Marketing has evolved significantly over the years and has brought with it more and more tactics to experiment with. However, it can be difficult to juggle all the marketing activities you want to do.
How can you ensure your marketing is reaching the right people, at the right time, with the right message? This is where marketing automation can help. No matter the size of your business, marketing automation can do so much more for you than simply sending automated emails.
In this blog, we discuss what marketing automation is and the top 10 features you should be using.
What is marketing automation?
Let’s start with the basics, what actually is marketing automation?
To sum it up, marketing automation is software that manages your marketing for you across multiple channels.
But more than this, marketing automation prioritises and executes your tasks in a more efficient and streamlined way. Whether it’s lead generation, nurturing and scoring or measuring the effectiveness of your campaigns, automation can lend itself to multiple areas of your marketing activity.
As a result, it can free up a lot of your time without compromising the authenticity of your efforts, allowing you to reach your objectives faster.
Quickly becoming the norm in the marketing world, automation is a concept that marketers must get comfortable with.
10 marketing automation features you should be using
1) Email marketing
The number of email users globally will exceed 4.1 billion this year and is expected to grow to over 4.5 billion by the end of 2025. That means that over half of the world’s population use email!
One of the most powerful features of marketing automation, email marketing enables you to build and maintain relationships with your customers – the people who keep your business alive. An effective email marketing strategy can boost conversions and revenue by providing your audience with valuable information and relevant content.
However, marketing automation goes beyond basic email sending. The platform you opt to use should provide engaging and customisable templates alongside an easy-to-use editor that empowers you to create effective emails from scratch.
2) Contact management
Acquiring a list of email subscribers is only half the battle. Marketing automation software helps you get the most from your data allowing you to filter, sort and organise your lists for more optimal and targeted emails.
You should also be able to store and access contact information in your marketing automation platform. Storing contact information in this way can bring huge benefits beyond what a customer relationship management (CMS) system can offer. Giving you a holistic view of your data, you can use it to create segments, send highly personalised emails, automatically score contacts’ activities and more.
3) Lead scoring
A lead score is a number that’s assigned to a contact. The number shows how valuable the lead is to your brand and how engaged they are. This will indicate if the lead is ready to be passed onto your sales team or not.
The score is based on the information you know about the user and the actions they take. For example:
- Has the user visited your website?
- Has the user opened your email?
- Has the user clicked on something in your email?
- Has the user submitted a survey?
The more a contact interacts with your business or engages with your campaigns, the higher their lead score will be. So, why is lead scoring so important for your business?
Research showed that 43 percent of respondents said that lead scoring helped them discover qualified leads that they may have otherwise overlooked. With a powerful marketing automation platform, lead scoring can be automated and is the best way to ensure that your leads are at the right stage of the buyer’s journey. Even better, the more qualified your leads are, the more effective your sales team will be.
4) Surveys and forms
Surveys and forms are important tools for generating leads and collecting customer feedback which leads to more sales and scalability for your business. Gaining first-hand information from your customers, their opinions on your brand and their experience with you can provide invaluable insight for your marketing efforts.
It should be a key objective of any business to build strong relationships with their audience, so it’s a must to take their feedback on board and apply it where necessary. The data collected from these surveys and forms can be used to meet their needs which should ultimately translate to more sales for your business.
5) Landing pages
Interested prospects need somewhere to land when they click on an ad. As such, a key element to a marketing campaign is a strong landing page.
Great landing pages are what bring digital marketing campaigns to life. Ideally, landing pages need to be aesthetically pleasing, easy to understand, optimised for conversions and feature an engaging CTA. These features help your visitors continue their journey. Each of your email marketing campaigns should include an effective CTA that links to a relevant landing page.
6) Visitor tracking
Do you want to know who’s viewing your site? What about how long they spend on each page or what content they’re interacting with? One of the most powerful capabilities of marketing automation is the ability to track prospects and visitor activity.
Visitor tracking, or Webtrack as we like to call it, allows you to do just this including what pages they looked at, for how long and what device they were using. Following up automated campaigns based on these insights will move contacts along the sales pipeline and closer to conversion. Find out more about Webtrack and how it works in our knowledge base article.
7) Automation workflows
Automation workflows and lead nurturing is the process of sending a series of automated emails that are triggered based on a contact’s behaviour. You can nurture leads based on a number of different attributes such as demographics and their buying stage.
Lead nurturing prevents your sales team from spending time talking to prospects who aren’t conversion ready. By drip-feeding your marketing content over time, you can stay front of mind and free up valuable time to focus on hotter leads.
8) All-in-one dashboard
Marketing automation can have a lot of moving pieces. An analytics dashboard gives you a holistic view of your data and how your campaigns are performing. On your marketing platform, you should be able to customise the dashboard view making it easy to compare and draw conclusions based on your results.
9) Dynamic content
Personalisation plays a big role in effective email marketing. Personalised content can be used to engage your contacts on topics tailored to their interests.
This process can be achieved through dynamic content which gives you the ability to create customised experiences by displaying content dynamically based on who is viewing your site. By tailoring your messaging to specific prospects, you can boost CTRs and increase engagement.
Reports are an effective method of keeping your team informed on how your campaigns are performing. Many marketing automation tools will allow you to create metric-based reports. The software will convert the data it has collated and place it into a general format – usually aided by graphs or tables.
Analytical insight is key to making strategy adjustments. Automation platforms can provide insights into different metrics such as clicks, open rates, conversions, bounce rates and unsubscribes allowing you to get the most from your activity.
Marketing automation can reduce the hassle of everyday marketing tasks while giving you the tools to build stronger customer relationships.
When used in the right way, a marketing automation platform can help increase your revenue and accomplish your marketing goals. Want to see the power of marketing automation for yourself? Book a demo of the Wired Plus platform.