget’s Interactive Marketing Hub. Combine these two vendors with their strong integrations to Salesforce CRM and I see a very simliar story developing. One with great promise and expectation of delivering amazing returns to your business and marketing objectives.

The partnership will combine Marketo’s full featured lead automation platform directly into ExactTargets Interactive Marketing Hub. This will allow marketers to plan, execute and analyze their marketing campaigns alongside ExactTarget’s email, social and web campaigns. Integrate this platform into the sales activities of Salesforce, and you have an amazing set of tools at your disposal to tie your marketing efforts to revenue in your business.

But with all partnerships, I expect this relationship to have some growing pains as organizations that have previously aligned with one or the other adapt to having a new start in the huddle. The combination of tools will allow you to execute campaigns more seamlessly, integrate multi-channel campaigns and provide much more insight into your marketing activity and budgets. It will be the decisions on which tool will be best to manage this campaign, and where the analysis for this report should come from that will cause frustrations and setbacks.. Ultimately, it will be this integration combined with strong strategy development and coaching with your marketing technology vendors, that will define how valuable this partnership is to your organization and whether you will be winning any championships this year, or next.

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