You’re working too dang hard. Marketers everywhere are feeling the burn, and Sailthru has the guide to help you use automation and data-driven strategy to manage your workload with less stress. Learn how you can be less reliant on big companies, all while moving at the speed of your customers, capturing trends, and staying relevant.
Use data and automation to get more from your marketing strategy this holiday season — while doing less.
The past year has been tough for marketers everywhere. In fact, 59% have felt like quitting their current job at one point. The pressure is real — and it’s not going away anytime soon.
So, how can you accomplish all of your goals and feel more fulfilled without any extra work? Learn how you can use automation and data-driven strategy to do more with less and start working smarter instead of harder.
Read this marketing strategy guide to learn more about:
- Future marketing trends and industry predictions
- Building a data-driven marketing strategy
- The tech capabilities that can elevate your efforts
- Accelerating your workflows and processes through automation
- Continued growth of ecommerce
- Foundational omnichannel marketing strategies
- First-party data
- Audience segmentation
- AI-driven personalization
- Automated email triggering, targeting, and testing tactics
- Increasing engagement and conversion rate through dynamic email content
- Cross-functional marketing KPIs and reporting tools
- Onboarding email series
WHEW! The past 16 months have been a crazy whirlwind. From the pandemic, to supply chain issues, to big changes from Apple and Google on the near-term horizon, old ways of working have been tossed out the window.
Consumers are now savvy online searchers, shoppers, and influencers. They seek out companies that offer the best customer experience and are quick to leave if they don’t get what they want. Deloitte notes that 66% of consumers agree that the pandemic has made them appreciate welldesigned technology more than before.
This has put a lot of strain on marketers. In fact, 59% said that they wanted to quit at least once in the past year. The top driver of stress was the demand customers put on marketers to deliver better digital experiences. The pressure is real, and it’s not going away.
The entire game is shifting. Planning in annual cycles, relying on cookies to help with targeting, assuming that customers will do what you want them to — these norms are gone. Now, you need to be more flexible, more agile, and less reliant on big companies so that you can move at the speed of your customers, capture trends, and remain relevant.
Sounds like a lot of work. But it doesn’t have to be.
You can achieve all of this with what you already have in place. Automation, data, and campaign flexibility can all help launch and scale your marketing programs successfully with less work and more agility.
Take Stock of What’s Next
Gone are the days of wash, rinse, repeat annual planning cycles, conveniently repetitive consumer behavior charts, and tried-and-true holiday campaigns. Now, everyone is looking at the most recent data they can find to try to figure out what consumers will be doing in Q4 so that they can plan their next moves.
Here are a few trends that we predict for holiday 2021:
- Holiday shopping starts earlier: The inevitable holiday shopping creep isn’t going to stop any time soon. Searching for deals and getting hot items before they sell out is a priority for many shoppers — starting this fall.
- eCommerce comes on strong: eMarketer predicts that more people will shop online this holiday season as ecommerce picks up speed. Big retailers like Walmart and Target are so confident in their online predictions that they’re closing many of their stores for Thanksgiving.
- Consumers expect more: From same-day shipping to highly relevant promotions and recommendations, consumers can spot a sloppy experience from a mile away. They get what they want from some retailers, so their standards are now high across the board.
Time To Work Smarter!
Managing a long online holiday season full of a bunch of demanding shoppers is a daunting task to look forward to. It’s a bit scary to think that this year, a lot of marketers are behind on holiday planning. That’s due to the fact that so much is in flux, and so much needs to be changed from last year when we were in the middle of the pandemic. This work can be overwhelming, and so it’s important to prioritize things that will address the big changes most effectively.
A lot of companies, maybe even yours, are investing in digital transformation to keep up with those savvy shoppers. That’s a good thing. Embrace newfound interest in ecommerce, data, and technology. These elements can be your friend — if you use them effectively.
The Smarter Not Harder Checklist
The foundation of a good omnichannel marketing strategy lies in data. Check in with your data team and see if you are accessing all of the customer data that your company has available. Get creative with your website team and see if you could be gathering new insights across your channels. Searches, click-through-rate, add-to-cart data, and more are valuable not just within a specific channel, but across the customer lifecycle.
- Use first-party data to find new segments such as “new online shoppers in holiday 2020.”
- Go beyond manual segmentation with AI-driven personalization that does the work for you at scale.
- Use customer interests and behaviors beyond email triggers, and consider adding SMS or even ad targeting for more automation across more channels.
According to Gartner, marketers use only 58% of the capabilities available in their technology stack. Set up calls with your customer reps across your CDP, ESP, CRM, and more to see what they recommend you start using. From dynamic testing to automated alerts, tech platforms likely have lots of handy capabilities that can help you.
- Add dynamic features to email to increase engagement and conversion.
- BrandsMart implements a variety of dynamic content in their email campaigns including video that automatically detects a device’s display capabilities. If it’s unable to display the embedded video as intended, this element allows the brand to dynamically populate fallback image content instead — ensuring every customer receives a visually engaging email experience. In BrandsMart’s case, dynamic content is creating a 2% revenue uptick from its emails.
- Connect email and web experiences with automated content personalization.
- NASCAR updated their birthday email by creating automated, personalized emails that drive fans to a website that a mystery discount, resulting in a 94% increase in conversions and a 308% increase in revenue generated by email.
- Use alerts tied to KPIs that can trigger rapid response from the team.
Planning and Reporting
If you want to stress less, you have to know more. And that happens when your planning and reporting are consolidated and focused on the right metrics. If you’re stuck with the same old reporting from last year, now’s the time to reassess what KPIs you really want to track. And if you’re hoping to be agile through the holiday season, it’s time to set up dynamic reports and alerts that can get you there.
- Empower cross-functional partners in creative, merchandising, and paid media by allowing view access to email performance directly in the ESP.
- Set up regular reports to be sent to key stakeholders automatically.
Does it take forever to get creative approved, set up, and tested? These slow processes are hurting your ability to keep up with customers. Find out what’s holding your team back from being faster and more agile and prioritize better processes.
- Set up “continuous testing” so that your customer experience is always improving and you don’t need to get individual approval and development for each email.
- Develop email welcome series that automatically keep new customers engaged.
- Through Liveclicker’s platform, Food Network built a connected, cross-channel audience experience that encourages interaction at every step, including automated emails that featured popular blog posts, recipe lists, and upcoming programming.
- Use email to orchestrate your segmentation strategy and automatically share with Facebook, Google, SMS, and mobile app notification platforms. Tap into the growing trend of social commerce with integrated messaging across channels.
- Create automated templates that can easily be changed without a lot of new design work.
The smarter-not-harder approach is a win-win. The more you get in the habit of working smarter, the more opportunities you’ll find to streamline your marketing and increase your agility. And the more you can show the results of your new approach, the more people across your company will get on board.
The good thing is that you don’t have to do it alone. We’re here to help you get started — get in touch with our team to start making smart changes today!