Where to begin with marketing automation
Although marketing automation has been on everyone’s mind for the last 5 or so years now, it’s still a technology that many marketers are still struggling to get on board with. It sounds sophisticated and a little intimidating, with many worrying that their company isn’t interesting enough. It’s also fair to say that it’s harder to dream up concepts for these projects when you’re in B2B.
We often need a bit of hand holding and moral support when trying something new. Luckily for you, we’re here to help! If you are struggling to come up with ideas, look no further: here are some suggestions that pretty much work for any company and promise results.
So, what are you waiting for? Let’s go!
Borrowed from the B2C world, here’s a tried and tested structure that can help boost engagement with new customers: a welcome series. This simple structure of up to three campaigns with a seven day wait time between each should introduce your company.
- Email one: a brief introduction to your company. This email should be fairly short, include your company logo and colours, with a friendly tone of voice. Nothing too heavy, think of it as a first date – don’t give too much away but be personable.
- Email two: if your customers have a named account manager looking after them, here’s an opportunity to introduce them and how they will work together. Start setting expectations for the relationship, for example how often you’ll be in touch.
- Email three: introduce your customers to your resources. If you have downloadable content on your website, show them. It’s time to continue demonstrating yourself as an expert and how your product or service will benefit in the long-haul.
Your audience should be set up as a refresh non-recurring list so that every new customer will automatically start receiving this series.
Automate your newsletters
If you send regular newsletters to your customers, here’s the perfect opportunity to start automating your campaigns! It seems obvious but where to begin?
Firstly, consider the structure of your newsletters. How many articles do you feature each time and is there any time sensitive content? What can you do without?
Once you’ve thought about this, consider compiling all your content like blog posts, asset downloads, videos, etc., and dividing it between a few weeks of campaigns. The beauty of laying out your newsletters like this is that if you use a refresh non-recurring list, new subscribers will start from the beginning, therefore maximising the life of your content.
Over time, the only real maintenance you’ll need to do is to make sure you have enough campaigns attached. When we did this for our customer newsletters, we saw an increase in click through rates from 2% to 20% and saved around 4 hours a week.
Create a lead nurture program
If there’s one thing marketing automation is made for, it’s creating lead nurture programs. Take out the pain, blood, sweat and tears of batch blasting your leads the same content, regardless of what they’ve done.
If you’ve been tracking what they’ve been engaging with (for example, downloads), create segments based on that. Next, create a workflow per topic. Here, we split ours into email marketing, lead generation and marketing automation.
For the structure of your workflows, we recommend using the formula we devised through trial and error over the years, which goes like this:
- Level 1 – Intrigue: blogs
- Level 2 – Discover: webinar recordings/video/whitepaper/guide
- Level 3 – Consider: product features relevant to content the contact has engaged with
- Level 4 – Decide: a demo request/sales message
Each time a lead clicks, drop them down to the next level of information, where they’ll receive more in-depth content. You can find out more about it here.