Marketing Automation for Dummies… AKA How to Improve Your Inbound
Fans of inbound marketing frequently find themselves going on the defensive. Years of sticking to the tried and true outbound methods have made real skeptics out of many business owners, so it’s not always easy to get your boss to greenlight your inbound project — or to continue giving you the okay to press on with your efforts. No matter what industry you’re in or how big or small your business is, every CEO and CFO wants to know the same thing: “What’s my ROI?”
Whether you’re just foraying into the new and exciting world of inbound or are trying to kick your game up a notch, you must have a plan for continuously maintaining a strong ROI, and for constant growth and improvement. This would be a real freakin’ chore if you had to do it all on your own. The good news is that you don’t have to. When correctly implemented, marketing automation can effectively improve your inbound ROI, thus leveraging the full power of your marketing strategy and boosting business. Here’s how:
Smart Lead Forms
By introducing smart lead forms to your landing pages, you can build stronger relationships with your prospects and contacts, gradually and naturally. Think about it. When an individual first visits your page, he’s likely interested in meeting a specific need or resolving a pain point. If he decides that he’s interested in what you have to offer, he’ll complete your lead form with his basic information. If you bombard him with too many questions, he may feel pressured or turned off and decide to navigate away from your page. The goal is to get that information later. When the customer returns to fill out further lead forms, your marketing automation software can automatically populate the fields with the information you already have, providing you with the opportunity to dig deeper and get more specific client information without overwhelming him. Pretty sneaky, sis.
Passing a lead off to a sales person too early can be catastrophic, but waiting to contact a “ripe” lead for too long can be equally problematic. With marketing automation, you can quickly and easily assess how qualified a specific prospect actually is via lead scoring. Every lead will accumulate “points” based on the types of steps the individual has taken. The points then act as an indication of how ready someone is to make a buying decision. As soon as someone is ripe for the picking, their information will be passed along to the right hands in order to close the deal.
So what happens if your leads aren’t racking up the points as quickly as you’d like? Marketing automation makes it easy for you to gently nudge a prospect’s way down the funnel. Automated email lead nurturing campaigns work to remind consumers of who you are, educate them on your products and services, notify them of any special promotions or offers, etc.
Nothing makes a prospect feel more valued than receiving content that is personalized and catered to her unique needs and wants. Working with a dynamic marketing automation system will make it simple for you to make strong connections with consumers as you offer custom content based upon their demographics, interests, search history, and previous actions taken. You can even personalize words throughout the page so that the reader is greeted with his or her name.
Wouldn’t it be great if you could do more with less? The beauty of marketing automation is that it demands virtually no man hours while empowering you to increase your capacity for running multiple marketing campaigns. Cha-ching!
Data is HOT right now, and marketing automation is on the ball. With the right automation software, you can glean invaluable data from all aspects of your inbound marketing campaign, including web traffic, landing pages, CTAs, emails, blog posts, social media, and so much more. The possibilities are endless!
What’s not to love about marketing automation? See for yourself what automation can do for your inbound ROI.