Through tracking and analysis of visitor behaviour, the best marketing automation software enables teams to create 1-to-1 cross-channel journeys that lead to a unified experience for the customer. This improves the efficiency of a sales funnel, quickly turning a broad base of leads into happy customers by using a combination of tactics.
B2C marketing involves familiarising the customer with a business’s brand and product set and giving them a compelling reason to purchase. B2C marketing automation both supports the nurturing process and automates the sales process so that it is quick and requires minimal or no involvement from a sales team.
While B2B marketing automation is all about long sales cycles, marketing in a consumer-facing environment is all about convincing potential buyers over a much shorter time frame. Marketing automation can supply useful content that develops trust in and respect for the brand, educating potential customers about its services and helping them to qualify their interest.
Further along the funnel, once prospects have narrowed down the types of products they’re interested in, the business can use automation to reach out with targeted messaging specifically tailored to those groups most likely both to respond and to benefit the business
Finally, as activity tracked via the marketing automation system indicates yet more focused interest, a qualified, comprehensive and well-understood lead is automatically handed to the sales team.
Create journeys for sales and for brand awareness
B2C marketing automation is also about tracking potential customer behaviour to decide a messaging strategy, but the big difference comes in the duration of campaigns. A consumer campaign needs to gain the customer’s interest very rapidly, with the road to checkout kept short, simple, obvious and enticing.
That’s not to say there is no place for longer-term strategic approaches to the customer base. Building brand loyalty and trust is also vital in B2C, as is market education. But these take a different form to the multi-touchpoint journey of B2B, with its deeper requirements in terms of product knowledge.
What’s the difference between CRM and marketing automation?
The roles and functions of marketing automation and CRM overlap and complement each other, and in many businesses, the two systems combine to maintain a consistent, detailed profile of an individual from contact to lead to prospect to customer.
Generally speaking, however, marketing automation tends to focus more on the automation of tasks for lead generation and lead nurture, with the ability to do this at significant scale. First, marketing automation gets a handle on prospect interest and handles lead generation and lead nurturing at scale by means of campaigns across a wide range of online and offline channels.
With a harmonised approach, sales staff can access information on a lead’s behaviour, the pages they visit and the content they download, for example, while marketing teams can see a customer’s past buying behaviour. And reporting and analytics across the closed loop between marketing automation and CRM allow businesses to hone campaigns to greater effectiveness.
Predictive personalisation software (PPS) is 100% automatic, requiring no staff whatsoever once it has been installed. This keeps the biggest cost impact on product sales GP to just that, the whole of the GP – only less the cost of the software itself.
By marketing automatically to each consumer the temptation or necessity to best guess segments, to clone them into, goes away. Instead of each consumer being “in a group” of people that might be tempted by an offering, but for being presented it, they are shown products exclusively chosen for them.
Research my the likes of McKinsey and Statista illustrate it is as much as twenty times the return traditional marketing facilities deliver – combined. If you haven’t got PPS installed at this very second, you are in serious trouble, as someone else is taking your business, and you don’t know it.