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The Significance of Lead Scoring in Marketing Automation

Marketing automation platforms – those that allow ‘dripped’ marketing by email, text message or another form of contact – have become incredibly popular as more consumers integrate the internet into their daily lives.

What is ‘Lead Scoring’?

Lead scoring refers to the process of choosing how close a lead is to purchasing based on where they are in the prospect cycle. For instance, if a prospect visits a website and spends two or three minutes browsing around before entering their email address into a form and leaving, they would likely score very low. Conversely, a prospect that has clicked through from a marketing email, browsed an online shop and added items to a shopping cart is likely very close to making a purchase, and would score much higher.

Motivating the Prospect to Take Action

Lead scoring is the best way to make marketing automation software work with high efficiency. Leads that are already close to purchasing or have made a purchase in the past are going to be turned off if they receive marketing material directed at cold prospects and brand new leads. By using a multi-step marketing campaign, leads can be coaxed to higher and higher scores and eventually converted when they are ready to purchase or end up making an impulse buy. Leverage marketing automation software to continually provide more and more motivation for the prospect to respond, and they will take action accordingly.

Creating a Long-Term Conversion Plan

The vast majority of prospects won’t convert the first or second time they are contacted. As a matter of fact, research suggests that prospects – especially those being contacted via email – may take up to ten or more contact points before they are converted into paying customers. This is where marketing automation software comes in handy; these automation platforms never forget about a prospect, and can be set to contact them with new content indefinitely. Invest the time and resources in creating a long-term contact and conversion plan for your prospects and with a few tweaks along the way it is sure to pay off.

Without a doubt, modern marketing automation software platforms offer marketers the ability to connect with leads and prospective customers far better than has been possible in the past. As long as campaigns are planned, executed, analyzed and optimized for improvement, there are few better ways to market to leads generated online.

John is a small business owner, and contributing writer for Aprimo marketing software.

 

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Streamlining Your Marketing Processes: Marketing Automation Explained

Large organizations selling a product or service, especially expensive ones, have long sales pipelines full of leads. When inbound marketing produces substantial leads, day in and day out, management of those leads becomes difficult. Marketing automation tools and software allow hands off management of these leads. Once a lead enters the pipeline, the automation software pushes them through each stage of your marketing plan, whether it be automated emails, or simple lead scoring and nurturing.

 

 

Three Types of Software

Marketing Intelligence- This type of marketing automation software uses tracking codes and custom analytics to track social media, user behavior on-site, and conversions.  Every one of the user’s actions can be tracked, from which social media page they followed, to which product page they viewed. This allows for a targeted response specifically catered to that lead’s needs and interests.

Marketing Automation- Marketing automation is focused on moving leads up or out. The goal is to move them from the top of the funnel to the bottom of the funnel where they are ready to buy. Typically, leads are scored and then placed in a lengthy email and social media marketing campaign. Most often, these techniques are used for B2B sales, but are also commonly used in B2C sales as well.

Workflow Automation- This kind of automation involves streamlining internal company marketing processes. It can include anything from budgeting, to event planning, to internal collaborations. Any internal processes are handled and organized by workflow automation, helping companies stay organized and efficient.

The only downside to this kind of automation is that they must be customized for every company. Thus, often a COM administrator must be used to setup a company’s individual marketing funnel and workflow system.

Cost- Marketing automation software can be very costly. Depending on the size of your organization and your needs, quality marketing automation software can cost anywhere from several hundred dollars a month, to many thousands of dollars a month.  Larger organizations are often paying hundreds of thousands of dollars a year for a comprehensive marketing automation solution.  COM administrators are provided for these clients with year-round support for troubleshooting and/or further customization and streamlining.

Whether expensive marketing automation software truly makes departments more efficient and closes more leads into buying customers is yet to be seen. One thing is for sure-many companies have yet to realize a return on their investment in their marketing automation software.  Despite this, more and more companies are investing in these solutions every day.

Ryan loves to write about marketing automation and all things related to marketing.

 

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