As a business, you have to constantly consider and improve the efficiency and effectiveness across your marketing section. But what are the best practices for maintaining and building your marketing department, and with that, your company?
Some questions that you should consider are:
- How does your organisation's investment in marketing compare with your competitors and peers?
- What are the best practices that other marketers are working to?
- How aligned are your sales and marketing teams?
- What ways can marketing and sales work together to eliminate duplicated effort?
- How aligned are your activities and messages with your customer’s buying journey?
- What does a best-in-class organisation’s marketing function look like at both strategic and tactical levels?
- What KPIs can you use to judge the ROI of marketing?
- How can technology help you to improve efficiency, prove ROI and bring sales and marketing processes together?
A 2012 survey of marketers in the UK and Germany revealed that repetitive tasks are a major hurdle for marketers in improving efficiency. Marketing automation can help improve efficiency by:
- Sending automatic lead nurturing emails when prospects take certain actions
- Scoring leads based on engagement and interaction so prospects are only contacted by sales when they are ready
- Showing you what content is effective and what is not
- Segmenting your audience based on their responses to your digital communications
- Delivering strategic intelligence for future improvements
The Aberdeen Group identified that in best-in-class companies, sales and marketing work together using inbound marketing techniques and marketing automation to:
- Plan, execute and follow up on campaigns to drive efficiency and improvements
- Define lead scoring and lead management processes that pass leads back and forth between them until they are ready to convert
- Improve the quantity and quality of leads passed from marketing to sales
- Develop content and collateral based on the input and ideas of both teams and what the data reveals about past activities
Organisations where marketing automation and CRM are integrated reap multiple rewards:
- Shorter sales cycles
- Larger deals
- Proven ROI on marketing programmes
- Fully trackable customer journeys
This infographic shows the difference integration can make:
To improve efficiency in your business, you need to know what marketing operations look like in the best-performing organisations. There are four key areas where you should improve process efficiency and overall marketing effectiveness:
- Infrastructure – identifies the tools needed to drive efficiency, develops processes and manages data
- Alignment – looks at where and how processes can be integrated to eliminate duplicated effort and silos
- Measurement – puts in place benchmarks, process compliance procedures, performance measurements and processes for proving ROI
- Insights – builds best practices and buyer knowledge resources to inform plans and budgets