There is a view of marketing for some, that results in a kind of touchy-feely approach to engaging customers. Marketing involves identifying customers’ needs, creating strategies to fulfill those needs, and nurturing a mutually rewarding relationship. Any form of automation then would appear to affect the ability to ‘feel’ the marketplace, and react accordingly.
The marketing environment is completely different today, and continues to evolve at an almost mind-blowing pace with regard to marketing channels.
That kind of thinking is problematic especially in today’s technology-driven world. Any company wishing to remain competitive must have an appreciation for the nuts and bolts that must support marketing. The marketing environment is completely different today, and continues to evolve at an almost mind-blowing pace with regard to marketing channels. To keep abreast of changes and remain competitive, marketers have to be willing to let go of traditional approaches and embrace techniques that will enable efficiency and business growth.
Marketing automation only serves to support the role of marketing. The software facilitates better marriage and management of data.
- Your database of customers can be organized to include purchase history and preferences, which makes it easier to target offers and stimulate demand.
- It enables targeting of large groups and is quite a valuable tool in event marketing.
- Data variety makes it is easier to develop marketing campaigns and determine their effectiveness.
- Better forecasting based on recorded trends or information aid the development of marketing plans.
- It allows for better lead generation and scoring, for improved conversion rates.
- It is therefore effective not just for customer acquisition, but also for customer retention efforts
A database with accurate, up-to-date customer information allows for customization of messages and more effective campaigns.
A database with accurate, up-to-date customer information allows for customization of messages and more effective campaigns. Beyond email, marketing automation can integrate social media, telephone campaigns, and direct mail. Marketing automation is even more effective when examined from a sales perspective. From information stored in the database, the Sales team will be able to study behavior patterns to determine potential buying interest. Sales representatives are able to focus on more profitable leads, and communicate easily with potential clients via email.
Unfortunately, in many organizations there is no cohesion between Sales and Marketing. Profitability and customer relationship management should be the focus of both departments. Marketing must be able to understand sales quotas, and determine their role in enabling Sales to meet these quotas. Sales must understand the processes and time frames in which Marketing operates, and how these affect their quotas. Marketing automation can bridge any gaps between these units.
Whether you operate with one or both departments, marketing automation integrates various activities, and simplifies repetitive tasks. Where there was previously separation of tasks, marketing automation software allows it all to be done in one application. The results:
- Increased efficiency
- More professional efforts
- Real time and data driven marketing
- More predictable leads to facilitate better forecasting
- The ability to better link specific activities to returns
Regardless of the benefits of marketing automation, its success will depend on your use or application. Before you invest in any type of marketing automation:
- Know your market.
- Set clear objectives.
- Determine how leads are to be generated.
- Enough content (in-bound and out-bound) must be produced to aid lead generation.
- Sales must follow through on leads for existing as well as potential customers.
- Know the number and types of channels through which messages are communicated for better integration and to avoid redundancy.
- Encourage synergy between marketing and sales.
No matter how good your message, or how sophisticated the software, it has no value if it is not read.
If your automated marketing is seen as spam your efforts are wasted. The key to marketing automation is relationship building. Your email will not be considered spam, if you have an established relationship, and your targets know who you are and most importantly, what you can do for them. This is where multi-channel communication is relevant. Sales persons need to pick up the phone and engage. Give targets a reason to react to your emails and direct mail. No matter how good your message, or how sophisticated the software, it has no value if it is not read. A simplified and reduced workload leaves more time to focus on understanding the needs of your targets, and better management of customer relationships.
At Postcard Services we are doing our part to help you automate your direct mail marketing with DirectMailManager.com. CLICK HERE to read more about the features of this awesome automated direct mail tool.
Here are some quick links to current Marketing Automation integrations that work with Direct Mail Manager, click the logos to find out more!