Thursday, April 10, 2014

IBM acquires Silverpop: Facts & Insights From Users

Facts about the transaction

1. This is IBM's second acquisition in the Marketing Automation space. Its first was Unica in 2010 which is acquired for $480 million (4-5x revenue)

2. The value of this deal is estimated to be under $300 million - approximately 3x 2013 revenue which is estimated to be $80-90 million.

3. This deal is on the recent heels of other Marketing Automation product acquisitions by other large software companies:
  • Salesforce - Exact Target (including Pardot) for $2.5 billion in 2013
  • Adobe - Neolane for $600 million in 2013
  • Oracle - Eloqua for $870 million in 2012
4. The stated rationale from IBM is to further support the development of its Digital Marketing Optimization Platform. IBM has been investing in the Cloud and Mobile. For more insights I encourage you to read this blog from IBM insider Blair Reeves.

Facts about Silverpop

1. Silverpop is estimated to serve c. 2,000 companies (many of whom have multiple brands)

2. Approximately 70% of Silverpop's clients are B2C though many use robust marketing automation features more commonly seen in use with B2B companies.

3. Silverpop grew 40% from 2011-2012. Growth figures for 2012-2013 are not available.

Insights from TrustRadius: Who does Silverpop compete with?

Based upon 13,812 comparisons run by Marketing Automation software buyers on TrustRadius in Q4 2013, Silverpop was most often compared to Marketo (29% of the time), followed by ExactTarget (11%) followed by Pardot from Salesforce (9%), then Hubspot (8%).
Access the comparison ring here: http://www.trustradius.com/products/silverpop/competitors

Insights from TrustRadius members: How is Silverpop rated by its users?

Silverpop scores below the Marketing Automation average in most attributes except for training satisfaction.

Insights from TrustRadius members: Pros/Cons of the Engage Platform?

Distilling end-user reviews on TrustRadius, we see a few core themes emerge as strengths and areas for improvement:

Areas for Improvement
Email Marketing
·         Strong email capabilities reflect the product’s legacy as an email marketing platform.
User Interface
·         User interface is dated and needs an upgrade.

Application Programming Interface (API)
·         API is generally considered effective.
Account Management
·         Although clients like having an account manager, client services is uneven.
Lead Scoring
·         Lead scoring module is relatively sophisticated.
·         Onboarding
·         Email sending delays
·         Reliability

So what's your take?

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