Marketing automation can help supply chain marketers become more efficient and more successful in earning and converting leads.
Automation is changing today’s supply chain, and not just because robots and autonomous vehicles are scooting around warehouse floors. Supply chain marketers can use automation to drive efficiency and improve our success rates.
HubSpot recently reported that businesses using marketing automation to nurture leads received a whopping 451% increase in qualified leads. So how can you reap these benefits? Let’s take a quick look at automated marketing applications in supply chain marketing.
What is marketing automation?
B2B buyers are increasingly demanding vendors provide personalized experiences throughout the buyer’s journey. That makes marketers’ jobs 1 million times more difficult in having to provide custom lead-nurturing content to all prospects in the database. Enter, marketing automation — a way to automate the process of personalizing leads’ interactions with your business.
HubSpot describes marketing automation as “software and tactics that allow companies to buy and sell like Amazon — that is, to nurture prospects with highly personalized, useful content that helps convert prospects to customers and turn customers into delighted customers.”
Examples of ways supply chain marketers might use marketing automation include:
- Social media scheduling tools
- Thank-you, welcome, and other triggered-by-an-event emails
- Event reminders
- Email workflows
Example: Automated email workflows
Automation is particularly useful in email. I’ve written before about how marketers spend way too much time creating marketing emails. How much of your day could you gain back if you didn’t have to create, send, and follow up with prospects via email?
One easy and effective way to utilize marketing automation in your emails is to set up an automated email workflow. That is a series of emails that a user will receive from you based on actions they take.
First, create an email list from your database based on certain criteria — like leads who have been inactive for 6 months or longer. Send them an email inviting them to download a new industry report you have published (using personalization tokens to show them its relevancy to their business). Then set a second email to send to only those who downloaded the report a day or two later thanking them for downloading. A third email could follow several days later offering a case study related to the topic. When someone downloads that case study, the workflow could trigger the designated sales rep to receive a notification to follow up with the prospect.
Instead of having to watch your database to see when a prospect takes each of these actions, then completing the necessary follow-up, automation software (we like HubSpot) can do this for you right when it happens. What’s more, those leads that have gone through the workflow will be more qualified (meaning more likely to buy), so your sales reps’ time will be better spent as well.
Marketing automation won’t make you irrelevant
Fear not, supply chain marketer. Marketing automation will not make you redundant. I have clients that express this fear to me on a regular basis. Instead, I have seen automation make marketers more efficient, more successful, and more valuable.
Marketing automation will help you provide more personalized experiences to your leads. That will increase the chances that they’ll buy. But it won’t take up more of your time. In fact, it will free you up to provide value in other areas that can’t be automated (like content creation). It’s really a win-win.
- Top 5 Trends to Know to Compete with Amazon’s Supply Chain