“Too much work, too little time” is something you might be hearing frequently from your B2B marketing team these days. Successful digital marketing campaigns combine large amounts of customer data with dynamic content to create personalized customer engagements delivered at the perfect time. What makes this marketing orchestration possible, without bogging down marketers with large amounts of incoming customer data? Marketing automation tools.
Marketing Automation Tools
Marketing automation tools are a complete game-changer for the world of digital marketing, allowing marketing and sales teams to scale and increase an organization’s online presence in meaningful ways. Not only do they automate repetitive tasks, they provide a platform for dynamic lead nurturing and tracking and maintaining multiple marketing campaigns at once.
How to determine if your organization is ready to implement a digital marketing program
1. Assess your contact database and content
Marketing automation platforms are most useful when filled with the right type and amount of customer data and content. Sort through your leads to keep those that are qualified and remove those that are inactive. To avoid degrading the metrics of your system and inundating inactive contacts with unwanted spam, filter out inactive leads from your contact database. Are the qualified leads categorized by personas that have been carefully researched and developed? One of the goals of a marketing automation tool is to better understand the needs and behavior of your customers. Customer personas should be developed and leads should be categorized by their personas.
Next, assess your marketing content. Do you have enough valuable content to input into the system? To ensure that content is dynamic and personalized, you should have a library of content focused on different customer personas and various points in the customer journey.
2. Align the workflow of your sales and marketing teams
Marketing automation platforms can really benefit both your sales and marketing teams, but workflows must be synced to take advantage of these benefits. A marketing automation tool not only automates marketing tasks, but it should be increasing lead sales by giving the sales team an understanding about which leads are qualified and ready for closing. With this kind of insight, sales can be closed at a higher rate in a shorter time. At the same time, the marketing team can see qualifications of a lead and determine the best personalized interaction to move them to the next point of the sales funnel. Sales and marketing teams can leverage marketing automation tools to determine the best plan for nurturing leads through the sales funnel. Determine at what target points each team will engage with leads to avoid overwhelming potential clients with too much interaction.
3. Build daily processes around the marketing automation tool
Marketing automation tools have the power to streamline marketing campaign workflows, but processes should be define to fully utilize the tool. Processes should define:
• Content strategy – What is the process for writing, adding and organizing content that gets added to the system and how often will this happen? Content should be customized to match customer personas throughout defined points in the customer journey.
• Analytics – How often will metrics be reported from the system and what is the process for using feedback to improve the system? Ensure that someone is in charge of monitoring the tool.
• Customer connections – With multiple campaigns, products and services, you will certainly come across leads that are on more than one journey within your system. What structures will be built to connect those customers and personalize their messages to include content pertinent to all their journeys?
• Teams & Tools - Do updates to the data in your marketing automation tool affect other tools or teams within your organization? Define processes for tying back updated data to your CRM or other tools. Determine how to best communicate updates and which teams within your organization will be affected by updates.
4. Have an implementation strategy
Depending on the customization needs of your system, implementation can range from a couple of clicks out of the box to months of planning, configuring and testing. Consider how the marketing automation tool will sync with your other existing tools (CRM, CMS, etc.) Is it best to automate those connections or connect manually? Once your tool has been implemented, use it for one campaign and then scale to multiple campaigns slowly. This will help you get a feel for data pulling, evaluation of metrics and using feedback to improve configuration. Using a qualified partner to guide you through the process of selecting and implementing a marketing automation tool will go a long way in making the adoption of the tool smooth and effective.
Once you have implemented a marketing automation tool and set up a business strategy to guarantee its success, you are on your way to running effective digital marketing campaigns. There are so many benefits of a well-implemented digital marketing automation platform. Leads will be nurtured properly by both your marketing and sales teams, working in sync. A wealth of customer data and behaviors can be leveraged to adjust content and campaigns to be more effective. Best of all, marketing campaign successes and positive ROI will be more visible, giving your marketing and sales teams the boost they need to continue landing customers and executing incredible campaigns.
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