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The term “marketing automation” has been circulating among industry professionals recently, but what exactly is it? According to Marketo,

“Marketing automation is a category of technology that allows companies to streamline, automate, and measure marketing tasks and workflows, so they can increase operational efficiency and grow revenue faster.”*

In other words, marketing automation utilises digital marketing tools to help companies track and perform marketing processes, personalise interactions, convert leads and retain current customers. Overall, it can be an extremely useful way to increase effectiveness, maximise efficiency and reduce manual workload.

Here are 5 tactics you can use to incorporate marketing automation into your business strategy.

1. Data collection

First and foremost, you need to know who you are trying to reach. To get an idea of your target audience, collect accurate and relevant data from users that will allow you to understand and predict their needs. You can use functionality forms as well as progressive profiling forms and CRM reports to get this information. For more tips on data collection, check out our article on how to make the most of Sugar reports and dashboards.

2. Market Segmentation and Targeting

Once you know who your users are, you must reach all of them as effectively as possible. To do this, you will need to segment them. You can use information on customer behaviour, interests, and demographics to decide how to organise them. This allows you to design targeted communication for each specific segment. It may not be possible to create a fully personalised communications for each individual user, but you can easily meet their needs with the right customer segmentation strategy.

3. Welcome emails

When you make initial contact with potential customers, it is vital to get in touch shortly after with a welcome email. This friendly greeting lets them know that you value their business. Converting leads into customers requires you not only to maintain contact, but to make it easy for interested users to get in touch. Your email marketing campaign should provide targeted information to specific groups, depending on where they are in the process—potential lead, first-time conversion or loyal customer, for example.

4. Automated personalisation

When creating an automated marketing campaign, you need to take into account every aspect of the user experience. While message content is certainly important, you should also think about timing; when is the best time of day or day of the week to contact certain customer segments? What kind of web content best suits different customer profiles? You can experiment with subjects, headings and content types to find what works best for your target. Again, CRM reports can help you gauge effectiveness.

5. Multi-touch campaigns

To make your campaign truly comprehensive, you may want to expand it across various channels. Marketing automation software can be used to integrate email, social media and content marketing for an all-around strategy. The user experience should be consistent and balanced across all platforms, so that customers have a clear idea of your business, the products or services you provide, and how to access them.

Maintain the momentum

Once you have designed a great marketing automation campaign, you need to sustain your strategy over time. To increase long-term success, make sure you keep track of trends and patterns using Sugar reports, and adjust your tactics accordingly. Continue using your email marketing campaign to maintain contact with successful conversions and build lasting customer relationships. Finally, stay up to date with the newest technology and marketing automation software to ensure that your strategy is always cutting-edge.