In a recent conversation with a chief technology officer, he asserted all digital technology changes in his organisation were being led by IT and not by marketing. It made me wonder: How long a marketing function like this could survive?
Today an extensive network of online tools and resources drives most purchase decisions, and consumers expect value-based interactions across all points of engagement.
Thankfully, these same tools can also fuel deeper engagement between marketers and consumer. Access to these vast sources of data can help marketers garner measurable insights, track the success of campaigns, and improve the quality and flow of leads – but it cannot be gleaned manually.
A recent Oracle Marketing Cloud report, entitled Marketing Automation Simplified, detailed how automation technologies can help marketers to refine, target, and optimise program initiatives, improve their knowledge of buyer behaviour, and understand how it plays out in campaigns.
While many new marketing communication channels have emerged, traditional email is still one of the most critical points of consumer engagement. Email helps support overall multi-touch communications strategies, and noting opens and clicks from eDMs is an effective way to measure their impact.
Marketing automation provides visual click through reporting so you can see which links or assets within an email get the best response. This helps optimise the overall effectiveness of email communications, ensuring more positive brand impressions, as well as avoiding complaints, bounce backs and unsubscribes.
By knowing which email messages and offers are the most engaging, marketers can deliver more targeted messages for individual customers based on their indicated preferences, while also fine tuning trigger-based marketing campaigns.
Automation improves the timing and relevance of trigger-based communications, so marketers can better provide the right message at the appropriate time.
Trigger-based marketing responds to behavioural attributes and actions demonstrated by a consumer, such as an email click-through rates or continued interest in a particular asset or offering. By providing tailored information specific to prospect or customer actions, marketers can more definitively provide value to assist and empower potential buyers.
With marketing automation, you can better drive the initiatives and offers that resonate with people based on their behaviour and interests. By delivering information at critical moments in the decision-making process, you can cultivate a greater role in engagement.
Social media and content
As already mentioned, prospective buyers today will initiate their own research and discovery processes through social media and online resources. These methods allow people to easily identify solutions to their personal or business challenges, and ask peers how they are addressing similar issues or trends.
This means the days of cold calling and generic emails are over. Rather than dictating what consumers should do, marketing and sales reps must now support the buyer’s new discovery process by providing value-driven insights, information, and engagement.
Marketers must think like publishers to provide compelling cross-channel content, filled with dynamic storytelling and real education, to engage with their community. Also like publishers, marketers must continually measure the impact of different content at various stages of the sales and marketing processes, and how consumer wants and need evolve over time.
Marketing automation enables you to circulate and track content based on buyer profiles, segment customers/prospects according to their individual interests and attributes, and trigger relevant content based on consumption and channel delivery preferences.
At the heart of these benefits lies the sophisticated tracking and analysis of user metrics, which depends greatly on the solidity of data management systems.
Marketing automation integrates data from social media, email, websites, and the sales pipeline from your CRM to close the loop and help you make more informed decisions that drive lead generation and strong engagement tactics.
Automation also helps sales and marketing teams work collaboratively by integrating technologies central to data management, such as CRM. This connection improves visibility of information gaps so marketers can standardise lists of values, normalise data, and ensure the accuracy of sources.
Leading organisations will leverage the power of marketing automation to fine tune their engagement methods by aligning marketing content with the consumer journey, creating new and loyal customers, and fueling overall business growth.
User engagement is just one of the five crucial tenets of modern marketing. Read the full report by Oracle Marketing Cloud for a better understanding of how marketing automation drives better results across all five principles – including targeting, engagement, conversion, analytics and marketing technology.