You’ve purchased a marketing automation solution, and it’s like having a brand new shiny toy, capable of turning your business around and converting more of your leads into sales. You want to start big! You have ideas of grandiose, complex automated drip campaigns that will reach out to all of your leads with the right messaging at the right time, convincing them to buy your product or service, and you will just have to sit back and watch the new business roll in. You’re ready to hit the ground running!
Let’s slow down a little bit.
If you are just getting started with marketing automation, and first planning out your automated programs/drip campaigns, you should start by automating the tasks you already do. And from there, automate the tasks that you *wish* you had time to do. Don’t get lost in trying to design big, complex programs. You will get more benefit from less effort by automating the simple things you’re already doing first.
Automate what you already do
Let’s look at an example. As part of your existing sales process, when a new lead attends a webinar, you (or one of your salespeople) sends an email over to them, checking in to see what they thought of the webinar, and maybe suggesting another piece of related content for them. This personalized interaction is a key part of lead nurturing, but what if you could have that process happen automatically?
Instead of having to individually send a follow-up email to each person that attends a webinar, you could put together an automated program that sends a personalized email out to them a day or two after the webinar, thanking them for attending, and suggesting that they download a related whitepaper, or sign up for your newsletter. If the user opens the email and takes the additional action that you have suggested to them, the program could add that lead to a specific list, alerting you that this is a qualified lead and you should see if they are considering working with you.
This is a fairly simple program. It’s something you were already doing, and it helps you nurture your leads, identifying the sales-qualified ones. These are exactly the types of programs that you should be starting with if you’re beginning with marketing automation.
Automate what you WISH you were doing
Another example we can consider is whenever anyone signs up to receive your monthly newsletter, you would *love* to have the time to check in with each of them after they have received the first couple of mailings to gather their feedback, but you don’t have the time to do that, so why not automate it?
You could build a campaign that, once someone subscribes to your newsletter, would wait a number of weeks (to insure that they have received a newsletter or two), and then send a personalized message from you, asking if they were enjoying the newsletter. You could also add another call to action, maybe recommending your upcoming webinar, or letting them know that they can also subscribe to other updates from your company.
This enables you to have more direct engagement with your leads, encouraging them to continue their interaction with your brand, while determining if they are or are not sales-qualified leads.
By doing this, you end up only spending your time talking to the more likely sales-qualified leads, because the initial steps have been automated, and the higher quality leads have already been identified. Thus, you will likely end up being more efficient and having a higher closing rate. These simple automations can save you a lot of time by automating the things you are already doing as well as the other small things you wish you could do. Then you’ll have plenty of time to plan out those big super-deluxe drip campaigns that are going to change your world!