Six Tactics for a More Effective B2B Marketing Automation Strategy
August 18, 20163 min read
Marketing automation has passed the tipping point in the B2B arena. Recent industry studies estimate that 55% of B2B companies use marketing automation technology, and the adoption rate continues to rise.
But merely adopting a marketing automation platform doesn’t make it effective. If you’re not satisfied with your results, consider folding these tactics into your strategy.
- Make the Investment: Yes, marketing automation is expensive. But to advance a digital marketing strategy and do it right, you must invest money and more.
Good marketing automation requires staff time, for learning how to use the system, for developing a clear plan (especially for lead scoring), and for properly segmenting your email lists by client, prospect, etc. Many marketing automation systems appear to be easy to get up and running, but even they require some initial work to become effective.
- Make Friends with Your Sales Staff: Salespeople deal with clients and prospects every day. Ask them for input. What content do they think would resonate with your target audience? How many touchpoints would best complement their efforts? Salespeople are crucial to a cohesive B2B marketing automation strategy.
- Develop Content: Without rich content aligned with your audiences’ interests, your marketing automation strategy will fail. Here’s how to develop that content:
- In addition to input from your sales staff, use data from your website (including Google Analytics, Search Console as well as your social media and PPC campaigns) to drive content development.
- Keep your target keywords in mind. Be sure to include keywords in your content naturally, to avoid a keyword-stuffing penalty from search engines.
- Write in a friendly tone, in active voice, and add examples and real-life stories as needed.
- Keep on track with an editorial calendar.
- Optimize all pages for SEO.
- Determine what’s successful, and repeat.
- Integrate Other Systems: Most marketing automation systems integrate with third-party tools, from CRMs and Facebook to Google Ad Words. Take advantage and integrate your marketing automation system with these tools. Like most marketing tactics, marketing automation should not be in a silo. Integrate it into your overall digital marketing strategy.
- Optimize Forms and Landing Pages: Your marketing automation system directs users to target pages on your website. Make sure that users land on well-designed, optimized pages with short, direct forms.
As a general rule, both the prompting and the landing pages should be clear and concise.
Landing pages should highlight a clear, singular message or piece of content and clear calls to action. Wipe away potential distractions, such as navigation menus. (Check out our blog on designing the perfect B2B landing page.)
Forms should be short and direct. Ask only for information you absolutely need. Too-long, too-nosy forms deter users from contacting you. (If your website is built on Northwoods’ Titan, learn to create responsive forms on your site.)
- Measure Success: The significant investment required for marketing automation dictates thorough measuring of results. Track not only the basics, such as overall leads, but also such illuminating metrics as website traffic, email open and click-through rates, and customer acquisition cost, to name just a few. If you’re not seeing the results you want, don’t be afraid to pause your efforts, reevaluate and, if necessary, revamp.
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