The Digital Transformation has created new types of buyers who prefer to inform themselves and consciously decide on a company's services or products instead of being found and convinced via traditional outbound marketing measures from commercials to cold calls. You can take advantage of this shift by realigning your marketing strategies. Reach your B2B customers with the right input right when they are on their way to making their next purchase decision. Automated marketing helps you get to know your customers better, build user profiles, guide them down the right path to purchase decision at the right time, and provide you with a custom-fit offer. New contacts become customers (lead).
Marketing automation describes the possibility of analyzing user behavior with the help of software tools and then conducting automated marketing tailored to the target group(s). For this purpose, the marketing automation software combines various functionalities from the field of digital marketing, depending on the requirements and provider. Processes in marketing and sales can be carried out efficiently in this way, starting with email marketing, lead management, and even a marketing automation system. Lead Generation, the lead management up to a certain degree also the Lead Nurturing.
The functionalities of marketing automation software include, for example, web analytics, which measures, for example, website visits, click paths and click-through rates. Marketing automation can also be used efficiently and reliably for customer relation management (CRM) - the targeted recording, storage and evaluation of customer transactions, which enables the systematic creation of customer profiles (buyer persona). Other functions include e-mail marketing measures (newsletter dispatch and other mailings), the placement of targeted ads via Google and on social media channels, as well as retargeting with advertising tailored to the customer. The biggest advantage of marketing automation is the cost-effective and targeted lead generation to acquire new customers with little time. In addition, marketing automation measures can be used to reactivate existing customers and address them precisely.
The actions of the leads and the already existing customer base are recorded through targeted tracking and can be automatically evaluated with the appropriate software. This creates customer profiles that show you quickly and without additional effort where the interests lie, when the interest for which service or product is particularly high and which online offers from blog posts to downloads are particularly popular with which customers. In addition, with the help of appropriate marketing automation tools, you can also record at which point contacts turn away and switch to other sites, which content does not interest them at all and who has not opened the newsletter for some time. At all these points, you can actively intervene and move on to lead nurturing, which can also be automated at some points.
Lead n urturing means that a contact receives the right information at the right time in order to develop from a lead, who initially only finds out about your products or services, to a real prospective buyer and finally to a customer. With marketing automation, lead nurturing can be particularly targeted. If you have contact information such as an email address and ideally other data - such as professional position and company - of the lead, you can use a marketing automation tool to create a profile: Which posts has the customer read, which files from the service offering have they downloaded, which emails have they read, which ones have they left unopened? - Based on this information, you can plan the next steps.
The beginning of the lead-nurturing process is about catching the eye of the prospect who is looking for a solution to a particular problem and offering information that qualifies the company to be able to solve the problem. With marketing automation, web analytics can be used to promote the findability of the site to potential prospects, such as through personalized advertising and search engine optimization of the company's website. Once an interested customer has become aware of your company's products or services, it is important to automatically persuade them to contact you. For example, you can offer webinars, newsletters or value-added content in exchange for a free subscription. With marketing automation software, you can add customer data to your database in this way and send out automation mailings right away. Automated email marketing could be, for example, sending an initial welcome newsletter or the last newsletter sent to the customer who just signed up for the newsletter. Another option would be to send automated mailings with discount coupons or feedback requests for customers who haven't opened the newsletter in a few issues.
If the lead contacts a company via a contact form, it can already be automatically forwarded to the corresponding contact person in the sales department in addition to an automation mailing in which the request is confirmed with thanks and a quick response is promised. In addition, a corresponding lead categorization can also be carried out automatically here in order to initiate further marketing measures (e.g. targeted contact, automatic reminder messages to the sales department or lead after a specified period of time, advertising stop for products or services that have already been specifically requested, etc.).
After the purchase decision, marketing automation helps you to retain customers permanently. At a glance you have the data on previous orders and interests, how often the customer continues to open mailings or whether the target group(s) change. For example, you can use automated mailings to request feedback or send targeted discounts or discount vouchers after a certain period of radio silence.
With marketing automation, you can keep track of what your customers are interested in, where their interest is waning, and follow up with them. This way, you can also provide existing customers with the appropriate information and offers, which facilitates a continuation of the customer relationship.
Especially in the collection and analysis of customer data , entrepreneurs hope for advantages from marketing automation software. This is because fast and reliable workflows can be used to determine which marketing measures are suitable for which customers, how campaigns have run and how they can be optimized for the customer. In addition, customer profiles are essential for customer care - both for leads and for new and existing customers. According to the PwC study, these are the 10 functions companies most often want in marketing automation
- Reporting and analysis of marketing campaigns
- The creation of customer profiles, strategic target groups and possible segmentations
- Consolidation and maintenance of all marketing-relevant data, including the definition of company-wide data models and taxonomies.
- Definition, management and analysis of marketing KPIs relevant to each channel
- the creation and optimisation of advertising media design
- the development and use of predictive models / predictive analytics
- Development of the marketing strategy
- Planning and managing personalised online campaigns
- Determining and planning marketing budgets
- PEO campaign management (planning, development, conception)
In order not to lose track of all the functions, it makes sense to rely on a software solution that can be operated intuitively, displays the desired data clearly and with which further measures can be initiated from anywhere: with a marketing cloud. The marketing cloud is ideal for CRM because the collected user data can be collected and managed centrally . The various functionalities, from web analysis to campaign management, can be accessed from anywhere via a uniform user interface. Depending on the wishes and needs, different modules can be combined for the automation, orchestration and analysis of customer interactions and marketing measures.
Companies (both the planners and the users among the employees) expect above all from a marketing cloud that it can be used to create customer profiles and strategic target groups and that segmentations can be carried out in them. The reporting and analysis of marketing campaigns should also be possible via a marketing cloud, according to the wishes of the entrepreneurs. Other expectations of a cloud are the development and use of predictive analytics. The collected customer data can be used, for example, to create model profiles for top customers, perform association analyses (à la "customers who have read this article / bought this product are also interested in ...") or make conversion forecasts about the probability that a customer will decide in favor of a certain product.
In B2B marketing, according to the current PwC study from September 2018, a quarter of the companies surveyed have used marketing automation tools so far, half of the respondents are planning to do so in the coming period, and for only 23 percent of the companies marketing automation is not currently relevant according to their own statements. Companies would like to invest primarily in the creation of customer profiles, strategic target groups and the possible segmentations in this area. The topic is very present in many companies and most entrepreneurs are planning to expand in this area, which could lead to the creation of jobs according to forecasts in the PwC study. Just over one-third of companies expect to create more jobs in the future through the use of marketing automation tools. But the new technologies also bring challenges. Instead of traditional outbound marketing, automated marketing is being used to target inbound marketing. This means that marketing tasks are changing fundamentally, something of which almost 60 percent of companies are aware, according to recent studies. The challenges increasingly consist of drawing the right conclusions from the collected data and responding more specifically to the needs of potential customers. Through clever marketing measures, which can be initiated and analyzed via marketing clouds, for example, it is easier to pick up leads where they are in the customer journey and to offer them solutions and suitable information that will lead them to make a purchase decision.
- Development of a custom-fit online marketing strategy, definition of smart goals, determination of your desired target groups by means of buyer personas and coordination of meaningful KPIs.
- Setting up targeted Nurture processes to enrich customer profiles.
- Consulting and implementation ofmarketing automation software that meets the requirements of the GDPR.
- Extensive workshops to train your team on Buyer Personae, Nurturing processes.
For success-oriented optimization of digital sales, we are also happy to support you on the subject of lead management.