UPDATED ON MARCH 7TH 2019
Are your prospects and customers contacted on a regular basis by your sales and marketing teams to ensure that your products and services stay fresh in their minds? If this is not the case, you are definitely missing an opportunity to take advantage of the power of automated scenarios.
Today’s marketing teams are finding tremendous benefits to automated marketing, such as significant increases in conversions, sales, brand awareness, and productivity. In addition, automated marketing is the secret weapon to better identify the most effective products, communications and services. Indeed, the actions made by the contacts generate other actions, which come to enrich the marketing database. The more you know about your contacts, the more you can fine-tune your actions, with very little effort on a daily basis.
Where to start ?
Even the best marketers can sometimes perceive setting up automated marketing scenarios as a difficult task. Where to start ? What kind of scenario do you need to put in place? How many scenarios do you really need? In fact, automated marketing can sometimes be complex. Believe me, having seen some patterns over the years, you can easily lose control in triggers, exceptions, and number of channels. On the other hand, automated marketing does not always have to be. You can easily do some small actions to get started and see results quickly.
The first steps in creating automated scenarios involve understanding the information you have about your contacts. Aside from standard information, what are the different categorizations you can do? This may include interest in certain products, purchase history, line of business, and any other profiling criteria.
Then, revisit the different stages of your pre- and post-sale process. You will be able to plan different message sequences based on certain triggers that are repetitive in these moments. To better explain this point, here are 13 automated scenarios that you could implement depending on the purchase cycle.
Welcome scenarios are essential. Although you’ve convinced someone to subscribe, buy, or sign up, it’s important to provide more valuable information from the first contact you will have. Indeed, the statistics prove that the first messages are more effective than any other, since the enthusiasm from a contact for your company is present. Take the opportunity to expose your differentiation and all the value that you can bring them vis-à-vis your brand identity.
In the easiest automated scenarios for welcome campaign, there are:
- New customer: take advantage of this moment to explain who you are, your mission, and why the contact is important for your business. Humanize these communications as much as possible by taking an email address from an employee (not have an info@ or something like that). In addition, why not put a picture of a representative to inform him that this person remains available and is ready to answer any questions.
- New Subscriber: A subscriber is at a different stage than the new customer. He is more interested in learning about topics or your expertise. Feel free to suggest other content, and direct him to all your educational channels.
In addition to these two frequently associated with a company, you could also have sequences for a new prospect, user, administrator, registrant, etc. To understand the landscape surrounding the welcome messages, it will be important to understand the status that contacts can take during the purchase process, but also during the period of use of your product / service.
Automated Engagement Scenarios
Automated engagement scenarios are numerous, and even unlimited depending on what you accumulate in a contact card. Depending on this, you need to use a good analysis to understand how you can use this information wisely. Be it behavioral information, interest, actions, visits (and so much more), you have to use them to add value for the contact. Indeed, it is necessary to limit the number of messages so as not to bombard the contacts with email and notifications.
Here are some suggestions to inspire you in creating automated scenarios:
- Participants (activities, webinar, etc.): If a contact has participated in an activity and there are others related, why not do cross ” selling ” at this level? Send emails suggesting recorded webinars, informative videos or recurring events to your schedule.
- Downloading content: Depending on the downloaded content, several scenarios can be created. For example, the implementation of automated scoring, which is part of an account development approach for sales. It could also be cross-content suggestion according to a category associated with that content. Or why not an automatic sending for a special offer after a number of downloads chosen by you (ex .: free call with an expert).
- Visiting a specific page: this kind of scenario is in my opinion under-exploited. The data of your contacts surrounding the visit of certain pages of the site are really a gold mine. On the other hand, you have to know how to exploit it. First, create landing pages that can be monitored for all your high-value content (download, demo or event registration, etc.). Depending on this, you can issue reminders on pages containing abandoned forms, for example. On the other hand, the real secret is the ability to adapt the contents of these pages according to the contact information. This method of marketing is starting to be more and more discussed, and that is where automated marketing platforms are headed.
- Interest-based: You can classify certain actions based on interest. For example, the visit of such page suggests an interest for X, while the download of this is rather an interest for Y, and so on. When the interests are associated with actions carried by the contact, you can mount different automated scenarios for every one of them. This makes it possible to suggest other things to this contact, or else to target communications that will specifically affect it. For example, I have already been exposed to a company selling glasses online, which according to the model purchased (which was categorized into 6 styles) communicated to me the suggestion of new models against the style that I had bought. The company understood my interest in this model rather than the others.
- According to behaviors: This is where sky’s the limit. Any behavior performed by a contact can serve as a trigger for automated scenarios. It’s up to you to evaluate the various actions monitored and what can be interesting data for your marketing tool. In addition to those mentioned here, there is also a video, slideshare, participation in a study, completion of forms, and more. In the best known, there are also abandoned baskets and inactive customers, which we cover in the next point.
- Inactive Clients (or Users): If you offer any platform that requires a user to log in, it is important to encourage contacts that have been inactive for a long period of time. This is a type of trigger easy to set up, by getting the date of last connection. Only send this type of communication when the period of inactivity is long, and it is important not to abuse it. Also, make sure to help the contact provide reasons for what is causing his inactivity. Indeed, some reasons will have to lead to the deactivation of the contact so as not to negatively affect the reputation of your sending.
2. Abandoned Baskets: You have all received communications following an incomplete purchase. It’s a living practice in the marketing world, and it can be very rewarding if done well. You can also offer discounts as a result of uncompleted transactions, but do not overdo it, since customers will get used to and never complete a transaction on the first try (unless it’s a strategy that fits into your business model).
3. Cross-selling: To increase the number of contact transactions, selling cross products can be very interesting. This is also the case for the sale of related services, which sometimes falls into oblivion in relation to the suggestion of products. Indeed, do not hesitate to suggest maintenance services, training, repair (and others), which may well accompany a product purchase. You could also create an automated scenario that allows you to make an appointment for a related service, based on the information stored in the contact card. 4. Sales of premium products: finally, if your offer is divided into several levels, always try to get the hottest customers to the next level. Share the most interesting aspects, and what it can offer the buyer. You could also trigger communications based on the amount billed, the number of items purchased, all in order to establish the contacts most likely to be interested in this offer.
Automated scenario for services
- Renewal: Depending on the service and the size of the company, some companies assign a full-time resource on the management of contract renewals. This is, to be honest, a waste of time, especially as automated marketing can easily send alerts at this level. Build an automated scenario based on the upcoming renewal date, whether the email is open, or clicked on the call to action. In any case, you can follow these actions so that the process is completely automated, unless there are alerts that would result in manual work.
- Rewards for engaged contacts: In this last possible automated scenario, why not please customers who deserve it? Whether for a reference, a purchase amount reached, a share or other, you could trigger actions to thank them. You could also have random assignments in a group built according to specific criteria.
To wrap up
Marketing automation can be a challenge to create and deploy, but the possibilities for using data are many … almost endless. It’s up to you to evaluate how to use this data to enrich each communication sent to a contact. And if you have a vision for an automated scenario, but the implementation seems too complicated, do not hesitate to contact us. You will be referred to one of our business analysts who can accompany you!