As marketers, we depend on productivity tools to help us work efficiently. We have to. There are simply too many projects to be bogged down by inefficient technology or processes. Yet too often we get stuck in a loop of using outdated methods for collecting essential information, even as it costs us time and resources.

 That’s why having the ability to create your own online forms has become a necessity. Data collection needs to be an organized and simplified process, which is why smart marketers have started using drag-and-drop form building software  — either for their own businesses or for their clients — for lead generation, downloading collateral, event registrations, and even collecting payments.

 For instance, Blossom Lab, a full-service marketing agency in Oakland, California, discovered how to manage data collection for all of their clients, as well as their own prospects, through custom online forms. As they found, the beauty of using a drag-and-drop form builder is that it requires very little effort or technical expertise.

 If you’re like Blossom Lab in that you want to save time, here are three ways you can immediately boost your productivity using online forms.

 1) Contact, Inquiry, and Lead Generation Forms

Qualifying interested prospects for any business doesn’t have to be difficult. By using an online form builder that embeds forms directly into your website, you can ask the exact questions you need and even customize an autoresponder email to include follow-up information for the potential lead. Gone are the days of leaving an email address on your website and hoping that a prospect finds it.

Plus, if you’re an agency that creates websites for your clients, you need to use an online form system that works on all of the various website builder platforms. Unlike the basic form capabilities typically built-in on most website builders, companies like JotForm allow your clients to add payment fields, export data to spreadsheets, and integrate with CRMs, email marketing systems, and cloud storage, while still seamlessly embedding on the website directly.

2) Event Registration Forms

Events require a ton of effort. But building an event registration form for your attendees does not have to be time consuming. A polished, professional event registration form makes it easy for your guests to get the pertinent registration information they need, while allowing you to organize all that information in the same place, right in your form building software inbox.

But there’s so much more you can do with event forms. When someone submits their information through your form, you can customize your “thank you” page with add-to-calendar links and any other information they’ll find helpful; you can send autoresponder emails thanking them for registering; and you can even charge a ticketing fee or suggested donation for the event straight from your form.

3) Feedback Forms

It’s difficult to grasp how critical customer feedback is until you start receiving it. For our marketing team, feedback drives new features, integrations, pricing, product improvement, and more. And we painlessly get the feedback we need using custom-built online feedback forms. Using forms instead of email allows us to organize the feedback we get, automatically send the responses to an integrated spreadsheet, and share the feedback we receive with our entire company.

Overhauling your team’s information-collection stream into clean, customized online forms is going to save boatloads of time and headache, while giving an enormous boost to productivity and organization. The best part of all? It’s inexpensive. All that’s required is a little willingness to update how your marketing team collects data.


About the Author: Chad Reid is the director of communications for JotForm, a popular online form building platform based in San Francisco used by marketing teams all over the world.