Marketing automation has its advantages, not the first of which is automating marketing channels and making things easier on marketers.
Satya Krishnaswamy gets it. But the CEO of NextPrinciples and former SAP vice president hears from marketers who say you miss context in automated marketing workflows.
Enter his company, which boosts marketing automation with its technology that generates better-qualified new leads and deeper insights into existing leads and customers. Its newest solution, an automated platform for social media marketing released this month, marries social media, marketing automation, demand gen and CRM.
The industry's done a "great job of automating things that were manual earlier," said Krishnaswamy, whose 4-year-old company is based in Milpitas, Calif. "But many don't believe they get context from those leads. The information in those leads is limited to demographics like name, title and email. Beyond that narrow tunnel vision I don't see that much more information about those leads."
His team's solution generates better leads and enhances data already in marketing automation and CRM systems. The NextPrinciples team is confident its solution will be a seamless integration into existing software. The CEO mentioned Marketo and Eloqua as potential integration systems.
Plans for both social marketing automation and social media management are priced from $99 to $2,499 per month based on client need and scope.
“Companies have moved into an era of quantifiable returns from social media and our customers demand solutions that bring together the worlds of social media and demand gen," Sanjay Dholakia, CMO at Marketo, a NextPrinciples partner, said in a statement. "We at Marketo are excited to have NextPrinciples as a LaunchPoint ISV partner to enable our customers to augment our existing solutions, find new and better leads, and drive faster time to revenue.”
Small, But Experienced Team
So who are these guys, anyway? NextPrinciples has about 10 full-time employees. Krishnaswamy said his team has some former "enterprise software guys" who left their "cushy jobs" to execute on a vision for a digital marketing platform that would bring true personalization and qualified-lead management to marketing.
Krishnaswamy himself is the former global vice president in the office of the chief technology officer at SAP. His boss? None other than Vishal Sikka, who left as the top dog at SAP HANA for Infosys, a new gig announced this week. A former president with Siebel Systems is a NextPrinciples investor, Krishnaswamy said.
Ultimately, Krishnaswamy said his company's platforms fall "smack dab" into the areas of social listening, predictive scoring and marketing automation and "bridges the gap" between the three.
It's a cluttered social media marketing world. What makes NextPrinciples unique?
"The fact that we cover the entire process soup to nuts and are not something that is a standalone feature where users are forced to use 10 other solutions," Krishnaswamy said.
Further, they're able to give relevance and scoring to data in order to qualify true leads and "clean out the noise."
The NextPrinciples team is steadfast on its integration beliefs, saying it can "seamlessly inject its process into a marketing automation and CRM."
"We configure," Krishnaswamy said, "an integration layer so our customers are not faced with a six-month long integration."