Sell to Win

The 7 best sales and marketing software platforms for unified growth teams

Maria Waida
Contributor, Sell to Win
Maria Waida
Contributor, Sell to Win

Combined sales and marketing software helps growth teams communicate better, coordinate their efforts, and save money.

There are two common problems with using multiple software platforms for all your sales and marketing tasks. First, you run the risk of information getting out of sync, with updates in one platform not appearing in others. Second, you’re likely overspending by paying for multiple products.

Not only is a unified sales and marketing tool more cost-effective, but it also acts as a central information hub for growth teams by keeping all historical customer information in one organized and searchable place. Growth teams gain full insight into buyer relationships so that no context is lost at any point in the buyer’s journey, keeping everyone on the same page at all times.  

But what is sales and marketing software, really?

Sales and marketing software is any platform that helps organizations track all the details of their customer relationships through the entire sales funnel, while offering tools to help sellers and marketers build better relationships with their buyers. They’re often used by growth teams to more effectively capture leads, nurture and engage them towards a sale, and provide ongoing value to existing customers.

And what does a growth team do?

A growth team is a group of sellers and marketers working together to accomplish a single goal: revenue growth. By eliminating silos between these teams, marketers gain a better understanding of which efforts produce viable leads and sellers gain insight on what their potential buyers are interested in. This closer relationship between sellers and marketers leads to higher quality leads, higher conversion rates, and more sales over time.

4 Ways That Sales and Marketing Software Provides a Positive ROI for Growth Teams

Saving Money

Paying for one solution is usually cheaper than buying multiple products that do the same tasks less efficiently. To get all the features a sales and marketing software platform offers, you’d need to invest in separate tools for email marketing, sales automation, customer relationship management, and analytics, to name a few. It all adds up, especially if you have a large team and are paying for each user on a monthly basis.

Freeing Up Time

Streamlining your tools into one growth team platform helps ensure that time isn’t lost working out incompatible integrations or doing busy work like updating client files and transferring data between platforms. In other words, using an all-in-one sales and marketing tool allows users to spend more time on their highest ROI activities.

Improving Lead Quality

One of the best ways to improve the quality of your B2B leads is to align sales and marketing teams on what a qualified lead really is, how quality should be measured, and what both departments should do to continue nurturing the relationship.

Sales and marketing software can help growth teams develop a mutually beneficial feedback loop that promotes high quality lead generation, and improves growth team alignment by keeping everyone in sync, up to date, and focused on clear, measurable goals.

Building Trust

Using sales and marketing software to align your team builds trust among your clients by providing consistent messaging throughout the buyer’s journey. For more on creating consistency at every sales touchpoint, watch our Q&A with Social Centered Selling’s Barb Giamanco at BOUNDLESS 2020.

The Best Sales and Marketing Software Platforms

Each of these sales and marketing software platforms offers a set of features that fulfill the essential operational needs of sellers and marketers. We’ll go over what every tool does, which features growth teams should pay special attention to, and the pricing options each brand offers.

We’ll also offer tips for how growth teams can use these standout platforms to improve their productivity, streamline collaboration, and maximize their investment.

1. Nutshell

Nutshell is a top-rated CRM that makes powerful sales and marketing automation tools accessible for small- and medium-sized businesses. At just $39/month per user, their full-featured Nutshell Pro package includes a fully customizable pipeline automation builder, one of the best reporting suites on the market, automated personal email sequences, and unlimited in-app phone dialing, as well as unlimited CRM contacts, unlimited data storage, and free live support.

The flexibility of Nutshell’s platform makes it a very valuable CRM for marketers. In 2021, Nutshell released their Nutshell Marketing email marketing automation suite, which allows sales and marketing teams to design and send beautiful marketing emails, automatically trigger drip sequences based on subscriber actions, instantly see who’s engaging with their messages, and manage all of their customer nurturing out of a single tool.

2. ActiveCampaign

ActiveCampaign is an automation tool designed for integrated email marketing and customer relationship management. It’s mostly geared towards small businesses looking to meaningfully engage with customers at scale. ActiveCampaign recently won G2Crowd’s prestigious Best Software Companies of 2020 award, ranking #12 in the world.  

In terms of growth features, this sales and marketing software platform offers omni-channel management for everything from email to text messaging to social media as well as machine learning tools. Packages range from $9 to $229 a month depending on your contact list size and which upgrades (such as lead win probabilities and free design services) your team may be interested in.

If you want to grow your online sales, you can use ActiveCampaign to tailor ads to the hobbies and interests of your dynamic market segmentations.

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3. Keap

Keap, another small business favorite, is an email marketing and sales platform that organizes all of your client information and daily work in one user-friendly dashboard. Their features help users quote customers, schedule sales calls, create invoices, collect payments, and foster long term relationships using a CRM with follow-up tools.

Keap Grow syncs client information across all of devices and users. It also helps you email, call, or text leads right from your phone and streamlines all payment activities with one-click features. Keap occasionally has steeply discounted limited time offers but if they don’t snag one of these deals, individual Keap Grow users can expect to pay $24 for their first two months then $79 per month for up to 500 total contacts.

To quadruple your lead generation like Keap customer Presidential Pools did, set up web forms with automated follow up messages that are tailored to the customer’s interest level.

4. EngageBay

EngageBay is a fully integrated all-in-one marketing, sales, and service platform that provides small to medium businesses with modular solutions. The platform has various tools to automate redundant and manual tasks, build and organize contacts, visualize deals, manage sales, and support customers—all from a single, easy-to-use platform.

EngageBay's software is neatly categorized into three stacks for marketing, sales, and service. Each of these stacks is called a 'Bay.'

The Marketing Bay has many compelling features, ranging from automation and scheduling to landing page and form builders. You can also keep your content up-to-date on various social media platforms using their 'Stream' feature.

The CRM & Sales Bay has impressive tools to streamline your company's sales process, and gives you a bird's eye view of your leads and the statuses of your deals. You can connect with third-party calendar applications to schedule appointments with customers, and get a holistic view of your sales progress using visual charts and insightful metrics right from EngageBay's dashboard.

The Service Bay offers a prudent way to manage and issue customer tickets quickly and efficiently, all from one place. With remarkable features such as canned responses, support groups, and autoresponders, your business can quickly view, prioritize and solve tickets in a customer-friendly manner. Additionally, you can interact with your customers in real-time with EngageBay's Live Chat feature.

With a completely free CRM, migration services, and onboarding sessions, EngageBay is one of the best options for small businesses and startups looking for a comprehensive solution to their marketing, sales, and customer support needs.

5. HubSpot

HubSpot is a full-service platform for inbound marketing, sales, and customer service. They’ve also become a go-to educational resource for professionals at every level of these departments.

Besides being a business household name, the quality of their tools prompts real users to say, “HubSpot has been THE tool in the Inbound Marketing space for a while now. They provide great value to any company or organization that wants to really embrace inbound marketing.”

The HubSpot Growth Platform has a completely free CRM included, plus a Marketing, Sales, and Service Hub that help users manage projects. Although they normally sell these Hubs as individual products, you can get a 25% discount with their Growth Platform—which helps, since HubSpot is notoriously expensive.

Growth teams interested in doubling their revenue like HubSpot’s demographics consultancy client, .id, did, should use the tool to hyper-focus their efforts on their most lucrative existing demographics while also expanding into promising new market segments.

6. Insightly

Insightly is a sales and marketing platform for unified growth teams that includes key tools such as task automation, a robust CRM, and popular app integrations. It is a past recipient of the 2018 Gartner Peer Insights Customers’ Choice for Sales Force Automation, receiving a 4.4 out of 5-star user rating.

Their standout growth features include a customizable marketing automation roadmap that allows marketing and sales teams to visually plot out a full cycle strategy for various customer segments. While you can purchase the marketing and sales features separately, growth teams who wish to bundle the two offers can contact sales for a custom quote.  

Take a page out of NimbleRX’s book and align multiple departments by using Keap’s highly customizable CRM to create personalized layouts, reports, and dashboards that scale high-value customer interactions.

7. Zoho

Zoho is a digital office-suite for complex enterprises that allows users to store notes, manage projects, send invoices and more. They even offer remote work help with features such as virtual training and meeting tools.  Their sales and marketing software platform won PCMag's Business Choice Awards in 2019.

While they offer a variety of bundles for HR, Finance, and IT departments, growth teams would be most interested in Zoho One, their A to Z business platform, which boasts a complete “lead to cash” solution for users. They offer a 30-day trial with a custom pricing quote.

If you want to expand your internal team from 2 to 1,500 people and scale your customer base along with it like IIFL did, consider getting a solution like Zoho One. It has a full suite of tightly integrated marketing and sales tools with more than 40 streamlined app integrations, so your customers can enjoy the personal touch that comes with knowing in-depth relationship histories no matter how big your team gets.

Maximize Impact With Growth Tools

Not using a sales and marketing software platform to unify teams and promote growth yet? You may be wasting a lot of unnecessary time on miscommunications, unstructured workflows, and lost sales. Adopt one of the suggested tools above to help automate tasks and guide your team towards rapid growth.

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