In nearly every corporation, marketing is one of the last business areas to be automated. According to a presentation by IDC Executive Advisory Service analyst Rich Vancil in September 2010, less than one in three companies have a complete marketing automation solution in place.
This means that streamlining complex marketing processes with automation may be one of the last places where companies can squeeze more efficiency out of the resources they have. Is your company a candidate for a distributed marketing automation solution? Here are the top 5 signs that technology may deliver a great return on investment.
- Your prospects are getting mixed messages – or the wrong messages. Personalization is the name of the game in digital marketing (on demand print, digital flip books and proposals, email marketing, and so on). But doing it manually is a black hole for time. It’s hard to see the big picture if you don’t have the ability to track mass personalization campaigns in one central place. Worse, if every link in your marketing and sales chain is “doing their own thing” because they can’t get a message customized, approved, and delivered in a timely fashion, your brand is becoming diluted, and your customers aren’t getting all the facts they need to make a purchase.
- Your sales and marketing team doesn’t get along. Marketing says that sales doesn’t use the materials they’re given – and sales says that the leads marketing generates aren’t qualified and the materials they have aren’t what they need. By centralizing the creation of marketing and sales enablement materials – and empowering field and local sales people to adapt and personalize it within corporate and regulatory guidelines – you’re likely to find that the relationship gets healthier – and so does the bottom line.
- Your campaigns are stepping on each other’s toes. How many marketing messages is each target audience receiving? Are you sure? Without automation, it’s nearly impossible to make sure that two different campaigns don’t target the same audience at the same time. At best, it annoys prospects – at worst, you may be broadcasting two completely different messages at once. A distributed marketing system with real-time tracking, roll-up reporting, and a centralized marketing asset management system makes it possible to stay on top of your marketing messages so everyone is dancing to the same tune.
- Legal and compliance approvals are delaying sales material delivery. One of the most common reasons sales people give for creating their own marketing materials is the need to deliver customized proposals and presentations quickly. From a legal and compliance standpoint, that’s a major problem, because as documents proliferate, the chance of a compliance problem proliferates, too. A well-designed distributed marketing platform can streamline compliance and approvals, and enable customization while insuring that brand and legal requirements can’t be changed or deleted.
- Email response rates are dropping. Email is a boon to marketers, but these days, a lot of the messages broadcast to potential customers are greeted by a deafening silence. Real-time tracking, simplified A/B testing, and roll-up reporting simplify deliver an unmatched picture of what your customers want and what they don’t. This helps segment contacts, and tailor messages to each group, which results in better results.
How many of these signs that you need a distributed marketing platform are present in your company?
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