B2C marketing automation lets brands deliver a personalized experience to thousands, or even millions of customers at a time.
Instead of manually creating emails for individual customers and sending out follow-up responses for every action, automation does all the work. Social media posting, text promotions, cart abandonment emails — if it’s an action that software can handle, you can take it off your marketing team’s plate.
But automating manual tasks to help scale your marketing is only one benefit. There’s a whole world of potential that you can tap into when you understand the benefits of marketing automation — so let’s look at what those benefits are and how businesses can use automation to grow.
What Is B2C Marketing Automation?
Any time a marketing team uses software to manage, perform, or measure a campaign or task instead of doing it manually, they’re using marketing automation.
Both B2C and B2B marketing automation enable marketers to scale their efforts and nurture leads more effectively, all while saving resources.
But in B2C, the sales cycle is shorter, and messaging is more personalized. Because of this, marketers use B2C automation tools to deliver highly relevant and personalized content. B2C is also more focused on where the individual is as they move through their unique customer journey.
So, for instance, where B2B marketing automation might send out an email campaign with informative content personalized for a specific buyer segment, B2C marketing automation will use captured data and specific action triggers (such as past purchases or viewing history) to deliver customized product recommendations and offers, like this:
The goal behind B2C marketing automation is twofold. One, it helps organizations deliver a highly personalized experience consistently, which delights customers, increases customer loyalty, and leads to a higher customer lifetime value.
At the same time, automation software collects, tracks, and analyzes data, helping marketers learn more about buyers and understand how effective their marketing efforts are so they can continually improve.
Why Automation Tools Are Critical for Successful B2C Marketing Today
Using B2C marketing automation platforms to streamline marketing efforts and increase personalization isn’t just nice to have. Automation is a foundational part of successful marketing today. Here’s why:
- Being able to deliver exceptional omnichannel experiences is vital today. Companies with high-level customer engagement strategies turn 89% of buyers into loyal customers. Without automation tools, marketers wouldn’t have the data insights or time to coordinate social media posts, personalized emails, mobile, and web content successfully.
- People want personalization. And they tend to stay with brands that are good at it. Seventy-eight percent of consumers are likely to make repeat purchases with brands that personalize, and companies that excel at personalization drive 40% more revenue than those that don’t.
- Companies need to use website data to stay competitive. Data-driven organizations are six times as likely to retain customers, 23 times as likely to acquire them, and 19 times as likely to be profitable. Marketing automation tools can capture and track data throughout the buyer’s journey.
If you want to elevate your ecommerce experience, here are five ways to use AI technologies and win over customers.
Top B2C Marketing Automation Benefits
1. Improves Customer Experience
According to a 2022 survey of global marketers, the top benefit of marketing automation is better customer experience.
You can use B2C marketing automation tools to boost CX in several ways:
- Automation lets marketers identify user experience (UX) friction points and solve them faster.
- It delivers relevant content that’s more likely to resonate with individuals, increasing customer satisfaction.
- With the time saved by automating manual tasks, organizations can shorten their average response times.
- Automation software tracks data on buying behavior, which marketers can use to improve shopping and checkout experiences.
2. Streamlines Email Marketing
With B2C marketing, email campaigns are a foundational conversion channel, but there’s a lot to get right to make this channel effective. Emails must follow a natural flow based on customer triggers and be personalized to customer needs, wants, and preferences.
65% of B2C marketers use email marketing software to market in this channel more effectively.
Automation can streamline the entire process, sending the right email at the right time based on nuanced details of customer behavior, such as when they normally open emails, what type of emails they open, and website browsing history.
The advantage of using email marketing automation tools is that brands can engage new and existing customers at scale, driving repeat purchases and increasing customer retention for tens of thousands or even millions of customers.
3. Puts Social Media Posting on Auto-Pilot
In B2C marketing, social media posts are important for building brand awareness, increasing trust and loyalty, and boosting conversions.
But many consumer-facing brands have to post regularly to stay relevant, and manual posting is too time-consuming.
Marketing automation software can help here by scheduling and automating posts across social media channels. Marketers can create posts for Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and other sites months in advance and then schedule when to post them.
The software can also collect data insights on which posts are the most effective for driving engagement and conversions, empowering brands to be more strategic about what content to use, when to post, and where they use social media content.
4. Enables Cohesive Multi-Channel Marketing
Because B2C marketing involves more personalization and reaching customers at the right time with relevant promotional offers, B2C marketers tend to use more channels than B2B marketers.
With automation, you can deliver a cohesive multi-channel experience, bringing together email, social media, mobile apps, SMS messaging, digital ads, and other channels.
It can also feel harmonious for the customer, giving them a next-level experience that seems like it was curated for them, from their welcome email to content that fits their interests, to discount offers sent to their phone when they are ready to make a purchase.
5. Helps Brands Reach (and Appeal to) a Larger Audience
Automation lets a brand go from local to global. You can automate experiences for different audiences, including language translation and the UX experience.
Guidance helped make this a reality for the cosmetics brand Benefit.
Benefit has localized websites in dozens of countries. The brand turned to the team at Guidance to perform their platform migration to Opimizely, which would allow them to manage their 42 localized website variations more easily.
Guidance collaborated with the team at Benefit to create workflows that would streamline the design process for their multiple sites in the future.
They created content blocks on the back end of the platform so Benefit’s content editors wouldn’t have to make changes manually.
All the localization, language, and design variations are ready to go, so they can update and manage each site with ease, saving Benefit an incredible amount of time and helping them offer a stellar customer experience to their audience around the globe.
6. Provides Valuable Insights on Customers
Automation tools generate insights, so you learn more about your customers. Marketers can find out what offers are effective, what channels are engaging, what content doesn’t resonate, where there might be friction along the buyer journey, and more.
Organizations can use these data insights to become more customer-centric, which can help to boost profits. Research by Gartner has found that customer-centric businesses are 60% more profitable.
7. Reduces Costs While Boosting Sales
By investing in marketing automation software, you can save time and resources and make your marketing more effective.
Brands that use marketing automation can reduce marketing costs by 12.2% while increasing sales activity by 14.5%. Costs also go down because it’s easier to maintain your existing customers, generate more leads, and generate better quality leads. Essentially, less effort is required to generate better results.
Not only that, but, with more time for higher-level tasks, marketing teams can become more strategic, focusing on how to generate long-term results with each campaign rather than getting buried in the nuances of sending emails, posting on social media, and tracking customer behavior. With automation, the software does all that heavy lifting for you.
How to Get Started with B2C Marketing Automation
With B2C marketing automation, organizations can meet rising customer experience expectations and stand out in a crowded field. But getting started is a little more complicated than buying a stack of marketing automation tools and launching them.
Here’s what you need to do:
Assess your needs
Small to mid-sized businesses might look for a multi-channel marketing automation tool that connects email, SMS, digital advertising, social media, and their website.
Enterprise companies might need a more data-driven marketing automation tool that combines customer data with automation and analytics so they can measure each touchpoint and enable sales and marketing to create advanced strategies.
Compare B2C marketing automation software
Make a list of the software that suits our needs, and then start comparing the features. When comparing tools, consider the answer to these questions:
- Will your marketing automation tool integrate with your ecommerce platform?
- Does it have the functions you need?
- Can it grow with your business?
- How much flexibility do you have to create highly personalized experiences?
Look at the bigger CX picture
Marketing automation, at root, is a tool for improving CX. So, how will you use your marketing automation software with your website to deliver phenomenal customer experiences?
If you want to be a B2C ecommerce leader, you’ll want a customized marketing solution developed with your brand, market, and goals in mind.
Take the First Step to Better B2C Marketing with Guidance
Guidance has been helping B2C organizations maximize their ecommerce potential for over 25 years. Our team of experts can help you create dynamic customer buyer journeys tailored to your products and buyer segments and access real-time data for smarter decision-making.
If you’re looking for a partner that can develop a powerful B2C marketing solution, contact Guidance today and let us know your vision.