What is a marketing tech stack? Simply put, it's a collection of tech tools that help marketing teams do their jobs. Marketing teams are typically tasked with filling the sales team's pipeline with leads, so their tech stack is designed to attract and convert prospects into leads.
Marketing tech stacks streamline marketing operations, enhance customer relationships, and drive growth. And while there are many marketing tech solutions available, it can be hard to know which ones you actually need to grow your business.
In this article, we'll explore the eight most common marketing tools for any B2B CRE business. CRE-related businesses include any service or goods provider that operates in the commercial real estate industry, whether building, operating, or maintaining any type of commercial property.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) for CRE
Customer relationship management (CRM) tools allow businesses to more easily organize and oversee interactions and relationships with their clients and prospects. It's a centralized platform that provides a comprehensive view of your customers, enabling you to tailor your marketing and sales efforts. Organizations use CRMs differently based on the nature of their business.
Finding CRMs that are specific to your industry may be difficult. For example, instead of searching for "best CRM for construction companies," you might look for "best CRMs for small businesses." Some of the best CRMs for CRE development companies, architects, construction companies, and CRE service providers are also used in other industries, including banking, healthcare, and even ecommerce. Why? The developers of these CRM platforms create versatile tech that you can adapt to fit your needs.
How CRMs are used in CRE
CRMs provide a centralized database where CRE companies can manage prospects, leads, contacts, and interactions. Many CRM platforms also allow you to build resource libraries and communicate with prospects directly from within the system. It’s important to understand that CRMs are not lead or demand generation tools, but can be used to streamline outreach efforts, identify, and research prospects.
Here are some prominent B2B CRM platforms:
Salesforce: Salesforce is a powerhouse in the CRM space, offering robust features for managing leads, opportunities, and customer relationships.
Pipedrive: Pipedrive is a sales-focused CRM with a user-friendly interface for planning, managing, and monitoring sales pipelines.
HubSpot: HubSpot is not just a CRM but an all-in-one marketing and sales platform. It's suitable for CRE businesses looking for an integrated solution.
Freshworks: Freshworks offers a range of CRM and customer engagement tools that can be customized to the specific needs of your business.
Content Management Systems (CMS) for CRE
Content management systems (CMS) are software applications that allow you to create, manage, and publish various types of digital content. CMS platforms can help CRE and B2B organizations with many tasks, including planning, scheduling, and publishing marketing and educational materials.
How CMS applications are used for CRE
How you use a CMS depends on your role within an organization. The following are common roles and some of the ways they might use a CMS.
CRE developers: CMS platforms help CRE developers showcase property listings, project portfolios, updates, and information.
Property managers: Property managers can use a CMS to communicate with existing tenants, attract prospective tenants, share lease documents, and provide maintenance updates.
Building engineering firms and HVAC service providers: These service providers can use CMS to share technical documents, service schedules, knowledge base articles and industry insights.
Marketers: CMS tools can help marketers manage, measure and improve content; attract organic traffic; boost lead generation efforts; keep website visitors engaged; and capture lead information.
Here are some notable CMS options:
HubSpot: In addition to serving as a CRM, HubSpot offers a CMS that integrates seamlessly with marketing and sales efforts.
WordPress: WordPress is a widely used CMS known for its flexibility, user-friendly interface, and scalability.
Drupal: Drupal is a robust open-source CMS option suitable for building websites, online directors, and e-commerce stores.
Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO) for CRE
Conversion rate optimization (CRO) is the process of improving a website's performance to increase the percentage of visitors that perform desired actions. In other words, it’s a technology that can help web developers monitor and measure what visitors do on a website. For example, what steps do visitors take to complete a form, download a document, or submit a request for information? You can also A/B test features to see how visitors respond to your calls to action.
How CRO applies to CRE
CRO directly impacts lead generation and an organization's ability to grow from their online efforts. For CRE organizations, CRO can mean optimizing property listings to encourage inquiries, simplifying contact forms, and improving user experience on the website.
Here are a couple of CRO tools:
Optimizely: Optimizely allows businesses to A/B test various elements on their websites, such as property listing layouts, calls to action, and contact forms. It helps CRE businesses fine-tune their websites for maximum lead generation and user engagement.
VXO: VWO is an A/B testing platform that includes tools such as heat maps, visitor recordings, surveys, and form analytics. It is user-friendly and provides valuable observations for increasing conversion rates.
Marketing Workflow Automation for CRE
Marketing workflow automation removes manual marketing tasks, such as boilerplate email messages and workflows within the lead nurturing process. These platforms fit seamlessly into sales and marketing processes by streamlining tasks like lead scoring, segmentation, and personalized communications with prospects. This enables CRE professionals to focus on high-value activities while the automation handles routine tasks.
A few examples of marketing workflow automation tools include:
Marketo: Marketo streamlines marketing tasks, automates email campaigns, and manages lead nurturing processes, helping CRE businesses save time and enhance efficiency. It integrates with CRMs to create a unified view of leads and customers.
Klaviyo: Klaviyo is an automation platform primarily used for SMS, push notifications, and email marketing. It offers advanced segmentation capabilities and ROI tracking so that users better understand the impact of their campaigns.
Eloqua: Eloqua is an automation platform typically used by B2B organizations. It allows users to send marketing advertisements to mobile devices, email inboxes, video and even search results pages.
Social Media Management Tool
In the B2B world, social media is not just for branding; it's a channel for lead generation and relationship building. Social media management platforms make this easier to do by helping businesses manage multiple social media accounts efficiently.
The following are popular social media management tools:
Hootsuite: Hootsuite is a social media management platform that allows CRE businesses to schedule posts, monitor social media activity, and analyze performance. It provides an efficient way to maintain an active online presence and engage with clients and prospects.
Sprout Social: Sprout Social offers features like post scheduling, social media monitoring, and detailed analytics. It helps you manage multiple social media accounts, identify trends, and optimize social media strategies.
Buffer: Buffer is a social media management platform that simplifies post scheduling and offers basic analytics. It is especially suited for smaller CRE businesses looking for a straightforward way to manage their social media presence.
Search Engine Marketing (SEM) and Adwords Research
Search engine marketing (SEM) and Adwords research help businesses gain higher quality traffic from people specifically interested in what they offer and more likely to convert. SEM typically combines organic search strategies (SEO) and paid search strategies.
A couple of popular tools for SEM and Adwords research include:
SEMrush: SEMrush is a versatile SEO and SEM tool that enables businesses to conduct keyword research, track search engine rankings, and analyze their competitors' online strategies. It provides valuable insights for optimizing website content and improving online visibility in the highly competitive CRE industry.
Ahrefs: Ahrefs is a comprehensive SEO toolset that offers in-depth analysis of backlinks, competitor research, and keyword tracking. For CRE companies, Ahrefs helps uncover content-sharing opportunities, refine SEO strategies, and gain a competitive edge in the digital landscape.
Live Chat and Chatbots
Live chat and chatbot platforms allow organizations to offer real-time customer support and engagement. Companies can use them to provide assistance, capture, and qualify leads. B2B organizations can leverage these types of tools to generate leads and establish relationships with prospects and existing clients.
A few examples of live chat and chatbots include:
Zendesk: Zendesk is a customer service platform that offers live chat and support ticketing, helping businesses provide excellent customer service and support to their clients.
ChatBot: ChatBot is an AI-powered chatbot platform that automates customer interactions on websites, enabling organizations to generate leads and assist visitors 24/7.
Freshworks: Freshworks provides a suite of customer engagement tools that help in lead generation and relationship building, including live chat and CRM solutions.
Prospecting Tool for CRE Leads
Prospecting tools help manage and automate some of the tasks associated with identifying new leads. Companies use these types of tools in conjunction with sales and marketing efforts to fuel growth. For CRE businesses seeking to expand their network and find new leads, Biscred is a noteworthy prospecting database that provides access to a large, up-to-date database of commercial real estate professionals, making it easy to identify potential clients, partners, and investment opportunities.
It’s important to note that the tools mentioned here are only some of the options available to you. Inclusion on this list does not equate to a recommendation or endorsement. It does, however, serve as a starting point for understanding the types of marketing technology available and how it fits into the picture for CRE and related organizations.