6 Steps To A Killer Marketing Automation Campaign
Automation is probably the best innovation that struck digital marketing. Today, the marketing landscape is so vastly competitive that anything that offers the ability to boost and improve a business’s workflow without having to sacrifice the effectivity of campaigns is valuable to any company. With automation, any business could increase sales and productivity, all while saving precious time and money.
Having an online software or tool manage and take care o the bulk of your marketing has a lot of benefits. But the most significant one would probably be the opportunity to free you up and let you focus more on other areas of your business like customer experience management, research, and development, as well as the overflow of unread emails on your inbox.
But as useful as it may be to any business, marketing automation is only as good as how a business’s marketing campaign is being automated. Automation isn’t capable of turning lousy marketing into good. If you feed the software some poorly-made content, along with a faulty marketing automation strategy, it will surely return with mediocre results.
For this reason, you should not take marketing automation for granted. Just because it makes marketing easier doesn’t mean you should rely on it and don’t make improvements of your own. Make sure that the strategy you make will give your marketing automation campaign the best shot at gaining a positive ROI (return on investment). To pull off an exceptional marketing campaign; six effective steps need to be done:
STEP 1 – MARKET RESEARCH
Before you can set up a stunning automation strategy, you need to define your target audience. Who are you exactly marketing to, and how are you going to approach them?
Create an Email Marketing Plan
Before you start sending out your emails to people, you should first warm up and create an effective email marketing plan. Formulate a relevant concept and add everything up so you can easily understand the flow of your campaign. Your initial checklist should cover every single aspect that needs to be considered that needs to be considered before you start creating your campaign.
As a business, you should be able to define your target audience. According to Keap/Infusionsoft, nearly 60% or digital marketing budget is wasted, with the main reason being content that is not being seen by the people that would find it relevant. Never assume that you already know your audience. For you to be able to find them, you need to do your research.
Keep in mind that any marketing, once not paired with proper research, is just similar to driving with your eyes closed. Market research is necessary. It answers important questions like the following:
- “Who is your target audience.”
- “What do they look like.”
- “What is their interest? Purchase behaviors?”
Conducting market research can be done using the following strategies:
- Surveys – online or in person
- Focus Groups – getting direct feedback and suggestions from potential clients/customers.
- Questionnaires – online or in person
- Interviews – email, in person, by telephone, or an online messaging client (Skype, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp).
During your research, determine the following:
- What people consider when they make a purchase.
- The price that they feel is the most ideal.
- What they like and dislike about your current products and services.
- Things they like to see improved.
Collect every data. Analyze it and also spend some time looking at how your competitors are operating.
Keep in mind that researching requires you to be as broad as possible in the people you reach out to. Don’t be limited in your research, try to incorporate different kinds of people from different places. Also, don’t rely exclusively on the currently available research no matter how credible and legit the results may be. Doing your own research is a lot more effective.
STEP 2 – FIND YOUR TONE OF VOICE
Before people make a purchase, they weigh it in first if it would be emotionally and logically justifiable for them. Other than that, they also want to feel a connection with the brand or business they are going to make their transaction with.
This client-to-brand connection originated with how you will portray your brand to its customers. That’s the reason why you should establish a voice for your brand.
This voice should be about keeping up with your audience. For instance, a company offering services to aid the homeless might want to avoid having a humorous tone. If your brand happens to be selling apparel, then having a cool and casual – sometimes funny – tone could be your best choice.
Once you’ve found your tone of voice, you should then complement it with an overall brand message. It should be something that would instantly inform people about who you are and why you are the best option. Take L’Oreal for example. Their brand message, “Because Your Worth It” builds an instant connection with its customers.
STEP 3 – ESTABLISH POINTS OF COMMUNICATION
To effectively market your brand and generate sales, you need first to reach your target audience. The question now is – how?
For starters, social media is the ideal choice if you are looking to reach your target audience. Just consider these numbers:
- Facebook has 2 billion active users.
- Instagram as 500 million
- Twitter has 333 million
- YouTube has over 1 billion people who watch videos every single day.
- Other platforms like Pinterest, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Tumblr, WhatsApp, and Google+ have user bases of over a hundred million.
Your target audience is surely existing on social media. However, it’s up to you to find out what specific social media they are most likely using.
You can also find your target audience on search engines and other display networks via ads. But despite all of these avenues, email has emerged as the most effective option for reaching your potential customers. According to research, 59 percent of marketers claim that emails are the most effective channel in terms of gaining revenue, while 80% or retailers have indicated email marketing as the greatest proponent for customer management and retention.
It has been estimated that by next year, 2019, 3 billion people will be using email. The ROI for every business that invests in email marketing will rise up to 38 percent, and other sources for revenue generation will take a dip. So if you are looking to boost your brands ROI, make email a major priority.
STEP 4 – CREATE AN EFFECTIVE CAMPAIGN
Whatever you do, make sure that you build your campaigns with your customers in mind. Your market research can help guide you towards establishing effective campaigns that suit with both your business and your target audience. Determine what your audience is into and use the details you gathered to determine the factors that will inspire them. Use the information you have to spark something memorable that will also fit with your brand story.
If you can look at big-name companies, they possess impactful, meaningful, and memorable marketing. Some good examples would include:
- Nike’s “Just Do it.”
- KFC’s “It’s Finger Lickin’ Good”
- The California Milk Processor Board’s “Got Milk?”
- Subway’s “Eat Fresh”
Not getting it right on the first time is okay, and you have the next step to make corrections or changes.
STEP 5 – TEST, TEST, & TEST
Never stop testing and making changes. From email headlines, templates, to brand logo, check everything and determine the best option. Test your campaigns against various points of communication to discover what works for you, what needs to be tweaked, and what needs to be deleted.
Always remember this process: Test -> Learn -> Adjust -> Test again.
Make sure every part of a campaign is tuned the right way before you even consider automation.
STEP 6 – SHOW THE HUMAN SIDE OF AUTOMATION
If you have finished the five steps, your brand is now ready for automation. However, before you proceed, never disregard the human element of your marketing campaign.
No matter how much automation helps your marketing efforts, you shouldn’t rely on it entirely and disregard the human factor altogether. Automation can deliver your brand’s message to your target audience as fast and as efficiently as possible. However, it is essential always to remember that you are still marketing to people, and these people want to feel a personal connection with the business they’re going to transact with.
Always consider the personal connection of your brand. Complement automation by conversing directly with the people that immediately respond to your campaign. Provide the solution to their problems, ask for their feedback and seek their opinion to improve your marketing campaigns and get better results.
Automation is just a tool you can use to put out what you put in. Ideally, you should not rely exclusively on it. To make your use of automation worth the while by incorporating effective strategies like the steps outlined above. Follow these six steps, and you can guarantee that your efforts will reward you with the results you deserve.