Marketing automation is an art and technology designed for marketers to use to improve the customer experience and business results of their organisations. It eliminates the monotonous tasks that marketers need to do by providing a great level of automation in areas like email marketing, content marketing and social media marketing.

There’s so much in the field that most marketers end up paying for more features than they need or choose platforms that may not be the best suited for their business. A main reason for that is the complexity of marketing automation and the abundance of features available.

Before starting with marketing automation, you need to have a solid understanding of the fundamentals and what you are trying to achieve. That said, you need a well-planned framework that will fall in line with your overall strategy and achieve your goals be lead generation, nurturing or conversions. Here’s how and what you can do to ensure the success of your digital marketing strategy through your marketing automation efforts.

Revisit your goals

What are your main goals as part of your marketing strategy? Do you want more leads? Do you want more qualified leads? Do you want to increase sales conversions? Do you want to decrease your cost of acquisition? Its important to start first with quantifying your goals. A good tip here is to also include customer centric goals. For example, a goal could be to improve your engagement with your leads on a certain topic to ensure you educate them on it. Another customer centric goal could be how many prospects have learned about a new added value or service that you have recently launched. Keep your goals balanced between business centric to customer centric goals.

So, with that said, here are some tips that will help take your email marketing and marketing automation to the next level.

Blasting is not the solution

Casting a net in the ocean hoping you land a custimer or two, is an outdated strategy and will do you no good. Make sure you are as targeted as possible. Irrelevant emails are never opened or entertained. The key here is, finding people who have some level of interest in what you offer. This can be done by using a serioes of email that only get fired if the user showss some level of interest such as opening your emails or better, clicking on a link. Use A/B testing to get some data on what works and doesn’t in terms of content, send times, subject lines, etc.

Engage your customers

What are your customers looking for? Many times, they will be looking for information as they are still early in the buying process. Some of them may not even be thinking about buying. But some will be ready and made their mind. You can’t afford to communicate with them all in the same way. You need to understand where they are in the process, understand more about what they are looking for and take personal interest in them. This will help you create engaging content and measure its success by utilizing the wealth of data you will get from your marketing automation engine. Segment your customer journeys in a way that enables you to address every customer profile efficiently and accurately.

effective engagementTake action when the time is right

Try to close to early you lose them and close too late, you also lose them. Timing is everything in sales and timing is everything in akreting automation also. You need to put in place a carefully thought and tested process to measure when your leads are ready to be passed onto your sales team. Lead socring and progressive profiling are the two common tools most sophisticated marketing automation engines have, that will allow you to find out when your lead is ready.

Progressive profiling uses dyanmic forms to capture additional information on landing pages that your leads visit when they click on your emails or come back to your website. Besides creating a better user experience, you get to know more about them so you can segment them in the relevant profiles to send them more better and more relevant content. Lead scoring typically looks at your leads engagement and assigns score to the different actions they take as they engage with you. Both tools are very effective in validating when your leads are ready.

There is no right or wrong here but generally speaking, the more information the lead has shared with you and the more interactivity and engagement they had with you, the more qualified they are. Try and test few rules and see what works better for your business.