In July 2013 I got my first taste of the complex world of marketing automation in the form of the now defunct Optify service. It was the clunky precursor to what would be ‘a brave new world’ of marketing automation that was to blast off (for me) in December 2013. With Optify getting itself into financial difficulty, being purchased and then shut down 30 days later; the Blirt team (wisely) made the shift to Pardot. Who or what is Pardot you ask? Well perhaps you have heard of the company who owns it… Salesforce.
What is Marketing Automation?
Marketing automation can mean different things to many people, but here’s how Pardot describes it:
Simply put, marketing automation works to automate your marketing communication programs. With a marketing automation platform in place, your marketing and sales teams can automate and optimise your lead generation and nurturing programs from initial prospect contact through the entire sales process.
Marketing automation makes it easy to integrate email marketing, reporting technology, and your lead generation and nurturing efforts to create a true sales ecosystem. Use it to create timely, structured communication programs with all of your prospects.
A good platform needs good strategy (and execution).
I’ve seen it several times now, a business is sold into a marketing automation platform on the promise of future full of increased qualified leads, opportunities and streamlined sales pipeline. For some businesses, walking the path to that promised future has been a just a few quick steps and they’re off.
But for others, getting moving along that path can a challenge. Difficulties can arise from a lack of technical or creative resources to produce the marketing materials needed, or no clear custom journey to build from. Sometimes it is just a simple case of team members resisting the change from a standard Commercial Email system to a full featured marketing automation solution.
Whatever the reason for a businesses struggle to get traction with their shiny new marketing automation software, I can assure you it is worth working out or pushing through all the pain points because the results can be amazing.
We’ve helped Blirt clients maximise their marketing suite with creative assets such as ad material, email templates, landing pages, and drip programs. Technical setup and customer journey work which leads into profiling, scoring and grading prospects. Targeted media buying that brings in leads on a cost per lead pricing model – offering a level of security to clients compared to other media buying models.
As a Pardot Certified Consultant I’ll often times run a full client implementation including technical setup, creative assets and training sessions.
And sometimes I have a stretch like this:
5 responsive email templates designed and coded in the last 3 days (amongst other stuff). Busy much?
— Matthew Olding (@MrOlding) August 27, 2014
Not that I am complaining. Having an abundance of work is a quality place to find yourself in.