Marketing Automation 101


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A quick guide on what Marketing Automation is, steps to success in launching your campaigns, how to optimise activity and enables sales to help drive revenue.

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Marketing Automation 101

  1. 1. Marketing Automation 101 Guide
  2. 2. Marketing automation, your route map to sales. Because the internet has revolutionised the way buyers go about their buying, whether in a consumer or B2B context (another conversation), demand generation is singularly re-inventing the science of marketing. However you go about your selling right now, demand generation will be affecting your bottom line. In this instance, ignorance isn’t bliss, but a missed sales opportunity, every time a potential buyer of yours elects to buy from a competitor. So, marketing automation, in a few words, is the platform that lets us do more with less, helps us to deliver more relevant, customised communications at the right time, to the right people. 1 To get the attention of people who don’t know who we are, or aren’t ready to buy from us. Content The answer n Content engine to deliver relevant content n Asset library n Guidance in content marketing 2 In fewer words still, marketing automation feeds your prospects’ need to fill a hole in their business. As one-third of a demand generation triangle, marketing automation enables you to replicate customised, one-to-one communications on a scale not possible before, acknowledging the customer journey and maximising your opportunities to influence prospects on their terms. The challenge 1 The challenge People don’t find us, or what they’re looking for from us, online. The answer n Greater online visibility n Make relevant information easily available n Ask them to give us some information about them 3 2 The challenge Giving them the right information at the right time to move them towards purchase. £ 3 The answer n Understanding their needs n Marketing automation process n Personalised communications Share Inbound Nurture 2
  3. 3. Marketing automation, your route map to sales. It’s not whether, but when. Marketing automation makes use of new technologies to deliver unprecedented returns-on-investment to its fast-growing fan base, with 84% of top-performing companies already using or planning to use it (Source: Salesforce/Pardot). The most compelling reasons for implementing marketing automation include revenue increases, increases in insight and better performance measurement. And companies that have used marketing automation report 53% higher conversion rates and nearly 10% higher sales quotas. And even if you’ve got it, you’ve probably not got it all. Even among companies who have seen the marketing automation light, few are using the technology to its fullest potential. Only 36% of companies are using their platform to nurture leads, under 10% use it to follow up later in the buying cycle, and less than 25% of companies with a marketing automation platform use it to its utmost capabilities. So it’s not what you have, but what you do with what you have that’s important. Share Most compelling reasons for implementing Marketing Automation Increase Revenue Gain more insight Measure performance Increase sales and marketing effectiveness Transparency into sales and marketing activities Understand marketing ROI and other reporting Companies that use automation have: 53% higher conversion rate from marketing response to marketing qualified lead 9.3% higher sales quota achievement rate +53% +9.3% 3
  4. 4. Top 10 tips for successful Marketing Automation Download As with anything, as you put marketing automation to work for you, it’s best to have a plan, point one in our ten top tips: 1. Plan 2. Decide 3. Track 4. Communicate 5. Stuff Get a good strategy together, consider cost, quality, speed and risk – and breakdown your project into people, processes and systems. Identify the technologies that best fit your in-house resource and skillsets – and your existing systems. Start capturing behavioural, online, and sales data. You need to get your data in good shape to make the most of behavioural triggers. Effective communication is key to getting senior stakeholders, contributors, partners and the channel on your side. In 2011, 80% of the top 1,000 websites used tracking technology. 7 weeks a year are lost by workers seeking clarification due to poor communication. Develop a content plan. Understand the four types of content you need (broadcast, sticky, trigger and community) to develop a Marketing Automation platform and plan accordingly. 40% of IT projects fail because of poor planning. 65% of management decisions are now based on data (not guesswork). source: MIT 2011. source: Ensighten 2011. source: Watts S Humphrey, IBM 2005. source: National Assoc. of Prof Organisers, 2012. Half of all sales are lost because of poor content. source: KissMetrics 2011. 6. SoLoMo 7. Journey 8. Time 9. Harmony 10. Goals Learn how SoLoMo – social, local, mobile – can make an impact on your business. B2B is using more localised targeted messages than ever before, often messages delivered on mobile devices. Understand your customer journey. Look at every possible touchpoint and interaction – and maximise every touchpoint with a sales message. Demand Generation programmes can deliver excellent ‘drip’ leads on a daily basis but you need planning first, and patience later, to make it work. Detail matters and can return handsome dividends. Work with your sales and product teams along with other stakeholders throughout the process. Marketing automation blurs the lines between departments and becomes much more collaborative in approach. Twice as much time spent on ‘urgent’ rather than ‘important’ tasks. 66% of sales teams don’t believe marketing ‘works’. You won’t reach utopia instantly. Put your projects into phases with clear goals at each stage – and communicate it internally. Setting sensible goals helps manage expectations and ensures the project stays on track. source: Stephen Covey, 7 Habits. source: IBM – Breaking the Feud 2009. 65m Americans use social, location based services on smartphones. source: CommerceInMotion 2011. It is six times easier to sell to existing customers than prospects. source: Harvard Business School. No.1 cause of project failure? – lack of direction and goals. source: Pink Elephant Conference 2012. Share 4
  5. 5. The customer journey, fuelled by marketing automation A state-of-the-art marketing automation platform covers end-to-end delivery of targeted messaging once a prospect becomes known. With minimal intervention and impressive customisation of messaging, it’s as close as you’ll get to your prospect saying, “Excellent, just what I needed to know right now. Maybe I’ll look into this a bit more, it sounds like it could really help me to crack my business problem.” And this bit is really important. Research shows that your precious buyer has already done 67% of their research on the product or service that might meet their need. On their own. Independently. In their own time. Before talking to you or any of your competitors once. That you’re able to identify them here is a great thing. That you can communicate with them and get them thinking positively about your proposition is better still. And this is marketing automation at work. 67% B2B buyers are 67% through their buying cycle before interacting with suppliers. source: Sirius Decisions Share 5
  6. 6. Meeting personal business needs through automated messaging Sounds like a paradox? If it is, it’s also a gold mine for anyone who uses a marketing automation platform to its fullest potential. Where historically, outbound activity meant a scattergun ‘batch‘n’blast’ approach, today you can provide the precise information buyers are looking for, meeting them nose-tonose during their journey towards purchase. The more you exchange, the easier it is to develop an understanding, which can become a relationship, which can lead to trust and confidence, which can lead to a meeting, which can lead, ultimately, to that gold we mentioned above. Reading prospects’ digital body language enables you to determine where they’ve been on your website, where they’ve stayed around to find out a bit more, what they’ve passed over, what they’ve downloaded. Automated messaging, where communications are created dependent on the levels and types of interaction between you and your prospect, makes the process productive, low maintenance and highly cost-effective. From here, you can start to build up a picture of this new visitor to your online shop. Move purposefully and you’ll be able to swap useful information of yours with useful details of theirs, name, email, sometimes business size and/or sector, sometimes even what it is they’re looking for. Low-touch or zero-touch programmes cut costs dramatically, and are achievable when lead scoring, nurture marketing and data management are automated. When you understand the potential of the platforms available, and combine them with the experience, insight and intuition of a good marketing team, you’ll start to question why you’d do it any other way. Relevant emails drive 18 times more revenue than broadcast emails. source: Jupiter Research Share 6
  7. 7. Critical success factors of a marketing automation campaign With any new technology, it helps to have yardsticks against which to measure performance and success. Taking a step back before you focus on specifics helps to prioritise – many businesses fail to capitalise on the potential inherent in their marketing automation platforms either because they fail to see the wood for the trees, or they underestimate or overlook the functionality, flexibility and capabilities of their purchases. It’s about balance. Look at a marketing automation platform in relation to four or five key business opportunities over the course of a year. Set a meeting, get the right people involved. Forget technology at this stage – focus on the basics of business marketing. Take each opportunity in turn, in small, bite-sized chunks. Be specific – identify the target audience, the target sale, and a very specific message. Why and when will they receive this message? What is your goal here? Modern marketing is data-driven. Identify what information you have at your disposal. Your goal here is to identify exactly what data sets, fields and information will contribute to creating your segment. Marketing automation platforms can segment dynamically, saving time, customising messaging and increasing interest and uptake. Never underestimate the power and importance of content. Writing compelling, useful, relevant and consumable content will be the number one success factor in converting more sales, bar none. This is where the bulk of your energy and investment should go – strategically planning out and mobilising your content assets as and when appropriate. 91% of b2b marketers profess to using content marketing for the following three reasons: to engage customers and prospects (82%); drive sales (55%); and educate the market (44%). source: Marketing Profs Share 7
  8. 8. Five ways marketing automation helps sales enablement Why sales may view technology as a threat and how to use marketing automation to help enable sales. From a marketing perspective, marketing offers unprecedented opportunities to explain why a given product or service meets precisely defined customer needs. However, it’s not always easy for the sales rep to view automation as positively as peers. In their eyes, it might be that nothing can replace the face-to-face conversation with a prospective customer, with real human interaction driving the buyer journey towards purchase. The main point to consider here is, as we’ve said before, that face-to-face conversations between buyer and seller start later in the process these days. We are not, however, replacing human interaction, just focusing this effort on where it delivers the most value – at the sharp end. It just means that more conversations take place at later stages and require slightly different props to help balance the scales against the modern buyer’s world, which is where marketing automation comes in. Here are five ways sales enablement can be fuelled from marketing Greater insight Improved visibility Marketing automation gives you the information on a prospect’s digital body language that helps you to map their journey towards purchase. So when pre-agreed lead scoring matrices show a warm lead to be ready for handover to sales, they come complete with online behaviour, with what they’ve viewed, downloaded and interacted with. From a sales perspective, the new model enables you to keep tabs on your customers. You can monitor their interest through visibility of their actions, taking action at pre-ordained points in the buyer journey. When a warm lead you have previously spoken to returns to the site, clicks on an email and downloads a document, then it’s easy to continue the conversation given the additional interest shown. It’s a great help in letting sales know exactly what the prospect spent doing in the first 67% of their buyer journey. They can then start the conversation at an appropriate level of engagement, taking details, tailoring information and addressing specific subject areas known to be of interest. 1 Share 2 8
  9. 9. 5 ways marketing automation helps sales enablement Automated personal touches, less manual input Prioritising opportunities Workloads become easier to manage and communications become more effective and less time-consuming. You can take care of your warmest prospects via automated responses to given actions, making the process more efficient and customised down to the individual and their perceived needs. These communications can come directly from the sales manager, yet require zero touch and effort from them. 3 Share Improved programmes Working this way, you make the best use of the time available by only following up really hot prospects, leaving aside visitors to your site who have simply filled in a form. Far from being an anonymous process that undermines the importance of personal relationships, marketing automation opens up new, more rewarding ways of talking to customers. Focus can be on their explicit business needs and how you can meet them, increasing both your credibility as a facilitator in the buyer journey and, at the end of the day, your value to your organisation. 4 The other great benefit of the marketing automation approach is that it makes results of action transparent, enabling you to adapt or tweak messaging based on response and feedback. Is there an area in which prospects never convert to sales, the upstream messaging is misleading, and is it apparent which behaviours lead to a conversion? Do more of what worked, and less of what didn’t, saving money and streamlining processes at the same time. While sales may view a new platform as less desirable than a bigger sales force, it’s actually a tool that helps sales close down more leads, with better insight and opportunities and less manual effort. It’s a tool that enables sales to have more telling, rich and advanced conversations than ever before. Your sales force is better armed to convert and spends more time talking to people who are ready to buy. 5 9
  10. 10. Harvesting more from your existing customer base. While we’re at it, a little insight into how marketing automation can help you to grow the value of existing customers. These people have bought into your product or service, your company and your approach. In the online world where trust is irreplaceable, you’ve earned their trust. The 80–20 rule consistently shows that it’s more costeffective to drive sales through existing business than to sell to a new audience. And yet so often companies fail to capitalise on their greatest supporters, the existing customer base. Treat your customer like a new prospect, even if they’re a new customer you know some really useful things about. Use the insight gained from your original lead nurturing exercise. Whether cross-selling or inviting customers to trade up to a higher level of product or service, accessing and using relevant information is key to communication and extra sales. Share Use these five top tips for growing customer value: n onitor purchase behaviour and look for opportunities to cross-sell and up-sell M n Track digital body language to see what interests them and personalise communications based on their interests n Don’t just focus on selling. Aim to build a deeper, more meaningful relationship, offering support and adding value where possible. If you have content you know will be useful or of interest to them, communicate it – at worst it opens up the potential for another conversation n e personal. Don’t think all communications need to be marketing messages – you can B automate them from individuals with existing relationships n rovide sales, account managers and business development professionals with as much insight P on the customer as possible to give them the best chance of converting to sale 10
  11. 11. Resource Centre You may also enjoy reading: Download European Email Legislation Demand Generation 101 Infographic Download Download Inbound Marketing 101 Guide Download About Ledger Bennett DGA Telephone: +44 (0)8458 383883 Email: Milton Keynes: Ledger Bennett DGA Tungsten House, Warren Road Little Horwood, Milton Keynes MK17 0NR London: Share Ledger Bennett DGA 1st Floor Centric House 390-391 Strand, London WC2R 0LT We are a B2B Demand Generation agency that uses sales and marketing know-how to help customers increase revenue by deploying Inbound Marketing, Content Marketing and Marketing Automation strategies. Our highly focused Demand Generation programmes drive our customers’ business performance, helping them to: n Generate more opportunity n Convert that opportunity into sales n Retain customers and grow their value Using more measurable and cost effective techniques than traditional full service marketing agencies we are able to maximise business revenue in the modern world where the internet has fundamentally changed the behaviour of the buyer.