Review on Marketo's Marketing Automation tool
Updated November 22, 2018

Review on Marketo's Marketing Automation tool

Tom Liolios | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Software Version


Modules Used

  • Marketo Lead Management
  • Marketo Sales Insight

Overall Satisfaction with Marketo

We use Marketo in our entire marketing team. Our sales team is also using the Marketo sales insight functionality in our CRM.

Marketo allows us to score, qualify and nurture all marketing leads before they are handed over to our sales department. Marketo fulfills an important part in the beginning of our sales funnel.
  • Powerful forms. The Marketo forms on our landing pages are highly customizable, and the use of progressive profiling and form pre-filling helps a lot.
  • A/B testing. Marketo offers you the possibility to test any email or landing page you create. It is very user-friendly and the insights are easy to understand.
  • Setting up campaigns. The use of campaigns in Marketo is very straightforward, and easy to use. Within one place, the so called "smart campaign", you define the who, the what and the when. For example: who do you want to target, what do you want to do with them (send an email?) and when does it need to happen.
  • Email editor. The current email editor of Marketo is very tricky to use. Without HTML knowledge, you basically cannot do anything 'fancy'. Hopefully the new email editor that Marketo recently launched will improve the usability.
  • Integration with Microsoft Dynamics CRM. If you need to integrate with this CRM system, you will face a lot of issues. The standard integration does not give you a lot of freedom. You will need to implement several workarounds if you want to get more out of both systems.
  • Anonymous visitors. Marketo recently removed insights on anonymous visitors to your landing pages and website. You have no idea where your page views come from, unless they fill out a form.
  • Product Launches
  • Upsell
  • Lead Management
  • Prospecting / New Business
Our main focus with Marketo is on prospecting/new business. We offer a lot of downloads on our website, and we link to our Marketo landing pages on social media and in paid advertising. We have set up many nurture flows to engage with the new business, in order to get them ready for sales.
Next to that, we do some customer marketing, in which we communicate with our existing customers, and try to upsell and inform them about product launches.
Marketo is a platform where everything comes together. It is the centralized marketing hub that your digital marketing team needs.
It is lead generation, lead management, content marketing, sales follow-up, and much more. Additionally, if the feature is not native to Marketo (like hosting a webinar) you can easily integrate with other parties.
Marketo is well suited when you have a substantial marketing team, that is in need of streamlining certain marketing processes. It also is a great help in setting up a standard alignment with your sales department.

Managing and administrating Marketo is, however, a full-time job. So you need the resources.

Adobe Marketo Engage Feature Ratings

WYSIWYG email editor
Dynamic content
Ability to test dynamic content
Landing pages
A/B testing
Mobile optimization
Email deliverability reporting
List management
Triggered drip sequences
Lead nurturing automation
Lead scoring and grading
Data quality management
Automated sales alerts and tasks
Event/webinar marketing
Social sharing and campaigns
Social profile integration
Standard reports
Custom reports
Role-based workflow & approvals
Integration with
Not Rated
Integration with Microsoft Dynamics CRM
Integration with SugarCRM
Not Rated

Using Marketo's core features

  • Channels
  • Programs
  • Email Templates
  • Forms
  • Landing Pages
  • Smart Campaigns
  • Lead Scoring
  • Lead Sourcing
  • Segmentation
  • Lead Nurture
  • Reporting/Analytics
  • Smart campaigns: a very easey to use, but powerful feature to manage and run all your flows.
  • Webinar/event integrations: Marketo very easily integrates with third parties like GoToWebinar. The integration syncs all data seamlessly from your webinar/event tool & Marketo, ensuring a perfect follow-up.
  • Tokens: Marketo has a feature called 'Tokens' that make it very easy to prefill standardized content & images. Saves a lot of time.

Initially, I would edit/update all text & images in each individual email or landing page, which takes a lot of time.

Now all my programs are filled with tokens, so that I can very easily update standard information across all emails within the program.
Nobody wants to type the same email signature 10 times. :)

Additionally, you can also use velocity scripting in your tokens, allowing your tokens to behave dynamically depending on certain values / lead details.
The Marketo Community is very active, and has many members that are very quick to reply with tips & advice.

There are some community members that are very knowledgeable in HTML and other coding, and have helped me out a lot in this area.

Additionally, I have created quite some complicated nurture programs, and I have been able to verify (and improve) my logic with the community.
Marketo is a powerful tool that encompasses a broad set of marketing features, but it is still very easy and intuitive to use. Some other platforms are less able to find this balance. It is especially vital for cross-functional marketing teams to have a tool that can do a lot, but keeps it straightforward.
Marketo organizes its programs in a folder structure, just like you would do on your computer. This is very intuitive, and makes organizing and sorting very easy.

Benefits of using some of Marketo's core features

Lead sourcing is vital if you want to know which marketing channel is most effective in acquiring and converting leads. You can assign an 'acquisition program' to each lead, so that you know which marketing program is responsible for the lead's initial conversion.

Additionally, you are able to use hidden fields on your forms, so that you can capture UTM data and other URL parameters. This can then be converted into a custom lead source.
We use the following channels:
- Engagement Programs
- Webinars
- Events
- Newsletters
- Report downloads
- Email Sign up
Our channels allow us to group our programs, and make our reporting much easier to use. Additionally, each channel type has a specific set of 'flow steps', allowing us to use the right flow structure for each program.
It is very easy to segment in Marketo, you just make use of the 'smart list' (a smart list is a dynamic list that you can create using all lead variables).
We created segments based on Department (IT, Marketing/Sales, Finance etc.).

We then used the segmentation in our emails, making our emails dynamic depending on department. If you work in Finance you'd get a different marketing email, then when you're in IT.
We use smart campaigns for all our marketing programs. It is the core function of Marketo, and is the way to run all your campaigns (send emails, update data, manage leads, sync to CRM etc.)
Smart campaigns are very effective, as you can combine your target audience with your flow step.
So in one overview, you determine who you want to target, how you want to do it, and when.
Forms are very easy to set up, and work perfectly on a native Marketo landing page, or embedded on an external page. Additionally, you're able to create dynamic forms depending on certain lead criteria, and you can use progressive profiling.
We use templates for emails & landing pages.
Templates are crucial, as it allows you to create emails and landing pages according to your corporate branding & design requirements. You can prefill all the standard stuff (logo, footer, disclaimer etc.), so it saves a lot of time. Additionally, it prevents people from sending off-brand content to your prospects/customers.