You might have heard the term Marketing Automation (MA) being thrown around as the latest fad in web analytics. After doing a lot of research and testing it for myself for both Lighthouse and several of our clients, I have to say it’s a game-changer for those that want to use it.
MA isn’t actually one thing – it’s a suite of tools that work in concert and allow you to hone your business intelligence as it relates to your current and future client base. It’s used in conjunction with your website and as a push tool in the form of Email blasting. It incorporates online forms, link tracking, lead scoring, customer relationship management, campaign cost measurement, and many more tools.
After looking at several of the big players in the market, we ended up partnering with Sharpspring, a Marketing Automation agency out of Gainesville, FL. They offered everything we were looking for in terms of tools, but most importantly allowed us to provide our clients this functionality at a fraction of the cost of the bigger market. They get how we operate as an agency and to that end have a model set up to help our clients – they are phenomenal.
Back to MA – the name itself implies the fact that things are moving behind the scenes. This is true, but there is a significant amount of work to be done up front in order for those workflows to run seamlessly. Kind of like building a website, where the most critical part of the development is in the blueprints, you really need to layout your plan for on boarding new clients and relationship management so your team is most efficient.
Once all of these things are in place, you can start tracking people that visit your website, landing pages, shopping carts, visit from links, social media posts, form submittals, etc. This is where it starts getting good, because the real value in the MA platform is Lead Scoring.
Every profile you track has a score – and that score increases or decreases automatically depending on the activity going on with that profile. I will go into more detail on lead scoring in subsequent posts, but the groovy thing here is that the warm to hot leads (those that are more active than others) will rise to the top of the list of contacts. Your sales team (which may be just yourself or a team of sales people) can then be contacting those leads that are “qualified” rather than just cold calling the entire database, which is vastly more productive.
I will be writing more posts going into the detail of Marketing Automation, but for more information, you can check out our page on MA here, or visit our partner Sharpspring who also has a wealth of information to give!