Choose the right marketing tool for the right purpose.
Technology has become a critical asset for both sales and marketers, but you shouldn’t just buy the first shiny tool you see. You have to purchase technology that adds value to your specific business needs. It may sound like common sense, but it’s the reason why 7 out of 10 companies fail at digital transformation, and only a mere 16% of business executives state their digital transformation efforts are working.
Just like shopping for a new phone, a new piece of technology, or using the stove, you have to know what you’re doing if you don’t want to get burned - and money, as we all know, can burn up fast. This blog post will help you make better choices for your marketing technology investments, with five tips for selecting the right marketing technology for your company.
Tip 1 - Tell a story
Like every good story, you have to start somewhere. By selecting the right marketing technology for your company, you have to start with a story to tell, specifically how you find and interact with your customers.
Just like money doesn’t materialise out of thin air, neither do your customers. They have to come from somewhere. They also have to go somewhere and do something before deciding to become your customer. As a marketer, it’s your job to find out where these locations are and what actions they take before you go out and buy any new toys for your marketing campaign.
To summarise, you need to find out a lot about your customer story such as:
- How they find out about you.
- Where they come from (or hang out).
- How they interact with your brand.
- What they need to know before making a purchase.
To find this out, you can make general assumptions about your customers based on their interactions with your current marketing materials. A Customer Data Platform (CDP) that stores this information is an ideal start to your marketing technology stack if you have the money to invest, but it’s not strictly necessary.
Once you can tell a story about how most of your leads come to be your customers, only then can you introduce tools and technology to facilitate the story. This leads us to our next point.
Tip 2 - Match each point to a tool or function
Now that you know how your customers come to be, you can begin to influence the story to be more favourable. You do this by selecting the right technology or tool to facilitate each part of the customer story you outlined above.
In other words, you need to find technology that:
- Provide more information at the moment your customers find out about you.
- Increases your visibility on the channel they usually come from.
- Helps your customers interact with your brand.
- Gives the information your customers need before they make a purchase
Sounds easy enough? Not exactly. This is actually where most marketers make a huge mistake.
If the technological transformation failure rate of 70% is true, every 7 out of 10 marketers choose the wrong tool for the job. The key is to find the technology that fits the right channel your customers use, your budget and your technical capabilities.
The right tool for you will address these specific use-cases in a way your customers prefer and perform according to their needs. Marketing automation is generally a good place to start here, using it to trigger actions that help move your customers along each journey point.
However, the successful setup and implementation of marketing automation and which specific platform would best suit your needs are just as critical. We’ll cover this in more detail below.
3 - Find the off switch
Thanks to step one, you know where your customers are. You also understand how you’re going to reach them and drive them towards a sale with props to step two. However, if you don’t want to get into trouble with the law or hurt your brand reputation, the tools you’re using need to include an escape plan for anyone who wants to cut out your marketing.
The best advantage technology has over telemarketers is that it can be turned off - so don’t get clingy. No matter whether you’re using email, marketing automation, SMS, or push notifications, your tool needs to provide a way for your customers to turn them off.
As a marketer, your job is to make this function clear and accessible for your customers. The best tools will do this automatically, but the worst will try to hide this function. The consequences of failing to remove unengaged leads vary from uninterested leads to millions of Euros in fines (GDPR).
Don’t make this mistake. Annoyed people don’t become customers, they become the opposite - brand detractors - telling everyone and their neighbour how terrible your company is. Instead, use a tool that automatically removes uninterested leads for you.
4 - Marketing technology can’t run on positive thinking
If you buy yourself a Lamborghini, you still need to be able to afford the fuel. Likewise, you should always try to get the best marketing technology possible within your budget. Let me repeat that last bit - within your budget.
As a marketer, you have to honestly evaluate where your company is, what pain points you have and which tool can be run reliably without bankrupting your organisation. A technology platform with all the bells and whistles may help you get more leads faster, but it may come with many solutions that solve problems you simply do not have.
The takeaway is this - marketing technology can’t run on positive thinking alone. You need money to invest, and you need to be prepared to pay for what you get. However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t invest in marketing technology if you don’t have money; it just means you have to be critically selective for what will most impact your needs.
Some aspects to consider when addressing how much your solution will cost include:
- Set-up and running costs
- Creative content to use on the platform
- Hosting and data fees
- Initial licensing and subscription fees
5 - Walk before you fly - or find a pilot
Just because you have a fancy piece of marketing technology doesn’t mean you’ll be able to use it effectively or even in the correct way.
Marketing solutions that are set up incorrectly or measure the wrong metrics easily steer your company in the wrong direction and could even cause enough disruption to hurt your bottom line. This is why it is critical to have the proper training, experience and knowledge to use the technology you select effectively.
If you don’t have the experience to use marketing technology or the time to learn it gradually, all is not lost. Experts, such as Demodia, can help you make the right decisions and implement an effective strategy that works for your needs.
An excellent place to start is to contact us for a free consultation on which kinds of technology solutions may be suitable for your business objectives and, more importantly, which would satisfy your company’s needs today.
If the above topic was interesting to you, there’s plenty more to be discovered! Our blog covers all the challenges and solutions to digital marketing, including digital transformation, content marketing, multi-channel marketing and more. Click here to view the topics that interest you most - or visit our website to find resources to take your marketing to the next level.