Best marketing automation software: Top 17 marketing automation tools for effective campaigns

Koen van de Wetering
Sep 25, 2022

The statistics don't lie. Email marketing is still one of the most effective and lucrative forms of digital marketing. In successful businesses, Marketing automation can play a role in growing the business. Although for many marketers social media "feels" like a good way to reach (especially) younger generations, Campaign Monitor research shows that email is up to 45 times(!) more effective than social media campaigns in reaching your customers. So in fact, you can't avoid email marketing and email.

But what role does automation play in this? Which tools are best to use for this purpose and how can AdPage help you increase conversion? Who chooses a marketing automation tool within your organization? And how does it connect to your current content management system? Which tools do the best marketers use? In this article we briefly explain to you what email marketing automation is exactly, what points may be important for you and what options you will encounter for it.

What is email marketing automation?

Marketing Automation is an indispensable part of any business. What exactly is email marketing automation? And when do you choose the right marketing software? The core of good email marketing automation software is not sending email, but automating good email. This is an important distinction.It is an essential part of your online marketing activities.

Good marketing automation tools help you to:

  • Easily and quickly put together professional templates for the content of your emails.
  • Put together so-called sequences, triggers and workflows that allow you to send certain mails automatically.
  • Create clear overviews and reports that allow you to analyze which marketing campaigns are successful and which emails can be improved.
  • Set up an integration with another vendor's software package that allows you to make your email campaigns even better, such as a CRM system like HubSpot for example

Email marketing automation software comes at different levels and price points. If you are still fairly unfamiliar with email marketing, it may be best to get started with a clear and simple package so that you can get started but not be overwhelmed right away. Also, you won't have to make a big investment right away. Are you more experienced and looking to optimize your existing email marketing campaigns? Then you are obviously looking for more features and probably willing to pay more for them. 

Below is an overview of our top 15 email marketing automation tools for 2022. It is no doubt clear to you that there are many more tools on the market, but we think these packages have proven their worth by now. We would like to take you through them one by one so you can make your own smart consideration. 

We compared the following best Marketing Automation tools and platforms:

  1. Hubspot
  2. Salesforce
  3. ActiveCampaign/Mailblue
  4. Flexmail
  6. MailChimp
  7. Mailerlite
  8. Moosend
  9. Sendinblue
  10. GetResponse
  11. AWeber
  12. Keap
  13. Constant Contact
  14. Campaign Monitor
  15. Klaviyo
  16. Marketo

1. HubSpot tools: Best Marketing Automation according to


This well-known and complete sales and marketing suite offers everything you need to convert visitors into leads and eventually into ... customers. Less well known is that HubSpot also offers a great option for creating and sending emails. For example, HubSpot allows you to create "sequences" (or: workflows) using a drag-and-drop editor. You can easily measure and analyze the effectiveness of your campaigns as part of your complete sales funnel. In fact, the possibilities within HubSpot are endless and it knows every form of marketing automation.

The essential components are free to use, but if you are looking for more functionality, you obviously need to upgrade. That can be an immediate disadvantage, by the way: HubSpot is one of the (known) more expensive software packages on the market. 

2. Marketing Automation tools from Salesforce Pardot



Salesforce is also known primarily as a complete CRM package. This is precisely why, like HubSpot, it offers the ability to send (automated) email campaigns and analyze them from the Marketing Automation module. Easily create 'drip campaigns' and turn on automated reports, for example. This allows you to collect more and more 'customer data' and get a more complete ('360 degree) view of the online customer journey of your 'ideal' customers through nurturing. 

One disadvantage of using these Salesforce packages is, of course, the (total) price. There's quite a price tag attached to this, making it really only suitable for the larger companies and organizations.

3. ActiveCampaign / Mailblue

ActiveCampaign / Mailblue

ActiveCampaign is represented in the Netherlands by the company MailBlue. Mailblue has been a partner of AdPage and Social Media Entrepreneur for 4 years. We have already created several content through webinars and challenges in cooperation with Youri Meuleman of Mailblue. Maiblue is expert in ActiveCampaign but they also understand the game of lead gathering.

This tool can handle more than 850 apps, such as Facebook, Shopify and WordPress. What is also special is that this software cannot be labeled as just a CRM, "email service provider" (ESP) or automation tool. In fact, it is all three and more. That said, ActiveCampaign is not the right solution for everyone. If you're looking for a more straightforward tool for your very first campaign, for example, it might be a bit overwhelming. For more seasoned email marketers, however, it is a wonderful toy. For example, ActiveCampaign is known for its ability to create highly personalized emails through the use of very extensive segmentation capabilities. 

Prices are market-based with incremental amounts and functionality. Beginners can get started with the Lite package and if you are looking for a full CRM package, you can easily switch to Plus. 

4. Flexmail


Flexmail is a marketing automation tool from Belgium. Since Belgium is obviously part of the EU, a key differentiator is that Flexmail is GDPR compliant. Important, if your company also does a lot of business in the EU in the coming years. The company has also achieved several ISO certifications, which offers confidence. Flexmail also has a drag-and-drop builder and integrations with Zapier, Monday, AdPage and Teamleader, among others.


Flexmail has gained notoriety in recent years, in part because of their partnership with the Dutch Grand Prix. What many people do not know, however, is exactly what this company stands for. is basically a complete "Customer Data Platform," which can serve as the backbone for many other microservices. One of them, of course, is e-mail campaigns, and with you get all the tools you expect to send professional e-mails, such as workflows or (drip) sequences and a drag-and-drop editor.

6. MailChimp


One of the oldest and perhaps most well-known ESPs on the market is MailChimp. In fact, this "nestor" has been around since 2001 and is synonymous with "email marketing" for many business owners. Typically, Mailchimp has all the basic elements you need to start email campaigns, built on a clear and accessible interface. MailChimp's weaknesses include its ability to integrate with other tools and its ability to do deep and sophisticated segmentation and automation.

7. Mailerlite: Lightweight email marketing automation

In the "easy to use" category, here's another recommended program: Mailerlite. This program is full of 'free' features that will help you set up and send your first campaigns. In fact, in terms of ease of use and overview, Mailerlite may score even better than MailChimp. You can quickly get started with Mailerlite to set up your own website, forms, pop-ups and automation.

8. Moosend: A low-cost Marketing Automation Package

Moosend offers several tools for email campaigns, including a drag-and-drop email editor that lets you build professional layouts in no time. There are several options for building and managing sequences. Are you sending to 1,000 people or less? Then you'll still be fine with Moosend's free plan.

9. Sendinblue: low-cost software and tools for marketing automation


Looking for a free solution for your company's email campaigns? Then Sendinblue is definitely worth a try. This software lets you send up to 300 emails per day to an unlimited amount of people. Moreover, you can quickly get started with professionally designed templates, automatic "welcome emails" and opt-in forms for your website. Another great feature is that Sendinblue's AI can determine for you the best time to send emails, increasing your chances of high open rates. Want to scale up? No point, as Sendinblue's Lite plan will only cost you an extra $25 per month.

10. GetResponse


GetResponse is one of the most complete software solutions for email marketers. With a global presence, you can rely on it being worked on by a professional team that comes up with new updates regularly. In addition to email marketing campaigns, GetResponse can also provide you with highly converting landing pages, as well as webinar software and autofunnel solutions. One disadvantage of GetResponse is that you have to pay (immediately); there is no "freemium" (entry-level) subscription. 

11. Aweber


One of the most well-known solutions and the leader in email marketing software is Aweber. With over 700 templates to choose from, there is always one that matches your brand identity. Unique to the team at Aweber, is the level of support they offer to startups and first-time users of their product. They also play heavily into B2B marketing. Another plus is the ability to start with a free plan, which allows you to send up to 3,000 emails to up to 500 users. 

12. Keap: Best software for CRM


Keap, designed by the team at InfusionSoft, is effectively a CRM. That makes it a relatively complete package with many features, at a relatively low cost, especially compared to larger CRM packages like Hubspot or Zoho. Another big plus is the extensive documentation for the software and the specialization lead nurturing and lead scoring. With the help of several online tutorials, you will master Keap in no time!

13. Constant Contact: Tools and Software for event industry

Constant Contact

Designed for the event industry, Constant Contact focuses on invitations, registrations and ticket sales, among other things. Another distinguishing feature of Constant Contact is the suitability of the emails for mobile readers. A disadvantage of this package is that its prices are relatively higher than competitors and there are only basic automation features. 

14. Campaign Monitor

Campaign Monitor

A well-known, professional service known for supporting startups and SMEs is Campaign Monitor. Positives include the amount of responsive templates to choose from, an easy drag-and-drop email builder and sequence builder and easy to add personalizations. Prices are market-based and scalable. 

15. Klaviyo


With a clear focus on e-commerce, Klaviyo helps marketers get more functionality out of their email and SMS follow-ups and increase sales. This package can help you turn important 'standard events' from your webshop into effective e-mail messages, for example when the price of a (favorite) product has dropped or new stock is available. It helps you formulate the right message. Creating emails based on online shopping behavior of your visitors is also easy with Klaviyo and gives you insight into the final ROI. 

You can get started with the free subscriptions to get started quickly, but if your shop already has more than 500 contacts you will have to pay a little more. 

16. Marketo


Marketo is ideal for bringing your marketing and sales team closer together. It has all the tools you need to make complex Customer Journeys simple and optimize them. It is one of the few marketing tools that can measure everything so you know how to optimize the customer journey and that it works well between marketing and sales as well. That's why the prices of don't lie either. You have packages that start from $895 per month and go up to $3175 per month.



17. Do Marketing Automation and CRM tools work well with Lead generation tool AdPage?

While the above ESPs are all powerful tools in this area, we know from our own experience that they can sometimes be overwhelming for clients just starting out with email marketing. In addition, you often see that every business case is different and there is no one size fits all. Our team has designed AdPage's powerful software to include all the tools you need to start collecting email addresses without losing track. This is also how we like to design our landing pages ourselves .

A key functionality of AdPage is building user-friendly forms. You can connect these effortlessly with various email and marketing automation tools. Marketing Automation is definitely going to help your business, but with AdPage you're going to realize results faster because you can easily generate leads with the conversion tools. We do, logically, sometimes get asked why entrepreneurs would choose AdPage when they could also work with the Pagebuilder of some marketing automation tools... However, the answer to that is quite simple. After all, at AdPage, we believe in:

  • More than 25 years of experience in automating marketing and helping B2B marketers and webshop owners
  • Support and experience in what works and what doesn't work in marketing processes.
  • Landing Page templates built to get more conversion.
  • Super fast load times.
  • AVG-proof marketing. All your visitors and customers are served by a Dutch server, which is in line with the provisions of the GDPR.

Conclusion: So what are the best Marketing Automation tools?

Without a clear plan based on the needs and wants of your organization or business, you can quickly become overwhelmed by all the possibilities of different marketing automation tools. After reading our shortlist, you may already have a few favorites picked out, but we highly recommend starting with a tool where you don't lose track. When getting started with marketing automation take the time to try out the right tool. Once you get started with marketing automation, and have chosen the software then you often can't easily switch to another tool that allows you to automate everything.

Are you looking for a good extension to generate leads or partner for your digital marketing for e.g. B2B marketing automation or for your web shop and want to spar? At AdPage we specialize in setting up and linking effective conversion tools such as pop-ups, landing pages and quizzes, but we have also gained quite a bit of marketing knowledge. Want to try out AdPage? You can! Through the following link you can try it completely free of charge. Of course, you can also schedule a demo with Koen or Jochem. They are happy to be of service.