Email Marketing Automation is a powerful tool that can help you qualify and nurture prospects to create sales opportunities. It also helps maintain strong relationships with customers. Salesforce includes useful marketing automation facilities to help you plan and measure campaigns and develop templates and processes that simplify and speed up the production of marketing campaigns. That’s backed by a comprehensive training program that will develop and hone your marketing skills.
To set the scene, we’ll look at the way a leading information security company used email to drive business for their sales force. This is a useful model for developing your own campaigns.
Identify Marketing Stages
The company recognized that its prospects would move through three stages in the marketing cycle. This is a simple example. Companies can have many process driven stages.
▪ At the first stage, prospects are qualified and consider their needs for information security.
▪ Once prospects understand that they have a need, information is provided to help develop their security strategy.
▪ At the third stage, prospects evaluate potential solutions that align to their strategy and decide on purchase options.
Segmented prospects by
▪ Level of interest (qualify and scoring)
▪ Products or services of interest
▪ Aligned collateral by product and service
▪ Aligned the collateral to marketing stage
Scoring which determines interest at each stage and corresponding messaging in the campaign moves prospects from initial stages to closed and post-closed. The post closed stages can include asking for referrals and up-sell, cross-sell opportunities.
Consider these Marketing Stages as a continuum. There is a start but no end to the processes of marketing and sales.
A series of emails targets each prospect as they move from one stage to the next and offers them content that will help them make informed decisions. Each subsequent stage moves the customer closer to the sale.
At the first stage, prospects were offered a short survey asking about the importance of security to their organization. The second stage provided independent reports and white papers on information security challenges and trends. The prospect’s survey responses and engagement with collateral, how many times opened, was it forwarded, etc. scored and qualified prospects. Finally, at the third stage prospects were offered product information and the opportunity to engage directly with a sales representative.
Monitor campaign effectiveness
To measure the effectiveness of the campaign, prospects were driven to a landing page where they could select and download the content or request further information. To reach prospects who did not respond to the original offer, the company emailed a different offer at weekly intervals.
When prospects downloaded the content, they received a follow-up mail. This email offered prospects the opportunity to request content for the next stage, ask for further information or speak with a representative.
By monitoring whether prospects opened the emails, shared them with colleagues and requested further information, the company was able to further qualify prospects by level of interest and propensity to buy.
Nurturing campaigns build confidence
The progressive nature of the campaign helped build confidence in the prospects and demonstrated that the security company was capable of acting as a trusted advisor – an important factor in consultative selling.
When prospects reached the final stage and requested a meeting, the company could feel confident that it would be dealing with informed decision makers who would respond to a professional presentation, rather than focus on price alone.
Email is an essential sales tool
This campaign illustrates the role of email in qualifying and nurturing prospects and ensuring they understand the real benefits to their business of a product or service. It shows how qualifying the prospects at an early stage, helps to deliver relevant content to the right decision makers based on their level of understanding and information needs.
The example also highlights the importance of monitoring campaign effectiveness and adapting strategies to improve results. By monitoring the number of times prospects open each of the emails or forward them to colleagues, you can develop a score that indicates their propensity to buy.
These are all important issues that are covered in Live Salesforce Training programs. Our classes can help you make the most effective use of the email automation facilities in Salesforce to develop targeted campaigns, improve response rates and win more business.