Ask a marketing consultant what value they bring to an engagement and the responses are likely to run the gamut from strategic to tactical.
Some will harp on their ability to translate customer insights into meaningful, creative campaigns while others will talk of their superb execution skills.
Regardless of their responses, one common thread often runs through the fabric of a marketing consultant’s core value proposition: the ability to generate enhanced interest, more leads, improved conversions, shorter sales cycles and increased sales.
To bring this value proposition to life, more and more marketing consultants over the past dozen years have explored various tools and technologies that help produce results. Like many other areas of business, the marketing function has undergone a dramatic transformation in terms of technology usage.
No longer the spawn of mere “spray and pray” campaigns, marketing departments are increasingly sophisticated and largely reliant on tools that help them optimize spend. To keep pace, consultants have embraced these tools and included them in the portfolio of services they offer.
In addition to improving their clients’ marketing and selling efforts, some of these tools and technologies have created increased revenues for the consultants themselves. Chief among these promising tools are email marketing and marketing automation platforms.
Benefits of Email Marketing: A Consultant’s Perspective
“Generate More Leads.” That’s usually the first and most important assignment given to marketing consultants. To achieve objectives, however, the consultant actually needs to level-set on how many leads the client is currently generating, what campaigns are most effective, how quickly leads move through the buying cycle and what leads cost.
All of the above is far easier said than done with the use of tools and technologies like email marketing and marketing automation. A robust platform will enable marketing consultants to present this information to clients, making their counsel less arbitrary and more definitive. As any marketing consultant knows, metric and data-driven counsel is far more effective and defensible. For this reason alone, consultants view email marketing and marketing automation platforms as central to their success.
2. Higher-Quality Leads
Worshipping exclusively at the altar of “more leads” instead of “higher quality leads” can often spell disaster for consultants, however. More leads often lead to more headaches, confusion, and a gunked up pipeline that takes time to filter. Knowing which leads are most likely to convert is what every consultant loves.
That’s why it’s so important for any email marketing and marketing automation platform to provide insights into the behaviors and actions of leads. Who is opening emails, who is clicking on links, who is visiting certain landing pages, who is downloading content. All of these and many more point to which leads are showing the greatest interest and perhaps demonstrating a higher propensity to buy a product or service.
If increased leads are the Holy Grail of marketing, increased conversions are the Holy Grail of sales. Acquiring a lead is merely the opening “pick-up” line in what could be a long courtship.
Converting a lead takes patience, consistency, creativity, and a willingness to take risks in the course of a conversation with a lead. Because demonstrating empathy during this lead nurturing process is so important, marketing consultants love the ability to test different messages to different audiences to see what works best in moving a lead through a pipeline.
Smart consultants realize that not every campaign is destined to be a home run. The key is to figure out which campaigns are most effective and then double down on them.
4. Shorter Sales Cycles
Closing sales now instead of later is always preferred, and that’s one of the chief benefits of email marketing and marketing automation. By establishing and automating routine nurturing initiatives, consultants can spend more time in personalized closing efforts.
A smart automation platform enables nurturing to occur in the background so only the most primed prospects are targeted with less scalable follow up. Nothing makes a client happier than seeing prospects enter a pipeline and then fly through it to a closed sale.
5. Segmentation Drives Engagement
To break through the clutter in inboxes, consultants need the ability to segment audiences in discrete, defined ways. What is often referred to as the “batch and blast” method typically fails to generate the desired results.
Platforms that enable smart filtering of targets and more personalized follow up are far more preferable and effective. And remember, which segmentation comes the need for nuanced and segmented campaigns, typically authored and produced by the consultant.
6. Clear Call-to-Actions
We humans are impatient beings, often distracted by the latest ding, ping or ring. As such, it’s important for consultants to deliver crisp call to actions in their email campaigns, making it patently obvious to the prospect what offer is on the table and why they should click immediately.
Email marketing and marketing automation platforms are perfectly suited to delivering targeted CTAs that drive immediate results.
Perhaps apocryphal, the father of modern advertising, David Ogilvy, is often attributed with having said that half of all advertising spend is wasted; he just wasn’t sure which half. Maddening to consultants is their inability to determine which campaign generated a lead and which campaign caused a sale to happen.
With email marketing and marketing automation, this albatross around a consultant’s neck is flung aside because a robust platform will show which campaigns are generating the highest returns. By taking the guesswork off the table, email marketing and marketing automation turn consultants into smart financial stewards of their clients’ resources. Consultants especially love the ability to prove the value of their campaigns and recommendations because it tends to extend client engagements.
8. Measure Success
A clear advantage of using email marketing is the ability to report on campaign performance. As mentioned previously, knowing and showing what has worked is critical to developing and optimizing campaigns. It’s also vitally important to consultants who want to prove the value of email marketing as a central element of their overall marketing mix.
9. Return on Investment
ROI from email marketing has consistently outperformed other channels with an approximately 30x return on average campaigns. When consultants give a monthly or quarterly report to clients showing merely average email marketing ROIs, not only do they look like geniuses but they are also likely to earn follow-on work in other areas.
Email marketing and marketing automation, therefore, ends up being a powerful new business growth tool for consultants.
10. Avoid Blacklisting
Email marketing platforms typically help campaigns not land in the spam heap and protect you from becoming blacklisted by ISPs. Few things cause more concern to a consultant than being labeled a spammer. Leveraging smart email marketing and marketing automation platforms averts this risk and protects consultants’ clients’ brands.
Most marketing consultants worth their weight appreciate and master the art of demonstrating value. In marketing a product or service, they understand how to highlight features and benefits in a way that underscores the value. And in marketing themselves, they understand how to show why their involvement is crucial to the success of a client’s business.
With email marketing and marketing automation in their back pocket, consultants have at their disposal a suite of tools and technologies that regularly and repeatedly generate and underscore value.
Equally importantly, consultants leveraging these tools find themselves in the “cat bird” seat with their clients, given that they control the lead generation engine, the conversion elements, the analytics and reporting cycles, and the creative studio to feed the content-hungry beast.
Smart consultants are able to leverage all of these tools for the benefit of their clients’ businesses and as revenue generators for their own marketing practices.
Small and medium-size businesses and marketing consultants add thrust to their marketing initiatives by leveraging Automizy’s intuitive, insightful and ingenious email marketing automation platform to generate and convert leads to sales.
Unlike competitors’ legacy platforms, Automizy’s sleek design and user-friendly interface make managing multiple campaigns a breeze. And with a powerful analytics component, the Automizy platform guides marketers and consultants to optimal results. For more information, visit automizy.com.
I’m the Head of Marketing @ Automizy.
I started out in the marketing startup world right after graduation and since then it’s been a blast to navigate in these waters.
After work, I love playing basketball and traveling.