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What is Marketo?

What is Marketo?
Written by publishing team

Marketo is perhaps one of the most popular marketing automation platforms for marketers. The company was founded in 2006, but was acquired in 2018 by the software giant Adobe for $4.7 billion. It has since been incorporated into the San Jose, California-based Abobe Marketing Software Group.

Marketo, which Abobe renamed Adobe Marketo Engage, primarily serves small and medium businesses for enterprise-level B2B marketers and some B2C marketers in a variety of industries, including technology, business services, healthcare, financial services, education, manufacturing, and communications. Some of its biggest clients are CenturyLink, Charles Schwab, GE Panasonic, RingCentral and Roche.

This guide will walk you through some of the basic capabilities of Marketo.

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Product Overview

The cloud-based Marketo Engage has 10 key capabilities to:

  • Marketing automation to create, automate, and measure campaigns across channels.
  • Account insights and profiling to identify the right target accounts using data and artificial intelligence.
  • Email to engage customers in relevant conversations in minutes.
  • Mobile to communicate with customers using mobile devices.
  • Social integration to identify potential and existing clients.
  • Targeted and personalized display ads.
  • Dynamic interactions with customers on the website.
  • Marketing analytics to demonstrate and improve business impact.
  • Predictive content ensures that the best fit assets are presented.
  • Marketo Sales Insight to direct account and forecast information to sales.
  • Marketo Sales Connect for sales and marketing coordination.

Marketo Engage also performs basic data cleansing locally. For example, the deduplication feature searches for duplicate users and integrates them into the database. Users can also set up automated workflows to normalize data. More advanced deduplication and data purification can be enabled through integrations with a number of LaunchPoint partners, including RingLead, ReachForce, StrikeIron, and CRMFusion.

Marketo also includes account-based marketing features. For example, smart account lists take advantage of artificial intelligence and predictive scoring to reveal the best-suited accounts for campaign activation. Customized experiences across accounts are also automated through intelligent account sponsorship. Account-based insights can also be delivered to sales providing complete visibility across the purchasing team.

In fact, Marketo’s Sales Partnership feature shares customer intelligence across every touch point in the buyer’s journey. It includes:

  • Multi-attribute lead points across sales and marketing touches.
  • Real-time data capture and two-way data integration sync with CRM.
  • Lead attraction points and priority accounts.

Supported sales posts and channels include sponsorship email and phone campaigns, sales and marketing, pre-loaded email templates, suggested email categories, and cross-channel personalization.

Finally, Marketo’s features are also compatible with the following data privacy frameworks and are ISO 27001 certified: SOC 2-Type 2, GDPR, CCPA, and HIPAA.

leadership management

Marketo Engage includes five core capabilities: content personalization, cross-channel engagement, experience automation, sales partnership, and marketing impact analytics.

Marketo also provides landing pages and progressive forms and users can develop and qualify potential buyers with personalized sponsorship campaigns and scorecard capabilities. Marketers can prioritize the best leads through assessments of quality and urgency.

Marketo offers campaign cloning across software, workflows, and assets and integrates with Salesforce, Microsoft Dynamics, SAP, and other CRM systems to increase the effectiveness of lead management.

Marketo Engage also promotes AI-powered capabilities such as predictive audiences that support lookalike and predictive models to help marketers discover new and unique audiences.

Campaign Channels

While email is traditionally central to any marketing automation platform, Marketo Engage claims to support the following marketing channels:

  • email.
  • Mobile push notifications and messages within the app.
  • direct mail.
  • Social media.
  • digital advertising.
  • web sites.
  • e-commerce sites.
  • Online conference and seminar services.
  • Video/interactive applications.
  • Trade fairs, seminars and events.


Task management is native to Marketo Engage from within the application command center or from the Tasks section of Live Feed. Tasks can also be managed from within CRM systems. The platform also provides flexible and customized access, users, roles, and permissions across the user base.

Workspaces can also be partitioned or shared based on programs, databases, and instances of partitioned teams. Marketing and sales coordination is also supported by infographics and participation in lead accounts in the platform.


Marketo Engage ROI reports include the multi-touch attribution and overall impact of marketing on the revenue cycle over time, including conversion rates as well as flow and speed through the conversion funnel. Executive dashboards also feature revenue cycle analytics that identify metrics and trends in real time.

Bizible by Marketo, Adobe’s add-on platform, provides complete referral across every marketing
sales contact point, a variety of referral models, and connections to paid media channels.

Performance Insights identifies programs and channels that offer the highest marketing ROI, and Marketo Success Path Analysis software monitors key performance metrics for each stage of the customer journey.

The company’s Revenue Modeler report identifies the stages of the customer journey and monitors how potential customers move through the conversion funnel.

Advanced Journey Analytics Reports features a pivot table user interface for custom reporting on channel and campaign performance, including referral and ROI.

Finally, Marketo Opportunity Influence Analyzer highlights cross-channel marketing activities that influence deals to understand the impact of each marketing touchpoint.


According to Billing as one of the leading marketing automation platforms available to marketers, Marketo offers a very wide range of integrations with other major marketing technology platforms in the market. In general, Marketo offers:

  • Native integration with Microsoft Dynamics 365, Salesforce, and SAP C4C.
  • Support for bi-directional sync.
  • With CRM credentials, custom objects and fields can be synchronized automatically.
  • Additions/deletions to the CRM framework such as fields or objects are automatically updated in Marketo Engage.
  • Turnkey integrations for Oracle NetSuite, SugarCRM, and Zoho.
  • The partner ecosystem for data integrators and digital agencies includes Accenture Digital, Deloitte Digital, DigitasLBi,
    Informatica, Mulesoft, Talend, Software AG.

Partners can also be found through Adobe Exchange and Experience Cloud, and additional integrations are available through Webhooks, SOAP, and REST APIs.

Pricing and support

Adobe does not share specific price ranges, but Marketo Engage pricing depends on the size of the marketing database, as well as any additional infrastructure required such as advanced security, high volume APIs, high volume email infrastructure, or advanced database features. An annual contract is required.

Adobe offers three prepackaged packages for basic email marketing and lead management, account-based marketing, and advanced multi-touch attribution. All of its solutions include the Marketing Data Environment, which integrates profiles and engagement history to help marketers build relationships with customers by enabling personalized interactions.

Any Adobe product/module that is not bundled in the Solution can also be purchased as an add-on.

According to Adobe, products/units are usually priced on a single metric factor, such as database size, number of marketing users, number of phone activities, or number of website visitors.

All Marketo subscriptions include access to Customer Success Managers and all customers receive 24/7 web portal support. Global phone support is also available with paid support options.

In addition to the programs, professional service packages for implementation and advisory services are available.

Premium support services include access to select support professionals, rapid service level response, proactive mentoring sessions and business review.

Snapshot: Marketing Automation

For marketers today, automation platforms are often the center of the marketing suite. They aren’t shiny new technologies, but rather powerful, dependable items that marketers can rely on to help them stand out in their crowded inbox and on the web amid a flood of content.

HubSpot indicated late last year that the volume of marketing email had increased by up to 52% compared to pre-COVID levels. Fortunately, response rates also increased to between 10% and 20% above the reference standard.

To help marketers win the battle for attention, marketing automation vendors have expanded from relying on static email campaigns to offering dynamic content publishing for email, landing pages, mobile, and social networks. They’ve also integrated machine learning and artificial intelligence-based features for functions like key scoring, as well as investing in user interface and scalability.

The growing popularity of account-based marketing has also been a force influencing sellers’ roadmaps, as marketers seek to serve the buying group in a holistic way—talking to all of its members and their different priorities. Ideally, these tools allow marketers to submit buyer information through their tight integration with CRMs, giving the sales team a boost when it comes to closing the deal. Learn more here.

About the author

Pamela Parker is Director of Research at Third Door Media’s content studio, where she produces MarTech Intelligence reports and other in-depth content for digital marketers jointly with Search Engine Land and MarTech. Prior to taking on this role at TDM, I worked as Content Manager, Senior Editor and Executive Features Editor. Parker is a highly respected authority in the field of digital marketing, who has reported and written on the topic since its inception. She was a former managing editor of ClickZ and also worked on the commercial side helping independent publishers monetize their Federated Media Publishing sites. Parker holds a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University.

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