Category Archives: Industry News

Marketing Director’s Guide to Traditional Advertising in 2020

Old School Media items

Many people are quick to assume that digital marketing is the ideal method to deliver their content and reach their customers, and they have a point—to a degree. 

Statistics show that 70% of consumers prefer to learn about products through content as opposed to conventional ads. Preferring content may be due to conventional-ad overload, or a simple desire to combine advertising with actionable information that you can find in marketing videos, blog posts, or other media.

However, this doesn’t mean that traditional advertising doesn’t have its perks. 79% of customers say that they read direct mail ads, which means the market penetration is still there. Also, a sizable chunk of customers still consider print advertising the most trustworthy type of advertising, and many will head to your company website after looking at traditional advertising. 

So, perhaps the best way to look at traditional advertising is by thinking about it not as something to be replaced, but rather, as something that can upgrade and integrate into other things while taking advantage of its pros and mitigating its cons.

How Is Traditional Advertising Purchased Today?
The greater traditional marketing umbrella includes the most common advertising methods that we’ve seen all our lives, including:

  • Print (newspaper, magazines)
  • Broadcast (TV, radio)
  • Direct Mail
  • Telemarketing
  • Billboards/Outdoor

How you go about purchasing advertising space is likely to vary depending on the medium. For example, if you were to look into advertising in a print magazine, you would generally reach out to the sales team there and discuss a package. In this case, a package may include the size of the ad you want, the frequency for running the ad, and the ideal placement for your ad. 

If you were looking to advertise your dietary supplement in a health magazine, you would likely place your ad in or near an article about supplements. Many magazines will give you a frequency benefit, where you buy ads over a given period for a discount or feature you in a special section.

However, this isn’t the same for every type of traditional media. If you were running a direct mail advertising campaign, for example, your price would be determined by how many mailers you wanted to send. The type of paper you wanted them printed on and the radius you were looking to see covered also play significant factors in total cost. 

For broadcast advertising on cable, you would make your ad buy based on the channels you want to appear on and your timing. Every traditional advertising method has a different purchasing style, which can be a shock to digital-only marketers who are typically using pay-per-click, impression, and programmatic buying techniques.

For those interested in using multiple methods or transitioning from digital-only to a digital/traditional hybrid, working with an agency is best. Agencies generally already have media partnerships with magazines, radio, and television, among others, and receive discounted rates. So, rather than doing the research and dealing with multiple media reps and processes, the agency does the work for you. If you want to handle it internally, be wary about bundled options that benefit the media companies more than you. Even with tracking, if you don’t have a strategic plan for capturing and converting leads, it can be difficult to determine success or failure.

Better Ways To Track Campaigns
Choosing the preferred marketing vehicle or vehicles is only the beginning of putting together a successful campaign. Strong marketing often ebbs and flows: you make shifts as your audience changes or responds to what you are putting out. The only way to do this effectively is by getting plenty of marketing data, understanding it, and capitalizing on it. Data is one area where traditional marketing has historically fallen short of digital. However, that’s changed. Integrated marketing strategies have made it a lot easier to track data through traditional marketing. Here are a few examples.

Vanity URLs
vanity URL is a branded web address for your pages, generally designed for easy memorability. However, these are also useful when it comes to traditional marketing integration. It’s a lot easier to put a vanity URL on a mailer or other physical piece of advertising than a traditional address. If you use a tracking cookie with the vanity URL, you can quickly determine how many customers are accessing your site, engaging, and converting.

Call Tracking Numbers
Call tracking entails putting a unique phone number on a piece of marketing. Adaptive for any form of messaging, call tracking can be used with traditional and digital. When a customer or client calls that number, you immediately see the engagement, and they can be put into the next stage of the sales funnel and credited to that particular piece of advertising. You can also record the phone conversation to determine if messaging is on point and help train your sales team. Split testing with two different numbers is a great way to see if one piece of advertising is helping more with conversions than others. For example, if you have two billboards on different sides of town, call tracking can help you determine which one is more effective.

Neighborhood-Specific Content
Customizing your content based on different neighborhoods can be useful for those looking into direct mail, but generally only for hyper-local businesses. However, it does enable you to test your messaging in real-time. If one style of content gets better traction in one neighborhood, you may want to make that the message you use for other neighborhoods also.

New Technology Across The Industry
There are also other pieces of new technology that are modernizing traditional marketing across the board. Many of these are focused on either better integration with digital marketing channels or trying to close the gap in areas where digital has an advantage. Customization is a good example of this. Here are some of the innovations we’ve noted in this area.

Informed Delivery
This unique service, currently being tested by the USPS, allows people to digitally preview the mail they are going to get before it’s delivered. Previewing means that customers will see your content far earlier in the process than usual and can allow them to build curiosity. It also means that your physical mail will be in the digital realm from the start and have the ability to be viewed on people’s computers or smartphones.

Digital Codes on Print Ads/Sales Flyers
Integrating both digital and traditional is a major goal for modern marketers. Utilizing Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality is a great way to integrate this approach along with QR coding. Adding one of these digital stamps allows users to activate a story or offer with smartphones that can instantly take them to a website or landing page to get them started in your sales funnel. 

Video Ads For Apps/Streaming Services
Cable advertising is more affordable than broadcast advertising, but it’s still has a high barrier to entry for many companies. Glintegration ReportingHowever, the advent of channels coming up with custom content on their streaming apps to try and retain audiences creates an opportunity for advertisers. By and large, apps and YouTube channels still put you in front of similar audiences as cable television, but for a lower cost per view. Thinking of video in this way will provide higher value by allowing you to take a traditional 30-second spot and chop and edit it into smaller segments for custom integration into any digital format. 

Even as digital marketing becomes the flagship of many company campaigns, the fact is that a multifaceted plan of attack is always going to be the ideal one. Traditional marketing is always going to have its uses, even if the way it’s purchased and utilized isn’t the same as it was in the past. 

If you need help integrating these new methods and technologies into classic strategies, a veteran marketing agency like Glint Advertising can help you figure out what options are best for you.

How To Make A Company Podcast

Podcast of Cooking ShowIf you’re looking for a new medium to reach your business audience, a podcast may be surprisingly effective. As much as 30% of all audio content that people regularly listen to is podcasts. A podcast is also material that a listener is motivated to follow the entire way through. 

Another major benefit of a podcast is its ability to validate your experience. The easiest way to prove you know what you’re talking about is by providing lots of information on a subject. Podcasts offer an audience-friendly format to provide actionable and valuable information for your audience. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to implement them.

Step 1: Decide What Your Goal Is For A Podcast
Like any marketing method, you’re not going to get far with a company podcast if you don’t fully understand what your goal is. Like most inbound marketing, you’re generally going to want content that teaches, similar to an e-book or other content marketing methods. Most people tune in to podcasts either to be entertained or to learn, and a company podcast fits neatly into the latter.

Your secondary question, though, is going to be what your goal is through teaching. Saying something general like “getting more traffic to the website” isn’t going to cut it, either. Do you think a more informed audience will be more likely to follow your sales funnel above your competitors? Alternatively, do you want to create an interesting podcast, then start slipping more marketing time into it? Whichever you think is best for you, make sure that the goal is front and center when applying the other steps we are about to cover.

Step 2: Determine Your Target Audience and Their Questions
Another fundamental element of marketing that carries over to company podcasts is determining your ideal audience and planning content for them. In some cases, this can be harder than others when applying to a podcast format. If you were a company that specializes in making, say, sunglasses, it would be difficult for you to create a content roadmap (more on that later), just around sunglasses. The average consumer wouldn’t likely be interested in an hour-long podcast about sunglasses construction and other elements.

Keeping an audience engaged is tough and is why it’s so important for you, the team creating the podcast, to think about not just topics related to your niche, but questions that customers may have. Using our example of sunglasses, customers may be curious about how sunglasses support eye health, finding transition lenses, or even accessorizing their sunglasses with outfits. All of these can make good fundamental starting points for podcast topics. In addition, by building your content around customer questions, you may get organic SEO benefits from people who weren’t even aware of your content. For example, a person searching for “how can I tell cheap from quality sunglasses” may end up stumbling on a podcast optimized for that subject.

Step 3: Plan Out A Content Roadmap
Good topics and a slick presentation are important for long-term podcast success, but so is consistency. If you set an expectation for content production, whether it’s every week, every month, or something in between, you can’t afford to miss it. Inconsistent posting gives the impression you’re disorganized or unreliable, two adjectives you don’t want to be associated with your company. Along with this, you don’t want a sudden dip in quality. Say that you budget for a 12-episode “season” of podcast content, but end up running out of solid topics or interviewees after four episodes. Your audience will notice this, and you lose that authority you’ve been working so hard to create.

The best way to make sure you don’t end up in this situation is by putting together a content roadmap. Use the brainstorming you’ve done for step 2 to put together an outline of exactly what each of your podcast episodes will cover. The roadmap is great for a company podcast as it allows you to see potential topics areas where you are lacking, and address them early on. For example, a travel company can make sure they have episodes dedicated to family travel, singles travel, cheaper excursions, and splurges, among others. 

Step 4: Choose A Format
Now you have the premise and the topics. It’s time to start getting into the nuts and bolts of your company podcast. Choosing the right format may be the single most important thing when it comes to prolonged success. A lot of the most popular podcasts follow a simple formula of an interview with a different person each week. If you have competitors in your niche, it pays to see what they are doing, as you have many formats to choose from, and a different approach may help you stand out. Some examples include:

  • A solo format, where a host talks about a given topic for the podcast.
  • A group-host format, where multiple people discuss the topic, rather than a different interviewee each episode.
  • A narrative format, where the host is telling a relevant story as the centerpiece of the episode.
  • A hybrid format, which mixes elements of each.

Even the traditional interview format has some room for development. For example, rather than a single interview on a topic, you could record all your interviews at once. Recording one time will allow you to extend and customize each episode from your interviewees on a potential topic. An approach like this also decreases the number of setups, recordings, and edits you need. It would be best if you also chose an appropriate length for the podcast based on your audience’s needs. 

In terms of logistics, we’re not going to get too much into the technical side of things when it comes to choosing your audio/recording equipment. There are many options to fit different budgetary needs. However, the logistics of setting up a podcast go well beyond that. Some of the logistics may include things like:

  • Creating your artwork/music, if needed.
  • Determining the best platform to take your podcast live.
  • Having a plan to reach out to interviewees.
  • Deciding who at the company will host the interviews.

If often helps to incorporate some of this work into the content roadmap. 

Step 5: Solicit/Incorporate Feedback, Then Improve
One thing you need to understand is that a company podcast is a long-term, Leaving Feedback Onlineslow-burn form of marketing. It would be best if you had time for a few episodes to come out for testing the best ways to get traction with your target audience. It’s also a good idea to continue making refinements as things progress. After a pilot episode/first few batches of podcasts, encourage people to give you feedback via social media or whatever platforms you think are appropriate. While you may think you know what your audience is looking for, things may be quite different in practice.

For example, you may have a podcast that’s too long for your target audience, or end up misfiring when it comes to a topic selection. While you don’t want to fall into knee jerk reactions, it’s a good idea to address common, repeated criticisms you see. If you find things are getting traction, you can start making other investments like better audio equipment.

At this point, you should have the foundation you need to create an effective podcast. In time, this can be a cornerstone of your marketing efforts, positioning your company as a true market authority. However, to properly leverage your hard work, you need to make sure that you have the means to showcase and market your podcast. 

Managing this balancing act, while still running a company, can be tough. Sometimes it’s best to hire an accomplished marketing agency like Glint Advertising to assist. We can help you formulate a company podcast that best suits your needs, as well as promote it so you can get more traction. Reach out to us for a consultation today.

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Marketing Director’s Guide to social video in 2020

Man taking promo videoIn statistical terms, many marketing experts see video marketing as their “holy grail.” Here are a few notable numbers about the medium:

  • 85% of all online users watch video content monthly on any of their given devices.
  • 54% of all consumers want to see more content out of the different brands/companies that they support.
  • Videos are the favorite type of content people want to see on social media.
  • 88% of all video marketers find themselves satisfied with the ROI their video marketing efforts provide.

If video seems so overly loved and preferred among audiences, why haven’t we reached a point of oversaturation? There are a few reasons for this; for one, a lot of the statistics we talk about refer to quality video content. Half-hearted forays into the format aren’t going to give you the results you want. Secondly, it’s important to realize that not all video content goes to the same place. There are a variety of different video social platforms out there, all of which have different pros, cons, and uses from a marketing perspective. Here’s a look at the major video social platforms out there and some of the existing video marketing strategies for each.

Snapchat

While Snapchat is one of the hottest video social platforms, it’s also one of the most unique, as the advent of similar functionalities for Instagram and now Twitter show. In essence, Snapchat is used for posting small images/videos known as “stories” that are deleted after 24 hours. In and of itself, this feature instantly separates Snapchat from the other options on the market. However, what should you know about finding success on this platform?

For one thing, as you probably already assumed, having your content get deleted after a day means that you need to be smart with how you prepare video content. Creating a longer video then cutting it into snap-friendly snippets will be a lot better use of your time than creating a bunch of smaller ones. You also want to be creative with your image editing to add your own brand flair to more generic images/videos. Demographics also matter. There’s no denying that Snapchat is the domain of millennials and younger generations. Trying to target Snapchat toward, say, a senior living facility is pretty much a waste of time and assets.

How Are Companies Using Snapchat? A great example of using Snapchat’s features and demographics to a marketing advantage is the Sour Patch Kids campaign in 2014. The brand, targeting teen fans of the candy, used the Sour Patch Kids characters in a series of Snapchat content targeting different events and holidays. The fun, simple approach was a perfect match for the fast pace of Snapchat, and it was reflected in the high amounts of impressions and engagements the campaign achieved.

Facebook Live

Over 2 billion people have watched Facebook Live, so needless to say, the audience is there. Facebook Live videos also get more engagement than conventional Facebook videos; however, as a lot of television personalities can tell you, managing a live production isn’t easy. 

One of the main things that you need to understand is that you want to strike a balance between coming off as relatable while maintaining a sense of polish. Plenty of planning should go into production before any live videos start, but you should still strive to capture that unedited, raw feeling that draws interest over other types of video content. People like the idea of getting a behind-the-scenes “real” look at your business. Equally important is rigorous testing of your video equipment and internet connection to make sure that all things work well when it’s time to go live.

As an added point, promotion matters. Unlike a typical video, you’re going to get most of your engagement in a small period, so you want to have a steady stream of reminders in your other marketing to get your audience prepped for the event.

How Are Companies Using Facebook Live? Sephora utilized the classic AMA (ask me anything) format with special guests to allow participants to ask questions about makeup and beauty. This is a perfect example of giving viewers value (the chance to interact with an industry figure) that they wouldn’t see in any other format. 

YouTube

For most companies, YouTube is the starting point with video marketing. This is a reasonable point, as between the popularity of the platform and the Google connection (for SEO purposes), there’s probably the most chance to strike marketing paydirt with a YouTube channel. The major drawback, though, is that the lane is a lot more crowded. Because of this, you need to take extra care when setting up a YouTube channel for marketing success. 

Perhaps the most important thing, which may sound funny enough, is making sure you have enough of a marketing base to really leverage a quality YouTube production. A lot of companies see the return video marketing provides and put the cart before the horse. This means a heavy investment in video content without a sales funnel or landing pages to really take advantage of the attention. Optimization also matters. Your tags, description, even thumbnail choice can impact your content showing up in searches. 

How Are Companies Using YouTube? Intel’s Meet The Makers campaign is a classic example of using video marketing to craft a narrative. Each video revolves around a person using Intel products to create new experiences and technology. This example shows how you can show micro (individual) effects of your product among greater macro trends, creating a brand story versus a conventional advertisement.

Vimeo

The difference between YouTube and Vimeo is largely a matter of audience. YouTube has a larger audience and more of a generalist focus. However, Vimeo has a far smaller but devoted audience, mainly coming from the creative realm. So, if your marketing audience generally has something to do with art, video editing, or similar niches, you may do better here. Just understand that the smaller audience means that you need to focus a lot more on engagement and interactions with the userbase to get traction.

How Are Companies Using Vimeo? For the most part, many marketing efforts on Vimeo are the same as on YouTube. It’s mainly the audience targeting that is the difference here.

TikTok

If you were to make a comparison to newcomer TikTok and other platforms, the since-retired Vine is probably the best Selfie Videoexample, largely based around short videos up to 15 seconds in length. Like Snapchat, the audience is entirely youth-based, so you want to be mindful of that. As of today, TikTok is in its infancy as a marketing channel, but it may be a good idea to see what some of the top influencers on the platform are doing. This may help with driving engagement to your own channel. 

How Are Companies Using TikTok? Chipotle’s clever use of dubbing songs with video of their product ended up launching a #Guac Challenge, which became the highest-performing branded challenge on the platform to date at the time. Less is more when you don’t have a lot of time to work with.

 

Video marketing is generally considered to be the crown jewel of a lot of different marketing strategies, but whatever platform you choose to use, the most important thing to remember is that quality matters. Putting together a half-hearted effort isn’t going to garner the results that you need, and considering the investment involved, that’s a major issue. 

The best way to see a return on your investment is by partnering with a veteran marketing agency like Glint Advertising. We supply consultation and resources to help your video content make a meaningful impression on your audience.

The Director’s Guide to Advanced Facebook Marketing

Facebook Marketing Page

Even the smallest marketing team has a fundamental understanding that Facebook is a platform that holds tons of potential. After all, you want to put your materials where your audience is, and Facebook boasts over 2.4 billion active users. Also, there are a lot of different tools within the platform that can help you narrow down that audience to whom you think will fit your business best. 

Many companies are only scratching the surface of Facebook’s potential, focusing mainly on sponsored posts and trying to boost them. Here’s a more advanced look at the steps you can take to improve your Facebook marketing, as well as what to do when you reach the limit of your in-house team’s capability.

What Can You Do On Your Own?
A lot of internal Facebook marketing “teams” are a bit misled with the tools they have at their disposal. For example, you can put together a series of content, hit the “boost post” function, and feel as though you’re making a significant impact. However, if you’re trying to build an audience, this function won’t produce much. The boost post function is more for the benefit of Facebook rather than your business. A boosted post also circulates to your current followers, rather than touching new followers. To find options that can help you target outside of your current followers, you should be using the Facebook Ad Center and Facebook Business Manager.

A good way to think of your Facebook strategy is in terms of circles. Boosting a post is more about your existing circle, so it’s a small radius. Ad Center was developed with marketers in mind so that it can target a wider circle. Because Facebook Business Manager gives you the ability to create ads and use tools like pictures to track conversions that go much further than your existing fan base. The caveat here is the larger the span, the harder it is to master these tools. Many in-house teams don’t have the capacity or experience necessary to try and master the Ad Center or Business Manager fully.

So, with this in mind, what can teams that are just doing sponsored posts do to start moving into more advanced work? Here are some key suggestions.

Targeting: There are different goals that companies have for their Facebook marketing. In some cases, they are just looking to increase brand awareness. However, for the most part, you should be looking to drive actual action, with brand awareness as a side benefit. The Ad Center is your home base that helps set up pixels so you can track conversions and fine-tune your demographic and geographic reach. One thing to keep in mind is that different pixel setups are required for each type of website platform (WordPress, Drupal, etc.).

Using Instagram Wisely: Facebook and Instagram have a seamless integration that can allow you to create content for it and Facebook at the same time. For example, if you create a square image ad, you’ll have something that works for both platforms. Image quality is paramount with this platform, so if you can’t afford professional photography, you’re better off utilizing stock images. It also helps to orient your imagery per the specifications of the platform to allow for the best representation of your brand. For example, if you put content that’s not vertical or made for video on Instagram Stories, there will be unsightly black borders present.

Messenger Bots: One survey showed that 80% of all businesses on Facebook wanted chatbots in place by this year. Adding this feature is time well spent, as it can help customers get answers to quick and easy questions about your business. Also, one-third of all Facebook users employ this function regularly. To get started with these, you need to purchase software to develop your chatbox before linking it to Facebook Messenger. The good news is that this process has become much easier due to advancements within the technology.

Building Up Slowly, But Steadily: The shotgun approach rarely works when it comes to advanced Facebook Marketing. It’s better to pick a few areas to excel in then move forward. As an example, if you want to get into video, you need to build up a content library first. If you don’t, you pay for a video, people look at it, want to see more, and there’s nothing to keep their interest. Lack of consistency will cost you conversions. The same applies to Facebook or Instagram ads that go to pages with sparse or irregular content.

Use Online Resources: While you’re not likely to be as good as a Facebook marketer that’s been working in the platform for years, you can advance from the basics. There’s are a variety of online resources that can help you learn some fundamentals of the Ad Center and other Facebook features. Also, if you have an Ad Center account, Facebook itself is likely to reach out to you and provide support, including audits.

So, with this in mind, at what point do you bring in external help and stop handling Facebook marketing on your own? That decision starts with being realistic about your ROI and how Facebook works. Remember, while Facebook can provide data for you about your ad performance, they are mainly going to be charting impressions, not conversions. In some cases, like building brand awareness, Facebook can be a great platform. However, if you’re a retail business, brand awareness may not be your primary focus. If that’s the case, it would be best for you to focus on conversions. When conversions are your main focus, and you’re beginning to spend $1,000 or more to compete on Facebook, it’s time to start engaging professional marketers.

Moving Forward With Additional Support
When you’re looking for additional support, it’s essential that you partner with a company like Glint, that has an in-depth understanding of marketing integration and creative development. Expertise like this ensures your campaigns integrate with your overall marketing strategy. For example, you can reach out to a digital firm and have them set up and monitor the campaigns in addition to throwing some ads together. A full-service agency will create the ads to ensure they connect with your brand and resonate with the targeted audience. They will also help develop integration strategies to make sure the ads are converting properly and driving toward your other marketing channels. 

Red Flag Storm

Equally important is making sure you work with an agency that is going to set clear expectations. Some businesses expect a volume of work and ROI with a budget that isn’t feasible. It’s better to reach out to an agency that will tell you your budget isn’t enough for the task, rather than taking your money and, in-turn providing ineffective campaigns.

One other red flag that you want to look out for when working with an agency is if you’re required to work within their platforms. Often it’s best to do this; however, it shouldn’t be required. If the relationship changes, you should have access to your platforms and have the power to press a button to remove their access. 

If you’re interested in more facts about advanced Facebook marketing, here’s a link to our recent podcast on the subject. When you’re ready to bridge the gap with a third-party solution, Glint Advertising is the ideal choice. We can appraise the status of your current Facebook marketing efforts, in addition to others, and get the platforms and campaigns you need moving forward.

The Director’s Guide To Marketing Automation

Marketing Automation Inbound Leads

If you’re not taking marketing automation seriously and incorporating it into your overall strategy, the chances are that you’re selling your company short. Last year:

  • 51% of companies used some form of marketing automation, with 58% of B2B companies having implementation plans in place.
  • 63% of professionals planned to raise their marketing budgets for automation.
  • 4 out of 5 marketers saw automation as a critical part of their overall success.

With this said, the term automation invokes a lot of fear and anxiety in the uninitiated, from people not looking forward to learning new platforms to worrying about their job security. 

In reality, though, marketing automation is less about supplanting professionals, and more about removing tedium and busywork from their daily operations. Here’s a top-down look on how to understand and utilize marketing automation in your business.

What Is Marketing Automation?
In essence, marketing automation is an umbrella term for using different software platforms to automate aspects of marketing activities. The marketing team puts together an overall strategy, or workflow, for the software, which it then executes to provide automated communications across a variety of different channels.

On paper, it seems easy, but don’t make the mistake of thinking that marketing automation is a replacement for a well-planned strategy. Marketing automation lives or dies off of the nature of the workflows that you create. As a result, you need to know your audience, and what they respond to or your investment in the process won’t pay off. 

Along with this, you need a solid CRM with prospects in your database to increase ROI with marketing automation. If you have a small existing list of leads, you’re going to see diminishing returns. At the same time, if you buy a cheap list of potential leads and use marketing automation to spam them, you’re just going to hurt your brand’s reputation. So, before implementing marketing automation, have a plan in place to handle database/lead decay.

Replacing Common Platforms
One of the major benefits of using marketing automation is that it allows you to replace a multitude of software platforms. A change like this also means more capacity for your marketing team to dedicate on additional tactics. Here are a few examples worth looking at:

Lead Forms: These used to be the gold standard when it came to lead collection. They consisted of attaching a lead form to something like an e-book or another type of enticing content. The lead’s information would then go into an accompanying database, which compiled warm leads to mine. In the past, this process would be quite time-consuming, from setting up the form to filtering for people who may have filled things out incorrectly. Skipping these steps with automation means you spend less time combing through the database and more time figuring out how to grow it.

Landing Pages: Marketing automation generally serves as the middle of a marketing funnel, helping convert prospects from the lead lists you create to the moment of conversion. For many businesses, landing pages are that point of conversion. Where marketing automation helps is cutting out a lot of the work of data collection (using heatmaps, checking KPIs) to see how your landing pages are performing. Automatically forward people to your landing pages, and see if your marketing is creating an effective bridge from lead generation to conversion.

Email: Replacing email outright isn’t necessarily what marketing automation is about, but more about ending the back and forth process that comes with an email campaign. For example, if someone doesn’t respond to your marketing email at first, it’s generally good practice to send a followup. However, drafting the email and remembering to send it can be a vexing task. Marketing automation allows you to set this all up in advance. Not only does it mean less tasking work, but it also ensures you’re not sending extra emails to prospects that don’t need them.

As a final note, statistically speaking, custom/dynamic automated marketing performs the best out of all automated marketing. And it’s pretty easy to understand why: it helps differentiate you from conventional sales/marketing copy, while also allowing you to target individual customer needs. Marketing automation is also a major timesaver when it comes to dynamic content. For example, you can:

  • Set when your marketing emails/communications will be sent based on past prospect actions.
  • Set different fields in your communications to account for names, companies, and other information. 
  • Add unique imagery/product suggestions based on past behavior.

Marketing Automation And Your Sales Funnel
So let’s say that you’re confident about using marMarketing Funnel Growthketing automation, and are ready to start implementing it. How exactly do you integrate this workflow into your existing sales funnel? Remember, as we mentioned earlier, marketing automation does a lot of work in the middle of the sales funnel. But, you also need to integrate multiple touch points at the top and bottom of the funnel to see the full impact.

How many touch points do you need? It will vary based on the clients, but here are some of the most common examples.

Phone calls: Whether this is a cold call or a followup to an in-person meeting, these are generally the starting point for a lot of sales funnels, especially for big-ticket purchases or services.

Emails: Often, these are the most effective ways to regularly contact a prospect with followup for answering questions and reinforcing services to help convert a sale. You can also use this as a reminder or to let them know about other opportunities.

Social media: Social media as a touch point may seem a bit odd but think of it as the touch point before the touch point. If you reach out to a prospect cold, they may not be interested in your service at that moment and turn you away. Doing things like providing them content on social media and engaging with them in a personal manner will warm them up to your offerings.

So, how does marketing automation come into play here? You can create a workflow based on a prospect liking a series of posts. Then, automatically, send a followup email right after the database triggers the actions of liking the posts. This approach hits multiple touch points for a fraction of the work, meaning it’s easier to personalize the marketing and connect with more prospects.

Marketing automation has gone from a novelty for many businesses to an essential tool. The ability to simplify a multitude of tasks not only helps streamline the workflow of your marketing team but also saves time. However, there are still two main touch points that you’ll need to overcome to transition into automation:

  • Finding a seamless way to transfer from legacy systems.
  • Implementing if you don’t have a marketing team or agency partner.

In both cases, working with a veteran marketing agency like Glint Advertising is your ideal solution. We can help provide consultation and resources for you to move your marketing strategy toward automation.