If I had a dollar every time a marketer underestimated marketing automation, I would be able to start and fund my own marketing automation startup. Although 75% of businesses (founders, marketers, and CEOs) have started to tap into the potentials of marketing automation, many are unaware of some of these awesome marketing best practices. These practices have been tried and tested personally by me and I can assure you, it works.
5 actionable Marketing Automation Best Practices
Let’s dive directly into the marketing automation best practices and learn how you can automate your marketing efforts right away.
- Create personalized and interactive email campaigns
While sending an email, personalization will help you stand out. Out of a list of hundreds of spammy emails, a personalized email will grab eyeballs. Have you seen the show ‘Bandersnatch’ on Netflix or read any “choose-your-own-adventure” type book? It feels fun because you get a sense of connection while reading the book or watching the movie. It works with emails as well.
Here’s how you can create email personalization
- Map your user’s journey: Create an outline that defines how an average user interacts with your business.
- Make triggers for your user in their journey: There are certain checkpoints on how a consumer will behave with your business. For example, if they use your product for 10 days. It could trigger one.
- Write a creative drip email campaign: You can write separate emails or create a follow-up email campaign in the same thread after each of these checkpoints/triggers.
- Automate a personalized email series with trigger-based marketing automation software.
For example, you run an eCommerce clothing business. Your regular customer, Matt adds 5 T-shirts in their cart. Then, he gets distracted and leaves your website. You can create a trigger for this action. Now, your marketing automation software will send an email that looks something like this:
Looks like you forgot to complete your transaction. Your 5 T-shirts are waiting for you in the cart to be taken out for delivery. Just a friendly reminder to complete your order in case you forgot.
Have a nice day. Stay safe.
Besides, you can also create triggers every time someone subscribes to your newsletter, signs up on your app, completes certain days with your business, etc. You can get as creative as possible. Being creative is a crucial part of business process automation. You can choose a marketing automation tool like Mailchimp if you have no idea on how to get started.
Software recommendation – Mailchimp, Hubspot
- Capture lead information with only useful data and innovative ways
Many marketers use the same old technique of putting a form to collect user information. You need to get innovative here. You can use lead generation tools to capture data from your traffic.
Also, it is necessary to ensure that your form is short and only asks for information that is absolutely useful for your business. People don’t give away information like their phone numbers easily. Chances are that your form will get abandoned completely.
Make use of exit pop-ups and form builders and create different strategies for different web pages. For example, ask for their email address when they are on your blog, so they can join your newsletter. But if they are on your features page or on your pricing page, ask for their name, position, and email address. You can also capture more lead information if you put a reward at the end.
Businesses have ups and downs in their sales cycle throughout the year. But there are certain days, weeks, or even months where you see a boom in the sales of your products or services.
For example, if you are in a SaaS business, you will see a high number of leads and buyers on Cyber Monday as most SaaS tools provide discounts on these days.
Analyze your customer’s buying cycle and find out the peak points when you can sell more. Use predictive analytics to get the right data. Start catering to your customers according to this buying cycle. Create innovative marketing automation strategies like personalized exit popups, creative forms, etc to engage with your customers at the right moment. You can also push your ad budget if you are getting enough ROI out of it.
Software recommendation – Optin Monster, Typeform
- Design a Lead qualification process
Designing a lead qualification process will allow you to target the segregated leads through marketing automation.
There are various types of leads such as Hot lead, Cold lead, Engaged lead, Marketing/Sales Qualified Leads, Disqualified lead, etc. You must create a process to differentiate leads according to their traits.
For example, there are 20 people who saw your product and only one of them actually bought it. Why?
Because 19 people had certain factors in their way that stopped them from buying from you.
What are these factors?
It really depends on your business. But you can use the classic 5 factors of qualifying a lead i.e. 1. Need,
4. Timing, and
5. Decision maker’s role.
You can also consider internal factors like how well did you solve their problem, your promptness in answering their doubts, etc while designing the lead qualification process.
Just remember you can’t treat every lead as your customer. Study your users and put them in categories that would help you measure their interest in your product or service.
For example, if David asks you questions about the features of your product and whether you can provide him a discount or not. Whereas, Raj is asking you what problem does your business solves. David is a hot lead and Raj is a cold one.
- Channelize your social listening
People are creating stories, sharing experiences, and basically talking all the time on social media. There are some people who also talk about your brand. You don’t wanna miss out on what they are saying about your business. This would include praises, brags, feedback, and questions that people have for your brand.
“The keyword in social media is “social” so socialize! Talk to your audience, make conversation, build relationships. Consumers are people and they don’t want to be sold to, they want to be engaged so engage them.”
Solve your customers’ problems and engage with your target audience through the power of social listening.
Software recommendations – Agorapulse, Keyhole
- Predetermine the metrics to measure outcomes
If you are giving all these efforts to streamline your marketing automation, you must have a way to measure and evaluate it. Create metrics to determine your marketing automation outcomes at all stages. Predetermine what metrics you are going to use to measure the success rate of your automation processes. Don’t just keep conversion rate or sales rate as a metrics for every process as it might demotivate the employees. Also, conversion/sales rate isn’t always the right way to evaluate marketing results. It is a good idea to keep specific metrics to judge specific outcomes.
For example, if you are using an email marketing automation software, your metrics can be reply rate, open rate, link click rate, etc.
Or if you are collecting lead data and have kept a form on your website, the number of forms filled can be a success metric.
The best part of marketing automation software is that almost every software will give you analytics. You can choose whichever is good for you and stick to it throughout. Analyzing and measuring performance will enable you to make data-driven decisions and form a strategy to reach your targeted outcome.
Congratulations. You just learned the top 5 marketing automation best practices. From Lead generation to send a personalized email campaign to your loyal customer, everything is important. Start any of these practices right now and you will start learning from your experience. These best practices have been formed from our understanding and experiences in marketing automation. While you implement these, you will find out that new and interesting things which will become your best practices. If you think we missed out on any marketing automation best practice, let us know in the comments.
Author Bio and other Details :
- Name: Akash Kotadia
- Email: Akash@fasproc.com
Akash is a founder of Fasproc, a fast process automation platform that lets you build and run processes in minutes. Akash has more than 8 years of experience in building enterprise software technology