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Dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing au­to­ma­tion is om­nipresent and savvy mar­keters are us­ing this pow­er­ful tool to di­rectly tar­get cus­tomers – reach­ing them any­where, at any time. But to max­imise the tech­nol­ogy’s benefits, com­pa­nies must fully lever­age the multi-chan­nel mar­ket­ing mix. Ubiq­uity helps or­gan­i­sa­tions use au­to­ma­tion to cut through the ‘noise’ and en­gage with their cus­tomers. “As ev­ery dig­i­tal mar­keter knows, in­creas­ing cus­tomer en­gage­ment drives rev­enue. While dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing is ubiq­ui­tous, or­gan­i­sa­tions rarely fully lever­age all they can do by us­ing a true multi-chan­nel ap­proach,” says Ubiq­uity’s Man­ag­ing Direc­tor, Nathalie Mor­ris.

“By us­ing tar­geted mar­ket­ing au­to­ma­tion they can en­gage cus­tomers at the right mo­ment – when they want to hear from you.”

Mor­ris says mar­keters should have a clear un­der­stand­ing of what they want from the dig­i­tal tool, be­fore em­bark­ing on any cam­paign. In line with this, Ubiq­uity fo­cuses its so­lu­tions on putting in place a mar­ket­ing strat­egy that al­lows mar­keters to de­liver lo­cal, rel­e­vant and timely con­tent to au­di­ences. The tech­nol­ogy helps mar­keters mea­sure and op­ti­mise the cus­tomer ex­pe­ri­ence, and ul­ti­mately build long-term re­la­tion­ships with cus­tomers.

“As with any tra­di­tional mar­ket­ing strat­egy, we need to first have a clear idea of our client’s ob­jec­tives and what their busi­ness pri­or­i­ties are – whether it is to get new cus­tomers, en­gage with ex­ist­ing cus­tomers or grow strong re­la­tion­ships with brand ad­vo­cates. From there we can help our clients en­gage and grow cus­tomers through­out their life­cy­cle, through email and the wider dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing mix.” A multi-chan­nel ap­proach for mar­ket­ing au­to­ma­tion also of­fers greater ef­fi­cien­cies for busi­ness pro­cesses, such as send­ing an au­to­mated text mes­sage to re­cap­ture bounced emails. No man­ual in­ter­ven­tion is re­quired and there is less like­li­hood of missed op­por­tu­ni­ties through poor data cap­ture.

Mar­ket­ing au­to­ma­tion tech­nol­ogy also pro­vides the abil­ity for mar­keters to au­to­mate and scale repet­i­tive mar­ket­ing tasks, and then an­a­lyse those ef­forts. It uses tar­geted tech­nol­ogy to build re­la­tion­ships with in­di­vid­ual cus­tomers in a sim­i­lar way to the lo­cal shop­keeper – but on a much larger scale.

“Put sim­ply, it’s send­ing the right mes­sage, to the right per­son, at the right time – au­to­mat­i­cally.” Wel­come mes­sages are amongst the most opened (and kept) email com­mu­ni­ca­tions a mar­keter can send. It’s when users are most in­ter­ested – they’ve just signed up and their at­ten­tion is on the brand.

“On­board­ing pro­grammes in­volve a se­ries of care­fully spaced com­mu­ni­ca­tions us­ing ap­pro­pri­ate chan­nels. This phase is all about build­ing the re­la­tion­ship – it is not about sell­ing. Mar­keters re­mind sub­scribers of the benefits they signed up for and to build brand cred­i­bil­ity, by pro­vid­ing ed­u­ca­tional in­for­ma­tion.”

This is also a good time to gather or con­firm ad­di­tional con­tact in­for­ma­tion and other key data. This should then be fed back into the com­mu­ni­ca­tions data­base to send even more tar­geted emails.

A typ­i­cal wel­come pro­gramme will have one or two in­tro­duc­tory ed­u­ca­tional emails, grad­u­ally mak­ing cus­tomers aware of ad­di­tional prod­ucts or ser­vices avail­able. For ex­am­ple, Dig­i­tal TV ser­vice provider IGLOO cre­ated a four-step wel­come pro­gramme, with each com­mu­ni­ca­tion serv­ing a spe­cific pur­pose to en­cour­age new trial sub­scribers fur­ther to­wards pur­chas­ing an on­go­ing sub­scrip­tion. “It’s im­por­tant that the tim­ing of each com­mu­ni­ca­tion is in step with the cus­tomer jour­ney, and the con­tent is of im­me­di­ate rel­e­vance to the re­cip­i­ent; this means we may have to make some log­i­cal ad­just­ments to our en­gage­ment with cus­tomers over time. For­tu­nately, mar­ket­ing au­to­ma­tion tech­nol­ogy makes it very straight­for­ward to do this,” says Mor­ris.

Once the frame­work is put in place and data is flow­ing in au­to­mat­i­cally, then mod­i­fy­ing com­po­nents of a pro­gramme can be done with min­i­mal in­vest­ment – and big re­sults.

“Most sig­nif­i­cantly, IGLOO added in one more well-timed com­mu­ni­ca­tion that de­liv­ered an ex­cep­tional con­ver­sion rate for very lit­tle ad­di­tional ef­fort. The com­pany re­viewed the ef­fec­tive­ness of the fi­nal email in the wel­come pro­gramme, which landed two days be­fore the cus­tomer’s free trial ex­pired.

“Peo­ple face a lot of dis­trac­tions. For some it’s not un­til the free trial is no longer avail­able that they start miss­ing out on the shows they want to watch, and so the call to pur­chase is much stronger at that point. IGLOO re­viewed the cus­tomer jour­ney, added an email en­cour­ag­ing pur­chase on the ac­tual day of ex­piry, in­creas­ing up­take of the sub­scrip­tion by 35%.“ Mor­ris adds that while email re­mains the most ef­fec­tive medium for reach­ing cus­tomers, it needs to be con­sid­ered as part of this in­te­grated multi-chan­nel ap­proach.

“The on­go­ing pop­u­lar­ity of text mes­sag­ing as well as the rise of app use have opened up a whole new realm of dig­i­tal data. With th­ese chan­nels uni­fied with email it’s now much eas­ier to use mar­ket­ing au­to­ma­tion to main­tain en­gage­ment with cus­tomers.”

Ubiq­uity ap­plied this ap­proach work­ing with Towe r In­sur­ance, which de­vel­oped the SmartDriver lead gen­er­a­tion smart­phone app, a way to en­cour­age users to travel 150kms us­ing the app to qual­ify for a dis­count. The main chal­lenge was main­tain­ing user en­gage­ment long enough to qual­ify. Towe r achieved this us­ing a se­ries of email and push no­ti­fi­ca­tion com­mu­ni­ca­tions trig­gered at key points along their jour­ney.

“Ubiq­uity set it up so the chan­nel used was based on cus­tomer pref­er­ences and var­ied depend­ing on be­hav­iour and app us­age. It is very im­por­tant when us­ing au­to­ma­tion that there is con­tin­u­ous mon­i­tor­ing and re­fine­ment.” The re­al­ity is that con­sumers lead busy, hec­tic life­styles. Au­to­ma­tion helps tar­get missed op­por­tu­ni­ties by send­ing timely re­minders to peo­ple who are of­ten eas­ily dis­tracted in the dig­i­tal en­vi­ron­ment.

“Once cus­tomer jour­ney mod­els are es­tab­lished through tar­geted data col­lec­tion and anal­y­sis, mar­ket­ing au­to­ma­tion can be used to tar­get cus­tomers with spe­cific pro­grammes based on th­ese data mod­els. Au­to­ma­tion en­ables mar­keters to go very di­rectly to the source, in real-time, and in a per­sonal way. In­creas­ingly we are see­ing more and more gains around this tech­nol­ogy’s abil­ity to con­tin­u­ously im­prove touch­point re­sults.”

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