Marketing automation and social media don’t seem like ideal partners. Sure, automation software enables more customer centric marketing, and it’s great for segmenting and personalizing emails. But it still can’t match the actual human interaction that makes social media so powerful.
Try running too much automation on social media and you’ll start inching precariously close to sounding like a robot. And robots aren’t that popular on social media.
But marketing automation isn’t meant to manage your social media; it’s designed to generate and nurture leads. It’s also designed to produce detailed analytics about your prospect’s behavior in emails and on your website. Translating this behavioral data to your social media channels not only shows you which candidates to engage with, but also enables you to speak directly to their interests.
Moving this data from your automation system to your social channels isn’t as challenging as it sounds. Nearly all automation platforms rely on lists to segment prospects in the system’s database and decide which emails get sent to which group — if your current program doesn’t you may need to do some marketing automation comparison.
Just download the CSV file for the audience you want to target and upload it to Twitter and Facebook.
You have a couple of options of what to do after you upload the file, all of which repurpose existing data and create a more holistic experience for your audience. These initiatives are neither ad-spend nor labor prohibitive, which makes them great for small businesses.
Option #1: Create a Retargeting Campaign
Retargeting comes in a variety of forms, but to control the cost of your campaign, stick with list-based retargeting. Pick one of your marketing automation lists and upload it to your preferred social media channel using a third party retargeting tool for Facebook or directly through Twitter. Then develop an ad that corresponds directly to the interest of the prospects.
You can make this process even more targeted by running an email campaign first and creating a new list for everyone who clicks through that email. Now you’ll only target prospects you know are engaged with your brand, and you can deliver content that aligns with their interests.
If your initial email campaign sent prospects to a landing page be sure to exclude anyone who converted from the retargeting campaign. You can also use this tactic as a re-engagement campaign and target prospects who didn’t open your emails.
Here’s an example of how to navigate retargeting in Facebook using Perfect Audience:
It’s a myth that retargeting campaigns are too expensive for small businesses. Because you don’t have an enterprise-level list, the cost of your campaign will contain itself.
Option #2: Upload Your List for Social Listening
If you’re not interested in spending any money on retargeting, uploading your list to expand the reach of your social channels is still a great idea. Not only does this present you with a number of opportunities to grow your audience, it also qualifies these audiences members based on their behavior with your brand.
Now rather than just performing social listening on a broad basis, you can analyze the conversations of prospects who have expressed an interest in your product or service (and whom you’ve hopefully qualified) and compare and benchmark them against your entire audience.
Again, you don’t need a giant list to make this strategy effective. You just need an understanding of how its members have engaged with your brand and where you want to take the relationship.
To Sum Up
Marketing automation platforms (MAPs) are making headway into social media, but few systems offer more than lightweight channel management and social listening. In truth, they’re not going to replace your social media management system any time soon, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use the two in conjunction.
About The Author
Zach Watson is the content manager at TechnologyAdvice. He covers marketing automation, healthcare IT, business intelligence, and other emerging technology. Connect with him on LinkedIn.