4majorityIn the past few years, a lot has changed in the marketing automation industry. If in 2013 only one in four large B2B company opted for automation, just two years later there are 59% doing that and for good reasons. In fact, there are two main reasons that have an impact on the marketing automation trend of Fortune Global 500 B2B companies:

1. ‘Lead Generation’ through speed
Due to the fact that customers increasingly have the option to interact with articles, photos, videos and product presentations, show that content marketing in particular continues to be a big issue. Hence, large businesses struggle to identify potential leads, especially since everybody started to interact with content, making the data volume increase enormously. The solution and answer to all is marketing automation. Capturing and evaluating user signals properly and taking appropriate measures, works with large volumes of data in real-time only with marketing automation and a programmatic approach.

According to a study, for instance, Oracle managed to shorten the time between identification and conversion considerably. It used to take up to five days, but today - after the introduction of appropriate automation measures – reduced it to only three hours. Time is a crucial factor to succeed in our industry, we all know.

Another study - this time from Harvard – examined several B2B companies and found out the chance of conversion is 60% higher a few hours after the initial contact than making use of the same tactics days later. In such cases, marketing automation is far more powerful because of its sheer speed.

2. ‘Lead Nurturing’ with the right timing
At least as important as ‘lead generation’ is ‘lead nurturing’. The problem here is, however, that the ideal type of process (customer is interested in brand, offer is made, customer buys offer) does not comply fixed rules anymore that way. Constant good care of the customer is crucial for success – comparable to an egg that must always kept warm, before a chick can hatch.

In fact, a study revealed that 77% of B2B buyers expect customized content appetizers, but wait at the same time longer before actually deciding to buy. Hence, it is the more important today to find out where exactly the customer is standing in the customer journey and to respond accordingly. Thus, automation is playing a major role again. Behavioral patterns need to be tracked, identified, and integrated correctly - a process which is possible only with a large amount of data. In addition, the appropriate customer communication has to be triggered at the right time, which requires as usual good planning and thinking ahead.

By Daniela La Marca