Marketing automation is the activity that defines the execution, management, and automatization of marketing tasks. Marketing automation platforms are software supporting these marketing activities. Marketing automation doesn’t exist without technology.
Marketing automation software promises increased revenue and improved return on investment by facilitating lead nurture campaigns that provide specific content aligned to the buyer’s needs and lead scoring models that deliver warmed leads to the sales team.
Marketing automation encompasses several benefits: It saves time on repetitive tasks and personalized communication. It increases efficiency and the return on investment (ROI) in marketing. It leads to higher lead quality and results in more leads or conversions. Marketing automation improves responsiveness and collaboration between marketing and sales.
Now, we will discuss the top common features of marketing automation software.
1. Website tracking
Customer behavior can be tracked and visible by adding a code to your website. It keeps track of the customer’s interactions with the website, such as website visits or page views. A customer journey can be traced throughout the product life cycle, from purchase to replacement. This group includes classic email marketing functions like email tracking and opening track, customer journey maps, click charts, clickthrough reporting, and site tracking.
2. Lists and segmentation
Segmentation is one of the most important features of a marketing automation tool. The shift to a consumer-oriented market resulted in more submarkets with different customer groups, necessitating the segmentation of these groups to target them with relevant offers. Every branch, global or local market, or lifestyle can be segmented. Wedel/Kamakura (2000) classified two types of segmentation with differentiated observable and unobservable traits: general and product-specific. Geographic, demographic, and cultural segments are all general and observable segments. User status, usage frequency, and store loyalty are product-specific but still observable segments. Personalization, which is not visible, is becoming increasingly important to users. Customers expect to be addressed according to their values, personalities, and lifestyle preferences. It’s crucial for identifying subscriber segments and targeting them with the right offer to boost the conversion rate from prospects to customers.
3. Advertising campaigns
Marketing is the process of establishing and maintaining a reciprocal bond with current and potential customers. Maintaining individualized customer relationships can be difficult when you have many customers. Marketers can use marketing automation tools to precisely identify the needs of each customer, reducing the risk of errors and saving time and effort.
4. Reports and analytics
Reports and analytics include everything from basic reports to in-depth analytics. This feature group can be further divided into strategic marketing and predictive analytics. Strategic marketing analytics aids in the marketing team’s direction and helps maximize the impact of limited resources. On the other hand, predictive analytics reports on user behavior, demographics, and lifestyle, among other things. This data is critical for identifying new trends within new segments.
5. Lead scoring
Lead scoring assesses a customer’s readiness to act based on his behavior. The leads are triggered by a tracking program and classified according to their discovery. Direct mail subscribers will receive a different score than website visitors. Lead scoring, in addition to lead generation and management, is a complex feature that isn’t yet included in every automation tool. There are several lead scoring models available, including points-based scoring. Customers earn points for every interaction on the website, such as clicking on products or signing up for the newsletter.
Multiple website visits or opening an email can quickly add up to a significant amount of value. However, the customer’s score may be deceiving because it does not reflect any genuine interest in purchasing it. To follow up on leads, this type of lead scoring requires adjustment and judgment by a salesperson. Activity-based scoring can help predict a more accurate lead score. It only collects points for product-related activity, as it is based on a points-based model. The user’s actions are tracked, allowing for the classification of active and inactive leads. The leads can also be classified as hot, warm, or cold based on the results of these calculations.
6. A/B testing
A/B Testing is a feature that allows you to compare the success rates of different media sources, such as landing pages or newsletters. For example, it enables a marketing automation user to send out two different versions with different photos or color schemes. The toolsets the stage for a controlled experiment by displaying versions A and B to an audience at random over a set period. The viewing parameters can be changed to a smaller percentage than 50/50. Each variation’s popularity is reported back to the marketing automation user, who can now decide how best to implement the variation. A/B testing’s impact can be critical to a campaign’s success.
7. Automated notifications
This feature includes all forms of notifications such as newsletter and other drip campaigns and transactional emails, including order notifications and transactional emails used to confirm orders or sign-ups. Additionally, each subscriber receives an email, preferably followed by a welcome series that can be automated, introducing the company, their product selection, and enticing the customer, for example, with a special discount. Automated notifications can also be initiated through certain customer behavior triggers. An abandoned cart notification can be set up after a customer leaves the store without completing their purchase. Notification automation entails sending time optimization and scheduling.
8. Integrations and social media lead ads
Integrations and social media ad integrations describe the process of extending a tool’s functionality and scope of services by integrating other apps. The marketing automation tool can receive external interactions from the integration’s platform with additional app integration. Facebook lead ads, for example, include a sign-up form that is linked to the ad on Facebook. The lead prospect’s work is not interrupted, and he can share his information on a pre-filled form. Facebook can send information such as an email address, region, or gender to the automation tool.