Marketing Automation in the Sales Funnel
By DANIEL LUISE – November 25, 2017
Oh, the sales funnel. It all starts with the top – the largest ring – the target market. And then it narrows down from there as the true leads come out of that target market. Then those leads are worked, some staying put as that funnel narrows, becoming sales. But, where does marketing automation fit into the sales funnel? At what point does the automated system kick in and help make that sales funnel work?
Define your Target Market
It all starts with your target market. The key to any sales funnel or effective marketing automation efforts begins with defining your target market. Whatever it may be, knowing who you are targeting is half the battle. You can’t send the right message at the right time if you don’t understand your prospects and audience.
With the right marketing automation tool, like MAX, you can create personas inside the tool itself. This allows you to differentiate between different target markets and get a better understanding of your prospects. Define the demographics of your audience as much as possible. The more you understand your audience, the better off you’ll be.
Building personas and defining your marketing efforts through automation will help your sales funnel in the long run. That “largest ring” in the sales funnel? It’s easy to lose your way if your target market is not defined the right way.
Measuring your Efforts
You may understand how to track your prospects and leads in the sales funnel. But, are you effectively tracking your automated marketing efforts?
You set up your campaign, choose the various channels (email, social media, direct mail, phone, etc.), hit send, and then what? Yes, the basics are good. You know who clicked what, added leads to certain lists, and saw who dropped off or was unresponsive. But, what efforts worked and what ones did not?
With the right marketing automation software, you can easily track all the data involved in a campaign. Data is tracked across all channels and can be broken down into specific emails, social posts, contact activity and more. This data is used for analyzing the current campaign and future campaign efforts. But more importantly, the automated marketing allows for personalized responses to go back out to these new leads, warming them up for the sales team.
Now Take Them Through the Funnel
Defining the market and measuring your actions and results are good starts. So, how does this all tie into marketing automation and actually moving through the sales funnel?
Warm up leads through a multi-touch, behavior-based campaign. Based on the actions taken by your prospects, they will move through the sales funnel, become more qualified leads, turn into sales, and then loyal customers. For example, a prospect likes a social media post, then engages on a second one before visiting your site. Once on the site, they visit a specific page and because of that, they receive a personalized email. The email was opened and a link was clicked. After a specified time, the lead receives a second email based on the link they clicked. You get the point.
Through this automated behavior-based campaign, you are gaining a better understanding of your targeted prospects and how best to turn them into leads. The more they move through the sales funnel, the more you learn about them.
Drive More Revenue
Throughout those contacts, all data is still being tracked and compiled. The sales team is being kept in the loop and even assigned tasks that would fall in line with the automated system. Perhaps a prospect has clicked on a personalized URL that indicates an interest in further information. The sales team will know about each contact and what the lead is looking to find out so when that phone call is made, all of the groundwork has already been laid.
Automation doesn’t stop once a lead is converted. Once the sale has been made, the customer service department can move in to help ensure a terrific customer experience. The marketing automation software can take all data compiled throughout the process and perform the various metrics to see what worked and what didn’t work. From the top of the sales funnel to the bottom, marketing automation helps to ensure a marketing campaign is consistent, efficient and capable of being analyzed for the benefit of future campaigns.