You’re Automating the Wrong Things

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These days there is so much data that the problem isn’t knowing what kind of marketing to do. The hard part is being really good and consistent at it. You start off with the best intentions and then things happen and marketing starts to fall by the wayside. It’s the #2 marketing mistake I see over and over again.

To be successful, you need to be consistent, and being consistent – day in and day out – requires automation.

51% of companies are currently using some form of marketing automation. With half of the rest planning to adopt the technology. But that stat is misleading. The real problem is that companies aren’t automating the right things. Most are focusing the bulk of their automation on their social media presence, which can cause reduced engagement on those platforms. Instead, you should be using automation to support your three key marketing goals:

  • Build Your Audience
  • Capture Leads
  • Stay Top of Mind

Let’s talk about what you should automate that align with these goals.

Capturing Leads from Your Website

You’ve built connections on LinkedIn. But now you want to be able to capture that audience and build your email list, so you can talk to them whenever you want.

Your website is your best and biggest sales rep and it needs to capture people coming to the site. You’ve taken the time to build an audience on LinkedIn and directed them to your website. Now that they’re there, it’s not enough to just serve up a great experience for them. The goal is to turn those visitors into leads and to do that you need to implement automation around capturing emails. If you aren’t capturing prospects as they hit your website and funneling them straight into your CRM system to move them further along the sales funnel, you’re missing a big opportunity.

By automating the email capture process on your website via landing pages and popups, you can optimize the capture of referrals to your website.

Make sure your website is connected to your CRM, so that not only are captured leads added to your email marketing, but they’re automatically added to the CRM as well. By the same token, your CRM should be integrated with your email marketing system, to ensure that every prospect and lead is automatically added to your email marketing list.

Nurturing Prospects

As soon as a prospect or referral is added to your CRM or signs up for email on your website, they should automatically be subscribed to your email list and start receiving email marketing. We like to start them off with a nurturing email campaign. It’s a series of emails that tell the full story of WHO you are, WHY you do what you do, and HOW you do it. It welcomes the new prospect in and then brings them up to speed on the story of the great things you’re doing for your clients over a series of 5-9 emails.

Staying Top of Mind

Once the nurturing campaign has ended, you still want to stay top of mind. Build campaigns are what we follow up the nurturing campaign with. They are regular emails (2 per month) that continue to give your audience valuable insight-driven content that helps them understand how you are uniquely positioned to help them solve the problems they are facing, and keeps you top of mind.

Automate Your Analytics – Automated analytics can help show you a view of your customer’s journey – both on the website and via email. It makes it easier to see what is working and what isn’t.

Mistakes in Automation

  • Having no goal in mind – You have to have a strategy in place that involves goals. If not, then it’s just automated random acts of marketing.
  • Not following the data – There is so much data available that can tell us whether or not what we’re doing is working. You have to track the data and iterate based on the results. Otherwise, no amount of automation will help grow your business.
  • Sending emails to the wrong audience – or just not building an audience in the first place. You want to build the right audience of prospects that you want to talk to. If you’re not focusing on building the right audience, then you’re automatically sending emails to the wrong audience.
  • Not A/B testing – Automation is the perfect place to try out A/B testing. You can easily test out different versions of emails or landing pages. It also provides a lot of good data on what approach is most effective and allows for further iteration.

There is no shortcut that is going to give you the results you want. Your strategic plan needs to be long term and consistency is key. Automation frees you up to focus on things that really need a live person doing them, like lead generation and creating good content.

Learn more by listening to our B2B Word of Mouth Marketing podcasts.

All the best,

Bill Bice

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