Are you achieving the full potential of marketing automation?

6 min read

by Simon Lees

We are firm believers that if you’re going to do something, do it right.

So, if you’re going to invest in tech to stay ahead of the competition, make sure you make that investment work.

Over the past decade there’s been a huge rise in marketing automation software; but there’s been an almost equally huge rise in abandoned marketing automation projects because they haven’t been carried out properly.

But, with a little forethought, planning and teamwork, you can make sure your own investment in marketing automation doesn’t go the same way.

Google Marketing Trends
Google Trends – search term ‘marketing automation’ over past 10 years.

Marketing automation tools are designed to help marketers communicate more effectively through multiple channels – using automation to boost efficiency, productivity and streamlining marketing activity.

On paper, the use of marketing automation can only be a positive. However, many companies aren’t using these systems to their full potential, leading to those aforementioned abandoned projects.

According to LeadMD, only 21% of respondents said their marketing automation maturity level was above average or higher.

This means a staggering 79% of marketing automation users don’t use their systems as they should be.

Here are some tips on getting the most out of your marketing automation solution:


Automating doesn’t mean you can skimp on research or training.

Decide who will ‘own’ the marketing automation system, and ring-fence enough time to build up that person’s knowledge.

Getting an automated system doesn’t mean you can sit back and relax from day one. You need to understand how the software should be aligned with your business’ processes and the desired workflow / customer journey.

Then there’s selecting the right solution for your needs: there’s plenty to choose from, with Eloqua, Marketo and Pardot leading the way, so do your research and choose a solution that works for you.

Consider whether your chosen marketing automation tool has everything you’re looking for and that it can cope with your future plans. Neglecting to do your research could prove a costly mistake, so make sure to get the input of all your users too, so you can fully scope out your requirements.


Lead scoring – don’t skimp on the basics

In order to push your marketing activity to the next level, lead nurturing and scoring can play a key role.

Understanding what your prospects want so you can create a more responsive nurture campaign to run from your marketing automation solution could provide huge increases in revenue and deal sizes, simply by improving the journey a prospect goes on. This is backed up by the Forrester Wave report, which states that ‘companies that excel at lead nurturing generate 50% more sales-ready leads at 33% less cost’. More on making that work comes next with…


…Better sales and marketing alignment (that old chestnut)

Marketing automation is most effective when both marketing and sales departments are working together.

Understanding the unique pain points for both teams is critical to making the most of your marketing automation tool. Decisions need to be made on how a lead should be scored, who a lead should be routed to, and if sales should have access to engagement tools as well as being able to see statistics on what a contact has been doing. By working together and having an understanding of each other’s problems, sales and marketing can work together to set up a system which works for both of them.


Personalise that content

No matter the project, when content is personalised it more often than not sees a higher conversion rate.

Whether this is using smart segmentation to target specific contacts with particular content, or adding dynamic fields to an email (to include the recipient’s name, organisation, sector etc).

It is even possible to create blank email templates which pull in personalised text and images depending on what that contact is interested in.

DMA UK suggest that over 75% of email revenue is generated by alternatives to generic one-size-fits-all email campaigns, showing just how important personalisation is.


What now?

Whether you’ve got your chosen marketing automation tool in place and aren’t fully utilising it, or you want to invest in a solution but aren’t sure where to start, we can help.

We’ve got the skills backed up by years of experience to break the barriers you’re facing with marketing automation.

Just visit our website or call us on (0)1628 894 620 to discuss your requirements.

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