Small businesses are utilizing marketing automation platforms to help grow their business more than ever before. When it comes to capturing leads and nurturing them into sales-ready prospects, marketing automation provides the tools to necessary to execute, manage and automate tasks that helps drive growth. A study found on eMarketer showed marketing automation platforms improved lead management and lead nurturing by an overwhelming 86% among B2B marketers worldwide. Needless to say, marketing automation is not going anywhere anytime soon. If you are a small business just getting started, here are a few marketing automation tips to help get you started.
1. Establish your goals for Marketing AutomationAs a small business just starting out with marketing automation you should determine your objectives and establish a set of measurable goals that will ultimately shape how your campaigns will be designed. When establishing these goals, you should consider what you are trying to accomplish with marketing automation. Most small businesses use marketing automation with the goal to increase e-commerce sales, lead generation, customer retention and repeat business. Marketing automation software can provide the tools necessary to accomplish these goals, however, it takes careful consideration and participation from Marketing and Sales teams to create campaigns that your audience will engage with.
2. Build your list from people interested in your products or servicesThere are several tactics that you can use grow your email database for your marketing automation campaigns.
- Newsletter Opt-ins
- Create Content Gates for Lead Generation
- Use Social Media to promote Lead Gen Offers
- Host a Webinar
- Promote an Online Contest
3. Segment your lists based on interests and tailor your messagingSegmentation is key to any successful marketing automation campaign. If your business offers a wide variety of products or services, you should ensure that your email content is tailored to the interests of each specific customer to move them further down the sales funnel.
4. Make your Automated Emails appear as “Un-Automated” as possibleThe beauty of marketing automation software is that it allows you to address the needs of your audience and the right time during the their journey, however, it is very easy to lose sight of the “human touch” that make campaigns most effective. Start with a goal you want your audience to accomplish and map out all possible decisions and responses. Put yourself in your customer’s shoes and think about how you would respond to your message. Once this is mapped out, you can begin to scale and test your messaging.
5. Perform Split-TestingA/B testing in email marketing is a method of conducting experiments using multiple variants of messaging to gather data on the best performing campaigns to make informative optimizations. Simply put, A/B campaigns can allow you to distribute two email messages to a list to test which email message has higher engagement metrics. Split-Testing your campaigns is a proven way to make data-driven decisions regarding your campaign’s messaging, offering, design and much more. This powerful tool integrated in your marketing automation platform allows you to consistently improve the metrics that matter the most to your small business.
6. Start Small and Measure your EffortsIt takes time to develop a well-oiled, marketing automation machine capable of nurturing sales-ready leads. Small Businesses just getting started should understand the importance of testing campaign messaging and response to. Here are some of the metrics you should be paying close attention at the very least:
- Email Open & Click-Thru Rates
- Unsubscribe Rates
- List Growth
- Website Engagement
- Conversion Rate
- It is important that you identify your goals.
- Diversify your lead generation efforts to capture your target audiences.
- There is no one-size-fits-all customer, segment your audiences to deliver the right message at the right time.
- Understand that marketing automation can and will fail if you lose sight of the “human touch”.
- Like any marketing effort, start small, test and scale.