If you want to know why you should use marketing automation best practices, you need to first start by understanding what a marketing automation tool is. Everybody gets the same amount of hours in a given day, from the average Joe all the way to the thinkers, leaders, and creators. The difference is what you do in that time, and what things you decide to focus on.
This is how you get ahead, by prioritizing activities and giving the required effort, time, and attention to the important decisions and time-sensitive, crucial tasks. There are some things though that just have to get done, like sending emails and reminders, payment confirmations, following up on potential leads, scheduling calls, saving contact information, and a hundred other small things that can’t be avoided if you wish to run a profitable and scalable business.
Small they may be, but if you track all the time spent on business-related tasks over a few years, you will most certainly find a worrying dent put into your schedule by all those repetitive tasks added up. Most things in life run on the basis of “you reap what you sow” and your company is no different. If you have less time to invest effort into your operation, the profits are sure to suffer as a consequence.
This is where a marketing automation tool can streamline and increase your business’ productivity exponentially. In short, a marketing automation tool is a system you design and implement to automate repetitive tasks using technology.
If this principle sounds like it might be too difficult to apply to your own situation, know that any business can gain from it and you may already be using it in some form or another. If you wake up with an alarm clock every day, that’s automation. If you’re using a message template (let’s say when you thank someone for signing up to your service), filling in the few blank spaces with their personal information, you’re almost halfway to efficient marketing automation already and you’re ready to start using marketing automation best practices!
Reasons To Choose A Great Marketing Automation Sofware
Here are some benefits of using marketing automation best practices when working with a great marketing tool:
It can collect contact information via a form on your website, so you don’t have to let trail hunting dogs loose in your office just to locate that one sticky note with the phone number of a big potential client.
It can schedule calls and send you reminders for them, ensuring you never double-book or miss a client appointment ever again.
You can set up a robust system where you can receive and track payments as well as send invoices around the clock.
But by far the most exciting opportunity on offer here is related to sales cycle management, and especially lead nurturing through drip email sequences.
Trigger emails are something that could only be done with a marketing automation tool. When completing a certain action (signing up, making a purchase, leaving the cart etc.), the prospect gets sent an email designed specifically with their place in the customer journey in mind. This way you can help virtually hundreds of thousands of leads along in the customer journey more or less at the same time.
Usually, in order to convert efficiently, these actions should trigger a whole nurture sequence designed to ensure that you are at the forefront of your prospect’s minds while educating them on what you offer and how much value it can bring them. You should save your hard sell for the endpoint, when they have already interacted with your brand over the course of at least a week and are familiar with you and your services. Here, customization options are endless! If you find a nurture sequence isn’t converting to your expectations, you can create a secondary sequence to specifically target the non-responsive people from the first one, after some time has passed and from another angle.
How to choose the Right Marketing Automation Tool
There are many good choices out there so it might get a bit overwhelming to have to choose one that’s appropriate for your needs. If you want a marketing automation platform list, we covered that in a previous blog post where we have gone over 4 of the best ones – Ontraport, ActiveCampaign, Maropost and Keap (formerly known as Infusionsoft), as well as 22 other tools that you should definitely consider adding to your arsenal. As you scroll through, think about the size and focus of your business. For example, Maropost is a more expensive but more comprehensive option for medium to large businesses, while Keap offers unique B2B marketing solutions. Click here to check our 26 Digital Marketing Tools to Scale Your Business blog post!
Moreover, try and look for CRM (Customer Relationship Management) integration in your digital marketing automation platform. To unlock the full potential of either one, they need to work in unison, one using the raw material provided by the other to deliver constant value. Think of it like a wind turbine that uses the raw material that is the wind to power a whole operation.
Also, make sure you get detailed reporting. Depending on the marketing automation platform you’re using, it can give you a ton of information, like if prospects opened your emails or not or if they fulfilled a call to action , effectively if your headline, timing and phrasing were right or not.
Marketing Automation Best Practices
Here are some tips to keep in mind as you progress through this journey of discovery.
Think about what you should automate and what should be left alone (aka what requires constant decision-making to steer the operation in the right direction)
Put a disclaimer in your automated messages like payment reminders, invoices, welcome emails, saying that it is an automated message, to avoid people trying to reply to the email and becoming upset that you don’t continue the conversation. You could also put a line redirecting them to the proper channels of communication with the correct department.
Deploy a lead scoring system. You can gauge a person’s interest in your campaign by tracking their behavior. Then you can assign a score to them and send out messages according to that score, ensuring you personalize the interaction as much as possible.
Focus on collecting appropriate data. No need to burden yourself with information that is irrelevant to what you are doing. You should gather only that which would be useful to your specific purposes. For example, if you are a B2B marketer, the size and sector of a business is more relevant than its location in the world.
Automation is one of the core principles of the Internet, one of its main selling points, so anyone looking to last around these parts should take full advantage of it. It’s not hard to start taking advantage of the benefits of marketing automation tools if you’re using marketing automation best practices, but if at any point this feels a bit overwhelming, don’t hesitate to reach out to us right here! We’d love to have a chat about how we can implement a marketing automation tool in your business right away to make it more efficient, productive, and profitable!