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Marketing Automation with Squarespace

Marketing automation with Squarespace is easy to do when you connect two systems together, specifically – your website and marketing automation platform. As a standalone solution, Squarespace is a fantastic, cost effective way to build and manage your businesses website. However, without connecting it to a marketing automation platform you won’t be able to take advantage of data you collect on your website and run effective marketing campaigns with that data. Two important integration points are website traffic and form collection.

Lead Liaison provides a marketing automation platform that integrates these two areas, among others, with Squarespace. Customer’s using Squarespace as their website platform can easily add a few lines of JavaScript code into the footer or header of their Squarespace website. Once done, the marketing automation platform will begin tracking visitor activity, including names of businesses and people (something Google Analytics cannot do), and build rich profiles of visitor activity. As the system monitors visitor engagement, such as pages visited, documents downloaded, videos watched, on-site search terms, button/link clicks, and much more, a robust profile is created. This information is valuable insight that sales reps can use when contacting their prospect or following up website visitors. Marketers can also use this information for analytics, to gage how effective their Squarespace website is.

Web forms are another area where marketing automation platforms like Lead Liaison and Squarespace integrate. In Lead Liaison, users can build and style smart web forms and easily embed those into their Squarespace page. The smart web forms can pre-fill data, use advanced features like progress profiling, and most importantly easily capture the lead and/or inquiry and add it to your CRM. With the marketing automation platform, businesses can easily wrap critical business processes around the form submission. For example, lead distribution, lead qualification, lead follow up, and lead nurturing are all processes that can be built and automated using the marketing automation platform.

Once the marketing automation does it’s job of turning the Squarespace website from a static platform into an inbound marketing machine, marketers can use the rich data collected to run sophisticated outbound marketing campaigns. Instead of using basic email integrations with Squarespace, such as Mailchimp, for outbound communication, marketers can now leverage the true power of a modern day outbound marketing platform to run their campaigns. Marketing automation platforms like Lead Liaison help deliver omni-channel communications. Omni-channel communication includes both offline and online marketing channels. Instead of relying only on email, marketers can easily send handwritten letters, postcards, text messages, and more as one-off campaigns to select prospects, or as part of an advanced automated campaign. Imagine hooking up marketing automation with Squarespace and being able to automate a process around a web form submission. For example, the visitor comes to your Squarespace website, submits a form, gets an immediate response, gets sent to the right sales rep at the right time, then gets nurtured on behalf of the sales rep (because they’re not quite ready to buy – a common occurrence!). All of these things are possible when you connect your Squarespace website with a marketing automation platform like Lead Liaison.

One final area of integration is with dynamic content. Lead Liaison provides a solution called SiteEngage™, which adds a level of higher engagement to your Squarespace website. With this solution, businesses can tailor embedded content (images/text) on their Squarespace site to the visitor’s interests. For example, changing a text headline stating that your company loves working with people in the visitor’s state. Since your marketing automation platform will know where the visitor is from, this information can be used to personalize the website experience. The other benefit of making your Squarespace website dynamic with SiteEngage™, is with popups. In addition to smart web forms, Lead Liaison can use pop ups to help convert more visitors to your Squarespace website. These pop ups can use information on the visitor, like the state mentioned above, to tailor the content in the pop up. Pop ups can be trigger by button clicks, page scrolls, exit intent (closing the browser or hitting the back button), and page clicks.

To learn more about how you can integrate your Squarespace website with a marketing automation platform like Lead Liaison contact us today!

3 Awesome Results from Visitor Tracking

If you’ve been in marketing for any amount of time, you know that Inbound Marketing is all the rage and visitor tracking is a must. That great content on your website doesn’t mean much if you don’t know who’s engaging with it.  But you know that already.

What you may not know is what you can get out of visitor tracking other than simply which pages on your website get the most traffic. When you use a visitor tracking platform like Lead Liaison’s ProspectVision™, you’ll be surprised what you can learn about your prospects, your content, and your campaigns. We’re going to look at some of the awesome results you get from visitor tracking.

Sales Learns What Visitors Care About

Having done B2B sales in the past, I can confidently say that prospecting isn’t fun. What’s worse is that a lot of old techniques aren’t working anymore. Knocking on random doors, smiling and dialing, and sending out cold email blasts isn’t going to get you a meeting. According to this great article at Forbes, only 1% of cold calls result in a deal, and 90% of decision makers don’t take cold calls. So how do you get around that? With a warm call, of course.

The great thing about prospecting from your website is that you know the prospect is already somewhat interested in you. More importantly, you can get in their heads. By seeing where they’ve gone, what videos they watched (or which parts of a video the skipped), and what content they’ve downloaded, you can get a pretty clear picture of what is important to them.

Don’t take my word for it, though. Check out this video to learn how HRchitect was able to close one of their biggest deals in one of their shortest sales cycles thanks to ProspectVision֭™

Marketers Can Evaluate the Value of the Campaigns

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, visitor tracking is not just for sales people. Marketers can use visitor tracking to rate the effectiveness of their campaigns. Sometimes it’s hard to tell when a marketing effort is really worth it. Did the campaign generate any prospects? Did that, in turn, generate an opportunity? Did that opportunity close with a win?

When combined with Marketing Automation like Lead Liaison’s Lead Management Automation (LMA)™ platform, it’s easy to learn where your precious marketing dollars are best spent. Imagine knowing not just where your prospects came from (organic search, PPC ad, etc.), but which campaigns have brought in the most visitors that later converted to prospects.

Since I help with many of our implementations, I’ve seen marketers be absolutely shocked by some of the things they’ve learned. Recently I was helping a client connect their Google AdWords account to Lead Liaison. Once we’d imported the data and connected it to the appropriate Prospect Profiles, he was shocked. He had spent over $10,000 on one ad campaign which ended up only creating 125 converted Prospects. That was $80 per Prospect with an email he could contact. Needless to say, he reallocated the budget for that campaign to one that was significantly more effective, reducing his cost per prospect from AdWords by about $65.   

You Learn Where Your Website is Doing Great (and What Needs Improving)

Chances are you have decent traffic to your home page. You probably also have at least one or two other pages that are visited at least somewhat frequently. Chances are also that you have content that hasn’t seen the light of day since it was put on your site.

With visitor tracking, you can learn which pieces of content are attracting the most visitors. By figuring out what is and isn’t working, you can continue to tweak your content to fit your user base. That’s the core of Inbound Marketing; delivering quality content that attracts visitors to your website.

You might be thinking “I already know which pages are visited the most and what content my visitors engage the most.” That’s great if you do, but like I said before, solutions like ProspectVision™ do so much more.

For every visitor, we create a prospect profile with a timeline. Even before we know their email and can identify them, we’re watching what they do. Sure, they might still convert with the same piece of content that everyone else seems attracted to, but the might have spent months anonymously poking around other parts of your site. With our timelines, we can show you the steps they took to get to that conversion. This is powerful insight into your prospects’ minds.

I can’t stress this enough: if you don’t have a visitor tracking solution, get one. If you’d like to know more about what ProspectVision™ and Lead Management Automation™ can do, click here for a demo.

Nonprofits and Marketing Automation: Automation & Analytics

Nonprofits need marketing automation, plain and simple. Specifically because marketing automation can help nonprofits make the most of their marketing budgets. In this series, we are talking about the ways that nonprofits and marketing automation can work together to generate more giving.

Automation and Analytics for Nonprofits

With 57 percent of nonprofits claiming they don’t get the most out of donor data when crafting fundraising strategies, it is clear they can benefit from basic marketing automation capabilities. These capabilities allow nonprofit organizations to use the data they collect to communicate more effectively with existing donors, and to also encourage new donors.

Automation and analytics are the cornerstones of any successful marketing automation campaign. See how these two strategies help organizations make it to the next level.

How Does Automation Work?

Automation might seem as if it is the wave of the future, but companies are using it right now to improve their bottom line, and nonprofits can benefit, as well. Nonprofits can benefit from using automation because they often struggle with manpower. There aren’t enough people to do the work that needs to be done, but marketing automation can step in and do a lot of the work for them! 

There isn’t a limit to what nonprofits can do with automation. They can trigger email campaigns to begin as soon as someone donates money, or they can use automation to nurture potential donors. Organizations can also use automation to create digital profiles of leads, segment those leads, and qualify them. This is just a snapshot of the power provided by automation.

Analyze Results with Analytics

Anyone who works at a nonprofit knows the importance of numbers. Numbers tell a story in a way that nothing else can, so you have to dig deep and look at the numbers to evaluate your success. Marketing automation is no different. Analytics play a very important role when running marketing automation campaigns.

Lead Liaison has tons of base-level reporting features. We also have an add-on called Revelation™, which is used to organize and analyze data. This enterprise analytics suite provides visual and interactive data, making it easy to see what is working and what isn’t working. Once you know what’s getting results and what isn’t, you can make changes to your campaign. That is the great thing about marketing automation. Campaigns can get changed and tweaked at any time. Then, the results can be measured in real-time to see if those changes helped or hurt the campaign.

Marketing automation is full of possibilities, and basic automation and analytics just scratch the surface. This technique is full of possibilities for nonprofits. Nonprofits that are serious about increasing donations will benefit from this technique.

To learn more about how marketing automation can help nonprofits increase giving, nurture donors, and empower their communities, click here!

The Importance of Event Follow-Up: Part 1

Your organization just attended a big marketing event. There was a lot of planning that went into your organzation’s participation at this event. You spent lots of marketing dollars trying to make an impact, and hopefully creating a lot of leads. And it worked! Your onsite representatives collected tons of leads! You probably already know that your event follow-up is important, but did you know just how important it really is? And, how rare it is?!

Why is the timing of your event follow-up important?

According to recent research from Certain published on MarketingProfs, “some 73.5% of respondents say their firm takes four days or longer to follow up with event leads. Just 2% of respondents say their firm follows up with event leads on the same day.” Most respondants to this research said that the reason they do not follow up quickly is because of how long it takes to prepare the outreach and that they do not have the tools to speed up the process.

Prompt event follow-up is critical. It allows your organization to stand out from the competition because it shows that you care enough to make that follow-up a priority.

Event lead capture methods, like our app GoCapture!™, are an important part of any marketing automation platform. This functionality allows companies to streamline thier event follow-up in a way that is personal, instantaneous, and repeatable. Our app allows onsite representatives to collect lead information quickly (without losing any valuable information), by scanning a badge, a business card, by manual entry, or even syncing with a registration list. Then, once that information is captured, it can be automatically uploaded to our database, segmented, and placed into a nuture campaign.

That nurture campaign can contain releveant event follow-up information in the form of email, text message, postcard, or even a handwritten letter (our personal favorite!). Whatever the method of outreach, the message should be well thought-out.

What kind of message to you send in your event follow-up?

First and foremost, your event follow-up should identify the specific show by name, within the first paragraph or even in the subject line. This immediately validates your outreach, which should encourage recipients to read further. And, don’t forget to include the information from the onsite representative that the prospect came into contact with. That will help create a personal connection with your outreach.

The conversations that onsite representatives have with leads can be breif, or very surface level. Your event follow-up messaging should offer a range of options for further engagement – also known as your call-to-actions (CTAs). You really want to appeal to a range of prospects at various stages of the selling cycle. You could offer a free download of a high-performing white paper, offer a free demonstration, or simply encourage your prospect to sign up for your company newsletter. These clickthrough options will help sales prioritze which leads should be called first and will also allow for further segmentation.

If you are interested in a better way to manage your event lead capture and your event follow-up, let us help you! Check out our event lead capture app, GoCapture!™ and our marketing automation platform, Lead Management Automation (LMA)™. If you like what you see, don’t hesitate to ask for a free, personalized demonstration.

Lead Nurturing Using Email

Lead Nurturing is dying quickly, and marketers are to blame. People are overwhelmed by massive amounts of email; and even your biggest fans are starting to see “educational” materials as being spam.

If I want to learn, I tend to go to a podcast, blog, or specific website for information. Information has lost its value in today’s “Google world,”  in most cases with evergreen content. However, automated messaging has one very important purpose: drawing attention to timely content.

If you are not sending content that is directly tied to the point in time that you are sending it, you are wasting your time and the time of your audience. And, your lead nurturing efforts are going out the window.

Instead, send timely/relevant information to nurture your leads. Examples include:

  • Special time sensitive offers (Your $50 coupon is going to expire tomorrow!)
  • Seasonal information  (Christmas is 1 month away and if you don’t buy your tree right now, you’re going to pay twice as much and get a brown tree!)
  • Date specific information (Your check-up is coming up in 3 weeks!)
  • Contact your representative and let them know to vote a certain way for our organization
  • Your contract is up for renewal
  • You are offering a webinar or attending a trade show and would like to include them

If there isn’t a time sensitive reason to open and act upon your message, 92% of all people that read the first line in your email will delete it/push it off with the intention of reading late – or worse, unsubscribe! Of the 8% that do read your entire email, 96% of those readers will not act upon your email.

A few tips to get a higher response rate:

  • Reference why you are writing to them at this time. Do so in the first sentence.
  • Let them know a consequence of not acting in the next 48 hours.
  • If information is not time sensitive, don’t send it, or wait until that information has a time sensitive meaning.
  • If your information is “education-only” consider sending a one sentence email letting them know that based on what you knew about that person, that you thought they would find a way to immediately benefit from the information…and send it as a link to a landing page. No proThis will build some level of curiosity, and the brevity of the email isn’t as likely to get 1,000 of your contacts to roll their eyes in unison when they open your email.   Also it will give you a much more organic “content garden” which could help SEO and future marketing efforts.

In the case of lead nurturing campaigns, less is best. Your messages should build excitement to the recipient. In doing so, you will be adding to your brand’s emotional value; and increasing response rates by 100% or more.

Want to learn how to automate time-sensitive messages as a part of your lead nurturing? Let us show you how!

Converting More Online Leads: Sales Team & Marketing Team Coordination

Marketing teams utilize online marketing activities to directly impact lead generation. It is no secret that leveraging data from various marketing channels provides companies with the ability to determine ROI and increase sales. Because of the nature of this relationship, a company’s marketing team and sales team should be closely aligned in order to close deals faster and collaborate on the best plan of action to effectively reel in potential customers. Too often, companies maintain a disconnect between these departments and lose out on profits. Consider the following problems and potential solutions to strengthen your business today. 

Problem: Lack of Interdepartmental Communication

Many companies find communication between departments to be difficult, so identifying the communication “pain points” is the first step in the process. You marketing team and your sales team should work with each other, not against each other. 

Solutions:

Funnel Location: The sales team needs to be assured that the marketing team is only passing along qualified, sales-ready leads. When a lead is established by marketing, it is important that the sales team knows what stage of the funnel the user is in. This allows a sales rep to tailor their approach when reaching out and presenting their sales pitch to the end consumer.

Tracking progress: The sales team can also find out the needs of their end consumers using online platforms if they are trained in the analyzation of prospect activity. All data, including emails and chat archives, should be sent over to sales once a new lead is acquired. If your marketing automation platform tracks this automatically, that’s a real bonus. 

Follow-ups: To be certain that no lead falls through the cracks, both departments should create a plan of action to follow-up with any lost leads identified throughout the online lead generation process. This should be completed on a monthly basis and can often be done by using a CRM tool.

Problem: Lack of Engagement on Social Platforms

Sales teams do not usually engage with leads through social platforms. It is imperative to teach the sales team to pay close attention to social media outlets and engage with possible leads when appropriate.

Solution:

Utilize LinkedIn and Other Online Social Tools: Both the sales and marketing teams should network with potential leads and current clients online. In addition, these platforms can be an effective way to gather information about a lead and add more ammunition to the sales pitch. Solutions like our social append allow for social data to enhance prospect profiles. Salespeople should also track one-on-one social engagement as notes in their CRM

By effectively synchronizing marketing and sales teams’ efforts, companies are bound to see an increase in ROI from online campaigns.

Author Bio: Tracy Julien is the VP of Marketing for GuidedChoice, a leader in retirement investment planning. Tracy received her Bachelor’s degree from Ohio University in 2000 and her MBA in Marketing Management from DePaul University in 2006. She has over 15 years of experience working for multi-national companies. Tracy specializes in consumer marketing, focusing heavily on marketing strategy, global brand management, customer experience, and product innovation.

What NOT To Do When Creating Your Newsletter

The only good newsletter that I ever received was in 2008. I’m not kidding. At the bottom of the newsletter was an offer that simply said:

For the first 20 people to respond to this email, you will receive a pair of tickets to our suite at the next New England Patriots game.

I won, and the rest is history.

I remained a “fan” of that newsletter for about two years…mainly in hopes that I would see another offer hidden inside. Since then, I’ve received hundreds -no THOUSANDS – of newsletters with sources ranging from neighbors updating me on their extended families (sorry, I don’t care.) to vendors (boring… congrats you made a bunch of money last quarter… I don’t care.) to those trying to sell me on their brilliance.

The point is: nobody likes newsletters. Even people that signed up for them, and appear to have read your newsletter, probably didn’t read it. If you insist on periodic communication as part of your required role, please consider doing the following to make things a little more palatable to your audience:

  1. Offer them something of value (and no, we’re not talking about content). Perhaps it’s a contest, a game, a trial of your product, an invitation to meet for coffee… anything that gives a feeling that is warmer than a Christmas Fruitcake.
  2. Personalize the message. If you expect me to take the time to read your content, at least take the time to know who you are sending your information to. If I bought a car from you last month, please don’t send me information about how badly you need to sell me a car this month because it’s President’s Day (or any other lame, manufactured reason).
  3. Segment your messaging. If I have to read 3 pages of information to find the two sentences that I care about; I won’t do it. If you are lucky, I’m going to give you 16 words to win my interest. If you can’t do that; I’m very likely to unsubscribe from your messaging forever. If you can entice me to click on information, and then follow that up with a special offer, you just might have my interest for many months.

In summary, with marketing automation and other analytic capabilities that are available to you, you would be amiss to send a generic newsletter in today’s business world. Be creative, be fun, and focus on building emotion, not just throwing as much content onto as many people as possible. Reface your newsletter, and watch your results blossom. And if you are ready to see the many other ways marketing automation can help your business be BETTER, let us know. We’d love to give you a quick tour.

5 Reasons Sales Teams Benefit from Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Marketing Automation Integration

We’ve talked about the 5 ways that marketing teams can benefit from Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Marketing Automation integration here. Today, we want to take a look at how sales can benefit from that same integration.

Let’s face it: time is not the sales person’s friend. I’ve seen far too many talented people fail in B2B sales because they couldn’t manage time. You certainly don’t need to waste time on courting unqualified prospects, hopelessly dialing bad numbers, and sending nurture email after nurture email to the “call me next year” crowd.

Having a CRM like Microsoft Dynamics will certainly help. You can use it to schedule tasks, keep prospects organized, and track your opportunities. But that’s just step one. You’ve still got to figure which prospects are worth your time and make sure you keep the data up to date.

That’s where marketing automation like Lead Liaison’s Lead Management Automation™ comes in. We have multiple ways to help you make the most of your time and find the right prospects. In fact, we’ve got five major ways that sales teams benefit from Lead Liaison and Microsoft Dynamics integrated together.

1. Get quality Leads straight to your CRM.

Adding qualified Leads to your pipeline isn’t an easy task. By far, the most time-consuming thing in a sales person’s life is prospecting. In most industries, you’re lucky if 10% of the people you talk to are qualified (even less with cold email and cold phone calls). Even if the prospect has gone so far as to fill out a demo request, they might just be another sales person trying to sell to you!

Lead Liaison tracks visitors to your website and scores them based on engagement. Every time they engage with a piece of content, their score goes up. We also grade them based on your organization’s ideal buyer profile from A-F. When we know that they’re a good fit and have shown real interest, we can send an alert, sync them to Dynamics as a Lead, and even assign them to the appropriate prospect owner.

Now you’ve got a steady stream of Leads in your CRM that you know are qualified.

2. Easily gauge your prospect’s interest.

How many times have you sent an email to a prospect and never heard back from them? I probably just described 95% of your prospecting emails. Even once you have a steady stream of Leads from your site, what’s the point if you don’t know who’s responding to your communications?

Our Send and Track plugin has you covered. We can tell you when your prospect has opened your email or clicked on a link inside. We can even send a browser alert to Google Chrome so you know right away. You get to learn who is interested in what you’re sending, even if they don’t respond. And, because we track them from the moment they click the link, you get to see what they’re looking for on your site.

What does this have to do with Dynamics? Our plugin lets send a copy to your CRM. That means the email and its contents are logged for your reference. If the prospect doesn’t exist in Dynamics already, we’ll create a new Lead for you. No need to manually create new records after a cold email campaign!  

3. Automate your nurture.

We’ve all run into prospects that just aren’t qualified yet. They could be the perfect fit for your organization, but for one reason or another a deal just isn’t going to happen right now. However, it’s important you don’t lose track of these people. They’re the ones helping you make quota six months from now. If you’ve got an opportunity in Dynamics that has stalled out, we’re here to help.

With Lead Liaison, you can drop these prospects into an automated nurture campaign. The prospect will get occasional follow ups, interesting articles, or links to relevant videos straight to their email. The emails come from your email address, signed by you, and if the prospect replies, it goes to your inbox. You just put them in the nurture campaign, and we do the rest on your behalf.

We’re not limited to email, either. Lead Liaison supports multi-channel marketing efforts. You could automatically send them a postcard, have us text them for you, or write a handwritten letter on your behalf. You can even choose the type of handwriting we’ll use!

4. Always have the most up-to-date information.

Have you ever called an old prospect in your database to reconnect and found their number was no longer valid? Or worse, they didn’t work there anymore? It’s happened to all of us. Now you must take the time to find a new contact, get the right info, and hopefully get it done in time to finish your tasks for the day.

That is, unless you had Lead Liaison. We sync our data with Microsoft Dynamics every five minutes. If a prospect has filled out a form or marketing has just updated your master list of key accounts (without telling you… again), we’ll know about it and send that new information to Dynamics.

But it gets even cooler than that. We use the prospect’s email address to crawl social media websites like LinkedIn and Twitter. We capture data like their company and job title, and we check back in with them from time to time. If we’ve noticed a change, we update it on their profile. And yes, that means it gets updated in Dynamics, too!

5. Find out what the heck Marketing is doing.

Sales and marketing have a love-hate relationship in a lot of organizations. Sales depends on marketing for qualified leads, marketing depends on sales to close the leads. Sales feels like marketing wouldn’t know what “qualified” was if a prospect came banging on the door begging for service, marketing feels like sales just cherry picks the easiest prospects and whines about the rest.

Let’s take a step and look at the root cause: sales and marketing almost never talk to each other! Not so with Lead Liaison. You have an insight to the inbound and outbound marketing efforts your prospect has received. The data marketing collects is stored in their prospect profile, so you have just as much insight as your marketers.

This is embodied in two of our Lifecycle Stages: Marketing Qualified and Sales Qualified. This is a two-step process to allow both teams to equally vet new prospects. No more working separately; it’s time for sales and marketing to both be a part of the funnel once and for all.

When that qualified account becomes an Opportunity, we’ll pick that up from Dynamics and automatically move them to the Opportunity Lifecycle Stage. And on the wonderful day you get to click Closed-Won, we’ll move them to the Customer Lifecycle stage. You’ve got your deal, and marketing can move on to generating new leads.

If Microsoft Dynamics and Lead Liaison are not a win-win for sales and marketing, then I really don’t know what is. We hope you enjoyed this article on 5 ways sales teams benefit from Microsoft Dynamics CRM and marketing automation integration! For more information on Lead Liaison’s integration of LMA and Microsoft Dynamics CRM see this page.

 

5 Reasons Marketing Teams Benefit from Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Marketing Automation Integration

What are the 5 ways marketing teams benefit from Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Marketing Automation integration?

In this article we’ll discuss 5 ways marketing marketing teams benefit from integrating Microsoft Dynamics CRM with marketing automation. Sales reps have always had their system of record, a CRM. A CRM is a common repository, a place to keep notes, contact information, and opportunities. Besides a need for pulling reports, marketers never had the need to access the CRM. The demand for businesses to grow, increased competition, and advancement in software as a service, has fostered a new suite of software capabilities – commonly referred to as marketing automation. Marketing automation is a suite of software services that help marketers do their job better and more efficiently. The problem is that marketers have their software to work with, and sales has their own. By integrating the two systems together sales and marketers can share data and help each other get the job done faster. In particular, there are 5 ways marketing teams benefit from Microsoft Dynamics CRM and marketing automation integration:

  1. Integrated views that include prospect activity.
  2. Better segmentation.
  3. Trigger actions on data changes.
  4. Integrated lead qualification.
  5. Data is in sync.

Integrated Views

A marketing automation platform, such as Lead Liaison’s Lead Management Automation software, helps marketers with outbound marketing, as well as inbound marketing. One key aspect of these platforms is being able to track all inbound marketer and engagement with outbound marketing. A marketing automation platform will build rich profiles of prospects as they download documents, watch videos, click paid ads, submit forms, visit web pages, and more. This information is crucial sales insight that needs to be available to sales reps in real-time. When integrating marketing automation and Microsoft Dynamics, this insight is mapped to Lead and Contact records in Dynamics. As a result, a sales person never has to leave Microsoft Dynamics to understand how their Lead/Contact has engaged with their company. It’s all inline in the Lead/Contact record.

Better Segmentation

Marketers used email systems like Mailchimp and Constant Contact before marketing automation existed. In the “olden days”, a marketer would use a “batch and blast” approach. They’d create a single email and send that email to a large list. With modern marketing platforms, marketers can easily segment their database. Not only can they use demographic data from Microsoft Dynamics CRM (things such as job title, industry, location), they can segment off of engagement data. For example, easily build a one-time list, or ongoing list that’s dynamically created, of all prospects who’ve had inbound activity within the past 30 days, live in five states, and downloaded a specific piece of content. What’s the point? Instead of demographic criteria, they’ve got more criteria to choose from, allowing them to build smaller segments (groups) of people to better tailor the message to a recipient’s interests. This helps marketers deliver a more personalized message – driving higher click through and open rates with email.

Trigger Actions

Marketers have greater control over how and when they send follow up content for nurturing when integrating marketing automation with Microsoft Dynamics CRM. Using automation, a marketer can monitor changes in a data field to detect if the value changes to any matching criteria. When this happens, the marketer can execute any number of tasks. For example, if the Lead Status field changes to Customer, they could trigger an automation that onboards a client and walks them through the customer experience, getting them closer to cross-sell and upsell opportunities down the line.

Integrated Lead Qualification

Prior to having marketing automation integrated with Microsoft Dynamics CRM, all leads look the same to a sales rep. In other words, the database is flat. The only way to differentiate leads is to use some sort of weighted scoring system. Marketing automation platforms refer to this as Lead Scoring, in Lead Liaison’s world it’s simply Scoring. For example, when your key documents, such as Case Studies, get downloaded, individual scores can be assigned to the action. With granular level control over scoring various interactions with prospects, the marketing automation system sums all individual scores into a single score, which is then shared with Microsoft Dynamics CRM in a Score field. Now, sales can create reports that give priority to their Leads and Contacts. Reps can make better use of their time by focusing on the highest scoring Leads and Contacts first.

Data is in Sync

With sales reps having their own stack, and marketing having theirs, it would be awful if the two systems did not communicate with one another and had data out of sync. With systems like Lead Liaison and Microsoft Dynamics CRM integrated, marketers don’t have to worry about disparate systems. When Lead, Contact, and Opportunity data changes in Microsoft Dynamics CRM, it also gets updated in Lead Liaison…and vice versa. Marketers are not slave to the way the data exchange works either. They can set which fields in the CRM map to fields in the marketing automation platform, and set the syncing direction. For example, if the marketer never wants the marketing automation platform to update the Lead Source in Microsoft Dynamics CRM, then they can set the sync direction to one-way, going from CRM to marketing automation only – and not the other way around.

We hope you enjoyed this article on 5 ways marketing teams benefit from Microsoft Dynamics CRM and marketing automation integration! For more information on Lead Liaison’s integration of LMA and Microsoft Dynamics CRM see this page.

 

Why Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Marketing Automation Integration Matters

Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Marketing AutomationWhy Does Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Marketing Automation Integration Matter?

In this article we’ll discuss why Microsoft Dynamics CRM and marketing automation integration matter to businesses with a sales and marketing team. I’ve always been a proponent of CRM systems. As a user myself, I first started using Salesforce.com. I couldn’t imagine trying to keep track of my activities and tasks anywhere else (oh no, not a spreadsheet!). When I hear about companies that don’t have a CRM, I cringe! Whether you’re using enterprise-level CRMs such as Salesforce.com or Microsoft Dynamics, or something with the essentials such as OneFocus™ or Pipedrive, having a marketing automation system coupled with your CRM is vital these days.

Let’s focus on Microsoft Dynamics CRM for the sake of discussion. Without a marketing automation system married up with Microsoft Dynamics CRM, the CRM is just one big database. A large data repository.  Companies can “bring their data to life” by implementing a number of different automated processes. For example, nurturing, qualification, tracking, and more will all make your operations run smoother. Without establishing these processes, businesses risk not being able to effectively scale. Below are four reasons why integrating Microsoft Dynamics CRM and marketing automation matters:

Four Reasons why Integrating Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Marketing Automation Matters:

Nurturing

Nurture prior to sales interaction. Sales and marketers widely view Microsoft Dynamics CRM as a standalone software system for sales. When pairing up a marketing automation system, such as Lead Liaison’s Lead Management Automation (LMA) platform, this changes. Marketers can take part in the traditional sales funnel, and support their sales teams. For example, Lead Liaison’s LMA has a concept of Lifecycle Stages. Lifecycle Stages provide a framework for marketers to “own” the top of the funnel, to transition prospects from anonymous > known > engaged > marketing qualified, and then hand warm leads off to sales for them to qualify. During these initial stages marketers can use lead nurturing to build stronger relationships with prospects. They’ll be able to educate them in ways that are important to them.

Sales Insight

Sales has greater visibility. A huge benefit of using marketing automation with Microsoft Dynamics CRM is that sales has more insight. This applies to both Leads and Contacts inside Microsoft Dynamics. When the sales team opens up a Lead or Contact record inside Microsoft Dynamics, they will see marketing metadata (score, last website visit, etc.). They’ll also see recent inbound and outbound activities (website pages viewed, documents downloaded, tracking links clicked, videos watched, forms submitted, email engagement, etc.). This insight helps prepare your sales rep. Sales people will be more successful when they reach out. Sales reps will be equipped with more knowledge about their prospect’s key careabouts and interests.

Prioritization

Prioritize leads. When using Microsoft Dynamics CRM and marketing automation, marketers can establish scoring rules. Scoring is a way to measure engagement. Marketers can configure individual scores to be associated with different types of inbound activities. For example, 10 points for an email link click, 50 points for submitting a form, 100 points for visiting your pricing page, etc. The higher the score, the more qualified and “hot” the prospect is. Using marketing automation, marketers can then establish a score threshold, to trigger an alert to the sales rep to take action. Another feature that’s not commonly used, but should be, is the ability to decrease a prospect’s score if they don’t engage. Lead Liaison’s LMA offers a feature called “Inactivity Periods”. If there’s no inbound activity within the inactivity period time frame, any number of actions can be triggered. For example, you could notify the sales rep, reach out to the prospect on behalf of the sales rep, or send the prospect and incentive to come back.

Revitalization

Revitalize old leads. Using marketing automation, it’s easy to segment and target leads/contacts based on last inbound activity. Without hooking up your Microsoft Dynamics CRM instance to marketing automation, this wouldn’t be possible. Dynamics will be a great database of record to track demographic data (job title, role, location, name, etc.) – things you might find on a business card, but it won’t track behavioral information (how the prospect engaged, inbound/outbound activities, etc.). All of this wonderful inbound activity that’s tracked by marketing automation gets appended to each record in Microsoft Dynamics CRM. As a marketer, you can use this information to better segment and nurture prospects that might need to be re-invigorated. After all, according to  Demand Metric, 60% of customers are encouraged to seek out a product after reading content about it

We hope you enjoyed this article on why Microsoft Dynamics CRM and marketing automation integration matters to sales and marketers! For more information on Lead Liaison’s integration of LMA and Microsoft Dynamics CRM see this page.