Marketing automation with Mautic

Date of publication

Admittedly, we don't have to. But we are curious and finally we can pretend for once that we are playing with the big boys. Since you are part of our further education, we will let you participate in our reflections and experiences. You are not a "data animal" but participants in an experiment.

In the past, we had used Matomo to create rough metrics of where our website visitors came from, with which devices and in what numbers. In practice, however, none of us looked at the numbers - at least not in such a way that any action could be derived from them. After some discussion about the pros and cons, the result was that we completely abandoned the creation of visitor metrics.

Thanks to Mautic, we have now come back to the topic because the possibilities have changed. Simply because Mautic runs on our own servers and we don't have to share the data - yours - with third parties.

What is it about?

In short: as soon as a website has more visitors than a normal company with a sales department can handle, clever minds in the company start thinking about how visitors can be segmented and converted into leads. Often the answer is then: marketing automation.

You know how it is: a website optimised for white papers/success stories, demo access, "secret" information or downloads - but you only get access after you have given your contact details.

The form data contains your personal data and, in the worst case scenario, the phone will be ringing off the hook (or the mailbox will be overflowing) because some sales team is calling or sending out "newsletters". There must have been something in the small print near the form about your consent.

So far. So bad.

Back: If there are more visitors and enquiries than there is capacity in the sales team, there is a desire to pre-qualify the 'leads'. Visitors are pre-qualified on the basis of key figures to the point where it is assumed that they are genuinely interested in the products and services offered on the website. Then it is handed over to the sales team and people take over. The downstream process can also be implemented in friendly and does not have to end as described in the previous paragraph.

Really? You have more visitors than you can handle?

No. We don't have so many visitors that we resort to these measures out of a real need.

Up to now, we have not successfully dealt with the issue, as the only serious offers came from US companies. With all the pain points that come with server locations in the USA.

In the context of the recent DrupalEurope, we became aware of Mautic. After the first games on the train ride from Darmstadt back to Berlin, we started the practical implementation.

As an experimental ground, we have resorted to our new Safeserver.Applications offer. There, we want to put "pressure" on the site so that we can get as many people as possible to use open source software. At the same time, our margin is so low that we can't finance a real sales pitch on the phone, on site at the customer or even as an individual offer. This is an offer that works well when it is largely automated. Marketing automation fitted like a glove.

We come in peace. Really.

The first version now implemented follows the following assumptions:

  • We are still not interested in anonymous website visits. How many people are on which pages and with which devices ... Completely out of scope.
  • However, we are interested in the visit history, which can be assigned to a person as soon as a contact is made via a form. Formerly anonymous website visitors then become complete visitor profiles that can be assigned to a contact with a name/mail address. From this we can deduce which of our offers our visitors have engaged with and try out more targeted approaches.
  • we are interested in a DSGVO compliant contact. We can then prove that you (?) have agreed to be part of our experiment :)
  • we are interested in scoring contacts so that we are prepared when we succeed in printing the site. The assumption then is that there are more contacts than we can staff. Scoring allows us to assign points to contacts based on their "click" behaviour and only take action when certain thresholds are reached. As long as this threshold has not been exceeded, an automated machine acts instead of us. Brave new world.
  • We are interested in the automatic workflow for sending multi-stage mailings. What a dream, if we no longer have to think about the maturity of your purchase decision. You will be contacted until you are ready. And then we call you :)
  • We are interested in your feedback. Are our assumptions correct? Have we taught the machine manners that are appropriate? Does all this help us or does it annoy you, even though we report on it transparently.


Wonderful worlds await behind every menu item in Mautic. Whether it's assets by form (see the whitepaper story above), dynamic content, rich forms that can be used in campaigns, or just looking at the beautiful dashboard that displays metrics and hints at assumptions that work. We will click all over the place and think of use cases for it on our websites and try them out in practice.

As a first step, we have extended the recording of the visit history to other websites of ours. Mautic is also already active on this website.

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DeepL is a deep learning company that develops AI systems for languages. The company, based in Cologne, Germany, was founded in 2009 as Linguee, and introduced the first internet search engine for translations. Linguee has answered over 10 billion queries from more than 1 billion users.

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Stephan Luckow

Stephan is an open source evangelist and constantly curious about technologies. Thematically, his blog posts can best be summarised as "curiosity satisfied".