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The Cosmic Countdown. 10 reasons why marketing automation missions fail

  1. The Cosmic Countdown reasons why marketing automation missions fail
  2. Houston... we have a problem! Marketing automation sounded like the perfect solution. You recognised that buyer behaviour has changed. That the internet has put customers more in control of the purchase process than ever before. That many of the old marketing rules don’t apply any more. So you invested time, money and faith in a marketing automation platform. It’s in place, it might even be linked to your CRM system. But it’s not delivering the hot leads you’d hoped for. It hasn’t improved your marketing productivity. It hasn’t upped conversion rates or reduced your incremental cost per lead. And you’re too busy to work out why. This guide counts down why marketing automation missions fail, and gives you practical, actionable suggestions on how to ensure your marketing automation programme flies.
  3. can you help us with marketing automation ll alien It’s a me... to yes You might know your products or services, but how well do you know your buyers? What business problems do they have? What keeps them awake at night? What can you offer them to meet this need? Only by asking these questions can you get to the heart of what you need to communicate, and when. Marketing automation gives you the ability to deliver the right information to each individual prospect at the right time, but how do you get the best from it? Actions: n Have you agreed personas for your key prospect types, and are you staying true to these? n Find out where your prospects are going online, and join them there. Put together a co-ordinated social selling strategy, building advocacy at every touchpoint n Keep listening to what the market is talking about, and show that you’re listening. Remember, it isn’t about you any more Companies that have used marketing automation report 53% higher conversion rates and nearly 10% higher sales quotas.
  4. RUNNING ON EMPTY Actions: Never underestimate the power and importance of content. It’s the fuel that powers your marketing automation rocket. But you need a tankful to keep you moving. Writing compelling, useful, relevant and consumable content will be the number one success factor in converting more sales, bar none. This is where the bulk of your energy and investment should go – strategically planning out and mobilising your content assets to provide real value to your target audience and tell an engaging story about your business. 93% of B2B marketers use content marketing. But only 42% say they are effective at it. Source: Content Marketing Institute Actions: n Attract unknown contacts through breadcrumb content, identify them through gated content, nurture them with relevant content n Lists, blogs, cheatsheets and infographics are useful allies, enabling you to cover a number of points at once in an easily digested form n Before beginning a piece of content, have it clear in your mind the persona, stage of the buyer journey, message and what you want them to do
  5. Can’t get off the ground Have you defaulted to more traditional ways of doing things – ‘batch and blast’ emails, shouting louder because you’re being heard less? A demand generation strategy using marketing automation is an intensive and long-term process. The majority of your prospects won’t buy from you today. A marketing automation platform is designed to help you get results in the long-term. Actions: Only 27% of B2B leads are salesready when first generated. n Make it easy for people to find you. Despite being a business critical tool, many B2B companies still haven’t optimised their websites for easy viewing and user-friendly functionality Source: MarketingSherpa n Analyse and continually reassess subject lines, bullet point benefits and calls to action. Test at least two variables in each project to see what works best n Double-check who is contacting your prospects – it could be that they’re receiving multiple messages from your company, so ignoring them all
  6. n Re fe rr al s, Effective inbound – attracting unknown prospects and converting them to known contacts – ensures that your marketing automation platform can get to work on engaging prospects through the buyer journey to sales. n M ake it an d w or d eas y fo r pe opl e to of m ou th tes ca vo ad ge ura co En n They came from outer space re co m m en da tio ns ar e po w sha er re y fu our l con ten t n Amplify your conte nt els ant chann ss all relev ialise acro soc licise and mote, pub rpose, pro n Repu Getting your search and social activity up to speed involves an investment of time and knowledge, but it doesn’t take a huge financial commitment. And once your automated model is in place, the process is essentially self-propelling. 65% of companies have acquired a lead through LinkedIn, and almost half via Twitter. Source: B2B barometer and Econsultancy
  7. Worlds apart Historically, marketing and sales have found it difficult to co-ordinate their approaches. A marketing automation platform gives both parties unprecedented opportunities for success, but efforts have to be integrated. Sales won’t define lead criteria based on ‘digital body language’, content engagement or buyer journey stage. But they do monitor prospects’ interest levels and propensity to buy. Your marketing automation platform can provide sales with invaluable insights. Actions: n Lead score like a salesperson – don’t use the same lead criteria checklist you’ve always used. Delivering better quality leads comes from using the information your platform provides to deliver real insight n Build a useful profile – don’t dump every web page view into the sales lead sheet. Filter and build a true picture of what the prospect is interested in n Mirror sales speak – don’t use terms like ‘digital body language’. Use terms that they would use when describing the opportunity after a meeting Over 40% of senior executives believe they would drive more revenue with a combined sales and marketing resource. Source: LBDGA Research – Sirius Decisions Conference
  8. re s a k. on wor i c is s s de gue t en ot em ta, n g na da ma d on of se 11 % 65 w ba IT 20 no rce: M Meteor showers u So Putting a marketing automation platform in place will expose data issues you didn’t know you had. Poor quality data will result in project failure. If you haven’t already, take the opportunity to review your company’s data. Ensure that you’re capturing behavioural, online, and sales data, and that everyone involved is co-ordinating their data into the same system in the same way. A o c ti ns : nd sa tie est t, i tiv ten ac the b on the c ct ele ide ing ive ag cy g e and o s prov t ng n im ta nd t e ue da os freq the t se tive a m t u ec the and rom f bu ng mes ore f ic, st ef I) si st m pli mo (RO aly , ti An mats o get ted sim t are ent s a n for y t ves tm nd h in ilit ou ls t ves ab ney It s nne n-in o a o n ch m urn ret
  9. One of the key reasons marketing automation efforts fail is a lack of internal communications. From the start, it pays to get buy-in on your plans. As you move forward, keep stakeholders informed and actively seek out their views on how the platform impacts on their roles. Actions: n Keep language precise and consistent. Remember that phrases you use to describe what you’re doing and how, might not necessarily translate to other departments n Create management dashboards to communicate project performance based on pre-defined objectives n If you haven’t done so, run an internal marketing campaign to educate stakeholders Seven weeks a year are lost by workers seeking clarification due to poor communication. Source: National Assoc. of Prof Organisers, 2012 Open up communications
  10. e n O p e t s ll a m s But no giant leap? As big as the change in buyer behaviour is the size of the opportunity it creates. Use data and response rates to refine messaging and audiences, and incorporate triggers into continually-running activity. Marketing automation is a means to an end. Despite your investment in research, time and money, the technology alone won’t help you to reach your goal unless you’re clear in your mind about what you’re doing and where you’re going as a business. Actions: n Low-touch or zero-touch programmes cut incremental costs dramatically, and are achievable when nurture marketing is automated n Don’t think on a campaign basis, focus on programmes that can be constantly active and running in the background, triggered only when the required behaviour is met n Ensure your targets and timescales are realistic and achievable. When it comes to the roll-out phase, take your resources into account and alter your targets and time plans accordingly No.1 cause of project failure? – lack of direction and goals. Source: Pink Elephant Conference 2012
  11. To boldly go As your marketing automation platform begins to deliver on its promises, you need to consider how to measure and report metrics that can help you demonstrate return and value of your marketing activity at board level. Measurement of revenue and sales should demonstrate uplift or increase in activity, especially marketing activity that can be directly attributed. Companies that excel at lead nurturing generate 50% more sales-ready leads at 33% lower cost. Actions: n If you’re attributing revenue and sales from marketing activity, calculating ROI becomes very straightforward. Activity should be allowed to evolve to demonstrate month-onmonth improvement of ROI on programmes n In order to understand your pipeline and what activity delivers results, visibility is needed on where your new prospects come from and how much they cost n To place a true value on an acquired prospect, end-to-end understanding is needed on drop-off and close rates by channel, to identify appropriate allocation of resources for future activity Source: Forrester Research
  12. It can be It’s early days for marketing automation. Many marketers are still operating in the dark to a certain extent, not making best use of the systems they’ve implemented. Having a platform, however, is better than not having one. When you understand the potential of the platforms available, and combine them with the experience, insight and intuition of a good marketing team and knowledgeable partners, you’ll start to question why you’d do it any other way. Actions: n Look for progressive partners who have experience in the marketing automation space, who speak the language of demand generation, and who can make a world of difference to your success rates n Change is often seen as a threat, rather than an opportunity. So it can take a third party to help you identify the changes required, carry them out effectively, and realise the desired results Nine out of ten business buyers say when they’re ready to buy, they’ll find you. Be ready. Source: DemandGen Report
  13. We’re not alien to all of this. If you think you could benefit from a marketing automation audit, please contact us on: 0845 838 3883 or email: |
  14. About Ledger Bennett DGA Telephone: +44 (0)8458 383883 Email: Milton Keynes: Ledger Bennett DGA Tungsten House, Warren Road Little Horwood, Milton Keynes MK17 0NR London: Share Ledger Bennett DGA 1st Floor Centric House 390-391 Strand, London WC2R 0LT We are a B2B Demand Generation agency that uses sales and marketing know-how to help customers increase revenue by deploying Inbound Marketing, Content Marketing and Marketing Automation strategies. Our highly focused Demand Generation programmes drive our customers’ business performance, helping them to: n Generate more opportunity n Convert that opportunity into sales n Retain customers and grow their value Using more measurable and cost effective techniques than traditional full service marketing agencies we are able to maximise business revenue in the modern world where the internet has fundamentally changed the behaviour of the buyer.