Marketing automation is much more than email automation. It enables marketers to automate simple, but often laborious and time-consuming marketing tasks, leaving the marketer with more time for strategic marketing decisions. Through its ability to collect and store prospect data, it can help you take your marketing efforts to the next level.
In this blog we explain how marketing automation can be used to improve your marketing campaigns, and enable you to make informed customer nourishment and acquisition decisions. If you are looking to adopt automation software, be sure to check out our earlier blog where we compare three automation tools: Hubspot, ActiveCampaign and Marketo.
By offering a wide range of metrics, marketing automation increases the transparency of your marketing efforts. It allows you to see where your marketing budget is going, how effective your current strategy is and, most importantly, how your audience is responding to your messages.
Many marketing automation tools offer a sophisticated workflow management function, allowing you to carefully map out the key customer touch points as well as set behavioural triggers. Setting behavioural triggers means determining an outcome for a predefined action, such as when a prospect signs up for an upcoming webinar, they receive an automated email with more information on the topic and your services.
To help you measure your campaign effectiveness, marketing automation software solutions offer a variety of digital metrics. For example, to measure customer engagement, you can take a look at the open and click-though rates from your email marketing efforts, as well as the number of your website visits and the site traffic sources. Besides this, the bounce rate and the rate that your audience is unsubscribing from your email list can give valuable insight to what in your content strategy works, and what doesn’t.
Marketing automation solutions can help you reach your audience in a more efficient manner. After all, marketing automation allows you to better understand the behaviour of your audience, as it enables you to see who opens your emails, who purchases what and in what quantities, as well as who keeps returning to your site over and over again. All of these behaviours can give indication of what stage the prospects are in the buyer journey.
Additionally, marketing automation software can make your sales funnel more visible, allowing you to determine what type of content will best benefit the prospect at each stage of the funnel, helping them move through the funnel to the purchase stage. Providing the right information at the right time can also help shorten the sales cycle, which especially in the B2B setting can be long.
Besides this, marketing automation can help you improve your overall customer experience as it allows you to become more responsive with your communications. In a B2B context where multiple decision-makers are usually involved (such as IT, sales, marketing and finance), marketing automation can help you to target each of them with content specific to their role in the business. In other words, marketing automation can help you create the illusion of one-to-one communication, while simultaneously responding to the behaviour of hundreds and hundreds of prospects in different companies.
The Advent of AI
AI tools are becoming more prevalent in the work flow of sales and marketing teams when engaging with prospective customers, particularly in the formative stages of enquiry and elevation. AI is also supporting the scalability of teams to manage more and more ‘conversations’ in an authentic way, and focus their time on qualified leads.
Companies such as Conversica are blazing the trail in this space by offering ‘human’ interaction in the early funnel stages, and passing leads over to actual humans once scoring criteria has been met.
Directing overall strategy
One of the key benefits of adopting marketing automation is the resulting time and cost savings that stem from automating the otherwise manual marketing tasks. This also leaves more time for the strategic marketing decisions, informing future campaigns.
Marketing automation can be used to guide overall strategy, as the closed-loop reporting, enabled by the increased transparency and available metrics allows the marketer to measure in detail what currently works, and hence what the future direction should be. Metrics such as cost per customer, sales and/or marketing qualified leads, overall revenue generated and the customer lifetime value can all be used to direct future marketing efforts.
Over all, marketing automation has many benefits for its user. It should be noted that with so many metrics inputs available, you need to be smart about what you are measuring. Stay tuned for our next blog in which we’ll be looking into measuring brand impact.
B2B expo 2019
On March 27th, at 1230, Theatre 18, our MD and Head of Strategy, David Simpson, will be presenting a lecture titled “DO NOTHING… unless you can measure it” in which he will touch upon the above as well as the recommended approach for marketers in 2019 to ensure they are getting biggest bang for buck in terms of spend and resource, to develop meaningful customer relationships and value.
DigitalParade will work with you to develop a creative platform and clear roadmap to deliver measurable success across your digital marketing mix.We specialise in using the latest technologies, within web and social app development, delivering bespoke solutions that not only look fantastic on desktop, mobile and tablet but also function seamlessly and aid the overarching strategy within your digital estate.
Learn more about how we can help you connect with your audience email@example.com