During a down economy, the temptation to cut back on marketing and sales spending looms large, but it shouldn’t trump the reality that sales are what sustains a business overall.
As primary revenue drivers, these business-building teams can be a stabilizing force amid economic shifts. To reap the full benefits of their marketing budget, companies like those in the financial sector should view marketing automation as a necessary tool and rely on dependable partners to guide potential customers toward the most suitable offerings.
Automation creates cost-saving operational efficiencies and insights into performance metrics that can assist in measuring the most effective conversion strategies for customers, leading to repeated and scalable success.
Marketing automation isn’t new.
Certain industries are less affected than others given their stance as essential businesses; however, economic downturns can still leave businesses stagnant or without a rise in profits.
Financial services are a prime example and can take advantage of the benefits of being a stable industry amid a recession. But, to maximize profits, financial service providers must explore smart strategies such as tracking and analyzing leads and their related sources, utilizing comprehensive data reporting and ensuring that there is a comprehensive view of the entire customer journey.
Lean into Lead Data
Tracking and analyzing leads is the first step to a strategic marketing plan, especially for financial services in a depressed economy that need a boost in conversions.
Many businesses have trouble generating traffic and leads, with 65% of companies identifying it as their biggest marketing challenge, but with the right strategy and solution, companies can improve customer acquisition and retention, aid in goal setting and help their respective businesses stay informed about their marketing efforts and employee performance.
Customer interactions should be tracked and analyzed from every source. Companies can implement tools like call, click and user behavior tracking as well as form submissions across all of their sources and partnerships to obtain an accurate reading. Understanding campaign effectiveness using tracking and analytics is key to understanding which marketing efforts are driving inbound inquiries.
While tracking can help with the awareness of campaign effectiveness, it is also essential in understanding the customer journey. Effective lead tracking through the entire customer journey can help teams identify where their leads are coming from, and which channels are generating the most high-value leads.
Having a singular view of the entire customer journey can also help to identify friction points in the sales process, as these friction points may differ depending on how the customer originally engaged. Tracking and a strong marketing automation program are crucial for success. Customer acquisition leaders must implement systems which track and report on all elements of customer interactions, from the first website click to the last phone order, to ensure an effective campaign.
Data Reporting to the Max
A key strategy to generating profit is maximizing data reporting for deeper insight. Reporting guides businesses to position themselves for long-term success and allows for better and speedier decision making.
Data analytics allows companies and marketing teams the ability to gain in-depth insight to help make their business more relevant and establish themselves within saturated markets. With analytics, companies can leverage more precise information to refine their brand strategies and the user experience.
Using real-time reporting to generate fast-loading reports on all campaigns enhances marketing decisions quickly and effectively by using valuable sorting and comparison tools.
Data analytics helps businesses understand their customers better, improves sales and customer targeting, reduces costs and allows for the creation of better problem-solving strategies.
Take Advantage of Software Solutions
In a down economy, financial services are one of the many industries looking for ways to generate new leads.
Lead acquisition must grow quickly, putting immense value on software solutions thanks to their automated systems that enable better organization of owned data. These solutions bring an organized front to the user to optimize and deliver results quickly, regardless of the level of maturity of the business as a whole.
In fact, 79% of top-performing companies have been using marketing automation for at least three years, proving that the implementation of software or other types of lead generation tactics will lead to new prospects and customers.
By automating lead generation, sales or marketing teams can capitalize on the selling points that attracted leads in the first place, and this same information can help build stronger customer relationships down the line. Automation allows for a current of communication based on customer interest and enhances the personalization required to build relationships and loyalty.
What’s more, lead generation software solutions provide additional advantages including easier management of contact information, mitigation of compliance-related issues, faster sales, efficient lead scoring and speed to contact, a vital component to getting ahead of the competition in a shaky economy.
For financial services to increase their margins they must implement lead-gen software and marketing automation tools, especially with an uptick in consumer and investor uncertainty, which can create a challenging environment when selling certain types of lending products.
These obstacles can be overcome using the right software solutions to collect and manage customer data. By utilizing these tools and resources that enhance the customer experience, they can establish strong customer relationships, better allocate marketing investments, achieve measurable returns and drive profits.
About the author:
Jeffrey Schaffer is the Chief Operating Officer of Phonexa. Schaffer drives new initiatives and expands brand awareness for the all-in-one marketing automation solution for calls, leads, clicks, email, SMS, accounting and more.
Schaffer is a seasoned business professional and executive with over 22 years of experience in business management, sales development and digital marketing transformation. His diverse experience has landed him in leadership roles across top firms in financial services, insurance, e-commerce and performance marketing.