Marketing, when done well, encompasses many platforms and tactics in order to effectively reach your target audience and maximize conversions for your business. But, the implementation of a robust marketing plan takes lots of time and effort - often time we don’t have in an already busy day at work. So, wouldn’t it be nice to relax knowing that one, crucial component of your marketing strategy is automatically running for you?
Well, there’s a solution for this. This solution not only relieves some of the marketing to-do’s on your list, but makes the overall marketing process for your business more efficient and reliable.
What’s the solution you ask? Marketing automation.
What is marketing automation?
Simply put, marketing automation is a technology that manages marketing processes and multifunctional campaigns, across multiple channels, automatically.
For further context, think about email marketing. Marketers heavily rely on email marketing to contact, engage with, and convert consumers into customers. But if you send one blanket email to your entire prospect database and hope the message resonates well with all of them, this is probably not as effective as it could be.
A marketing automation platform gives you the ability to nurture leads through the entire purchase funnel. By delivering personalized, targeted and specific messages that are appealing, it encourages the consumer to perform certain actions, ultimately moving them further down the purchase funnel.
As an example, here is what a basic automated email workflow could look like:
Step 1: Someone fills out a form with their details after seeing your ad, wanting to download an ebook.
Step 2: You send an email to the contact, saying thank you and provide the link to download your latest ebook.
Step 3: You send a follow up to all the people that downloaded the offer, checking it downloaded ok and offering more help if they need.
Step 4: A few days later, you send another email to the list of people who downloaded the ebook, offering them a case study relating to that topic or offering them a special promotion for a service relating to the ebook.
Step 5: Finally, when someone downloads that case study, or replies wanting to discuss the service you offered a promotion on, your team gets that notification so they can follow up further or schedule a meeting. This person is now much more qualified and is likely further down the purchase funnel, as they have expressed a significant interest in your business and your offering.
What are the benefits of marketing automation?
Marketing automation can help your business succeed. Salesforce states that marketing automation drives a 14.5% increase in sales productivity and a 12.2% reduction in marketing overhead overall.
So, what are the benefits of marketing automation? Some have been summarized above but let’s dive further into each.
Generates Better Leads
Generating leads is how a business increases their sales and overall growth. Leads are critical to the success of a business. By tracking user behavior such as following their journey on your website and then automating interactions with a prospect, you have the ability to make these interactions personalized and tailored to their specific interest. This can help a prospect become more ready to talk to a salesperson or complete a purchase, ultimately leaving your business with a more qualified lead - without you needing to do all the legwork to get them there yourself!
As you know, not all prospects are instantly ready to purchase your product or service. Often, they need nurturing and further brand interactions to become ready to make a purchase decision. Nurturing leads can be time-consuming and hard to keep track of if you don’t implement marketing automation software to help you. It is especially time-consuming when not all leads are actually ever going to convert into a sale. By using marketing automation, this process can be set up and can engage with the prospect at different times to provide them more information.
Personalizes the Customer Journey
How do you make sure you get the right information to the right prospect at the right time? Marketing automation. This technology simplifies the process for your business and can also track actions; such as if a prospect opened your email, what they clicked on in your email and how long they then spent on your website as a result. All this information helps you to tailor your content to the prospect and increase the likelihood of generating a sale.
Helps Sales and Marketing Work Together
It often poses a challenge when your sales and marketing team are both trying to generate leads and sales, but are working with different tools and not communicating effectively. Marketing automation often includes CRM, or can integrate with CRM platforms to ensure everyone is on the same page and working towards a common goal. Marketing automation improves lead quality, helps with revenue and automates manual processes like lead assignments and follow-ups.
Marketing automation is all about nurturing and informing, not selling. Providing useful information that is relevant to the prospect and their interests results in a better chance of gaining their business. Marketing automation not only helps streamline the process but helps your business gain better leads.