Simplifying B2B Campaign Automation

Simplifying B2B Campaign Automation

excerpt of an article by Cameron Avery - Elastic Grid

Wanted: a partner-friendly platform

It’s important to pick the right tool to help your partners rather than hinder them. We found that what partners really need and want is a partner-friendly platform, a platform that’s powerful, scalable and easy to use. From a supplier perspective, SiriusDecisions says the biggest challenge for B2B IT channel marketers is how to drive partner adoption and performance of their programs. Challenges include:

       Partners not running the campaigns created for them

       Creating effective partner marketing assets with a small budget

       Getting campaigns to market in a timely fashion

       Multiple global challenges, including ensuring marketing programs are consistent, while also meeting regional requirements; getting overseas partners to adopt campaigns and programs; and launching global campaigns throughout multiple regions in a timely manner

       The need for visibility into campaign ROI and ways to improve that ROI

       Creating tools and campaigns that all partner types can access and run, while offering consistent messaging

The solution: campaign automation. Marketing automation is the technology that allows companies to streamline, automate, and measure marketing tasks and workflows. Campaign automation is an effective sub-set. It involves:

       Email marketing

       Landing pages

       Lead generation

       Segmentation

       Lead nurturing

       Lead scoring

       CRM integration

       Social Media integration

       Marketing ROI measurement

For small volumes, most of these practices are possible without campaign automation. At scale, automation is essential. So for companies that rely on partners or affiliates, this campaign automation is an essential part of business. Marketing automation adds levels of complexity to the above, while adding optional campaign management, prediction, forms, lead lifecycle management, and resource management. So, consider the time, human resources and investment available for your marketing effort. That is, consider the benefits of simplified campaign automation versus full-blown and complex marketing automation.

5 Steps to Simplified B2B Campaign Automation:

1.     Automated Lead Generation (Make it easy to generate leads.)

Choose the platform that makes it easiest for you and your partners to build, execute and follow up on demand generation campaigns. These campaigns typically involve a series of emails, linked to related micro-sites or landing pages. They’re often supported by web banners to attract whitespace traffic. Allow your channel partners to easily register, customize and schedule co-branded campaigns. Let them create nurture flows and manage contacts with a Salesforce-integrated CMS. And, give them real-time lead alerts.Your campaign automation platform should also integrate and consolidate marketing activities from your other channel marketing and enablement vendors. This gives partners a single pane of glass to operate.

2.     Co-branding and Personalization (Promote partners professionally.)

Now, let partners differentiate their campaign execution through co-branding. Ensure their name and logo feature in the campaign clearly, reflecting their partner status. Give them space to add their own unique content. Not only does it encourage campaign adoption, it encourages more active participation in campaign execution and follow-up. From a personalization perspective, using the recipient’s name helps you make a very direct connection with them. Inserting their company name as well, in the right context, helps them to connect the dots between your solution and their work environment. Use personalization elements sparingly and appropriately. Generally, only use the recipient’s first name as part of the salutation, and reserve usage of a recipient’s company name in reference to the main call-to-action (CTA), or to underline a key solution benefit. Choose a platform that automates these insertions for partners, simply.

 

3.     Reporting (Reach your goals. Discover insights.)

Your platform also needs to make it easy to report on campaign ROI. As a supplier, you need high-level statistics and trends about your marketing performance across regions, partners and quarters. It should also help partners quickly report on the performance of their campaigns, giving them the ability to access specific campaign details and download campaign reports.

 

4.     CRM Integration (Tag it and bag it.)

Get those leads actioned. Ensure your platform makes it easy to transfer leads generated into your partners’ CRM system. Get them closer to the close.

 

5.     Social Media Integration (Harness the power of social, self-educated buyers.)

Ensure your chosen platform automates not only the campaign execution, but also automates the posting of relevant content across your partners’ social media channels. Partners want to generate more leads. They’re not interested in achieving ‘platform certification’ to generate those leads.  They simply do not have the time. Removing complexity sometimes requires a helping hand. Giving them access to a dedicated team of marketing professionals to help answer their questions in real-time can also help partners make the most of campaigns. And after teaching them how to fish, keep listening.

The more you listen to your partners’ desires, the more successful your campaigns. Our words of advice? Choose a B2B campaign automation platform that is powerful, scalable and easy to use.