Blog Series (7/9): Marketing Automation

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By Chantal Tol

The seventh part of the blog series. The continuation of what we've written so far. And the next important part of your entire marketing strategy. Marketing Automation. The process by which you use technology to streamline marketing efforts and make them more effective. Thereby also the way to communicate not only with prospects, but also with existing customers. And the beauty of Marketing Automation, when deployed properly, is that you can send personalized content to every contact in your database. Interesting information for them, sent at exactly the right time.

wat is Marketing Automation?

Marketing Automation makes it possible for companies to automate marketing processes, partially or otherwise, so that almost no human actions are required. Sounds too good to be true? Maybe so. The fact is that Marketing Automation is popular with many organizations, and for good reason! After all, in today's market, it's hard for companies to be original when it comes to marketing. We are bombarded with marketing messages via both online and offline channels. Take a good look around you when you are sitting in the bus shelter, walking through the mall or looking at the menu in that cozy restaurant. But how do you make sure you reach the right audience for your product or service? And then also with a message that is specifically relevant to them? Right. Marketing Automation.

Why Marketing Automation?

Marketing and sales departments of companies are not only using marketing automation to help generate, nurture and score leads, but also to make the results from various campaigns measurable. This is not a new trend, but the number of companies using such a type of software is growing. As many as 51% of companies are actively using a Marketing Automation software. But before we tell you about that, it might be useful to give a little explanation. About exactly how Marketing Automation works. And how you can make it work for your organization.

Over to the explanation! In the previous parts of this blog series, we've already explained to you that the journey actually always starts with the target audience. It is no different in this case.

**sidenote: In this piece, we refer to previous blogs in this series. If you need a brief refresher or have not yet read the blog in question, of course we encourage you to do so.**

What we went on to tell you is that once you have your target audience mapped out and know what the buyer's journey looks like, you start using a lead magnet to collect personal data from your new, potential customers. We call this moment the opt-in. Why is this important? This moment, when you are an organization using a Marketing Automation software, will be the trigger for starting a workflow.

You can set up this workflow entirely to your liking. For example, welcome leads by starting with a thank-you email. This thank-you email obviously contains the content you agreed to with the lead magnet. After this, you wait x number of days before contacting them again. Perhaps send recipients who didn't open your first email a reminder first, so you can make sure they don't miss out on your unique product or service offering.


From this point on, it is also already possible to start segmenting. Based on the information you received in the form, you could send different types of content or adjust the texts in the mailings. But! More importantly; through the questions in the form you are able to qualify leads as Marketing Qualified Lead (MQL) from this very moment. You will learn more about the specific situation, pain points or needs of a lead. This is information you can use in the follow-up of these leads. Do you personalize your follow-up based on these specific situations? Then you can slowly guide the leads to the next phase in the customer journey: Sales Qualified Lead or SQL.

triggering one or more workflows.

So now you understand that workflows can be built. And that to start, these workflows must be triggered! This trigger can range from filling out a certain form, being a member of a list, having certain attributes and so on. Depending on the type of automation you want to start, you can choose which one is the most appropriate.
Besides the fact that a trigger can cause you to start an automation, it can also cause you to take another turn in an already running automation. We can imagine that this might not be entirely clear. Therefore, we briefly illustrate how the customer journey might unfold.

A target audience analysis on a screen

verzamel de juiste informatie voor jouw opvolging.

Your campaign goes to a landing page, which has a form on it. In this form, you're going to ask relevant questions. For example, about what the specific situation is regarding the pain point. If a person fills out the form, that is the trigger for starting your automation workflow. Because this person has left his or her data, you know for sure that there is some interest in your product or service. Use your follow-up to provide more information, for example. Or get it. In an email, ask additional questions that you use to enrich this lead's profile with information. Did someone answer an additional question? Then this can be the trigger for changing the route this lead takes. Not only providing information can be a trigger for this change of flow or further qualifying the lead. Other examples of triggers include opening an email, viewing added media or clicking on a URL. Of course, this is completely customizable to your organization's preferences. This way you can continue to personalize so that you further guide the lead through the customer journey.

Does it go beyond building workflows?

Jazeker! Want met het Marketing Automation systeem weet jij niet alleen zeker dat jouw leads op een persoonlijke manier worden benaderd met content die voor hun specifieke situatie interessant is, maar ook dat zowel hun gedrag, als het resultaat van jouw diverse campagnes meetbaar wordt. Zo kun je nagaan hoeveel euro je in een campagne stopt, maar ook hoeveel opbrengsten hieruit komen.

Also, through automatic lead scoring, you know when a lead is ready to be contacted by you, or the sales department. This way, approaching a potential customer, just like sending content, happens at exactly the right time!
Thereby, when you set up the right criteria, when someone meets these criteria, you can trigger certain actions. A lead is hereby qualified as SQL, or you can perform a certain action through automatic lead scoring when a lead meets these criteria and thus has "enough" points.

Will only results be measurable? Certainly not. The Analytics functions within the systems make it possible to 'track' behavior per e-mail or even per contact. For example, you can see how many times an e-mail is opened, by whom, which links are clicked on and whether the media that you have sent is actually viewed.
You can also follow the behavior of the lead after the opt-in.

which system suits me?

We've talked about Marketing Automation software in general in this blog. But how do you know which software is the best fit for you and your organization's needs? That choice and final decision is even more difficult than it may seem at first glance. After all, every organization has different needs. Different pain points and different desires. So how do I know if there is a specific system that fits our organization?

Get Advice. As schurq. we advise both our existing and potential clients in choosing a Marketing Automation system. For this, we of course first completely map out where the need lies and what functionalities belong to it. And make no mistake, this advice is not limited to a single system. This is because the knowledge of the many different systems within our organization is broad.

And should you wonder if a Marketing Automation system can run alongside, or in addition to, the current systems you use as an organization? If so, let's first examine whether the systems might complement each other, or whether one of them makes the other redundant. If this could be an addition, then we will look at the possibilities of linking these systems. Extensive story, therefore may seem more complicated than it is.

What comes after Marketing Automation? Of course that which complements it. Provided properly set up of course, but that's part of the next blog. ;) Sales Automation! Where previously the marketing and sales departments were not always on the same page, we believe that these departments should strengthen each other to achieve maximum results. More about how exactly we will set this up and what the advantages of this are, you will find in our next blog. So please be patient for a while longer!

In the meantime, would you like more information about Marketing Automation? If so, feel free to contact us without obligation.

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Chantal Tol
Chantal Tol

About this schurq

Online Marketing Consultant

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