This article is about what key considerations your organization should make before choosing a marketing solution for Dynamics 365. Dynamics 365 Marketing or ClickDimensions – or a whole third? It is not as simple to answer as most people think.
If you simply compare the functions of two systems against each other 1:1, you will not be able to choose the marketing system that best suits your needs.
Dynamics 365 Marketing and ClickDimensions (or any other marketing system you are considering) have more or less the same features and the vast majority of features that your organization will need.
So this is not what you should look at and evaluate when you choose a marketing system.
It is something completely different. But what? – That is what we are looking into here.
Most people do not spend enough time preparing to implement a marketing system together with Dynamics 365.
The vast majority of companies have already implemented Dynamics 365 in advance and use it in their sales department. This can result in the processing not being thorough enough, as it is simply an extension of some IT that the company already uses.
Bad decisions that unfortunately often result in the marketing system not being used optimally, the marketing department not being able to deliver the results and insights that the management expected – and the value of the investment not being realized.
Bad decisions that are unfortunately repeated after a few years, when the management recognizes that it is probably the system that is wrong and therefore simply replaces it with another, without having to look at the actual challenges.
You must start by writing down what you would like to be able to do with your marketing system.
We, as advisers, can only guide you when we know what you would like to achieve by using the marketing system.
Prepare decision document for data-driven marketing with Dynamics 365.
We recommend preparing a decision document for your data-driven marketing with Dynamics 365. The decision document will help you to get an overview of the elements you should have considered before you make a choice about your marketing system.
Use the document for an internal review and discussion about choosing a marketing system for Dynamics 365. Bring the document with you when you meet with an external advisor who will help you make the decision or implement the system.
As an advisor, it is our job to help you succeed with your marketing solution and realize the potential of your investment. The decision document contains a plan for how you will succeed in this.
Regardless of whether you choose, for example, Dynamics 365 Marketing or ClickDimensions, there will be various advantages or disadvantages. Although the marketing systems have the same functions, there is a difference in how you work with them in Dynamics 365.
You must know the various advantages and disadvantages and not just based on an IT technical assessment. It is also about what experience and knowledge you have internally in the department. What is an advantage in one company is not necessarily an advantage in another company due to the resources they have employed.
It can also be the size of the marketing department or the industry the company is in.
There is a difference in how far the companies are in their approach to working with digital marketing in Dynamics 365. Some are at a basic level, while others have become more sophisticated.
We have prepared a model that shows different stages, and based on it, it is quite simple to focus on which functions you need to initiate.
Every single phase and level make demands on your organization and marketing department, and every level adds new layers to how you utilize the opportunities in your marketing system.
Contact For A Fact if you want insight into what lies at the individual levels and want to know how you can work with them.
The 4 areas in the maturity phases must go hand in hand. (Data, Segmentation, Automation, Content)
For example, you cannot set up very advanced automation flows if you do not have the right data to create the right segments.
Assess where you are currently and where you would like to go.
The marketing system you choose must fit your strategy and where you want to go.
You must choose a business partner who has experience in connecting Dynamics 365 data with the chosen marketing system.
For A Fact receives many customer inquiries where the system has already been chosen and (partially) implemented – but where the process has stalled.
When you choose a marketing system, you must make sure how far a possible Microsoft partner is able to help you. Maybe they have experience in implementing the IT system itself, but how can they advise or onboard you afterwards if they don’t know anything about marketing processes, marketing campaigns, etc.?
If at the same time your company has not written down a decision document, and therefore does not have a target for the use of the marketing system or know when it is a financial success, then your project most often ends after the first column in the illustration below.
If necessary, use several different business partners when choosing a marketing system.
As a consulting marketing agency and Microsoft partner, we have, for example, good experience in collaborating with the company’s existing IT department or Microsoft partner, as they have extensive IT knowledge and know how your existing Dynamics 365 setup is composed. The marketing system should ideally fit into it.
Therefore, we have great success with the company’s normal Microsoft partner being connected after the decision document has been drawn up and they are responsible for the actual implementation and setup, after which we ensure the onboarding of the employees in the marketing department.
Look at the drawing on the left. It illustrates different competencies that should be in your marketing department when you want to work with data-driven marketing in Dynamics 365.
It is not certain that you will have all competences internally in your department. It may be that it makes better sense to have certain functions internally, and then use external partners for certain other functions.
Some parts are in relation to those who must work with the system and others are of more technical clarification.
Download our decision document and get help choosing the marketing automation system that best suits your company and needs.
At the same time, use the decision document to create an overview of all the considerations you should generally make before you start working more data-driven with your marketing in Dynamics 365.