What do you want for your business this year: Growth or growth?
The primary goal of most businesses is to grow, which generally requires an increase in sales by acquiring new customers, earning repeat purchases or increasing wallet share. All too often companies choose to squeeze as much as they can from their existing staff — more campaigns, more emails, more calls, more meetings — when there’s a different path that can produce better results while increasing morale.
The trick is to do more with less, and that’s where marketing automation comes in. Although, like most things in marketing and with technology, it’s easy to get overwhelmed real fast. (Maybe we can help.)
While marketing automation is not a silver bullet that will set every business on the fast path to 10x revenues, it has been proven to drive an average of a 14.5% increase in sales productivity and a 12.2% reduction in marketing overhead. Plus, the average return on investment (ROI) for automation software is $8.71 for every dollar spent, so it’s no surprise that growth-minded companies are eager to get one implemented.
If you missed the first post in our Marketing Automation series, you can always go back to get the 411. This post will focus on the telltale signs that you’re ready to consider a marketing automation platform for your business.
Sign #1. Your customer database has grown (and is growing).
Congratulations! You’re doing something right already if your database continues to grow. The exact number can vary, but a “healthy” database or usually falls within 1,500-5,000 contacts depending on the level of engagement you desire among your customers or business clients.
Several of the “free” email marketing tools work pretty well up until this point, but if you’re ready to scale and evolve into more sophisticated, multi-channel workflows and elevate your lead scoring capabilities for your sales team, marketing automation is where it’s at.
Sign #2. You’re spending too much time combing through an email inbox for leads.
Stop doing this. Automation can save you and your team a TON of time that you can use to focus on other strategic projects. (After you implement a marketing automation program, of course!) Perhaps the best part about an automation platform is its lead scoring, the ability to segment, score and create specific paths for engaging with your sales team. Your marketing team will appreciate the efficiency gains and your sales team will benefit from higher producing leads. It’s a win-win (if implemented correctly).
Sign #3. You aren’t effectively collecting leads from your website. Whether your list is growing or not, how effectively are you collecting leads from your website? Every page should serve a purpose — either linking a visitor to the next step (in the buyer’s journey) or offering up something of value to ensure you capture their contact information.
The right automation platform seamlessly helps you create gated content pages and smart follow-up sequences to continue the conversation on or offline.
Sign #4. You can’t efficiently follow up with people interested in your product or service.
Say what!?!? It’s ok, we won’t tell. But this is literally like letting money slip through your hands. The right automation platform is smart enough to know when contacts visit certain pages on your website and allow you to integrate additional touch points -- think chat, text, sales outreach -- so you don’t miss out on a possible opportunity.
What’s more is that basic automation allows you to set up and optimize a wide variety of “no brainer” contact points. Abandoned cart, blog signup, content download, webinar enrollment, request a call/demo, and so much more.
Sign #5. You’re in technology platform purgatory.
I can’t tell you how many clients flag technology as their double-edged sword. It’s great when it works, but there are so many options that it’s so dang hard to select the “right” ones. The secret is to focus on how well your technology “talks” to each other and the insight it provides you -- the marketer, business leader, or budding entrepreneur.
Google “Best Marketing Automation Platform” or “Top Marketing Apps” and let the inundation of information begin. There really is no right or wrong answer. It’s just how effective YOU or YOUR TEAM is at syncing and creating a memorable user experience. (No pressure.)
This list could go on, but I’ll spare you. These are good signs to pay attention to as you continue along your digital transformation. If you’re still not sure, or simply want to talk to a real person (who’s not trying to sell a specific platform), let’s talk.
Next up in the Marketing Automation Series is Quick Tips for Choosing the Right Marketing Automation Platform.