How to use marketing automation to generate qualified leads for your business

In an ideal world, people with bulging wallets would:

  • Flock to your website in droves,
  • Read a couple of sentences about the wonders that you and your mob perform, and
  • Buy your products or services.

But alas, the world is not ideal. We have Kim Jong-Whatsisface. And US politicians. And the Eurovision Song Contest.

Faced with this harsh reality, what must you do to at least have a fighting chance of generating the qualified leads that your sales team need, so that you can get more business?

SEO is the first step, and we have talked about it elsewhere. For example, you’ll get some great insights from this informative blog.

But right now, let’s look at the next step — what you can do to turn the traffic your SEO is creating into real, solid, tangible leads.

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Why you must consider marketing automation

First up, let’s put the word ‘automation’ into some perspective.

I don’t know about you, but when I first heard it, I was sceptical.

I even scoffed. 

Having spent over 25 years perfecting the craft of writing warm, engaging and persuasive marketing copy, the mental picture of a bunch of steel robots with glowing red eyes trying to do this popped into my head — and I thought it was a pretty stupid idea. 

But that isn’t how it is.

The emails, landing pages, thank you pages and other collateral you’ll use for your digital marketing STILL must be well crafted by an experienced copywriter.

The difference that marketing automation makes is that they WILL be used — in a most powerful and effective way — that you can’t even hope to do manually.

Here’s a quick heads-up on some of what marketing automation can do. There are a bazillion important points. But here are three for you to think about:

1. With marketing automation, you’ll target the RIGHT people

A well set-up marketing automation system is based around the personas you want to do business with.

Instead of just having one ‘market’ and firing off broadsides, you’ll automatically build lists of potential clients who have different problems and requirements.

For example, say you were in financial services, you could build one list of people who are interested in home finance, and another list of people who need help with business finance.

Each of those will AUTOMATICALLY receive relevant information from you. And that puts you WAY ahead of your competitors.

2. With marketing automation, you’ll be RELEVANT

Alas, not everyone is ready to buy from you right now — even within the lists in the previous point. 

Think about this for a minute… 

You have your list of people interested in commercial finance (or whatever it is that you are selling).

Great. And yes, some are at the ‘decision’ stage of the Buyer’s Journey and are ready to whip out their wallets. But many others will be earlier in the funnel…  at the ‘consideration’ or at the ‘awareness’ stage.

With a well-crafted marketing automation strategy, you’ll no longer be a dump truck, piling a mountain of ‘stuff’ on people.

Instead, you’ll be able to provide your potential customers with the information that they need right NOW. And again, you’ll be out-marketing your competitors who just can’t do this stuff manually.

3. With marketing automation, you’ll get stuff DONE

Last night while I was drinkin’ beer, partying, doing the Limbo and going off like a frog in a sock (not true, I was happily at home with my family) a couple of interesting people visited our website. 

I know this because I just checked this morning. 

I know exactly WHICH pages they looked at. And I also know that they downloaded some information in the form of an eBook and an Explainer.

They also went onto two different lists. 

  • One went onto the “I need more leads” list.
  • One went on to the “I need to measure marketing ROI” list.

Later this week… without anyone here in our bunker lifting a finger… they will each receive a warm, engaging email thanking them for downloading our stuff and offering them more information that will be relevant and helpful to them.

C’mon. Admit it. You are salivating at the thought of this. 

You are thinking about “All-Those-Lost-Opportunities-For-Follow-Up” that have been, well, lost over the years.

Yep. It hurts. It used to drive me crackers.

Marketing Automation changes all that. I tell you, I’m a big believer. Seriously.

And trying to do it manually will drive you nutzo. 

The diagram below shows the marketing automation we are doing for a client in the industrial sector

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This flow-chart maps out the journey we will take a potential client — from the first time they land on the website (from either AdWords or an Organic search) — through each stage until they sign up for an onsite consult.

You will see the stages of the journey (Awareness, Consideration, Decision) at the left-hand side of the diagram.

At each stage, (which may be over days, weeks or months), they will receive offers of information that will help them to understand how our client’s solutions can help them.

As time goes by, they will be nurtured until they reach the bottom of the funnel and say “Yes!” to an onsite consult.

Marketing automation gives you an unprecedented advantage

Make no bones about it, automation is the best way to do this. As I said earlier, doing it manually will drive you nutzo.

You can do some pretty good stuff with MailChimp’s automation offering, but in our view, HubSpot is the way to go.

We use it. A lot. And its power is breathtaking.

It enables you to connect the RIGHT content with the RIGHT people, which gives you a huge advantage over your competitors who are not across this technology.

You can see who is doing what on your website… what content they are liking and want more of… what content is drawing the traffic and what content is converting. 

You can do some of this the hard way using Google Analytics and other packages, but in our experience, nothing comes close to HubSpot for analysis and practical application.

Here’s an example of how you might engage people into your marketing automation system 

This blog post is written for business owners or marketers who are concerned that their home page might not be SEO-friendly.

Notice that it has a CTA (Call to action) in the content that directs the reader to a free resource 

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Once they make their choice, they will automatically go onto the appropriate list, and we can then be in touch (automatically) to offer additional helpful resources.

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Use automation as part of your Content Marketing strategy

I trust that we’ve given you something to think about in this article. The next step is to figure out how you can pull the whole she-bang together, with a complete strategy for lead generation.

In overview, the steps are:

  1. Attract — Drawing people to your site with SEO and social promotion.
  2. Convert — Engaging people with offers to convert them into a lead.
  3. Close — The yummy bit. Money in the bank.
  4. Delight — Creating an army of happy customers who will refer you.

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We have several helpful resources that will point you in the right direction, and a good start would be to read our <CTA to the free Inbound Marketing Explainer>. It’s only a 10-minute read, but it’ll give you the big picture and put the steps into perspective.

Want some expert help with your marketing automation?

If you’d like to talk about the use of marketing automation to grow your business and aren’t sure where to start, please call us on 07 3891 3800.  If you are in Brisbane, we can get together. Anywhere else, Skype or the phone work great!