The prospect of working with a fellow pioneer of SaaS technology was an exciting one for us…. and team Airsweb did not disappoint!
Tim and his team took our marketing automation solution and really hit the ground running, coming up with great use cases and even new feature suggestions for us (which we duly implemented). They have been every Customer Success Manager’s dream!
Read about how his blooming relationship with marketing automation began and how he went about building customer engagement through a ‘less is more’ approach to marketing…
Q1. Could you please tell us a little bit about your background and the sector you work in. eg. Job description, where you work, company description, your experience of marketing automation, your personal objectives etc?
My name is Tim Jubb and I am the Digital Marketing Manager at Airsweb.
I got into marketing 5 years ago and have worked almost exclusively with marketing b2b software companies even since. I started my current position at Airsweb 7 months ago.
Airsweb provide health, safety and environmental management software to a wide range of companies across the globe. Our company vision is to make every workplace safer, healthier and more sustainable – something I am personally very passionate about.
Q2. What is it about MA that makes it so compelling? Did you have any specific challenges that you were looking to overcome?
High value b2b software businesses have a (relatively) long marketing and sales cycle. So one of the key marketing challenges we have is nurturing prospects and customers from the initial point of interest to the point of sale. Once you start talking about nurturing – particularly over long time periods – marketing automation becomes a no-brainer.
Q3. What objectives/KPI’s did you set yourself before embarking on your marketing automation adventure?
It ties into the above – but our key goals were to create personalised nurturing journeys for a global audience.
Q4. Research suggests that around 20% of top-performing companies are still not taking advantage of marketing automation. What do you think’s holding them back?
I’ve been quite lucky so far – and perhaps it’s a result of working in the software industry – in that every company I have worked at has had access to marketing automation software in some form or another.
I think the uptake of marketing automation may have been slow in other industries for two main reasons.
First – many organisations are not marketing-orientated. By that, I mean that the wider organisation – particularly in the C-suite – do not place a lot of value in marketing.
Second – I think there are some fundamental misconceptions about what marketing automation is. Often those outside of marketing imagine either:
- hundreds upon thousands of emails being sent (spam)
2. being tricked into having conversations with chatbots.
Marketing automation can do those things – but it shouldn’t. And that’s not how reputable businesses use it.
Rather than increasing the amount of low value marketing (like spam), marketing automation should increase the amount of high value marketing through personalisation.
For example, dynamic segmentation is one type of marketing automation, and Kulea actually does this particularly well through their persona-lisation features.
- Traditional segmentation is a static group. You run a query on your CRM, save it and voila – there’s your segment. That means that the segment doesn’t change unless you update it.
- Dynamic segmentation means that you set global rules to update your groups, and these groups are updated in real time.
Dynamic segmentation means that your segments are always up to date, and users can move into different segments in real time, without any manual interference from marketing. This leaves marketers free to really focus on understanding customer needs and wants.
Q5. From your own experiences, have you found these to be realistic reservations?
Not really. It all comes down to objectives and to how the system is used. If your marketing objectives align with your business requirements then marketing automation is a must have for virtually any organisation.
Q6. How quickly were you able to get up to speed with marketing automation, and how did you find the first few months?
Mainly because of experience with similar systems it was pretty quick to get up and running, and the first few months have been good, but using marketing automation to its fullest potential takes time. As data builds up, you learn more and more about your customers and prospects. The more data you have – the better you can target and personalise your communications.
It’s important to think about marketing automation as a medium to long term investment because of the time it takes to build quality data.
Q7. Where do you personally see the greatest benefits of marketing automation?
As marketers we know that personalisation, and personal conversations with customers and prospects are the best way to convert. But it is not scalable to have a personal conversation with everyone.
So marketing automation offers a scalable compromise. It allows us to create personalised experiences and conversations without the time constraints.
Q8. What are your next steps in your marketing automation journey?
Learning more about our prospects, learning more about our customers and then putting that into a digital framework on our website or via journeys in Kulea.
Q9. Have you any words of advice for tech companies and marketers in general that are considering marketing automation?
Bill Gates once said: “Automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency.”
I think it’s pretty obvious that marketing automation is important to creating scalable modern businesses. But it is only the tool. The real key to success with automation is understanding customers and prospects wants and needs and then setting clear objectives about what you want to achieve.
Without that in place, as the Gates quote suggests – marketing automation will only magnify your inefficiencies.
But if you engage with marketing automation from a position of understanding, it will increase the reach and effectiveness of your business.