Marketing automation software represents the state of the art in marketing technology, but without a firm grasp of what it can do for your organization, you may not be getting optimal performance from it. Think of it as owning a powerful new sports car; it only matters how it handles if you know how to drive it. Here’s how to get the most from your marketing automation system.
Work with the Pros
If you want your marketing automation ROI to take off, work with a consultant who’s certified on your platform. Certified consultants have thorough knowledge of the system and can coordinate with your personnel on everything from campaign management to insightful analytics. To go back to the automotive analogy, marketing automation consultants are like professional drivers; they know the equipment and the track, and they can push their vehicle to the limit in pursuit of a win.
Marketing automation works well as an email management tool, a lead scoring system, or market analysis software. It’s far more powerful, though, when it’s used as all these and more. Making your automation platform your marketing nerve center lets you see the bigger picture, linking all your marketing activities and creating a seamless transition of well qualified leads to your sales team. The software has power to spare to handle lead scoring, customer acquisition, retention programs, coordinated multi-channel campaigns, and just about anything else you ask it to do, so think big.
Automate Data Hygiene Processes
We’ve talked about marketing automation in terms of blazing speed and power, but let’s look now at a humbler analogy that’s a bit closer to home: the washing machine. How much time does your marketing team spend dealing with inaccurate data and updating customer files by hand? Marketing automation is a washing machine for data, allowing you to scrub old data, merge duplicate files, and append useful information to make records more complete. The system alerts you to ambiguous data so you can make decisions on individual files while handling the bulk of your data hygiene with automated processes to ensure valuable information is kept.
Build Campaigns That Scale
Automation produces consistent, repeatable results. Once your system is set up, you can create new campaigns of any size, using any channels you choose, within less time than it used to take to develop a single-channel campaign. Better yet, every time you create a new campaign, you have data, templates, and tokens from previous campaigns to build on so you never waste time on redundant work. The same philosophy also allows you to convert content on one channel to other applications, which acts as a force multiplier for everything your content creation team does.
Personalize and Customize
In a crowded in-box filled with marketing messages, what makes a lead pay attention to your email in particular? Simple: Relevance. If it’s relevant, it’s opened. To send relevant messages, you need to show your prospects that you know something about them. One effective way of increasing relevance is with customization. Marketing automation lets you customize virtually every aspect of your communications with your leads, and not just in email. Customized landing pages, direct mail, and home pages make even the largest campaigns feel personally relevant to your leads. You effectively get the chance to have one-on-one conversations with thousands of prospects at once.
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