Marketing automation is among the best martech solutions that help businesses run more efficiently. With the right marketing automation tools and strategies, you can save time, gain more in-depth customer information, and streamline all of your marketing efforts. The best approach, however, depends on the unique needs and challenges of your business.
What is Marketing Automation?
Marketing automation is a category of tools and strategies that help businesses streamline their marketing efforts. It eliminates the need to manually perform some repetitive tasks, like sending welcome emails to new customers or assigning a lead to a salesperson. With marketing automation, all you need to do is create workflows that initiate actions based on specified triggers. Everything else is done automatically.
In addition to increased efficiency, marketing automation enhances existing marketing strategies by leveraging data from a wide range of channels. These channels include email, social media, browser cookies, web traffic, and text messages. When all of this data is combined, it’s easier to create interactions tailored to each customer’s unique interests and needs. Personalized customer experiences are more likely to drive conversions, so marketing automation also helps businesses meet their revenue goals.
What are the benefits of marketing automation?
While marketing automation can take time and effort to get up and running, it can bring many long-term benefits to your business.
Marketing Automation Helps You Understand Your Customers
All of the data that marketing automation tools collect is used to deepen your understanding of your customers: who they are, what they do, what they like and what they don’t like. You might learn that they prefer email communications that contain more graphics than text, or vice versa. You may find that a large portion of your customers leave items in their ecommerce cart for a few days before they complete their purchase. Successes and opportunities like these give you a better idea of what motivates your customers to engage with your business.
Marketing automation helps conversions
When you better understand your customers, you can optimize your marketing strategy for conversions. One of the ways in which marketing automation is to identify the customers most likely to interact with your business and tailor each interaction to their unique needs and priorities. In turn, each interaction is more likely to lead to a conversion. For example, you can connect a marketing automation tool like Mailchimp to your ecommerce site and use the cross-functional data to create personalized emails that match the buyer’s activity on your site.
Marketing automation helps you focus on the big picture
The biggest benefit of marketing automation that you might notice on a daily basis is the time and energy it saves. Most small businesses manage their marketing efforts with very little time and staff; in fact, Fundera’s Small Business Marketing Statistics and Trends report found that 47% of small business owners handle marketing entirely on their own. With marketing automation, you can focus your time and energy on broader business strategies and decisions rather than manual, repetitive marketing tasks. Plus, you’ll have data-backed insight that will inform those decisions and point you in the right direction.
Marketing automation extends beyond marketing
It sounds counterintuitive, but the benefits of marketing automation aren’t limited to marketing. On the contrary, marketing automation can produce results for your sales department as well. Sales teams are able to use lead nurturing and scoring tools to prioritize potential customers who are ready to buy. Likewise, lead routing features like those offered by Pardot ensure that no prospect falls through the cracks no matter where they are in the sales pipeline. To get the most out of your marketing automation tools, make sure your strategy is aligned with both marketing and sales.
Best practices in marketing automation
There are a few best practices to keep in mind when creating an effective marketing automation strategy.
Set specific goals
When implementing marketing automation, it’s important to have specific goals in mind that make sense for your business. This way you can track the performance of each campaign and assess what is working and where you need to make adjustments. It’s also important that your goals are realistic: don’t bite more than you can chew when you are starting out. Instead, it’s best to start small and set higher goals as you grow older.
Segment your audience strategically
Marketing automation tools provide a lot of rich data, but that data is fundamentally worthless unless you put it to good use. Consider your target customer for each product or service you offer and look for patterns or trends that intersect with those targets. For example, one of your products may be more popular among customers in a particular geographic area, or customers of a limited age range may be more likely to purchase a product from an advertisement on the social networks.
The segments you identify may change over time, and new segments may appear as your business grows. Be sure to periodically assess your audience segments to stay on top of any changes.
Create efficient workflows
Workflows are like the pistons of the marketing automation engine. To keep the whole machine running smoothly, it’s important to create workflows that support the goals you want to achieve. Think about all the touch points you have with your customers: this is where your customer journey begins. Then think about where you want your customers to go based on the actions they take.
For example, you can use a tool like SendinBlue to welcome new email subscribers with a special discount on a future order. With the right workflow in place, SendinBlue will automatically send this email and then add it to a list based on the action it takes. The exact metrics may vary, but they should improve every step of the customer journey.
Monitor and adjust your campaigns
Once your marketing automation campaigns are up and running, it’s important to monitor their performance. If you can identify individual elements that contribute to the success of a campaign, it may be worth emulating them in other campaigns. On the flip side, if something isn’t working as well as you might think, you can make small adjustments until you find the right solution. Either way, identifying successes and opportunities will help you plan your business.
Your marketing automation strategy depends on having the right tools in place. To find the one that’s right for you, start by making a list of all the marketing channels you use for your business along with your main business goals. Then look for a tool that fits this list and works within your budget. You can refine your list by reading customer reviews or signing up for a free trial.
Read more : Can Marketing Automation Software Help Your Business?