Marketing automation has rapidly transformed from a new cutting-edge technology into a feature that all self-respecting companies should have in their arsenal. In this article, I’m going to talk about some tricks that will help you always achieve your goals and avoid serious mistakes that can hurt profits. The tips will suit beginners as well as those who have experience with marketing automation but are looking for ways to optimize.
Whether you’re a B2C company that sends out reminders to convert visitors interested in your product, or a B2B company that nurtures (“nurtures”) leads throughout the complex customer journey, marketing automation is one of the most effective tools for converting leads.
When it comes to marketing automation capabilities, some tips will seem familiar because they are all based on the principles of email marketing. Marketing automation techniques are 90% email marketing techniques.
Setting up email marketing automation correctly is not an easy task, but it offers fantastic prospects. Automation opens up opportunities that you wouldn’t dream of if you were managing it manually, such as sending personalized emails to thousands of contacts or sending offers based on what products customers have expressed interest in on your site.
- Personalize and segment
The effect of quality personalization can be compared to the difference between receiving an ordinary flyer, which is slipped under the door by a courier, and a real letter, written by hand with a fountain pen. The first letter often goes straight to the trash, while the second will attract attention and be read. If you have never had experience with email letters you can use an essay writing service that helps you in any case.
Dumpster notices are used everywhere. But can they be improved? Personalizing the header of an email can increase operability, and personalizing recommendations to the user based on their browsing history will keep them coming back again.
Along with personalization, it’s also important to segment your audience to avoid sending out irrelevant content en masse and indiscriminately to everyone.
It’s not a bad idea to segment users by country/time zone, because then you can tailor offers to specific regions. If you have an online store that offers a 20% discount on the summer collection to customers all over the world, that doesn’t mean you have to send the same email to everyone.
If you’re in the U.S., your summer sale email sent to all locations worldwide will be received by customers in Australia or Argentina just in the middle of winter. If you segment by region, your emails will be more accurately tailored to your contacts’ preferences and interests.
Ideally, segmentation is also done according to other criteria, such as sending out different letters to loyal customers who show obvious interest and those who have shown interest but have not made a purchase. These two groups of contacts interact with your brand in completely different ways, so it doesn’t make sense to put them in the same email strategy.
- send emails on behalf of a real person
This is an optional rule. Sometimes info@[company name] or support@[company name] is enough. However, if you set up an email on behalf of an employee of your firm, it usually yields more opens and clicks. It’s best when it’s a well-known person at the level of the CEO. If you can’t do that, it’s enough to give the contact the impression of real human interaction, which will partially increase the effectiveness of the email.
- test, test, and test again. Then measure the results.
This advice is critical. We at our company (SmartInsights) do testing all the time. If there are several thousand different pages available, they give room for A/B testing (split tests): many elements can be tested. For example, with about 6 million visitors per year to our pages, even a slight increase in conversion due to a slightly better formulation of the call to action discovered through testing yields surprising results.
As for our A/B testing experience, I’d like to point out an interesting fact. We’re constantly thinking about how to improve the site. That’s why we do A/B testing so often. You might think, after all these years in the marketing industry, that we know which test will produce the expected results. About a third of all A/B tests have a positive effect on conversion rates, a third have a negative effect, and a third makes no noticeable difference. We never know which test will work. Experience in marketing is no match for the ability to test.
Never implement a change without testing it first. It doesn’t matter how confident you are of a positive outcome. Test every element that is available to you, adjust your processes. That way, slowly but surely, you’ll get high operability and clickability rates.
And one more thing: don’t get so caught up in testing that you forget to measure the results. During A/B testing, 1 email is compared to another by analyzing click-through rates, opens, or links, tracking which leads convert into customers.
But measuring results isn’t just important to do during testing. Analyzing the click and open rates of each email, even if you’re not running A/B tests, is still important: that way you’ll be aware of a sudden deterioration in performance and can take appropriate action. If you notice that open rates are suddenly much lower, you may have been penalized by spam emails. If this is the case, you can take the right action to stop it. If you’re not measuring the numbers, you’re in careless ignorance of what’s going on, and your problems can only get worse.
- Provide an unsubscribe option
This simple function is a must if you send large volumes of mails. Of course, there is an “unsubscribe” button in the emails (all reputable email platforms support this rule, otherwise it is a violation of the law). But if you’re sending a weekly newsletter, discount offers, or personalized recommendations, the “unsubscribe” button alone isn’t enough. Some people want to receive discount coupons and read weekly newsletters, while others are interested in weekly newsletters but not discounts. You need to create a preference center so subscribers can specify what types of emails they like to receive. Without this, you run the risk that contacts will start unsubscribing from all emails, even though they were fine with some of them, or will just mark your emails as spam. The first scenario is terrible, and the second is even worse. You can avoid both.
- Become useful to your audience
The last tip is pretty tricky: “become useful.” Email automation is a powerful tool for converting customers and increasing profits. It’s undoubtedly useful to you, but have you thought about how useful your emails are to your customers? This is an example from the Detroit Pistons. They use emails to inform fans about the progress of the game by showing the score in real-time.