Ever wondered how information specific to your Internet search-related topics are delivered to your personal email ID? Some of them are not even solicited. Thanks to artificial intelligence and automation, today companies, especially those in the consumer segment, are positioned to study and analyse consumer behaviour and spending patterns and approach you with a targeted marketing strategy!
Automation is the latest buzzword in marketing, particularly for companies, that are present across all platforms. Today, brands optimise all platforms, offline and online, to enhance their marketing and sales efforts, and automation is integral to their activities. Automation has permeated into every sector and companies cannot afford to ignore it while preparing their marketing strategy. Automation complements offline and online marketing in multiple ways and the two are mutually dependent.
It is imperative for companies to have marketing automation technology because they allow businesses to streamline, automate, and measure their marketing tasks and workflows. In addition, it helps increase operational efficiency and augment revenue quicker. Marketing Automation technology can be implemented through a software that takes care of repetitive tasks such as emails, social media, and other website actions aimed at existing and potential customers.
Automation helps companies in several ways by profiling their customers and to specifically approach specific category of buyers with targeted marketing. The automation software follows a model and is linear. To begin with, customers and prospective customers are categorised based on their web browsing patterns, including shopping sites, e-retailers, product and services search, interests, demographic details and age group. Based on the search preferences of the customers, the list is further refined. The software will automatically prepare a list of potential customers and their profiles. Marketing automation also helps company test different variables, such as email send times, subject headings, and ideas for personalisation. Consequently, a detailed database of customers is prepared over a time.
Based on an individual’s specific user profile, organisations can provide dynamic content. For example, organisations can send targeted offers based on website usage patterns of customers. It could be apparel products to some while to others it could be accessories. The Marketing Automation software is so powerful and sophisticated that it can profile users to the last detail. A database of such users can be best optimised by organisations to reach their targeted customers in an effective manner bypassing the traditional marketing channels. Further, organisations can integrate marketing channels and deliver a comprehensive and cross-platform user experience for customers.
Typically, there are nine best practices for organisations to ensure that Marketing Automation is effective. They include – mapping the lead flow by evolving protocols and systems to engage the customers; Understand the prospective customers’ Buying Cycle and create effective marketing content accordingly (interact with customers on websites; optimise content relating to products, secure feedback for branding, seek customer testimonials, track purchase history and introduce offers); create customer profile that will help organisations determine where to focus their time, guide product development, and allow for alignment across the organisation.
It is also important for organisations to craft the right message, at the right time and position the product better over that of the rival. Care must be taken to ensure that the organisation’s email reputation is intact. Otherwise, the chances of the marketing email being dumped into spam are high. A customer-friendly organisation will always empower its customers by offering unsubscribe options for all their marketing emailers. Once the top five practices are in place, it becomes easy for organisations to capture the leads effectively by mapping the customers. This further helps organisations align their marketing and sales efforts using CRM software. Also, using CTA metrics tied to sales efforts help organisations evolve marketing campaigns that provide the highest ROI.
One of the biggest imperatives while implementing Marketing Automation is to not to give an impression to customers that they are not interacting with intelligent machines whenever they visit your website. The conversations should be personalised to provide a human touch so that the customers are confident about what they are dealing with. All through, it is important that organisations build a non-linear nurturing framework, as multiple leads are critical to the success of Marketing Automation.
Unless organisations make Marketing Automation an integral component of their marketing initiatives, results are not effective. For, rival organisations would have optimised Marketing Automation unknowingly to win over the customer segment.