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6 Steps to Ramp Up Trigger Marketing

Sebastian Zentgraf
Senior Customer Success Manager

Are you in the "old habit" of aligning customer communications solely around your marketing calendar, product launches, and company events? Are you finding that’s not really working for you anymore? That’s probably because customers today have high expectations from the companies they engage with. It’s the era of buyer-centric digital marketing. Customers expect us to know who they are, understand their challenges as much as their goals, and anticipate their future needs. And when we engage with them, they want us to interact on a personal level that is responsive, highly relevant, and consistent across all channels. To be honest, the customer has every reason to expect this from us. In today’s digital world, companies have access to the tools, data, and skills required to create a highly personalized digital experience.

One modern marketing tactic, which puts the customer in the center of the digital experience and harnesses the power of marketing automation, is triggered programs. Triggered programs are based on a customer’s profile data, preferences and digital body language. They engage with the customer, when the customer is ready to engage and help to increase the speed in which he/she moves through the customer lifecycle.

"Old habits die hard," sings Mick Jagger, but don’t worry, getting started with triggered programs and becoming a "trigger happy" marketer is much easier than you think.

Here are 6 simple steps to help get you started with triggered programs:

Step 1: Define and map out your customer’s lifecycle. Assess all the different stages that your customer goes through when making a purchase, such as identifying the need, conducting research, purchasing the product or service, and so on.

Step 2: Identify opportunities to implement triggered communications at every stage of the journey. You want to create programs that give your customers the right information at the right time so that you can help move them through the customer lifecycle. Determine which type of email communications you can build into your automated triggered programs that will align with your customer’s lifecycle stages identified in step 1.

Need some ideas to get started? MarketingSherpa created a list of the most common types of B2B and B2C triggered email programs:

Top 10 B2B triggered email programs

1.     Thanks

2.     Welcome

3.     Transactional

4.     Post-purchase

5.     Triggered based on website behavior

6.     Activation

7.     Up sell/cross-promotional

8.     Date triggered

9.     Event countdown

10.  Win-back/re-engagement

Top 10 B2C triggered email programs

1.     Welcome

2.     Transactional

3.     Thanks

4.     Up sell/cross-promotional

5.     Activation

6.     Date triggered

7.     Post-purchase

8.     Triggered based on website behavior

9.     Event countdown

10.  Win-back/re-engagement

Step 3: Prioritize your triggered programs in order of their importance. While there are seemingly endless opportunities to create triggered programs, you will need to prioritize them based on the biggest impact they have on revenue, profits, and customer loyalty. If you are new to marketing automation, consider starting with a simple triggered campaign, like a welcome nurture program.

Step 4: Design your trigger program. Define the goal of your trigger program and what success looks like. Start mapping out the message flow and define trigger rules based on the data available. Conduct a content audit and be sure to include only content types and communication channels that are relevant to your audience. Modify the campaign flow based on the contacts tracked behavior and engagement with your content.

Step 5: Establish communications rules. When you have multiple trigger and nurture programs in place, you want to make sure to establish communications rules, which determine the priority of different programs, as well as the frequency in which contacts can be emailed. You don't want a new prospect to enter your database and suddenly receive five emails within an hour. You will see how quickly the unsubscribe rate will sky rocket, if you don’t build rules around your communications architecture.

Step 6: Measure success and continuously optimize your trigger program. Define your success metrics. Some common ones include: unique click-through rates, active contacts and form conversion rates. Create a baseline which you will use to measure the success of your trigger program. Start tracking and analyzing the results from your trigger programs. Come up with a set of recommendations on how you could optimize your trigger program.

If you are just getting started with trigger programs, or want to further develop your knowledge on this topic, request to have the Engage Customers with Trigger-Based Programs Facilitated Discussion with a marketing advisor today! Oracle Marketing Cloud customers can check out our full menu of Facilitated Discussions!


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