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Oracle's marketing automation solution

Find out more about Oracle’s comprehensive marketing automation solution.


Discover marketing automation

See how to use marketing automation software to its full extent.

How marketing automation works

Marketing automation streamlines your marketing processes, helping you achieve better results. Instead of performing manual, repetitive processes, you’re able to focus on more strategic tasks, such as planning and design, goal development, research, establishing branding consistency, measuring KPIs, and more. Through automation, marketing teams can:

  1. Build brand awareness through thought leadership and advocacy programs and better utilization of blogs, website, social, and other digital platforms to interest and intrigue prospects and current customers.
  2. Compile customer data through interactions with (known and unknown) people across multiple channels, including emails, newsletter sign ups, content downloads, social media and website visits, onsite and virtual events, and more.
  3. Use that data to streamline and improve their audience segmentation and customer targeting.
  4. Personalize each marketing message to those segments and targets, making each one more relevant to its intended audience.
  5. Send marketing messages out on the appropriate (and preferred) channel at a convenient time for the recipient (which is known, thanks to the data).
  6. Review the analytics to see how campaigns performed.
  7. Tweak, revise, and optimize campaigns on an ongoing basis.
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Marketing automation software automates processes so marketing teams can plan, coordinate, manage, and measure the results of campaigns across channels, including email, web, display, search, and social. By automating processes, the software also does the following:

  • Simplifies and streamlines many manual and time-consuming steps in the marketing process, making everything more efficient
  • Automates repetitive tasks so that everyone has more time for planning and creative projects
  • Reduces human error
  • Saves time, money, and effort
  • Boosts revenue

How marketing automation makes marketing more effective

Let’s look at three examples of how marketing automation makes complex and arduous processes much more manageable.

1

A/B and multivariate testing

With the right data, you can easily experiment with different types of content, emails, subject lines, offers, themes, designs, landing pages, demos, CTAs, and more. A/B testing helps you optimize your marketing efforts by showing you what your audience responds to which will indicate what should be refined, revised, or eliminated.

2

Lists and segmentation

Marketing automation software uses lists of prospects, leads, and already existing customers who make up your target audience. These lists are then segmented according to your already-established criteria, such as demographics, geography, buyer persona, preferred channel, business type, industry, job title, and other relevant information. The more marketers can narrow customer and audience segments down, the better they can properly target and personalize to their audience.

3

Lead nurturing and scoring

Effective lead management is critical to running successful marketing campaigns. If the target audience receives the wrong communication on the wrong channel at the wrong time, the marketing campaign will fail. To guard against this, marketers assign a score to their leads—based on the level of interest—and nurture those leads until they are ready to be passed on to sales.

80%

of companies report an increase in leads generated thanks to marketing automation.

77%

of companies report an increase in conversions due to marketing automation.

Triggers and actions

Triggers are behaviors that people do to interact and show interest in your brand. Actions are your system's automated responses to those behaviors.

What is a marketing automation workflow?

A marketing automation workflow consists of triggers and actions. Suppose someone downloads an ebook from a website (trigger). In that case, the marketing automation system can send them an email (action) when the next ebook in that series is available. If someone signs up for a webinar (trigger), the system can send them a related solution brief or ebook (action). If someone subscribes to a newsletter (trigger), the marketing automation system can send an invitation to an event (action) that’s promoted in the newsletter.

Essentially, workflows help marketers provide relevant content and information to follow up on a person's interest. The idea is to offer valuable knowledge so the person engages more and more, travels further down the marketing funnel, and becomes more interested in making a purchase or talking to a salesperson. Workflows help convert prospects to leads, leads to customers, and customers into loyal customers.

How does a prospect become a lead?

Prospects are people who has shown interest in your brand through their behaviors. They have business problems they think your product or service might be able to help them with. Prospects explore your content and thought leadership to determine if that is the case. A prospect becomes a lead by continuing to engage with your brand.

Trigger example Possible corresponding action
Signs up for a newsletter. Send a welcome email and add them to the distribution list.
Downloads an ebook from your website. Highlight related content and show them how to access it.
Registers for a virtual summit. After the event, send a thank you email and make them aware of upcoming events and related content. May request they sign up for a newsletter.

How does a lead become a sales qualified lead?

Trigger example Possible corresponding action
Takes actions (email opens, content downloads, event attendance) that causes their lead score to reach the sales lead threshold. Pass the lead to sales as a sales-ready lead.

How does a customer become a loyal customer?

Trigger example Possible corresponding action
Continues to engage with your brand. Send more personalized content, special offers designed to upsell or cross-sell. Make them aware of updates, new features, and upcoming events.
Searches for information because they have difficulties with your product. Provide content that offers potential solutions and easy access to whatever customer service channel they wish to use.
Has remained a customer in good standing. Celebrate your relationship. Send customers an email that highlights their status and thanks them for their business. Offer product renewals and any complementary products.

Marketing automation best practices

Marketing automation software can help improve campaign management and get qualified leads into your sellers’ hand faster and with less effort. To use marketing automation properly and get the best results from your software, keep the following best practices in mind:

1

Set goals

Determine what your objectives of your marketing campaign will be in terms of:

  • Number of quality leads
  • Number of sales-ready leads
  • Number of conversions (prospects to customers)
2

Know who you want to target and market to

Create buyer personas by looking at your audience's demographics, including interests, preferences, location, job title/role, industry, known challenges, and more. This information will help you understand how you can help them with real solutions to their problems, market to them more effectively, and send the right messages at the right times.

3

Build workflows based on the customer's buying journey

Map out workflows for your new personas to attract their attention and address their concerns at each point of the buyer’s journey. Workflows should be based on each stage of the buyer’s journey. Possible stages could include:

  • Awareness. A prospect has identified a problem and is looking a solution.
  • Consideration. Prospects are weighing their options and considering which solution to use.
  • Decision. The person decides on a solution and makes a purchase.
  • Post-purchase. As a customer, the person might have questions about the solution or need add-ons or other products and services in the future.
4

Create engaging content

When you know who you are targeting and where they are in their buying journey, you can create the types of content that will produce the best results. It must offer value—such as information, tips, an invitation to an event, or a special offer. The possibilities are endless. However, it must also be compelling and relevant. It needs to capture the audience’s attention and keep it.

5

Personalization

Use customer data to personalize content as much as possible to better win prospects and customers over.

6

Take a multichannel approach

Customers now expect a seamless, multichannel experience. So you have to engage them with consistent content and experiences across all the channels they prefer.

7

Lead scoring and qualification

By the time leads start coming in, you should have developed a model by which to score them. Assigning scores helps you identify which ones need more nurturing and at what point a lead can be handed off to sales.

8

Measure your performance

Do you know how many leads your campaign attracted, were passed to sales, or converted into customers? Once you know that information, you can review your goals and see where leads dropped off. Then you can tweak, revise, and improve your marketing automation workflows and processes.

Oracle Eloqua Marketing Automation

Explore more of what marketing automation can do to optimize your campaigns and increase your success with Oracle Eloqua Marketing Automation.

Learn more about marketing automation