Marketing automation allows digital marketing teams to do more with less. But how can a marketer make the most of their marketing automation efforts? These eight practices give a framework teams can use when planning out their campaigns in order to ensure that they use automation properly and to their best effect:
Look at how marketing automation can improve your campaigns by setting and exceeding goals for the number of:
- Leads deemed ready to pass onto sales
- Conversions you help contribute to, and at what points in the customer’s journey these conversions happen
Develop Buyer Personas
You create buyer personas by looking at your audience’s backgrounds, demographics, interests, preferences, location, jobs, industries, the challenges they meet, and more to understand where they are coming from and what their pain points are. By knowing that, you can understand how you can help them, offer solutions to their problems, and thus better market to them.
Build Workflows Based upon the Buyer’s Journey
Map out workflows for the personas you create to engage them and address their concerns at each point of the buyer’s journey. You want a workflow based upon each stage of the buyer’s journey:
- Awareness – A prospect has identified a problem and is seeking a solution.
- Consideration – They are weighing their options and considering which solution to use.
- Decision – They decide upon a solution and make a purchase.
- Post-Purchase – They might have questions about the solution or need add-ons or other products and services in the future.
Knowing what persona you are targeting at what stage will help you send the right message at the right time.
Create Engaging Content
Who your personas are and what stage of the buyer’s journey they are at will dictate the type of content you produce. Emails and thought leadership can help make prospects aware of your brand. Data sheets that show why your solution stands out can make a difference at the consideration stage. Case studies and demos might nudge someone toward making a final decision and purchase. After that purchase, a thank-you note and follow-up emails to see if they have any questions can keep them engaged and willing to do more business with you.
The possibilities for content are endless. However, all the content you create must be relevant. It has to be something your audience would be interested in. It has to capture their attention, keep it, and present something of value to them, such as information, a pro tip, an invitation to an event, or even an offer.
Use your customer data to personalize your content (and marketing in general) as much as possible. The more you can personalize to your audiences and the stage of the buyers’ journey they are at, the better your chances of winning them over.
Customers now expect a seamless, multi-channel experience. You will have to engage them with consistent content and marketing across on the channels they prefer and be ready to jump from one to the other. Also, do not forget the importance of mobile, as everyone lives on their phones nowadays.
Lead Scoring and Qualification
Once the leads start coming in, you have to develop a model by which to score them. Then you will know which leads need more nurture and which are qualified to be handed off to sales.
Measure Your Performance
How many leads did your campaign attract? How many did you hand off to sales? How many conversions did you help make? How much did you affect ROI? Review your goals and see where leads might have dropped off and how you can tweak, revise, and improve your process.