Best practices for lead generation, marketing automation and revenue generation topics.

How can you integrate trade shows and other industry events into your automated marketing?

Marketing Automation Trade ShowsRegardless of the industry you are in, trade shows are a great opportunity to gain new leads and meet potential new clients. Regardless of whether you plan to have a representative at the event or not, trade shows represent a gathering of individuals interested in the type of services that you provide, and interacting with them is always a positive experience. And since it is nearly impossible for most businesses to have a real presence at every relevant show, using some of the marketing automation tools provided by Lead Liaison can greatly increase your company’s visibility to attendees and the industry in general.

Social Media and Marketing Automation

One of the most straightforward ways to utilize Lead Liaison’s marketing automation tools to interact with trade show attendees and other individuals who are interested in what the show has to offer is to utilize the automated social media tools in Lead Liaison.

With a little bit of planning, your marketing team can quickly schedule LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook posts to automatically post as the event approaches. With strategic use of hashtags and other markers, your company will become a part of the online community interested in the event, introducing you and your services to new clients naturally.

Social media automation doesn’t stop there either. During the event, posts about significant events can help attract attention to your company’s social media feeds, but even more effective are interactive posts that prompt community discussion. Social media posts that quiz attendees about favorite products and questions directed at attendees can all be scheduled in advance, generating create feedback and exposure.

Make New Connections and Keep Them Interested With Lead Liaison’s Lead Nurturing Tools

If you do have a representative at the event, be sure that they stay in tune with social media, but don’t neglect the face-to-face network opportunities inherent in events such as trade shows. You want to meet as many prospective clients as possible, but don’t let this be your only goal. You aren’t simply trying to sell – you want to be receptive and listen to what your new contacts are interested in.

After an event has occurred, enter any new client data obtained from the event or social media into Lead Liaison’s client database, and let the program qualify all prospective leads. Make sure to integrate any leads that may not pay off right away into Lead Liaison’s lead nurturing system – and also remember that trade shows offer you great opportunities to send a message to anyone already in your lead nurturing system.

Trade shows are fun events that bring together lots of disparate elements of any industry, and treated properly can yield fantastic information and lead generation. With a little planning and good use of marketing automation, you’ll be amazed at the difference even the most basic levels of interaction with these events will have.

Visit our revenue generation and marketing automation resource blog to learn more ways to use marketing automation to expand your client base and build your business with Lead Liaison.

Database Segmentation Can Be Easy

Database Segmentation Can Be Easy Database segmentation is a crucial element of allowing your marketing and sales team to communicate effectively with leads and customers. It becomes even more important as the overall number of leads and customers grows to ensure that you are able to remain in contact with everyone. However, it is equally important that the communication you send to your customers is relevant to the individual, and that you are not spamming leads with unwanted information, potentially turning them away from your business. Lead Liaison features many intuitive automated tools to help you manage your growing database of customer contacts.

Different Methods Of Data Segmentation

One of the most important features of Lead Liaison is the ability to dynamically create lists in order to quickly and accurately send emails to your relevant leads. Lead Liaison has over 65 preset attributes to segment your database and help you communicate the correct information at the correct times to your leads. Those categories can broadly be defined as related to lead strength, helping you access customers when the Lead Liaison database has determined they are most ready to purchase your services, and personalization, so you can send communications based off specific relevant information gathered about your customers.

Segmenting customers according to the strength and type of leads helps you connect with customers when they are ready to purchase your service with the correct level of service appropriate for their needs and budget. Lead grade is an attribute that is defined in the Lead Liaison database based on how well an individual fits your buyer profile. This helps ensure that each customer is being approached with an appropriate level of service by your sales and marketing teams. Lead score is an attribute that is determined by a customer’s interaction with your website, sales team and marketing. This attribute helps you know how interested a customer is in your service and when they might be most likely to buy.

By creating lists based on personalization attributes, you can contact your customers with services that are specific to their location, needs or ability to interact with your services. One of the best ways to use this is by creating lists based on geography, so you can quickly communicate with your leads in a specific region with relevant information. Another important factor is a customer job title, since an owner or vice-president can make purchasing decisions that individuals lower in the hierarchy would not be able to. Past purchases is another important factor to consider when segmenting your customer database, so you can inform your customer of services that could be repeated or inform them of a complementary offer.

Use Data Segmentation To Maximize Efficiency

In addition to accessing customers to inform them of relevant opportunities, you can also use data segmentation to help reduce waste. Attributes such as delivery bounce, do not call or do not email all help to ensure that your marketing and sales teams aren’t wasting their time contacting someone who is uninterested in your service.

These are only some of the ways that Lead Liaison’s automated data segmentation services can help your business, visit our resource blog to learn more.

Keep Your Social Media Current With Real-Time Event Integration

Keep Your Social Media Current With Real-Time Event IntegrationKeep your social media current with real-time event integration and you’ll start impressing your prospects. Using Lead Liaison’s powerful tools, you can quickly set up an automated schedule to maintain multiple healthy and vibrant social media profiles, greatly increasing the visibility of your company to potential leads. However, to get the most out of your social media presence it should include not only relevant details about your company, but be responsive to events and news that involves your field. Real-time event integration is a key strategy in today’s fast paced world of social media communication, and should be an essential component of your social media strategy.

If your marketing has already set up an automated schedule using Lead Liaison, then that’s good – they’ve laid the framework for a healthy social media presence. Your customers are informed of what is happening with your company, and that’s important. Real-time event integration isn’t something that exists beside a long term social media automation strategy, the two are intimately related and equals parts of one singular goal, becoming part of an active, engaged community. Let’s use the example of a trade show related to your company to see how real-time integration can reach a broader audience and stimulate new leads.

Reactive Real-Time Event Integration

If there’s an important trade show approaching in your industry, hopefully it is already being planned for as a part of your marketing team’s social media automation strategy. Announcements leading up to are a great way to demonstrate activity on various social media platforms. Once the event begins, make sure you are participating in the conversation. If you have a marketing representative attending, have them take pictures, and never forget the importance of hashtags to become part of a larger conversation. If a big announcement happens, be a part of it. Even if the announcement isn’t directly related to your company, it never hurts to be a part of the buzz.

Predictive Real-Time Event Integration

Not all real-time even integration has to be reactive, however. Your marketing team should also design posts that will go up at times when they will be seen by the largest number of potential leads and customers. By creating posts that encourage participation, such as a question about attendees’ favorite moments, a poll, or even a contest related to the show, you can engage lot of new contacts and increase your social media profile very effectively.

At the end of the day, your marketing team should be working on a real-time event integration social media strategy that is both predictive and reactive, and all of this should fall under the umbrella of your larger social media automation strategy. And make sure that all of your social media posts are landing on the appropriate platform, a 40 word tweet accompanied by a hashtag looks a lot more at home on Twitter than it does on LinkedIn.

With a little planning and an effective utilization of the social media automation tools that Lead Liaison places at your disposal, you’ll quickly see the benefits of an active social media presence. Visit our marketing automation blog to learn more about how you can get the most from your social media accounts.

Scheduling Your Social Posts Makes All The Difference

Scheduling Your Social Posts Makes All The DifferenceScheduling your social posts makes a ton of difference. In today’s landscape of digital communication, an active social media presence is essential for communicating with potential and existing customers. In order to create an active presence, however, your marketing team needs to be able to deliver quality social media content on a consistent schedule that is in line with everything else that is going on within your company. This can be difficult to do on the fly, and trying to do so can make it difficult for a marketing team to adhere to their overall strategy. In order to maximize the impact of your social media presence, you should consider scheduling your social media posts, and Lead Liaison’s social media automation tools make this a simple and straightforward process.

A Consistent Schedule Of Social Media Posts Yields Tangible Benefits

What kinds of benefits will you see after pursuing a social media post scheduling strategy? An active social media presence helps establish a connection with potential customers, and reassures your existing customers that your company is actively engaged with the services you provide. In addition, regular social media updates build an online presence by connecting not only with other users but also other businesses, giving your company a wider profile and making it visible to more potential customers. However, achieving these sorts of connections and a large presence takes time and continued engagement, all of which can be easily controlled by an automated posting schedule.

Lead Liaison provides tools that connect to all the major social media platforms, such as Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook, and allows you to connect multiple accounts from each service. Our intuitive software lets you quickly decide on which platform every post your marketing department creates will be shown, helping you control the voice of each account while ensuring that crucial messages are delivered at the same time across all relevant social media services. In addition, our social media post queue, called the buffer, not only lets you post essentially on auto-pilot, but will let your team know when the buffer is low, helping you ensure an uninterrupted flow of social media activity.

Make Sure Your Team Remains Engaged

While posting on a consistent schedule on various social media platforms is an important part of an effective social media strategy, don’t think it’s the whole game. A crucial part of an engaging Twitter or Facebook account is the conversation that can occur between your customers. Make sure your team is making time to respond to activity on your various social media accounts, and make sure they stay aware of what is happening in your field and the world to make sure that automated posts don’t conflict with any important events or news.

By remembering these basic tenants of social media engagement and developing a coherent, automated schedule for social media postings, you’ll quickly see increased activity on social media and awareness from your customers and community. Remember to start scheduling your social posts! Visit Lead Liaison to find out more about how we can help engage your company on social media and the many other ways we can help automate your marketing capabilities.

Understanding Your Leads With Lead Liaison

Understanding Your Leads With Lead LiaisonIn order to both market effectively to your customers and enable your sales team to be able convert potential customers, you need to start understanding your leads, both on an individual scale and your lead database as a whole. After all, even the most skilled sales team can put up less than stellar conversion numbers if they are handed too many leads, or are not given the appropriate information to sell to promising leads. Lead Liaison incorporates a wide variety of features to help your marketing team gather information about your leads, and integrates this with features to communicate that information with the sales team.

Gather Information About Your Leads To Market Effectively

In order to learn whether your leads are ready to buy or receptive to your companies’ services, you need a way for your marketing team to gather information about them. Lead Liaison features many tools to help accomplish that. One of the most important ways to do this is with automatic lead scoring, which will score activities such as web form submissions, page views, video activity, document downloads and many other statistics, all of which can customized. In addition, Lead Liaison will connect to a lead’s social media profiles, pulling any pertinent data and adding it to their profile, helping you understand as much as possible about your leads.

All of this information is compiled into Lead Liaison’s hot lead dashboard, entitled Briefcase. This tool is designed to help your sales team interpret the data that your marketing team has gathered about leads, and will help your sales force be able to quickly access how warm any given lead is. These levels are based on a wide range of qualification factors, such as overall activity, buy signals and lead grade so the software can comb the entire database to eliminate duplicates, ensuring your sales reps never irritates a potential customer with over access.

Maintain A Relationship With All Leads, Cold Or Hot

Leads are not only potential customers when your marketing or sales team first comes in contact with them, and many of your potential leads may not be ready for the service you provide at the moment they enter your radar. In order to maximize these cold leads, and convert them into customers when the time is right, Lead Liaison has automated nurturing tools to open a conversation and keep your company present in a potential customer’s mind for when they do require your services. Our automated tools will continue to track a customer who may not be a warm lead yet, and will inform you if their pattern of behavior indicates that they could potentially become a candidate for conversion.

Lead Liaison offers many useful and efficient tools to help you, your marketing department and your sales team understand all of your leads information in order to help make sales. Visit our revenue generation blog and marketing automation resources page to learn more about how you can increase your business with Lead Liaison, and visit our website to learn more about how our software can help you gather information about your customers.

Do You Know Which Leads Are More Likely To Become Customers?

Do you know which leads are  more likely to become customers?Do you know which leads are more likely to become customers? There’s nothing more exciting than a fresh new group of leads, all contacted through a successful marketing strategy and ready to be turned over to an eager sales staff. But as we all know an unfortunately small percentage of those leads, no how well they were acquired, will be ready to buy when they are contacted. So how do you know which leads are likely to become customers, and how do you help your staff contact those leads at the right time? Using a combination of tools available through Lead Liaison’s software and solutions you can help your marketing and sales staff capitalize on every opportunity.

Lead Liaison is able to offer these sorts of results by employing a variety of different approaches to information collection, analysis, and automated marketing solutions to keep leads engaged and accessible for the right moment for your team to make the sale. How does this work? It begins with the analysis of data gleaned from your website and other materials, which feeds into a sophisticated algorithm of lead grading and scoring to tell you’re sales team when a lead can be converted into a customer.

Analytics

One of the basic principles of creating an automated marketing solution for your company is gathering and examining the data that customers bring to your marketing team through their activity on your website and with other materials. Actions like web form conversion, email opens and social media activity inform your marketing team of what is working with customers and helps sales better understand the interest of their leads.

Buy signals are a real-time system of alerts that will communicate with your sales team when a potential lead performs an activity that exhibits a good chance to make a sale, such as a time-sensitive email click through or web form submission.

Lead Grading

Lead grading is a vital technique in helping your marketing team identify ideal buyers. Lead Liaison’s lead grading algorithms take a variety of factors into account, including job title, industry, geography and revenue to determine whether or not they are a good match for your product or service and thus would make a likely sale. These qualifications are fully customizable, letting your team develop the ideal customer for your company.

Using the data compiled by the lead grading algorithms, Lead Liaison’s software scores individual leads, and passes this data on to your sales team. Using the hot lead dashboard, Briefcase, your sales team will have all the information they need to know when a lead is ready to buy and have the information they need to make the sale. Information such as buy signals, overall activity and lead grade is delivered into the engine to create a complete picture of your potential customers.

Lead Liaison’s tools for helping your team know which leads are more likely to be converted to customers don’t end there. Visit our marketing automation blog to learn more about practices such as lead nurturing, which helps you turn cold leads into warm one.

 

Marketing Automation Tools Every Company Should Be Using

Marketing Automation Tools Every Company Should Be UsingMarketing automation is far from a trendy phrase that businesses are using to create buzz. When marketing automation tools are implemented, lead nurturing skyrockets: an astounding 451% of companies see an increase in quality leads and 53% higher conversion rates. Marketing automation will also save you time, money, and stress and will condense many of your daily activities so your team can focus on more important tasks. Clearly, marketing automation is a solution that many businesses should be engaging. If you’re just now considering adding marketing automation, you may be overwhelmed in the sea of options. We’ve broken down a few marketing automation tools for you to consider.

Blog Content Management Systems

You’re probably familiar with this type of marketing automation system and don’t even know it. Popular blog content management systems include WordPress which is an active user community that has an enormous range of plugins available, all designed to help you create and manage a blog. Other options include Joomla and Drupal. Like WordPress, Joomla has an enormous interactive user community who can answer your questions or address concerns. Drupal is an additional option that is an open source CMS and is used to create blogs as well as enterprise applications.

Landing Pages and Lead Capture Forms

A landing page is a single web page, designed to be individual from your main web pages. In simpler terms, a landing page can be any web page that someone ‘lands’ on but it’s generally used for one main purpose: to guide users to convert. Some landing pages are ‘click-through’ which means your user will click a link through to another page. Typically, this page will be a descriptor page offering them more information about your products. Lead capture forms are often on the landing page: a place where users can submit their information for a Freemium trial, get a free sample, or request that the sales team call them back with more information. Truly, the lead capture form should be the focus of your landing page and its placement is important.

Contact Management and Lead Nurturing

The most popular contact management suites for midsized companies include Lead Liaison, which allows you to rank your website and sales team generated leads according to buying interest – making your leads all the more powerful and improving conversion rates. Some content management suites also allow you to manage your social media accounts and offer extensions that will make you even more automated – especially common and time-consuming tasks. You can even choose software that will track your interactions with potential customers, making it clear where they fall in the conversion funnel.

Email Marketing

Perhaps the most time-consuming and tedious task, automating your email marketing frees up a considerable amount of your time. Want to email all contacts that are about to exhaust their Freemium version? Email marketing automation can send out targeted communications and automated messages while also appearing to be customized to each receiver: this means that you’ll create a more personal relationship, which will hopefully lead to higher conversion rates.

This isn’t an inclusive list of all the marketing automation tools available but it is a good place to start. There are options that can automate some or all of your marketing. You just have to do your research and decide which one is right for your company and your customers!

Effectively Implementing Marketing Automation

Effectively Implementing Marketing Automation Often, the biggest challenge in effectively implementing marketing automation software to your repertoire of business tools is how to deliver messages that are appropriate to your audience while engaging leads. Marketing automation can help you reach a broader audience than other marketing strategies but it can be stressful software to implement and the concept can often seem overwhelming.

Decide What Your Goal Is

A successful marketing automation program really begins with a company deciding what they want to accomplish. Creating a plan for implementation before purchasing or even considering software is key for success. It’s easy to get carried away by all the excitement that good marketing automation can bring but you’ll need to set expectations to be really satisfied. If you really want to be successful at marketing automation, your sales and marketing teams will need to get on board with the plan and come to an agreement on how they will work together and what their roles will be. Starting with a Service Level Agreement (SLA) between sales and marketing is always a good first step.

With marketing automation, your marketing team’s new job will be to deliver the right message at the right time so you can engage your audience and nurture your leads. This means that marketing will be getting a new workload, probably from the sales team, and everyone will need to realize his or her new roles. Avoiding unwelcome surprises regarding workload, tasks, and interaction between teams will be easier if all these issues are discussed beforehand.

Start Small

It’s tempting to take your marketing automation software and throw everything into it but it might not be wise, especially at the beginning. Sometimes, less truly is more, and trying to include every feature of your marketing automation program right at the offset is more likely to set you back than push you forward. You’ll be in a much greater position if you start small, measure your successes and reevaluate your challenges, than you will be if you toss everything into the pot and hope for the best.

To get off on right foot effectively implementing marketing automation, think of your first full-fledged campaign as a trial run and learning experience will help mitigate any difficulties or disappointments. What you learn from your first sales and marketing campaign can help you learn what works and what doesn’t work for your next one. You also need to decide what exactly you’ll be automating. Do you have on the fly content that needs to be automated or are you looking for a more complex plan on creating, distributing, and re-employing your creative content? Don’t forget to include in your plans some action items for what should happen after the leads start coming in. You need to ensure you have a dedicated and knowledgeable sales team who can answer all your leads questions and concerns.

Keep in mind while you’re doing all of this that the process, planning, and implementation can be overwhelming. Remember that your investment into marketing automation isn’t just your monthly or quarterly subscription, but it’s also the time you put into the software and the data it produces.

How Can Marketing Automation Save Money: How Does $181,059 Sound!

How Can Marketing Automation Save Money?

“Marketing automation” has become such a buzz phrase over recent years that most vendors try to incorporate the term into their pitch, and sometimes go as far as completely branding their business as marketing automation. In reality, there aren’t that many pure-play marketing automation companies out there in the industry. 100s of providers stake claim on marketing automation to be part of the buzz, which causes confusion in the marketplace. Companies have a hard time understanding marketing automation let alone how marketing automation can save money. In this post we provide a quantitative analysis to answer the question, how can marketing automation save money? We’ll also touch on our approach to marketing automation.

ROI of Marketing Automation Based on Functional Usage

You’ll see some fancy calculators to add up the ROI of marketing automation, but not many resources provide a ROI analysis based on functional areas. We did that for you and looked at what a typical company would spend after investing in a piece-milled software strategy. When you list out the category of tools that companies use to help drive revenue, the list typically includes sales efficiency tools, landing page designers, form designers, email marketing, automation, and a handful of other tools. The problem with buying all of these ad-hoc solutions is two-fold. First, they don’t all play nice together as disparate solutions. Second, your wallet gets pretty thin when you’re buying all these pieces separately. We decided to do a little analysis and tally up individual, best-in-breed solutions to see how much money would drain from your budget over a five year period if a company were to acquire all of these solutions standalone.

Integrated Marketing - How Much Money Can Marketing Automation Save

How Much Money Can Marketing Automation Save You?

Below you’ll find the assumptions we used, cost of individual solutions, and a ROI analysis at the end.

The bottom line: Lead Liaison can save your company $181,059 or 362%! What we didn’t include are the incremental costs for:

  • Multiple learning curves
  • Multiple resources required to manage each ad-hoc solution

Add those in and you could very well double the ROI from what we’ve reported above.

Assumptions:

Assumptions
At least 5 sales people
Up to 10,000 contacts
No more than 100 forms
No more than 25,000 unique visitors per month
Email frequency to database 2x per month
Use each software package for 5 years

Cost of Individual Solutions:

Solution Monthly Price Package Purpose
Tout App $250 Team Email for Sales
Blogging $600 2 Posts Per Week, $75 per Blog Marketing Content
Litmus $149 Plus Email Testing
Marketo $1,795 Standard Marketing Automation
VisiStat $500 Rocket Visitor Tracking
HootSuite $10 Pro Social Posting
Gravity Forms/
Formstack
$99 Business License / Gold Web Forms
Unbounce $99 Pro 99 Landing Pages
Mailchimp $150 Growing business Email Marketing
Opt-In Monster $199 Pro Engaging Popups

Total Spend on Ad-Hoc Solutions:

TOTAL $3,851
ANNUAL SPEND $46,212
LIFETIME SPEND $231,059

ROI with Lead Liaison:

AVERAGE ANNUAL SPEND with Lead Liaison $10,000
LIFETIME SPEND with Lead Liaison $50,000
ROI of Lead Liaison 362.12%
SAVINGS with Lead Liaison $181,059

Lead Liaison’s Philosophy

We’ve got a different philosophy about marketing automation here at Lead Liaison. We don’t hate marketing automation, we just hate how the term is overused, misused, and misunderstood. The truth is that marketing automation is not software, it’s a strategy. You can’t really buy marketing automation software, but you can buy software that helps execute your strategy, which should include automation. No software out-of-the-box is going to automate your marketing – that’s wishful thinking.

Choices are getting “clouded” too. Some companies like HubSpot try to be the all-in-one solution, and get your CRM business too. Unfortunately, or fortunately for some, HubSpot is morphing into an Oracle or Salesforce.com type of company, is now public – trying to satisfy Wall Street, and now trying to take all your sales and marketing dollars with the emphasis on their new CRM. Lead Liaison fits in between the all-in-ones and marketing automation providers with our Revenue Generation Software® platform optimized for mid-market companies. Our mission has always been to focus on automation that improves a company’s sales and marketing operations but more importantly, generates more revenue for our customers. We believe companies care about revenue, not just automating marketing. We’re CRM agnostic, offer professional-grade sales and marketing automation functionality at killer prices, and have the industry’s deepest integration with 3rd party solutions.

Marketing Automation: What Defines Top Performers?

What Defines Top Performers in Marketing AutomationIn organizations, job retention in the marketing department remains low. In fact, job tenures in a typical marketing department are as little as three years and it’s one role that is under constant analysis and assessment. When performance wanes, marketers can expect to have to answer big questions and fight for their jobs. Successful marketers from one company may have trouble transitioning to another because what works for one industry may not work in another. This can lead to confusion about what traits top performers have.

Most top performers tend to focus on keeping their existing customers while spending less time on expanding their customer base. Keeping your customers loyal and happy tends to work out much better for companies rather than chasing after new customers. It’s also less expensive with top performers only spending approximately 20 percent of their budget on expansion where others in the field spend around 30 percent. When it comes to customers, top performers also make it a priority to manage the entire life cycle of their clients. Instead of leaving the majority of the life cycle to sales and technical support, top performers recognize that marketing has a huge role to play in successfully managing the entire customer experience.

Speaking of the customer life cycles, top performers tie response rates, satisfaction scores, and other metrics into how well they’re performing. Instead of measuring typical things like number of leads, top performers are able to control their technology and make it work for them instead of the other way around. In fact, 30% to 75% of top performing marketers personalize their technology and data to get a better perspective on how they’re performing and what they should change to boost performance.

Finally, top performers recognize that retention is a problem. Recruiting and retention is a priority among top performing companies but it doesn’t stop there. Top companies make sure that they provide their crucial employees with the training, technology, and resources needed to get their job done – therefore, customer satisfaction tends to rank just as high as customer satisfaction with these companies.

Obviously, when it comes to performance, recognizing the link between customers, marketers, and the sales team is key. But you also have to take all of that data and put it to good use – making it work for you – instead of the other way around. Marketing automation may vary from industry to industry but top performers know that one thing remains true: using your stats and metrics to evolve and change your marketing strategy will maximize your effectiveness.