On Focus.com, Holly asks:
“Does marketing automation work if I only have a cold list of records? How effective would using this cold list be?”
It’s true that most marketing automation implementations involve either customers or existing prospects – people with whom the company has had prior contact – but there’s no reason why you couldn’t use the same technology against a cold list.
Case in point – we’re currently developing an integrated demand generation campaign for a client targeting a select group of contacts at key accounts. The campaign will involve a series of both email and direct mail “touches” all driving the prospects to a single, custom Web microsite. The client sourced the names from their CRM database and outside lists and has taken great pains to verify the contact information. Nonetheless, it is, for the most part, a cold list.
We’ll be heavily leveraging the client’s marketing automation platform to broadcast the emails and track response. What will marketing automation do for us that a run-of-the-mill email engine wouldn’t?
* once any of the target contacts opens any of the emails (and is “cookied” by the system), that individual’s contact information will appear pre-populated on response forms, increasing conversion rates
* once cookied in the manner described above, we can track that same contact’s Web activity – i.e. visits to the client’s Website or the campaign microsite – and automatically trigger sales alerts based on that activity, regardless of whether the person ever fills out a form
* if we fulfill downloadable content via email, we can track whether the respondent actually downloaded (i.e. read) that content and trigger action accordingly – for example, sending the respondent a friendly reminder 2 days later if he/she has failed to download the offer
* we can design the program to withhold incremental touches – or possibly deliver a slightly different message – if we know that any individual contact has opened, or responded to, one or more previous emails, or failed to do any of the above
and so on. This isn’t a typical use case for marketing automation, but there’s plenty that marketing automation will do to make the campaign that much more effective.