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5 Ways to Improve Your Email Marketing with CRM
81% of B2B marketers say their most used form of content marketing is email newsletters. (Content Marketing Institute, 2020)
31% of B2B marketers say email newsletters are the best way to nurture leads. (Content Marketing Institute, 2020)
Both of these stats tell us a lot about the importance and effectiveness of email marketing. Email marketing as a strategy is one of the easiest and least expensive ways to reach your target audience. It beats social media, PPC (pay-per-click), media buys, and almost all other forms of marketing. Because of the generous ROI of email marketing, there is a lot of competition to stand out in the Inbox. With millions of emails going out on a daily basis, it’s even more important to implement proper email marketing practices.
In this blog post, we are going to cover 5 ways you can improve your email marketing strategy using CRM.
The importance of CRM in Email Marketing
Customer relationship management (CRM) is a commonly used software application that stores and manages important customer data. Traditionally, CRM solutions were standalone systems that sales used to track their contacts. Now, the role of CRM has evolved from an important sales tool to an important business tool. CRM is important for ALL departments, not just sales.
Marketing needs CRM data to gather valuable insights about your leads and customers. When they don’t have access to this information, they do not get the entire picture of who your customers are and how they move through your sales process. Integrating sales, marketing, and customer service allows your marketing team to use real data to segment and personalize your email communications.
First and foremost, a CRM can help strengthen your email marketing through personalization. A CRM holds a lot of information about your leads and clients. When you tie your CRM to your email marketing, you can easily personalize each message.
Basic personalization includes things like first name, last name, company, location, title, or industry. Using any of these demographic data points is a great starting point to improve your email marketing. That being said, think about the data your CRM contains. What else can you use to personalize your email marketing campaigns?
As a B2B SaaS solution, some data points we might use include:
As you can see from these examples, you can use data points from basic demographic information to more complex data points like survey responses, form responses, and more.
Segmentation is the process of dividing your contacts into select groups based on certain attributes. A segment can be based on demographics or behaviors.
For example, you can create a segment based on location, and you can also create a segment based on where that contact is in your sales funnel. The only way to segment your contacts is with CRM data. You need the data to be able to define groups of contacts.
When you integrate your email marketing with CRM, you can pull that information from each contact and use it to create targeted communication.
You can segment your contacts on both demographic and behavioral data.
Demographic segmentation includes:
Behavioral segmentation includes:
Above are examples of ways that you can use CRM data to create segments of contacts. You can send personalized emails to each segment. For example, someone at the top of your funnel that has downloaded a whitepaper in a previous email would get a different follow up message than a person who has not clicked or read an email.
#3 Automate follow-ups
Automation is a great way to streamline your customer experience. When you build automation into your strategy, you reduce manual work, decrease the chance of human error, and you create consistency in your overall process.
For example, if someone requests a meeting with a salesperson, you can automate a confirmation and follow up message. This saves your team time and ensures that the person requesting the meeting gets a prompt follow up.
Another example would be after a purchase. Automate a follow up to confirm the purchase, provide additional information, or upsell the customers.
When you integrate CRM with marketing automation and email marketing, like with GreenRope Complete CRM, contacts are automatically added to your database and can be sent on automated and personalized customer journeys.
#4 Improve data collection
Data collection is another way email marketing and CRM play well together. While CRM data feeds your email marketing strategy, email marketing is a great way to fill your CRM with important demographic and behavioral data.
For example, give recipients the option to update their profile, or link to a form when they can submit updated information about their preferences.
In terms of behavioral data, email marketing insights help you track reads, clicks, and engagement. You can use reader action or inaction to trigger additional emails, assign a follow up to your sales people, or further segment your contact lists. If someone clicks on a specific email or a specific link within an email, you can add them to a group, give them a tag, add custom data, and more.
Email marketing is one of the most effective ways to collect and improve your data collection efforts.
#5 Identify where a customer is in the buying process
Understanding where your leads are in your sales funnel is important if you want to target them with relevant information. A person at the top of your funnel should receive different messaging than a person towards the bottom.
An example of this would be a lead nurturing campaign.
A B2B software company uses social media, content, webinars, and pay-per-click advertising to drive awareness and generate new leads. The leads that they get from social, content, and webinars tend to be more marketing qualified, whereas the leads coming in from PPC have specifically requested a demo of the platform. Those leads are called sales qualified leads, meaning they are ready to evaluate the product.
The marketing qualified leads should be put in an email series that is less sales-y and more informative. For example, sending them additional ebooks, blog posts, or webinars they might be interested in would be engaging content.
The sales qualified leads should get case studies, reviews, and comparisons to help them in their consideration of the platform. You can see how the content at each of the stages of your funnel is different. Marketing qualified leads are not yet ready for case studies and comparisons, as they may not even know they need the platform yet. Instead, they need information on strategy, benefits, and more.
Your CRM will tell you where your leads are in your sales funnel so you can email them appropriate content.
There are so many reasons to integrate your CRM with your email marketing. Sending out mass broadcasts just isn’t effective anymore. Using data to personalize the customer experience sets you apart from the competition and allows you to stand out from your competitors.
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