Will Marketing Automation Solve Your Lead Problem?

December 3, 2012 at 7:00 AM

World Class Lead Generation.  Every marketing leader wants it.  Not every marketing leader has it.  Why not?

SBI works with companies of all sizes across (19) different industries.  Personally, I’ve engaged with companies from $50MM to $5B in revenues.  I have not worked with one that doesn’t have a lead generation problem.  In every instance, it’s the same issue: one or more of the (4) critical elements of Lead Gen are missing.

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In my last two blog posts, I covered People and Process.  Let’s cover Technology next.

Technology

To say that Buyer Behavior has changed is an understatement.  Today’s buyer is spending more & more time self-directing their purchase decision.  Engaging with a sales rep is the last thing on their mind.  In fact, two-thirds of the buyer’s journey is completed before the 1st contact with a sales rep (Source: Sales Executive Council).  Today’s Informed Buyer uses Google, Social Media, etc. to educate himself. And their online behavior is a window into what they are trying to solve for.

What does this mean for the marketing leader?  If you don’t have the ability to track your buyer’s online behavior, there’s a gap.  The Informed Buyer has Digital Body Language.  You must be able to read it and respond to it.

A buyer’s Digital Body Language speaks volumes.  Over the course of a lead’s interactions with your company you learn a lot about their interests, challenges and timing. Here’s a simple SBI example:  A prospect picks up one of our blog posts on “Improving Rep Ramp Time”. The prospect navigates to our Talent Management page and consumes every piece of content on Onboarding. We capture this online behavior in real time and respond with personalized & relevant content.  Instead of some generic email blast, we offer insight aligned with their point of interest. To do this you need marketing automation.

Marketing Automation

What is Marketing Automation?  Marketing Automation is the art and science of automatically managing the targeting, timing, and content of your outbound marketing messages in response to prospects inbound actions and online behaviors.  Marketing Automation software gives a marketer the ability to capture, measure and respond to a buyer’s digital body language.  In real-time.

 

 

The benefits and functionality of marketing automation software are vast.  For a marketing leader considering an MA solution, here are three:

  1. Campaign Management – MA provides an enhanced ability to start & sequence campaigns based on customer-driven event.  Campaigns adapt to prospect behavior, increasing relevance.
  2. Lead Nurturing – MA facilitates ongoing dialogue with prospect that develops interest until sales-ready.
  3. Lead Prioritization – MA scores leads based on predetermined criteria.  Top rated leads get pushed to sales.

Don’t run out the door and buy a marketing automation solution just yet.  Like the CRM-craze before, many companies rush out and drop a lot of cash on MA, justified by promises of huge bumps in productivity and revenue.  Unfortunately, lots of companies do and never realize the gains.  Memorize this formula…

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Implement marketing automation and forget Content, Process & People, you get an EOO.  To do it right, you need a comprehensive Lead Generation implementation strategy. All four key elements must be included.

Call to Action: Every marketing leader wants more quality leads.  Marketing Automation is definitely a piece of that puzzle.  But your first step should be to evaluate your Lead Generation strategy.  Do you have a comprehensive strategy that addresses all four essential elements?  If you don’t, you may end up an EOO!

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Topics: Lead Generation, Leads, Lead Gen, marketing automation, CMO, Marketing Resources

Posted by George de los Reyes

George de los Reyes
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