4 Ways to Make Social Media a Core Part of Your Marketing Automation Strategy

Opinion: Your marketing automation strategy is not complete without social media

According to research from VB Insight, 80 percent of companies using marketing automation experience an increase in leads, while 77 percent experience an increase in sales conversion.

PR20/20’s Marketing Score report also reveals that high performers at marketing automation have at least a 60 percent higher lead-to-sale conversion rate compared with others.

The importance of marketing automation is indisputable. We live in a world where attention spans are rapidly declining and people are bombarded with a barrage of information on a consistent basis.

The only way to really stand out as a business is by ensuring that you deliver tailored and targeted information that is based on your audience’s interests—this, research shows, can boost sales by up to 208 percent.

Your marketing automation strategy is not complete without social media, though. Here are some key ways to make social media a core part of your marketing automation strategy:

Actively integrate social media in your email marketing efforts

Data from the Direct Marketing Association shows that you can expect a return on investment of $38 for every $1 spent on email marketing, so naturally, email marketing is expected to be a core part of any marketing automation effort.

However, very few people effectively leverage social media to boost their email marketing efforts. If used right, social media can significantly amplify the reach of your emails while also boosting email subscriptions.

Here are some ways you can integrate social media and email marketing:

  • Make it easy to share your email content on social media: With the right content appeal, you can reach several times the people on your email list. Many people feel that having a share button or link in their email messages isn’t essential. It is. Include a share option that leads people back to your opt-in page.
  • Add opt-in forms to key places on your blog: Your blog could be the biggest social channel driving leads to your automation system if properly optimized with opt-in forms in all of the relevant places.
  • Share links to excerpts of your email updates on social media: Have them require people to subscribe and join your automation sequence to read the full message.
  • Use Twitter cards and web forms on your Facebook page: Effectively leverage social media to boost your email subscriptions.

Of course, it is important to realize that the ability to implement the above options depends on your email service provider. Most email service providers today enable you to do the above and more. For example, GetResponse has a feature that enables instant tweets and Facebook updates of your emails, as well as an option to embed a link in your emails to facilitate social sharing of your email content.

Use social media to create more attention around your launches

If you haven’t actively used social media during a launch, you’ve probably missed out on a good portion of your sales.

There’s a reason why there has been a lot of emphasis on social selling lately: People on social media have bigger pockets.

According to research from Sales for Life, people who engage on social media have 84 percent bigger budgets than people who don’t engage on social media. So, if you’re silent during your launches, you’re costing yourself sales.

Platforms like Kajabi enable integrations that regularly feed people with updates about your launches at different phases in your sales cycle.

More important, take things up a notch and actively engage with people who are interested in your product or even topics around your product. If it can boost sales by up to 84 percent, why not do it?

Establish thought leadership with content curation

Research shows that 85 percent of people agree that content curation helps establish thought leadership. Thought leadership should be a core factor when designing your marketing automation system; while it is difficult to measure, research shows that perceived expertise and thought leadership can indeed boost conversions significantly.

The famous Milgram experiments show to what extent authority and thought leadership can influence people’s actions. The experiments, conducted in the 1960s, showed that majority of people are willing to obey authority to a major degree, even if it means electrocuting someone else. A version of the experiment conducted recently in Poland showed that even more people defer to authority now than in the past.

This same principle explains why social curation can be very effective as part of a marketing automation strategy. Use applications like DrumUp to curate top content in your industry, ensuring that you have an endless source of fresh, relevant content automatically delivered to your audience.

Actively repurpose your content and spread across social channels

You don’t always need a mega-budget to effectively distribute content aimed at increasing the number of leads that join your automation system. Often, simply repurposing existing content and distributing it far and wide will be more than enough. A blog post can be repurposed into an infographic, a slide presentation, infographics, video content, tweets, Facebook status updates and other social media updates.

A single piece of content repurposed into eight different content forms can potentially help you achieve eight times the reach the single piece of content would have achieved. That’s potentially an 800 percent increase in leads. What will that mean for your automation system?

Repurposing content helps you achieve content unity by ensuring that your content is related while significantly amplifying your message across different channels.

Harald Merckel is a freelance writer whose primary focuses are business, e-gaming and marketing.

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