What is Marketing Automation?
Marketing automation helps marketers streamline their lead generation, segmentation, lead nurturing and lead scoring, customer lifecycle marketing, cross-sell and up-sell, customer retention, and marketing ROI measurement.
Some of these practices are possible at small volumes without software, but technology becomes essential with any scale and with the increasing number of channels marketers are required to manage. In particular, these processes all require:
A central marketing database. A place for all your marketing data, including detailed prospect and customer interactions and behaviors, so you can segment and target the right message to each customer. Think of this as “system of record” for all your marketing information.
An engagement marketing engine. An environment for the creation, management and automation of marketing processes and conversations across online and offline channels. Think of this as the “orchestra conductor” for your customer interactions.
An analytics engine. A way to test, measure, and optimize marketing ROI and impact on revenue. Think of this as the place you go to understand what worked, what didn’t, and where you can improve.
Who Uses Marketing Automation?
Large enterprises have long found value in the technology, but marketing automation isn’t just for big companies. In fact, Small and Mid-Sized Businesses (SMBs) make up the largest growing segment in the space right now. And thousands of companies even smaller than that are using automation as well. Similarly, companies across all industries are using it. The early adopters were primarily in “business-to-business” (B2B) industries such as high-tech / software, manufacturing, and business services. But increasingly companies across all categories–including “business-to-consumer” (B2C) industries such as healthcare, financial services, media and entertainment, and retail–are adopting the software for its real-time, engagement-oriented approach to maintaining and extending customer relationships throughout the customer lifecycle.
What Are The Common Features And Functions of Marketing Automation?
Features include email marketing, landing pages and forms, campaign management, engagement marketing, prediction and scoring, customer lifecycle management, CRM integration, social marketing capabilities, mobile marketing capabilities and marketing analytics.