At its best, marketing automation is software and tactics that allow companies to buy and sell like E-Bay, Konga, Jumia e.t.c — that is, to nurture prospects with highly personalized, useful content that helps convert prospects to customers and turn customers into delighted customers. This type of marketing automation typically generates significant new revenue for companies, and provides an excellent return on the investment required.
Though it’s not the easiest marketing initiative to execute on, marketing automation is certainly not impossible. Imagine you’re trying to grow a plant. First you need fertile soil ripe for the growth of your plant. Next you need seeds themselves to care for, and last you need water and light in order to nurture those seeds into a lush, blooming plant. It’s not foolproof, but it’s not impossible. In our story, effective marketing automation looks just like nurturing this plant does. At the end of the day, we hope we’ve nurtured our leads (the seedlings) well enough to produce actual paying customers (a lush, full-grown plant.)
When there’s no top-of-the-funnel foundation put in place to support middle of the funnel marketing automation. Many marketers invest in marketing automation before they have fertile ground for advanced lead nurturing campaigns to blossom. Marketers won’t have the ingredients they need for effective marketing automation until they have both a steady flow of organic leads coming through the funnel. Too many marketers without inbound lead generation strategies spend their time figuring out how to take the tiny fraction of the market they already have in their database as leads and squeeze more out of them. While they’re doing that, their competition is figuring out how to get more out of the 99.99% of the market that’s still out there. Do you have all the existing leads needed to hit your revenue goals in your database already? Are you getting your fair share of the available market?
E-Mail Marketing Automation
With email marketing automation your business can go further – in fact, automated emails are opened more often and generate more revenue than standard marketing emails. Why is email marketing automation so useful? Because it helps marketers send timely, personalized, and more relevant messages to their audiences. As opposed to email newsletters and one-off campaigns that you create and send to a whole list of people in one go, an automated email campaign is set up once and then automatically sent to a particular individual when that person meets a certain trigger.
For example, let’s say you’d like to send an email to somebody when they sign up for an account on your site. This email would welcome them to your brand and show them how to get started. You might provide links to popular resources or offer a discount code for a first purchase.
It would be really time-consuming to manually create and send an email campaign to every person when they sign up; so instead, you set up an automated welcome email that gets sent whenever a new person joins your list. That’s the beauty of email automation: You set up the email once, and as people meet the trigger you defined, the email will send without any additional effort on your part. It essentially “automates” your email marketing for you. Score!
On the other hand, automation minimizes repetitive tasks, saves time and reduces human error in campaigns. It is a true win-win tool that not only it allows for better targeting of leads and customers on your side – it also improves the overall experience of your audience by setting them on an exciting journey.
Does It Work?
Email marketing automation is when a software automatically sends campaigns to your subscribers list based on triggers and time that you specify. There are a ton of Email Service Providers who offers email marketing automation that’s very efficient and easy-to-use. For example, if you’d like to welcome a new subscriber to your newsletter. You can create an automated email providing some helpful information or a special offer. Automation makes this super easy – instead of manually creating and sending a campaign to each new subscriber, you can set up an automated welcome email that will be sent out each time a newcomer joins. Joining a list is just one of many possible triggers. You can also send birthday greeting campaigns, approach your customer when they open an email or click on a particular link, and much more.
So Yes! It really works.
What’s Your Plan?
Any marketing automation journey begins with a clear plan. Decide how to segment your audience based on the data you have – age, gender, address, subscription date, loyalty status, purchase behavior, etc. It might be helpful to draw a scheme on a piece of paper, mapping out all the possible branches and “if” conditions. Think about time intervals and choose the best day and time to target your subscribers. The blend of data, if conditions, timing, and content should create a successful campaign for you and an exciting experience for your customer.
- Special offers or VIP offers – You can make your customers feel appreciated by sending an offer that is available only to those who subscribed to your newsletter. It can be a discount coupon, an early announcement of sale or some special content that can give added value to your customers.
- Welcome series – By using a single email or a series to introduce your subscribers to your company. Tell them that you appreciate them signing up and that they won’t regret it. Inform them about what they can expect in future newsletters. If they don’t open or click the first email, try sending a special offer or give them tips on how they can take advantage of all your services. Welcome emails have high open and click-through rates because they’re sent in a moment when your customer is highly interested in what your business can offer. Once you have engaged your audience with the welcome email, keep the connection alive and add value with each message or offer you send.
- Upsell campaigns – In reality, most marketers want their users to purchase more products more often, in other words – spend more money at their e-commerce store. This is easier to do with automation series that offers to buy more products that correspond to each customer’s purchase history.
- Website or content updates – You might choose to segment the customers who joined recently and create education series for them. Introduce long-term customers to new features in your e-store or service or remind them about useful tools they don’t use daily. Educating your customers can be a powerful tool when it comes to building customer loyalty.
- Birthday greetings – Utilize the “specific date” trigger to send a Happy Birthday campaign to your customers. If you make the greeting beautiful and personal, it can increase customer loyalty and strengthen the bond with your audience.
- Re-engagement series – Why not send a personal “We miss you” email or a special offer to customers who have been inactive for a longer time? This is your last chance to impress your audience so make the content of this email precious and attractive.
- Reminder campaigns Which can be a powerful tool for different services – and they can be helpful to the customer too. For example, if you own a car service, remind your clients about their last check-up. If you are a SaaS, segment the clients who have been inactive for a while and send updates on how to make the most of your service.