Marketing Automation (Marketing Automation) – with this technology you will be at the peak of marketing development. Delivering the right message to the right person at the right time . However, this concept is still unfamiliar to most marketers.And, if you are just starting to learn marketing automation, this impressive statistic will help you.
First, let’s define what marketing automation is. This technology is represented by software platforms that help marketers automate repetitive processes and tasks . It also allows you to more effectively manage multiple online marketing channels in real time. Thus, Marketing Automation reduces the element of uncertainty in Internet marketing. It determines what content your site visitors want to see, and does so based on their behavior and content consumption on the Internet.
Until recently, it was thought that Marketing Automation was available only to large corporations with huge budgets, but now everything has changed. This technology is developing by leaps and bounds and becomes available for small and medium businesses . Even a small business with a small budget can find a suitable version of marketing automation. Now companies of any size can enjoy the benefits of automating their tasks and processes.
Benefits and capabilities of marketing automation
Marketing Automation is indispensable when working with leads (potential buyers) and improving marketing effectiveness:
1. Lead generation and lead heating are recognized as the most important advantage of using Marketing Automation ( Pepper Global research “ B2B Marketing Automation Report 2014 ”
- Automation leads to a 14.5% increase in the productivity of your sales and a 12.2% reduction in operating marketing costs .
- 80% of users indicated an increase in the number of leads and 77% indicated an increase in conversions .
- Heated leads spend on purchases by 47% more when compared with unheated leads
2. Improving the quality of target coverage for leads and customers (Pepper Global). The majority (59%) of companies that use marketing automation can now target content to trigger their potential buyers (Lenskold and Pedowitz Groups 2013 Lead-Generation Marketing Effectiveness Study ). Jeff Bullas, in his e-book created specifically for GetResponse in July 2016, writes: “Determine which content your target audience responds to and which does not. As a result, your content will get better, target coverage will be more focused, and target audience will be more involved. ”
3. Save time and increase marketing effectiveness. 73% of marketers believe that high productivity and time saving is a key advantage . Bullas says that “Computer era is creating software for scaling up your marketing. Marketing funnels can be created and downloaded once, and then used again and again. The routine tasks of publication and measurement are also automated. Things like numerous coordination and endorsement of marketing processes by management are also managed by software cloud solutions. And all this is what saves our time. ”
4. Better interaction with customers. 36% of marketers said that increasing customer engagement is one of the most important goals for Marketing Automation .
5. More advanced sales and conversions (Pepper Global). For companies that use marketing automation, the conversion rate of the leads that previously showed interest in them is 53% higher in buyers than those who do not use it . A potential buyer begins to have confidence in these companies, because, thanks to Marketing Automation, he gets the content he wants to read. First, these people buy something small. Bullas says: “Relationships with such customers begin with low-cost sales, which then leads to more expensive pre-sales, as the technology seamlessly guides the customer through the entire automated marketing funnel.”
Strategic goals of marketers using automation
The possibilities of this new technology are really impressive, so more and more marketers are starting to use it. Here’s how the marketing experts surveyed by Ascend2 defined the strategic goals of Marketing Automation:
- Increasing the number of potential customers (leads) – 61%
- Improving the quality of potential customers (heated leads) – 57%
- Increase sales revenue – 47%
- Increased customer involvement – 36%
- Increase marketing productivity – 29%
- Improved ability to measure processes – 28%
- Improved campaign targeting – 22%
Marketing Automation System Features
In order to evaluate the benefits and objectives of this technology, marketers first need to develop a proper system for assessing their own needs. According to a study by The Ascend2 Marketing Automation Trends (2016), marketers evaluate various functions as follows:
- 51% think analytics and reporting are useful functions of marketing automation programs.
- 46% think campaign management is a useful feature.
- 46% think heated leads are also a useful feature.
- 42% believe that it is important to have integration capabilities for Marketing Automation systems
- 32% think lead scoring is important
- 26% are sure that subscriber base segmentation is important too
Time to understand the benefits of using Marketing Automation
Even if the organization has chosen the right platform, it still takes time to adapt and learn the technology, as well as begin to achieve its goals. The countdown starts from the moment when your system started working (how to make the system work, this is a topic for a separate post). Marketers disagree on how long it takes to understand all the advantages that we described above. In this case, The Ascend2 in its report Marketing Automation Trends, interviewing marketers who have implemented marketing automation, cite the following figures:
- 23% expect to see results in 3 months or even earlier.
- 34% expect results in 4-6 months
- 20% in 6-9 months
- 14% in the period from 10 months to a year
- 3% expect to get results in a year or more.
Marketing Automation Metrics
In order to understand whether your company has achieved any results and how Marketing Automation has benefited you, you need to measure and measure your efforts. Therefore, you will have to apply and track metrics. Ascend2 reports that marketers have found the following metrics useful for measuring their progress:
- conversion rate: 62%
- Profit earned: 48%
- attracted leads: 43%
- involvement: 42%
- cost of all possible transactions in the sales funnel: 31%
- lead costs: 29%
Barriers to success with Marketing Automation
Even when you did everything right while preparing for the launch of marketing automation, not everything is so smooth ahead. Studies by The Pepper Global and Ascend2 have identified the following barriers to success:
- Budget constraints (27%)
- Lack of qualified employees who can manage Marketing Automation (32%).Well-known author Erik Qualman in his e-book, specially created for GetResponse , offers to solve this problem in the following way: “Ask your Marketing Automation system provider to help you with marketing automation terms and adapt them to your company’s language. Then things will no longer seem so complicated and it will immediately become clear how the automation system will simplify your marketing. A marketing automation service that looks simple and easy to use will save you time and allow people to gain experience faster. ”
- Base of poor quality contacts (38%)
- Lack of content for marketing automation processes (31%). This is something that your marketing team needs to work on. If you understand who your customers are, that they are interested in reading or watching how they consume information, you will solve this problem by creating relevant content. Just do not forget to provide time to check this content! Qualman says: “Some companies who like to save time plan weekly official meetings to check content with important people involved in its creation. Other companies work in the style of dynamic modern media, holding morning briefings on content and storytelling ideas. Remember that creating and running content is just the beginning. You will need to analyze, make changes and optimize the content so that it not only appeals to your audience, but also brings you the expected results. ”
- The complexity of the platform Marketing Automation (42%). Qualman says: “If marketing automation looks complicated, marketers will spend more time and energy on understanding how to work with it than on marketing itself. It is important to choose the right system and correctly implement it, then you will be sure that you devote your time to working with the target audience and potential customers, and not trying to figure out the system. ”
- The problem of feedback on the evaluation of leads from the sales department
- Poor integration of the platform with marketing and sales activities (30%)
- Lack of relevant infrastructure for data collection and analytics
- Problems with compatibility of systems and their interaction
- Lack of key performance indicators (KPIs) – for measuring marketing automation
Interestingly, the Ascend2 study found that more than half (52%) of marketers reported that the lack of a strategy for Marketing Automation was the biggest obstacle to success. But in the study of The Pepper Global there is not a word about this issue. In any case, you can avoid this and other obstacles if you carefully plan everything in advance.