BEGINNER'S-GUIDE

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if all of your leads nurtured themselves? Or if your social media accounts could update on their own? And if all the components of your marketing strategy could send you monthly reports automatically?

Well, that’s the beauty of marketing automation. You can automate several tactics that you use as part of your marketing campaigns. However, you still need to be prepared to do a whole lot of leg work to make them effective.

Let’s start with Marketo’s definition of marketing automation:

“Marketing automation is a category of technology that allows companies to streamline, automate, and measure marketing tasks and workflows, so they can increase operational efficiency and grow revenue faster.”

Sounds great, right? But the mistake many marketers make is moving forward with a marketing automation software purchase without having enough quality contacts at their disposal to make their purchase worthwhile. For example, if you have only one email list full of people that have already purchased your product or service, why would you buy software designed to send them lead-nurturing email series?

But if you have a significant amount of unique visitors to your website, a decent following on social media, or more people interested in your product or service, it might be time to consider automating one (if not all!) of the following marketing tactics:

  • Email Marketing
  • Landing Pages
  • Referral Marketing
  • Lead Management
  • Social Marketing

Here at Expect Referrals, we use a variety of software to track leads, send prospects personalized emails and manage our social platforms. Below are some of the tools that we use and recommend to our clients that want to dive into marketing automation.

Unbounce

Landing pages are used to give website visitors some sort of premium content in exchange for their contact information. Unbounce provides marketers with the means to create landing pages for their website through a user-friendly drag and drop interface. Even if you’re not a designer, you’ll be able to create a landing page that mimics the look and feel of your website.

When someone fills out a form on an Unbound landing page, their contact information can be automatically sent to an email list or customer relationship management platform, giving you the ability to nurture that lead and follow them through the buying process.

Sprout Social

Gone are the days of having five different tabs open as you try to manage all of your social media platforms. Sprout Social aggregates all of your social media accounts into one place. You can schedule posts, respond to messages and see how your social is performing all in one place.

One of our favorite features of Sprout Social is that you can search for keywords right in their browser, allowing you to find out if someone mentioned your business in a post without tagging you in it. This allows you to interact with people who otherwise would go unnoticed. If you have a large social following that you engage with on a daily basis, Sprout Social would be a sound investment.

SharpSpring

SharpSpring combines email automation with powerful lead scoring that allow you to engage with leads at critical moments during the buying process. Like Unbound, SharpSpring also allows you to create smart forms that you can use that will automatically add them to an email list based on their responses.

SharpSpring also features a built-in customer relationship management platform that allows you to customize it based on your sales process. This gives you a better way of tracking leads, and allows your whole team to see how likely it is that someone will purchase your product or service.

How These Platforms Can Work With Expect Referrals

Using either one of these services or a combination of them services along with the Expect Referrals software, you’ll be able to promote your referral campaign and encourage people to refer your business. And since you’ll be collecting tons of email addresses through our software, you can funnel those contacts into another marketing automation platform that will allow you to continue to nurture them after they have redeemed their offer.

For more information about how the Expect Referrals software can automate your referral marketing efforts, visit our website. Interested in trying out Expect Referrals free of charge for the next 30 days?

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