It’s no secret that marketing automation is an integral part of most digital marketing strategies these days. The problem, however, is that many marketers are still unsure about where to start their automation journey from.
Thankfully, we’ve put together this blog post to help you get started on your own (and very fast)! In the following paragraphs, we’ll discuss some of the fundamentals of marketing automation and offer a few helpful tips for getting started in this space.
What is Marketing Automation?
Marketing Automation refers to any marketing software or technology that helps you automate your online activities such as email campaigns, social media interactions and more. Moreover, it can also be used to score leads and nurture prospects down the funnel towards conversion.
Marketing Automation software is also helpful when streamlining your marketing process, increasing the speed of your online campaigns and saving time along the way. For activities like volume emailing, prospecting management etc. it is quite indispensable.
Marketing Automation has become an essential tool for improving bottom-line growth. Over 70% of Indian marketers use it primarily to improve their lead conversion rate.
Do You Need It?
Before you hop on to the bandwagon, it is essential to ask yourself if it is necessary for your business. Marketing automation can be beneficial in saving time. Still, there are some things that it won’t be especially good at doing right off the bat.
Marketing Automation doesn’t help you make sense of all of your online data or provide a complete picture of what’s going on — but it does help you pull together data from multiple systems into something manageable and actionable. It also allows users to build their campaigns and strategies within an existing framework without paying for every little feature they want individually.
What Does Marketing Automation Do?
Automation helps your marketing processes become more efficient; it streamlines almost all asepcts and increases overall efficiency. Marketing automation technology aims to provide a more personalized experience (think of it as an assistant for marketers) by simplifying the way you conduct your marketing tasks.
What Are The Benefits Of Marketing Automation?
There are plenty of benefits to using marketing automation, including:
Using marketing automation is incredibly time-saving because it eliminates the need for manual steps involved in multiple campaigns and touchpoints. You spend less time on repetitive tasks, thereby reducing possible errors too. Instead, you can focus on data analysis, strategy implementation or creating new content. Not only that, but it dramatically speeds up your lead conversion rates through things like drip email sequences and automated follow-ups.
How many times have you found yourself spending your marketing budget without intending to? Marketing automation saves money by growing leads into customers and increasing sales conversion rates through personalized and automated approaches. This decreases the cost per lead (CPL) generated, while also decreasing overall costs associated with marketing efforts and activities because it can help eliminate waste in the form of unwanted or unqualified leads.
Having an automated solution allows marketers to keep track of their leads, whether they are subscribers/subscribed to newsletters, social followers or regular visitors on a website/blog etc. It eliminates human error, which is never good for business!
Qualified leads are essential for improving your bottom-line growth. Marketing automation can help you find those leads much faster and easier than ever before. It allows you to better track qualified leads while also delivering personalised engagement, that goes above and beyond.
One of the best things about marketing automation is that it allows you to create a personalized experience for customers, both on the website and through email. This way, whenever they visit your site or open up your emails, they receive a customized message that pertains directly to them, their preferences and other interactions they have had with your brand.
Marketing automation also allows you to send emails based on past behaviour — i.e., based on what customers have been reading about lately or any products/services they’ve viewed online. This provides an incredibly personal approach in marketing campaigns by showing each customer something unique and relevant to them. This also leads to increased engagement.
Customer Retention And Loyalty
As marketing automation gets more intelligent, it has the potential to get even more personal. It can connect customers with like-minded people through social media and push them towards personalized marketing opportunities that align with their interests and preferences. All of these lead to greater customer loyalty and retention. As customer loyalty increases, customer retention will follow.
Customer Data Mining
Marketing automation solutions allow you to continually mine customer data for customer service, insight and intelligence by analyzing customer journeys, transactions, email interaction history, social media activity etc. It also provides marketing teams with the resources they need to produce better customer experiences through insights gathered from customer interactions online. And since this is an ever evolving process, the marketer can continually fine-tune the communication to increase customer engagement.
Marketing automation software provides an incredibly efficient customer segmentation function that you can use to make customer profiles more accurate and detailed. This allows improved understanding of customer needs, likes, dislikes, customer journeys, behaviours, etc., so you can create customer-focused marketing messages. Such customer profiling is done through the tracking of customer behaviour (emails opened, links clicked etc.), customer data (email addresses, names etc.) and customer preferences (browsing history, buying behaviour/history etc.). You can also create customer segments based on geographic location, demography or customer lifecycle stage.
Marketing automation also allows customer segments to be created based on customer-specific attributes such as customer lifetime value/spend and customer segmentation regarding how loyal or valuable your customers are. This helps marketing teams target customers more accurately, which is particularly important for customer engagement, loyalty and retention efforts through personalized messaging.
The benefits of fine-tuned segmentation are well known to marketing professionals and marketing automation software helps do this with relatively little effort.
Benefits For Small Businesses
Small businesses can benefit a lot from Marketing Automation, especially when it comes to email automation. A marketing automation platform is ideal for lead generation, list segmentation, and, of course, lead follow up. It is an excellent way for small businesses to scale their business cost-efficiently without worrying about hiring more employees or outsourcing work to external agencies. According to Emailmonday, more than 51% of companies are using Marketing Automation already, and over 58% of the companies are planning to adopt it. (webengage.com) .
Since marketing budgets are often limited for SME’s, using software to cost-effectively reach their key audiences is must-have in their aresenal.
Small businesses can save time and effort with automation in the following ways:
Generate more leads through email marketing campaigns
According to the B2B Technology Marketing Community, generating high-quality leads is one of the biggest challenges faced by B2B companies. Marketing automation platforms provide a cost-effective way to automate your outreach process so that scaling your lead generation efforts across multiple channels and platforms becomes a breeze.
Automation helps you stay organized and reduce the amount of time spent organizing lists, prospects and leads. It is a great way to improve your email open rates by segmenting your email list based on past behaviour and providing more relevant information in real-time.
Fight Monotony And Make Mundane Tasks Fun
Marketing tasks can get monotonous and boring. Automating these tasks can help make the mundane more fun by sending out various automated messages for your business. With automation, you can create different types of campaigns that will appear differently in your prospects’ inboxes. This means that you’ll never sound like every other marketer out there!
Score Leads Based on User Behavior
Marketing Automation is excellent for lead scoring, which helps you determine which leads are more likely to convert into customers. It is ideal for lead nurturing and follow-up automation. It can help you target potential customers based on their behaviour and thus, increase the relevancy of your messaging.
Identify Trends and Patterns
It helps you keep track of contact data and interactions so that they’re never lost. It helps you keep your marketing strategy on point by identifying trends and patterns in the data it tracks. Marketing Automation enables you to send personalized messages to a highly targeted audience via social media, email and other online platforms. Moreover, you can manage large-scale direct mailing campaigns with ease and as efficiently as possible.
Is Marketing Automation Easy To Use?
It is undoubtedly more efficient, but marketing automation does require some technical knowledge and skills. It is an excellent tool for saving time. Still, it doesn’t eliminate the need to spend time on a marketing strategy or analyzing data.
It is an essential tool to have in your marketing toolkit. It can be as simple or complex as you want it to be — all you need is a bit of creative thinking, along with some technical knowledge.
Getting Started With Marketing Automation
Marketing automation isn’t hard to use, but marketing strategies and techniques must be in place before marketing automation can be fully utilized. It is a great tool for streamlining marketing efforts and processes; however, marketing automation only works well with an established marketing strategy.
Define Your Target Market Or “Hot List”
You should define your “Hot List” by putting together a complete picture of whom you’re marketing to so that you know what type of content they want and what kind of offers might appeal to them. If this isn’t done, it can lead marketing automation efforts in the wrong direction and waste time, money AND resources!
A great example of this would be if I wanted to run an email campaign directed at dog lovers, then marketing automation is great! If I wanted to run marketing automation for the general population, say that 50% of the population has a pet, marketing automation might create a “hot list” consisting of all pet owners. While this is efficient, it’s also very narrow and possibly not what my business wants or needs!
Create Your Marketing Elevator Pitch
Developing a marketing strategy at the onset will allow marketing strategies to be designed around brand messaging/market position, audience persona definition (or customer avatar), and marketing goals based on revenue targets. This will make marketing automation more effective because it won’t be sending random emails with no connection or relevance to customers.
Data Collection & Customer Engagement
Formulate marketing strategies with customer data in mind. With marketing automation in place, it’s effortless to track information on customers and their interactions with the brand. This helps marketing teams target offers and messages more specifically to the entire marketing list or segmentation groups of customers within a marketing list.
Create Marketing Lists
Defining marketing lists is essential for creating segments of your audience who will receive specific marketing communications based on customized criteria that marketers set up, such as behaviour, demographics, geography and other parameters.
For example, suppose you want to send an email campaign designed for dog owners within a 50-mile radius of your business. In that case, you can create a marketing list based on these criteria (behaviour), which tracks whether or not people are interacting with you online (or in-person) and purchases they have made with you. You can upload this marketing list directly into your marketing automation platform. The marketing team can send out a custom email marketing campaign for existing customers or to people who haven’t bought from your business before!
10 Marketing Automation Tips For Success
#1 – Get More Out Of Your Existing Data
Marketing automation is an option that was not available to your business earlier. Think about how much time you can save by creating marketing lists using data already available to marketing teams. Add information to marketing lists using marketing tools such as Google Analytics and then export this into your marketing automation tool.
Follow up with current customers, get referrals and build brand advocates within each marketed segment of your customer list. Keep marketing and sales team updated on sales metrics, marketing list segmentation successes and more with marketing automation in place. This data helps marketing managers, marketing team members, and sales representatives make better decisions about the marketing mix for their business.
#2 – Create Lead Nurturing Campaigns
Nurturing can result in 50% more sales leads at a 33% lower cost. Setting up lead nurturing campaigns is a great way to build relationships with leads who have expressed interest in your products or services online or offline. You can create content relevant to your leads as they interact with your brand (newsletters, blog posts, etc.). These will be sent to the marketing list at a specified time and delivered by email.
It’s essential to set up triggers based on actions performed by people within the marketing automation tool. For example, you can receive a trigger and corresponding marketing list when people on your marketing list send an email to sales@yourdomain (a marketing team member could also create this segment within the marketing automation tool too).
#3 – Invest Time in Prospect Finder Forms
Find out what your ideal customer is looking for with lead prospect forms. If your business sells products online or offline, add a simple contact form on your website where customers can provide their details for follow up communication. You could also run events such as trade shows or conferences where prospects can sign up to be part of the event marketing lists.
The leads you get will have minimal resistance because most marketing automation marketing lists are usually made up of customers who have direct, first-hand experience with your brand. They already know the benefits that your product or service offers, and they also value the relationship you have with their organization. From there, marketing automation campaigns will help nurture these leads into more profitable sales opportunities both online and offline!
#4 – Use Marketing Automation for Lead Generation
Most marketing professionals will tell you that lead generation is one of the most important things to build a potent marketing mix. Marketing campaign success is dependent on having enough leads to fill every stage of your pipeline. This is known as marketing list segmentation.
Follow up with people using marketing automation tools after they have visited your website or while marketing campaigns are running. This way, you can take the information provided and start marketing to these people with more relevant, personalized content in your list segmentation.
Marketing automation allows a marketing team member to add leads immediately after they arrive by filling out lead prospect forms via your website, social media channels, or trade shows. The marketing automation software will then take the information from those forms (including how each person found you), and based on their actions (such as visiting certain pages of your website), will create a marketing list that will be nurtured with a marketing campaign specific to that prospect.
#5 – Get More Marketing Team Members Up To Speed With Marketing Campaigns
Marketing is always a changing game. New marketing techniques, new marketing channels and new marketing teams are just some of the variables that keep marketing professionals on their toes. This is why marketing automation should be used as an effective way for marketing team members to understand the intricacies of each marketing list segmentation.
The best thing about using marketing automation systems is that it allows you to set how much information each person in your marketing team will see through specific permissions settings. In addition, deliver training content via email or by posting it directly into a forum on your website where everyone can share ideas or ask questions!
You’ll be able to train and engage your sales team better. Sales staff will be better equipped to understand the marketing automation list segmentation and objectives and the marketing department resources available to achieve those objectives.
#6 – Make Your Marketing Team More Accountable
Once you have a marketing automation tool in place with marketing lists set up and access assigned to each marketing team member, what’s next? How do you keep marketing campaigns on track with everyone accountable for their role in the process? How do you measure marketing efficiency?
Marketing automation can be used in the best way by having a schedule that clearly outlines when each marketing team member should complete specific tasks. It helps everyone to stay focused and organized. It also allows managers to effectively evaluate their assignments and assign more responsibility to people who meet their marketing list segmentation on time.
You can use marketing automation software to hold marketing team members accountable for campaign progress and results. Marketing automation software allows you to schedule marketing campaigns with specific dates and times. This helps keep everyone on track and ensures that marketing campaigns are completed on schedule. Marketing templates based on each sale’s sales cycle will help hold marketing team members accountable for their actions in the marketing automation chain.
#7 – Use Marketing Automation For Better Analysis
One of the most prominent challenges marketers face is analyzing data from various marketing channels such as website analytics, email analytics, social media site analytics. Analyzing marketing campaigns with marketing automation software is easy with marketing lists.
Marketing automation list segmentation enables marketers to analyze the results of marketing databases, marketing campaign sales objectives and marketing efforts. For example, applying a marketing analytics report (such as where prospects came in from) to a marketing list that was grouped based on when they became customers will give you staggering insight into how your marketing is actually working!
With better analysis comes more successful marketing campaigns. Use data from each action item completed in the marketing automation templates to track the success and effectiveness of specific ideas. This will enable you to improve upon ongoing campaigns and learn what tactics will work for future endeavours.
#8 – Increase Marketing Campaign ROI
Having marketing lists set up with different marketing roles will enable you to optimize marketing campaigns. You can track the progress of your sales team by having them complete actions items on the automation journey. This will allow you to see how you can improve each sale’s process and results. Marketing automation helps business owners determine which media channels are more effective by comparing marketing list segmentation sent via specific mediums over time.
Make sure your marketing team is channelling resources effectively! Use individual elements for various purposes to see where it performs best. For example, use the same landing page for a webinar and test out lead capture marketing lists in marketing automation with the same landing page. This allows you to apply marketing list segmentation to automation templates that outline who should see the marketing piece and track how it performed over time.
#9 – Leverage Account-Based Marketing
We’ve all heard the buzz about account-based marketing. A study showed that companies using account-based marketing tactics generated 9x higher revenue than those without it. That is a significant impact on revenue!
Account-based marketing (ABM) focuses on a marketing message’s relevance to existing customers or accounts. The marketing campaign is customized to the individual, and the marketing messages are tailored to match customer needs. This type of marketing is a relatively new approach, but it has been growing in popularity because it works.
Use marketing list segmentation in your account-based marketing strategy. You can create lead generation lists with buyers’ names. Segment them based on their job title, annual income, or any other information that will allow you to determine the best messaging for these individuals. Taking time to build this list before account-based marketing will help you be more efficient and productive in your account-based strategy.
#10 – Better Quality Marketing
When marketing teams are responsible for validating all leads from sales, a feedback loop is created through marketing list segmentation. This enables you to make adjustments based on what works best. Marketing automation allows business owners to gain insight into which marketing strategies work best. It analyzes lead generation, lead nurturing, and sales conversion rates in real-time.
Having an online analytics dashboard that shows any small changes over time makes marketing automation list segmentation useful for marketing team members who want to better understand how marketing tactics affect sales!
Myths About Marketing Automation
Let’s go over some common myths of marketing automation:
I don’t want marketing emails cluttering up my inbox!
If you have a well-designed marketing campaign, this shouldn’t be a problem — unless someone blasts out hundreds of emails without segmenting lists. Initial marketing campaigns are a great way to offer introductory deals and build relationships with new potential clients.
I think the main concern about having non-personalized marketing emails hitting people’s inboxes is that automated emails should be sent with a purpose. You should set a goal for marketing communications. Suppose you are sending marketing emails to your marketing list with no relevant content or value. In that case, customers will feel as though they aren’t getting anything out of your email campaigns and unsubscribe from the marketing lists, which is not what you want!
It’s too expensive!
I’ve had many clients say this, but marketing automation, in general, can be very affordable depending on what level of service you want. There are also some free resources, like Mailchimp (which has amazing templates), that users can use at no additional cost.
In addition, email marketing services usually have great introductory offers where users can try it out for free for a month (or sometimes more) with no obligation. So marketing automation is actually cost-effective when you compare the marketing costs of cold calling and snail mail marketing, which could burn a hole in your wallet very quickly!
I’m concerned marketing automation will take over marketing decisions!
Marketing automation can result in a lot of data being collected about marketing campaigns and other marketing elements. However, the marketing team or marketing manager should be able to decide which marketing strategies they want. Marketing automation isn’t going to make strategic decisions for you! But it could help with making more informed choices by providing detailed reports, metrics and analysis.
Are You Ready for Marketing Automation?
Getting started requires a bit of preparation to ensure that you have systems to process the data and manage your campaigns. Before you plug Marketing Automation into all of your activities, it is essential to consider whether or not this tool will be helpful for you. Such software works best when used over a long period – ideally three months or more — so be sure to set adequate expectations around usage upfront. It can help streamline repetitive tasks, but there are some things that automation tools won’t be especially good at doing right off the bat (like making sense of all of your online data). It’s crucial to ask yourself: Is Marketing Automation necessary for my business?
Know Your Business
The first step towards Marketing Automation success is to make sure that the tool you select can support the capabilities of your business. Marketing automation software lets users build campaigns and systems in an existing framework. However, suppose you are running a large-volume campaign. In that case, it is crucial to select a platform that offers robust reporting options to allow you to monitor the performance of different strategies throughout your automation process.
Have Your Goals Crystal Clear
It’s crucial — when it comes to Marketing Automation — that all stakeholders involved in the process have similar goals in mind for what they hope to gain from automation. If everyone has agreed upon these goals, automation can be incredibly helpful in meeting them.
Integrate with Existing Marketing Systems
Marketing automation software lets you create and manage campaigns in a central framework rather than purchasing each feature individually. It is important to ensure that your Marketing Automation software can seamlessly integrate with other technologies so that everything functions together. A great thing about Marketing Automation software is its ability to help you determine who responds to your content and what stage they’re at in a buying cycle. By taking these insights into account, businesses can tailor their messaging more effectively towards prospects depending on where they are along the sales funnel.
Know What Automation Can and Cannot Do
Marketing automation doesn’t help you make sense of all of your online data or provide a complete picture of what’s going on; instead, it will help you pull together data from multiple systems into something manageable and actionable. Automation can help streamline repetitive tasks, but Marketing Automation tools can’t do everything right out of the gate (like making sense of all of your online data).
Marketing Automation Software
There are hundreds of Marketing Automation platforms that you can use. Some of the notable tools include:
- Marketing automation software like Salesforce Marketing Cloud, Oracle Marketing Cloud, HubSpot etc.
- Customer relationship management software like Salesforce or Base CRM
- SEO Tools and platforms like Moz or SEMRush to analyze traffic trends and statistics etc.
Note: If you require further assistance with Marketing automation or setting up your own martech stack, don’t hesitate to contact us for more information today. Our experts at DerbaTech have decades of experience and can help you with your marketing automation journey. Remember that our services are always free for those who require assistance and have a limited budget when just getting started.
We live in an age where we are busier than ever before; we hardly have time for ourselves, let alone the hours required for traditional marketing campaigns and labour-intensive customer outreach processes.
Automation makes life easier by providing a way to manage, segment, and track leads across multiple channels such as websites, email accounts/newsletters, social media platforms, etc., so that you reach out at the appropriate time via emails and social media posts as through other touchpoints.
Marketing automation isn’t scary or hard all by itself, though; you will get results if you use it properly. Many people are afraid of automation because it CAN be difficult if not handled right! The key is to learn how it works before diving headfirst into automation so you can avoid simple problems every business owner will run into while implementing marketing automation.