60% of B2B marketers report that their top challenge in 2016 will be producing engaging content. 57% say measuring content effectiveness will be their greatest challenge, and 57% say producing content consistently will be their biggest struggle.
— Forbes, December 2015

Marketing automation at 30,000 feet

It's helpful to look at Marketing Automation as not a single process or initiative, but rather, a communications plan you develop for customers and your prospects as they move through the various stages of your sales funnel.

Marketing automation is not about simply blasting your customers with emails. Rather, it is about having a clear understanding of the various types of buyers you may be dealing with, and formulating a plan for each of them, consisting of relevant messaging aligned to the stage they are at in their buyer’s journey with your business.

It's worth remembering too that often there are many stakeholders involved with a purchase, particularly when the product or service you sell is considered a "high involvement" purchasing decision. Some of these people will be influencers, others approvers, and one person will be the decision maker. And if you are selling to small businesses, often one person (the owner) will wear many hats.

 

What does success in marketing automation look like?

The hallmarks of a successful marketing automation plan are generally as follows:

  • influencers to purchasing decisions of your product or service have found it easy to find the information they seek;
  • all purchasing influencers have established a sense of trust in your brand, and your ability to deliver;
  • you have earned the right to have a 1:1 conversation with the prospect, and when your sales team have called them they have been receptive and keen to book a meeting;
  • your cost of sale has reduced as a result of your prospects' dealings with your business online with your reps needing to spend less time in the education process of the sale;
  • you have seen an increase in the quality and quantity of qualified leads (as opposed to "just leads");
  • you have had a reduction in unsubscribes in percentage terms from your communications;
  • you have an effective lead scoring process to ensure you are dealing with your audience at the right time with the right message;
  • and of course, you are selling more!

 

Our Marketing Automation Services

Our lead consultants are senior business/technology consultants can help you define your customers' journey with you, and devise a plan that you can follow to communicate to each of your customer's "persona's" based on where they are in their buying journey with your organisation.

From a technology perspective we can also provide advice as to what level of automation tooling you need to support your requirements - for example, if your needs are simple we often find Mailchimp is a very good fit, and if you have a need for something more powerful Click Dimensions and Hubspot are great alternatives.

If you're in the business of selling high-involvement products, we can also help you better understand your sales pipeline and where to focus your marketing efforts by linking your customer journey to your customer relationship management system.

 

Free half hour consultation

If you are interested in understanding marketing automation more, and how it may apply to your business, please fill out this form below and we'll be in touch shortly.

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