Sales optimization is a process that today can count on powerful Marketing Automation tools with which automate massive activities, customizing the offer to a specific user cluster. These tools are located at various stages of the customer journey, with the aim of providing marketers with an overall view of the various channels used by customers and to activate consequent actions to increase conversion rates. The first factor, therefore, on which a Marketing Automation strategy is based is the knowledge of consumer behavior both online and offline. Even more and more, customer journey, observed on web, must be integrated with the one in the stores, it is possible through Wi-Fi sensors and beacons placed in the stores. The quantity and quality of data collected are a prelude to a definition of a customized campaigns for a specific target audience, with a level of precision that is greater the more precise is the interactions between user and brand.
DMP, the first Marketing Automation tool
To obtain the above knowledge, the essential Marketing Automation tool is a platform or DMP (Data Management Platform) able to transform all data coming from the Web and from the physical world into insight for marketer. The creation of an omnichannel customer database, with a unique view of customer, is possible by the platform's ability not only to collect, but also to aggregate, systematize and analyze data. These can be inhomogeneous, coming from multiple sources, internal and external to the company: from CRM to the e-commerce channel, from social pages to tracking site navigation. A capacity that is now enhanced thanks to artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning algorithms with which to identify patterns and recurring patterns among consumers. Marketing campaigns aimed at multiple channels such as e-mail, web, mobile apps, SMS and social media are also based on the objective analysis of customer behaviors detected by DMP.
Sending targeted e-mails and messages
Starting from Data Management Platform, all the other Marketing Automation tools must be used to finalize the journey and to convert it into a sale. To obtain this, customer database must first be segmented according to the campaigns it wants to activate. Each campaign must be built according to the end user profile and to his or her favorite channels (and the most used). It means, for example, sending personalized newsletters or push notifications during the customer journey in the store, with ad hoc promotion to encourage the purchase. Even the monitoring of abandoned carts in e-commerce can trigger automatic reminders, which can make up for lost purchases. In general, the churn analysis, the observation of abandonment rates, is a valuable tool to understand what are the reasons that slow down or prevent the buyer's journey from arriving at the desired outcome.
Recommendation engine and mobile loyalty app within a strategy
Additional tools to support Marketing Automation are the recommendation engines, with which is possible to suggest upselling and cross selling products, and mobile loyalty apps. The former transforms the number of visits and purchases into a lever for proposing incremental or related purchases. The latter aim to create a strong bond with the brand, taking advantage of the increasingly massive use of the smartphone. The mobile phone, in essence, becomes the vehicle to connect to various digital services, to receive communications and information, to participate in loyalty point campaigns, to locate the nearest store etc.
It is important to underline that these last Marketing Automation tools, together with the others mentioned above, must be placed in an ecosystem that puts customer at the center. The optimization of sales, in fact, is a result that can be achieved if the Marketing Automation firmly keeps together technologies and processes within a solid strategic approach.