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Marketing automation is not new and it’s safe to say the honeymoon period is well and truly over. Much to a lot of CEOs disappointment everybody now understands that automation platforms cannot replace the whole marketing team, however, they can make life a whole lot easier and our marketing and lead lead generation a lot more efficient. Here is a quick and easy guide to getting automation right and using it to compliment the rest of your marketing strategy.
First of all, what exactly is it? Marketing automation is essentially software that will enable you to streamline, automate and measure your marketing tasks so that you can be more efficient and grow your bottom line quicker. Its primary task is to nurture and convert them into customers by providing them with personalised and added value content that eventually convinces them that your product or service is worth investing in. It essentially does all the mandrolic time consuming jobs such as responding to emails, posting on social media and monitoring who’s been on your website, leaving you free to look at the bigger picture.
When done right, marketing automation can help you to generate significant new revenue and give you a great return on investment by saving you time and increasing your brand awareness. Here are a few tips to help you get the most out of it:
Know your audience – make sure you have a way of segmenting your data so that you can personalise your approach. This needs to be done first and requires human input.
Get personal. Don’t just spam! Use automation to create work flows that inform prospects based on their preferences e.g. someone who is interested in fast print solutions gets information on your next day services.
Use automation to drive prospects to specific parts of your website – this way you can track their behaviours and interests getting them ready for engagement.
Be careful with over personalisation – just putting a name on an automatic email does not constitute personalisation, it can instead make it look fake and cheesy, especially if you are not 100% confident that their name is correct.
Having reactive content that automatically customises an email to the recipients’ preferences is a useful feature for an automation platform.
Plan out your workflows and how they will interact with each other based on the journey you want your prospect to take. Don’t just create one off the cuff as it could lead to saturating the prospect with emails or content.
Have a realistic lead scoring system and if you are unsure, do your research. Don’t put too much weight on email clicks or single interactions.
Have an end goal. What is the purpose of your amazing content? Always have a call to action and know what you will do when a prospect reaches a certain lead score e.g. will you call them to qualify? Send a message to the sales team to follow up? How will you convert all your hard work?
What Does Good Marketing Automation Look Like?
Good marketing automation will enable you to understand the changing and evolving needs of your prospects. It will help you to track the behaviours they display and how they interact with you across your various marketing channels. By understanding the behaviour of your prospects and the type of content their tuning into, you are able to tailor your message more effectively and build a greater understanding of what they are interested in and what they need. This process of interaction and nurturing will help you to know the right time to make human contact and the optimum time the prospect is ready to buy. That’s what good marketing automation looks like.
Posted in Info | Marketing Automation Comments Off June 25, 2015
Qualify Your Appointments
Anybody who works in sales will know that not all appointments are created equal and only those that are properly qualified are really worth your time and effort to attend. There is nothing worse for a sales person to turn up to an appointment which they have prepared for only to find that the customer isn’t faintly interested and that they only said yes to the appointment maker to get them off the phone. It’s even worse when the customer tries to start selling to you!
As a sales person, time is a precious commodity. Time is taken to prepare for the appointment, to set aside time for the appointment and of course, the drive time to get there. When it’s all a complete waste of time it actually costs you money in real terms. This is why it is so important to thoroughly qualify appointments and make sure that the customer is genuinely interested in finding out more and has the propensity to buy.
So what is the best way of qualifying an appointment to ensure that the customer is serious about finding out more?
Well, this is where a little process called BANT+A comes into play. BANT+A is an acronym for Budget, Authority, Need, Timescale and Attitude and any specialist in appointment making should know this process like the back of their hand. So let’s expand on this a little:
BUDGET – Is there an appropriate spend level? …or in other words…can they afford it?
AUTHORITY – Is the contact senior enough to make or influence decision?…or in other words, are they the person who holds the purse strings and can make the decisions?
NEED – Does the company have an appropriate requirement and will your solution meet it?…or in other words, will it really be a meaningful solution for them?
TIMESCALE – Are they looking to select a solution within an appropriate timescale?…or in other words, do they want to do this now, in the next couple of weeks or sometime way in the future?
ATTITUDE – What is their attitude to the overall value proposition?…..or in words, are they just giving you lip service or are they chomping at the bit to get your product or service?
An experienced appointment maker will be able to ask all the right questions to get a true understanding of where the prospect stands and by following the above process, they will know if the prospect is really interested. As a sales person, when you’ve received an appointment that you know has gone through the BANTA process, it really puts a spring in your step because you know there’s a real opportunity to be had.
The Icing on the Cake
Things are pretty competitive in the B2B world and it’s more important than ever to have a robust outbound lead generation strategy. If you want to drive revenue, create a consistent sales funnel and build a sustainable pipeline then you need to be pro-actively contacting your prospects and generating their interest.
In any organisation, driving qualified sales leads is a top business challenge. To tackle this challenge effectively you need a good handle on your data, good insight into the types of industries you’re targeting, and a way of creating a meaningful dialogue with your prospects. Qualifying your appointments is the icing on the cake. It will allow you to use your resources efficiently and make your sales forecasting more accurate. The time and money you save by keeping your sales force in a good mood will also be a major bonus!Posted in Info | Appointment Setting Comments Off June 23, 2015
You can have the best event in the world with the most engaging speakers in the industry but it’s hard to relax until the day arrives and your venue fills up. This is why the direct approach to increasing your event registration can be very effective.
There are numerous ways you can promote your event using mediums such as social media, email marketing, specially designed website landing pages, online adverts as well as using traditional media. There are also lots of strategies you can adopt to increase event registration including:
- Making sure your registration process is mobile-friendly
- Ensuring that the registration form is as short as possible
- Checking that the registration form works in all major browsers
- Reminding people about the event through SMS text messaging
However, nothing works quite as well as picking up the phone and speaking to somebody about your event. Making direct contact is a much underestimated method of increasing your event registration and by doing this; you are likely to yield more tangible results. Relying on people to sign up themselves is all well and good but it’s very easy for people to forget or simply not bother. This is especially true for senior level attendees and VIPs.
Now, we’re not talking about contacting people out of the blue to do this. A little warming up would be prudent to do initially for example starting off with an email and then following up with a call. Whether you’re targeting existing clients, prospects or delegates who attended the event last year, it makes sense to tailor your message depending on the audience and then make sure you have an effective follow-up strategy.
Refining your approach
The more sophisticated your approach, the better the response will be. And by sophisticated we mean tracking the initial email you send, see who opens it, check who clicks on the information and then follow-up with further emails and phone calls. The more insight you can gain about the email response the better your delegate recruitment will be. This is often best done with the help of an automation platform.
If your database of contacts is a bit on the sparse side then don’t worry, there are plenty of suppliers out there who can identify a B2B data list of suitable contacts for your event and if you refine your approach to this list, the response rate can be amazing.
Benefits of Direct Contact
Making direct contact with potential event delegates can be beneficial in several ways:
- It enables you to add that personal touch which is harder to say no to
- You can answer any questions about the event or venue
- You can ask if there is anyone else who would benefit from attending
- You may be able to up-sell value added services such as VIP tickets
It’s not just event organisers that benefit from this approach. If you have spent tens of thousands on a shiny new exhibition stand and have your top team attending a big industry event why not let your key and target accounts know where you will be? The direct approach is a perfect way of targeting these valuable organisations.
Maximising on Registration
To maximise on registration you need a whole host of event support mechanisms working in the background such as appropriate promotion strategies, easy sign up process, a good contact plan and a way of capturing all the important information you are going to need if you plan to make a success of it again next year!
If you want to master the art of event registration then you need to think about the long game…Posted in Info | Event Support Comments Off ← Older posts