The midmarket is an often overlooked segment. Large vendors tend to focus on producing large, robust enterprise versions of their solutions, while small businesses are often tailored to directly as well. Meanwhile, the mid-sized market is offered what amounts to a simple downgrade of full enterprise software and solutions not at all tailored to the specific needs of the mid-sized business; obviously, a scaled-down enterprise application will not adequately meet the needs of a mid-sized company the way a solution tailored for the midmarket will.
While some areas don't necessarily require a midmarket-specific solution, other areas, like marketing automation, could really use that extra finesse to address mid-sized businesses.
In this environment, though, there are ways for the mid-sized business to get what it needs. Soffront, a provider of customer relationship management (CRM) solutions, including customer support, helpdesk software, back office support, datasheets and marketing automation, recently posted two tips to help mid-sized businesses select a marketing automation solution on its blog. However, these tips could apply to other solutions.
First, and most important, is to seek out a technology partner with enough experience in the mid market that your needs and problems will be understood. A frequent misjudgment made by mid-sized businesses is treating CRM only as a software, without considering the overall relationship with the company providing that software. Put simply: effective solutions can be created when a technology partner takes the time to analyze current methods, needs, staffing and goals.
Second, marketing automation solutions should be flexible enough to work as part of a larger CRM solution provided by the same vendor or be adaptable to other software solutions not provided by that vendor. While marketing solutions may be effective on their own, integration with other components can increase effectiveness significantly.
Edited by Rachel Ramsey