Automation has become an essential part of many marketers’ daily operations: more than two-thirds of marketers use automation to optimize their workflow and 63 percent of marketers plan to increase their automation budget in the near future. This guide covers everything you need to know about the benefits and common uses of B2C marketing automation and B2B marketing automation.
What is marketing automation?
Marketing automation uses technology to automate tasks, saving teams from laborious work that doesn’t efficiently use employees time and skills.
Modern marketing campaigns have a granular complexity that would have been previously unthinkable. With more information to manage and organize in a usable way, marketers need to automate specific tasks. The aim is to streamline marketing efforts so that workflows are easier to manage and optimize.
However, access to automation tools won’t make a marketer’s expertise less valuable. Instead, Paul Müller, CTO and co-founder at Adjust, has said automation technology “leaves marketers free to focus on being creative and pushing the boundaries of what marketing can achieve.”
Thanks to recent technological advancements, marketing automation is now more affordable for B2B and B2C companies, enabling them to automate tasks and focus their attention on overall strategy and other functions that a machine cannot complete.
Automation and the customer journey
Marketing automation can be used to map customer journeys and set certain triggers throughout this journey. This will depend on the nature of a company’s product, but examples of triggers include when a customer signs up for a mailing list or clicks on an ad. The aim is to move customers along their journey and generate revenue. B2C marketers can create superior customer journeys through automating processes. Marketers can immediately send relevant emails to a target audience and maintain better customer service for their entire customer base. This improved customer journey enables marketers to generate greater revenue without additional work.
Why is marketing automation effective for B2B and B2C companies?
The way B2C and B2B marketers use automation platforms will differ, but both can use this technology to their advantage. Marketing automation platforms can be adaptable to the specific needs of a company. Below we explore how automated processes are used for B2B and B2C companies and the significant benefits of working with a marketing automation platform.
B2B marketing automation
B2B marketers are often tasked with finding new leads, communicating with potential partners, and identifying ways to seamlessly onboard new customers. The aim is to ensure customers are getting the most out of their product with successful communication and automated processes. For example, B2B companies can use marketing automation to send relevant content – such as company updates and educational materials – to leads, clients and partners.
Why you need B2B marketing automation: Key benefits to consider
Spend less time on menial tasks
By incorporating B2B marketing automation into your operations, you can save your team from laborious tasks that do not utilize their expertise. For example, with these menial tasks taken care of by automation technology, your team can focus on developing your marketing strategy, troubleshooting, training and A/B testing. They will also have more time to devote to building a relationship with your customers. It may take some experimentation to find the right balance between automated and manual tasks, but it’s worth it for the long-term benefits.
Bidding automation has become common practice for marketers, enabling them to adjust bids based on CPA (Cost Per Action). This has made it easier for marketers to win the bids that are most important to their marketing strategy in a cost-effective way because marketers can maximize their conversions at the lowest possible cost. In addition to these benefits, machine learning can suggest target CPAs for marketers over time.
Improve your testing capabilities
Automation can help B2B marketers complete A/B tests effectively. This can be done by automatically segmenting users into cohorts and testing how they react to essential elements of your marketing process - whether that’s creatives, your onboarding process or UI. Automatically segmenting user groups is a smart way to save time that is better spent on audience analysis and further developing your team’s marketing strategy.
Generate new audiences
B2B automation platforms enable marketers to pull data from various sources and generate new audiences. You can also automatically target different audience groups. This type of automation is relatively new but is a promising development in how automation platforms can assist marketers when finding and organizing user groups. Tolga Kuzdere, Senior Performance Marketing Manager at Akbank, has said “The full realization is years away, but you can be sure that targeting automation (without explicit human intervention) will transform marketing over the next five years.”
Achieve your marketing goals faster
By helping you allocate budgets for your campaigns and channels, B2B marketing automation platforms make it easier to efficiently reach your KPIs and other company goals. This technology enables you to automate bid increases for campaigns that perform above expectations and bid decreases for underperforming campaigns. This means your budgets are better spent without any additional work.
Personalization is a great way to improve your marketing performance and reach your KPIs. A certain level of personalization is now expected by customers, ranging from including a customer’s name in their emails to curating creatives based on their interests. This type of large-scale personalization is only possible with the use of automation. You can also use automation technology to test which kinds of personalization works best for your audience.
B2C marketing automation
Although there are crossover uses for B2C marketing automation and B2B marketing automation, these two types of marketing have different approaches to the same tools. B2C automation gives marketers more ways to leverage data to offer a superior service and optimize revenue. B2C companies are often looking for ease-of-use and the possibility to integrate automation technology with the systems they are currently using to perform tasks. Another requirement is the ability to implement multichannel marketing programs. This is a smart way to prevent bombarding a customer with the same content across different channels. Here are the important ways in which B2C businesses can use automation.
Why you need B2C marketing automation: Key benefits to consider
Optimize your onboarding
Automation enables B2C marketers to enhance the onboarding experience they offer to their customers. For example, if a customer has signed up to a mailing list marketers can send automated emails to communicate the next step in their customer journey. This can lead to significant revenue increases: 74 percent of marketers believe targeted personalization will increase customer engagement and more than half of marketers say consistent personalized communication positively impacts a company’s revenue.
This is also an opportunity to create brand loyalty and improve brand awareness. Automation can also be used to A/B test your onboarding for different audience groups, which gives you the data needed to determine the optimal creatives for your customers.
Improve your retargeting capabilities
Automation technology can significantly improve how B2C companies can retarget their audience. This can be achieved by setting up retargeting triggers for users based on their behavior. For example, you can automatically send a retargeting email to a user who has left an item in their cart for more than 24 hours. This can also be used for users who have not signed in or made a purchase for a set period.
Automated reminders can also be used to reach out to customers who haven’t opened your email - and you could for example send a reminder to encourage a customer by including a promotional offer for a limited time.
Implement A/B testing
Just like with B2B marketing, automation can be used for A/B testing for B2C. This involves exposing different audience groups to different creatives, UI and other elements you wish to optimize - for example, you could test how free shipping impacts sales. This lets you learn whether this offering is viable and profitable in the long run.
Set up automated promotional campaigns
You can use B2C marketing automation platforms to implement promotional campaigns and special offers for your most valuable customers. For example, you may want to set up a rewards system where users automatically receive a discount based on their behavior. After purchasing X amount, you can offer a particular discount or free shipping to reward users for their loyalty to your brand. Another example is for special occasions: birthdays, seasonal celebrations and anniversaries are great opportunities to reward customers for continuing to use your services.
Automation with Adjust: How we can help
A recent study commissioned by Adjust showed that 81 percent of marketers said their company has plans to increase marketing or advertising automation budgets in 2020. We also discovered that the biggest pain points for these marketers are merging disparate sources of data, accurate campaign management and updating bids and budgets individually. This is why we launched Adjust Automate. This automation product suite gives marketers the tools needed to simplify campaign optimization. This means you can scale your marketing faster, maximize your app ROI, and keep investing in the most profitable channels.
Adjust Automate can be used by marketers to centralize and scale campaign optimization by updating bids and campaign budgets for ads running on Facebook, Google, Twitter, and Apple Search. Marketers can also use Report Automation to drill into their highest performing KPIs and optimize these campaigns with Rule Engine. Most importantly, our automation suite enables marketers to save time when optimizing campaigns - helping you to quickly find campaigns that match your performance goals and set rules for automatic bids and budget adjustments. This is designed to help you spend less time chasing KPIs and more time developing ways to reach your goals efficiently.
Part of the Adjust Automate product suite, our Control Center tool is a cross-app, cross-partner and cross-network dashboard that enables marketers to view their data across all of their apps and campaigns. The Control Center was designed to simplify the process of mobile advertising management, allowing marketers to automate routine tasks so that marketers have more time to invest in creative work. Mobile marketers can also use Control Center as an equalizer to allow teams of all sizes to compete against larger marketing departments.