Marketers are reaping the benefits of scaling marketing automation to their businesses. What’s not to love about a class of technology that can automate and measure your program’s success for you in real-time? For those rookies who have not tapped into the benefits of marketing automation, you could be striking out of increasing your organization’s ROI dramatically.
Marketing automation helps marketers streamline their lead generation, segmentation, lead nurturing and lead scoring, customer lifecycle marketing, cross-sell and up-sell, customer retention and marketing ROI measurement. Let’s remember that these are complex, intuitive technologies that if used correctly, will become your strongest ally in producing actual, paying customers.
According to SiriusDecisions, the adoption of marketing automation is expected to increase by 50% this year. So say au revoir to the days of having to balance multiple systems to acquire the essential data that your leadership team is begging for. There are hundreds of different marketing automation features for you to consider, but below are the dark horse features that have emerged as forces to be reckoned with in 2015:
1. Real-Time Personalization
This is a feature that spans far beyond the level of personalization you could achieve with your average drip campaign. Tools like Marketo claim that marketers can ignite a 30% increase in conversion rates and up to 270% increase in content consumption by using their real-time personalization tools. If you are a part of a major corporation struggling to make meaningful connections with a large pool of prospects, this feature could be the answer to your prayers. With real-time personalization you can pump out dynamic, characteristic content that appeals to both the yins and the yangs of your database. Note that this feature can also standardize your output across email, web, advertisements and mobile.
2. Social & Mobile Integration
If we had to choose one of the most important integration features in marketing automation for 2015, it would most likely be social media and mobile integration. Marketers are putting their blood, sweat and tears into how their messages read and appear on desktop computers, when in fact 65% of all emails get opened on a mobile device. In addition, most millennials are receiving their news through social media first. So if you haven’t done so already, the real question is, why haven’t you made your lead nurture strategy social and mobile compatible?
3. Progressive Profiling
Progressive profiling uses dynamic form fields to ask for and collect information on prospects based on the information you already have about them. This can not only help you target prospects that you have been neglecting to squeeze through the sales cycle, but also provide you with meaningful insights as you craft your buyer personas for future campaigns.
4. ROI Reporting
Marketing automation technology has really stepped up its game when it comes to the ability to demonstrate how your efforts are directly contributing to the bottom line. Many tools now offer systematic ROI reports that can provide you with information including the total number of net new opportunities you have versus the opportunities you have won. It also includes velocity metrics such as the total number of days it took your prospects to go from visitors, to prospects, to MQLs, to SQLs to customers. If you know you won’t have the willpower to log in every week to view these reports, you can also customize your account to have these nifty reports sent to you directly via email.
It’s important to remember that it may not make sense to adopt all of these features at once based on key variables such as the size, budget and competitive placement of your organization in the marketplace. For those best-in-class marketing mavens out there who have already capitalized on these features, consider how you are using these features compared to your competitors.
No matter what your competitive placement is, know that a whopping 64% of CMOs have either an informal or no process to manage their marketing automation, further proving that the odds will be in your favor if you take action now and exploit this technology to the fullest.