SaaS is all the rage in every industry and Marketing Automation is no exception, tools like Hubspot, Marketo, Pardot, Eloqua and many others to the count of more than a hundred MA SaaS tools!
However, SaaS tends to use a "one size fits all" service model (or better said, 3 sizes fits all), which tends to leave a big chunk of companies out of their offerings.
Your company might be one of the special outliers that don't perfectly fit in the SaaS model. The good news is, most probably, Mautic will cover all of your needs.
With SaaS adoption we're losing the ability to do some things that were pretty standard before the rise of SaaS, here are 9 advantages inherent to owning your software instead of leasing it for a monthly (or yearly) fee.
Saas is not a perfect fit for if you are one of those special companies that go above and beyond the mean standard, you might find Mautic is a great tool to have in your marketing toolbox.
Take a look at the graphic I've chosen for this post, it shows how SaaS companies must map their product to a certain user base or client profile if they want mass adoption to ever happen, the center is called the mean, there's where most companies will be for a certain market, the borders are formed mostly by the outliers, companies that do not conform to a given standard and hence are not targeted by the software producer, these companies are deemed irrelevant or unattainable for the business objectives. Well, with a total of about 28 Million companies just in the US, the 5% forming the outliers is 1,4 Million companies!!!
Note: The level of success of Hubspot is amazing and strong proof that SaaS is a very good match for most SMBs and that is why I have chosen the name for the title, but this post applies to almost every other SaaS tool out there too...
1) Mautic gives you full control over pricing and expense
When renting your apps to a SaaS company, you have no control over pricing, you can find surprise expenses here and there and prices can change without much of a notice. Since the more time and effort you spend with a given SaaS provider increases the barrier to leave said SaaS partner, the more you use a platform the more you get tied to it, and since you don't have control over the APP, you put yourself in a dangerous position. Mautic gives you full ownership and control over every single aspect of your APP.
- Pay as you go, not yearly. You decide how much money and resources go into your MA deployment.
- You can adjust your expense anytime without having to cut down on features or number of contacts.
- Pay what you want, or rather pay only for what you really need, do you need training? you can get it! but if you don't, you are not forced to buy it upfront.
2) With FOSS everything is included out of the box
SaaS pricing is very commonly designed to milk your success... Newer features are added to superior packages that you need to scale up to in order to keep competitive... With Mautic everything is included, no extra charges, you're not forced to scale up to the next and more expensive package in order to have fully featured software. The price (free), remains the same no matter how many features you use, no matter the number of contacts, etc. New features are added with every version and integrated into the main software at no charge. Most Free and Open Source (FOSS) applications will give you access to the 100% of its features out of the box.
3) Your software, your rules!
With Mautic, since you control all aspects of your software, you don't need to negotiate or abide by the rules imposed by an external company, but most importantly, you are not at the mercy of their legal department, who could change the rules of engagement at any time with just a notification on their login page or an email...
- No contracts needed
- No SLAs required
- Confidentiality agreements unnecessary
And just remember:
- Your company is not the top priority of an external SaaS company
- Companies make mistakes
- Companies are sold and bought all the time, introducing unexpected changes that affect your own company.
- Privacy and TOS policy gets changed continuously, what can you do if you are not happy with it?
By owning your marketing automation software (or any other software) you gain control over many more things than just the software.
4) Real and full data ownership
Data is among the most valuable assets your company owns, as soon as you start using any marketing automation platform, you start building a unique dataset, gaining a more detailed view with valuable insight about your own market and your own clients. When you use a SaaS tool you both relinquish ownership of that data and give the SaaS company permission to leverage your data, this effectively means you lose the ability to extract value from that data, which could eventually be used by your competition's Machine learning algorithms. It might seem like a secondary concern right now, but as Machine Learning and AI evolve, you will start understanding the real power and value of your data and how giving it away might not be a good idea.
The battle for data ownership is harsh, if you don't take control now, when you eventually need to gain control over data ownership, negotiating special deals is not simple, but beyond special requirements, having full data ownership without having to negotiate, not even having to ask for it, it's always an advantage and it puts you in a very good place to offer the same to your customers, which might become a strong selling point for your business down the road.
5) Easy compliance for special regulatory requirements
While most SaaS tools have adapted or are adapting to newer data privacy regulations, If you have to comply with GDPR and/or the newer California Consumer Privacy Act, you might find not all tools allow you the freedom to adopt it in the exact degree you want to or need to.
If your company is in any of the Government Regulated Industries this becomes especially important, Most mass SaaS tools will not offer you the required levels of compliance, the special tools that are perfectly tailored to your needs will be expensive and sometimes even cumbersome. Mautic offers you total freedom to modify the entirety of the software, hence guaranteeing any level of compliance you have or want to achieve.
6) Uttermost flexibility and top to bottom personalization
Mautic uses a standardized license called GPL3, this license allows you to truly own your Mautic copy; and this is not like owning a Windows CD, under proprietary software licenses, you only own the right to use the software, but it still belongs to Microsoft, when you download a copy of any FOSS software, you really own this copy, and as such, you can sell Mautic in a pen drive, deploy 10 copies on a cluster or build your own SaaS business with it. Yes, you can build your own Marketing Automation Platform, based on Mautic. But this goes beyond... cause there are already many small companies doing exactly that, they sell Mautic as SaaS, you truly can get Mautic from a wide range of providers and each one adds its own spices to it! That's right, dozens of companies offer Mautic as SaaS around the world, that's how open the Mautic license is, and this allows for internal competition within Mautic itself, fuels innovation within Mautic and encourages the development of the product.
This freedom to modifying the software allows you to add any specific features that no one else needs and a SaaS company would never feel compelled to develop for you.
If you have, for example, your own In-house developed CRM, or use that very well tailored vertical ERP, you might have a hard time connecting it to standardized SaaS applications and it might get quite expensive to do so. With Mautic you can integrate at will.
And what about personalization? None of the top Marketing Automation companies will offer you a completely white brand experience. With Mautic and a good PHP programmer, you can change anything and everything. Mautic is a developer's dream, everything is accessible via API, and you can do really deep tuning of every single aspect of the app.
7) Choose your own email delivery platform
If you need really top-notch deliverability, the only way is if you control your email delivery from top to bottom, impossible with any SaaS tool, they choose a provider which offers them a good deal or they build their own and put everyone there, both the best performing and the not so good, the legitimate, double opt-in marketers with the spammers, all in one place, as long as they pay the fee.
Same is true for your SMS delivery platform or any other external service you want to use, Mautic offers you true freedom of choice to use, stop using or swap your providers at will.
8) Choose the provider and location of your IT infrastructure.
Nowadays every millisecond counts, we are all used to immediate responses on the web, if your SaaS provider has its servers in NYC and your clients are in San Francisco, you are going to suffer delays, bigger chance of shortages, and latency; if your provider has it's servers in NYC and your company is in Argentina, that's going to get a lot worst!
Same goes for the distance from your Marketing Automation platform and your web servers or other applications your company uses, the closer they are together the lower the risk of problems and the better your response times will be. With Mautic you decide where your servers are located and decide which provider runs your IT infrastructure.
9) Are you a paranoid security freak? Welcome!
With Mautic you can bring your data security to the complete madness level, no one's gonna complain, au contraire, if you can share your knowledge and make Mautic even more secure, we might give you an award!
Are you an old school guy like myself? Keep everything in-house! You can host Mautic at your own rack or datacenter in your own hardware, how's that for ownership and security of your data?
Just make sure you set your budget right!
The biggest mistake I see among new Mautic adopters is not setting the right budget for Mautic adoption. It's easy to fall into the trap of thinking that because the software is free, the rest is going to be too... SaaS companies charge those enormous fees because there are a lot of costs involved in operating an MA platform and making sure users can use it productively. When adopting Mautic, you are the one in charge and responsible for everything surrounding Marketing Automation, avoiding your responsibility for all that's needed on top of the free software is not a good approach. Make sure you understand the requirements and plan accordingly.
You can source all the required resources either internally or externally and get the benefits of a fully featured marketing automation program for your company and still pay a lot less than you would with Hubspot, Pardot, etc... without neglecting a proper adoption plan, however, the really good thing about Mautic, is that you can, if you wish to, neglect all you want, that's the greatness Free and Open Source Software and Mautic.
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