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5 Ways To Grow Your Business in 2023 With Marketing Automation

5 Ways To Grow Your Business in 2023 With Marketing Automation

If you’re a Canadian small or medium-sized business that wants to take advantage of marketing automation, here are some tactics you can apply right away

When the most successful marketers talk about “building a brand,” they’re not just talking about raising awareness about their company. Brand-building is more than simply creating an emotional connection with your customers (though that’s important).

Building a brand should be conceived as all the activity a marketing team does to help accelerate the company on its path to growth. That could mean more customers, a greater share of wallet among existing customers, and greater long-term loyalty.

Contributing directly to revenue and growth wasn’t always considered core to the marketing function. Running an ad campaign could help boost sales, but it could be difficult to prove how much. The disconnect between what a marketing team was spending, and the return on investment (ROI) sometimes prompted skepticism about the real value of brand-building.

Today, the advancements in technology and the increased use of digital channels make investing in brand-building – including tools to support it like marketing automation – a no-brainer. As Salesforce discovered in the 8th annual State of Marketing Report, a whopping 87% of marketers say their work provides greater value than it did a year ago.

The difference is that data and automation helps marketers on multiple levels. Harnessing the right data makes it easier to identify the most engaged customers and prospects, for example. Automation helps streamline the workflows that make marketers more productive. Yet data and automation is also helping marketers be more creative, with the ability to iterate variations on ideas at breakneck speed.

Brands don’t have to wait months or years to benefit from marketing automation. Platforms like Marketing Cloud were designed to be adopted quickly and easily, allowing teams to focus on deepening their understanding of their target market’s biggest needs and designing the best possible customer experience in response.

If you’re a Canadian small or medium-sized business that wants to take advantage of marketing automation to turn your team into a value centre, here are some tactics you can apply right away:

1. Shift marketing to focus on first-party data

There’s nothing more relevant, from a marketing perspective, than the information you’ve directly collected about your customers. It’s the best way to come up with creative content that resonates, and opens the door to greater personalization across every channel.

According to The State Of Marketing Report, however, three-quarters of those surveyed admit they rely heavily on third party data collected via web site cookies and their partners. That’s probably because historically, first party data from social media conversations, e-mail, and purchase histories have been siloed within companies.

Platforms like Customer 360 address that by centralizing first party data and making it far easier to mine for in-depth behavioural analysis. Make this a top priority if you really want to see growth from your marketing efforts.

2. Create a guided customer journey by syncing across business functions

Customers can wind up interacting with a number of different departments as they research products and services, make a purchase, and then seek service or support. Marketers need to ensure the right messages are present throughout each of these touchpoints so they can help lead customers down the most desirable path.

Marketing automation helps here by allowing you to set triggers no matter where customers are in their journey. If they’re talking to the customer service team, for example, they can learn about other products that might help them avoid future troubleshooting issues. When they’re talking to sales, they can be informed about the latest promotions of product bundles. This is really a way of automating upselling and cross-selling so it feels natural and seamless.

3. Tap into AI to craft a more bespoke customer experience

How will your next campaign land with your target audience? Artificial intelligence (AI) takes away the guesswork that used to be the basis of answering that question by sifting through vast quantities of data to predict customers’ next moves.

This builds upon the richer customer profiles you’re able to create with marketing automation. Machine learning capabilities will be able to identify the kind of content that will speak to a particular customer’s needs, aspirations, or answer their most commonly-asked questions.

AI can also help fine-tune the way you market to customers through particular channels. While the State of Marketing Report found e-mail is still the dominant channel and accounts for more than 80% of outbound messaging, there’s also been considerable growth in push and SMS notifications. Overall, 90% of marketers surveyed are using AI to automate customer interactions.

4. Make content creation, approval, and distribution as turnkey as possible

Companies can’t afford to have their growth prospects stall because the marketing department is late on getting a campaign out the door. That usually happens when collaborating among marketing team members isn’t fluid. This is an even bigger issue as more companies adopt hybrid work models.

When marketing automation platforms are run in the cloud, it means team members can successfully create, review, or approve content no matter where they are. Advanced search and tagging ensures nothing gets lost in the shuffle, and you’ll wind up spending more time tracking the performance of a campaign instead of trying to get it live.

5. Keep up with more KPIs than ever before

Having a lot of people watch a video is great. It’s fantastic to see hundreds of thousands of people like and share your brand’s social posts. However marketers also need to track how many people go from landing on the company’s web site to clicking through to an e-commerce purchase.

Then there are the age-old metrics such as customer satisfaction (CSAT) and customer lifetime value, among many others. The State of Marketing Report found marketers are looking at a wide variety of key performance indicators (KPIs). This includes revenue, which topped the list at 88% of marketers surveyed.

No matter which KPIs matter to your brand, marketing automation provides a dashboard to see them all at a glance, while providing a toolkit for taking actions that will move the needle on all of them. In other words, you’ll be in a much better position to continue building your brand – and thereby furthering your company’s growth.

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