“Physician, heal thyself,” the old maxim goes. In a landscape like the one mapped below, it’s important that martech providers lend it their own spin: “Martech company, market thyself.”
Drawn up by martech pundit Scott Brinker, here’s the 2019 edition of his annual Marketing Technology Landscape which includes 7,040 martech companies.
It’s no wonder there’s a gold rush of startups and seasoned competitors alike when it’s estimated the martech market could be worth upwards of $34 billion. With plenty of headroom: One study claimed that 50% of brands had no martech tools in place.
To survive, let alone thrive, in this increasingly crowded marketplace, martech companies need to excel at marketing themselves to potential customers. The best of them have always made this a priority, and it’s no surprise they’ve relied on the best available platform for targeting and engaging B2B prospects: email marketing.
Using the entire toolkit
We could belabor a lot of stats around the efficacy of B2B email marketing, but we’ll stick to just two: 73% of B2B marketers say email marketing is vital to growing their business, according to Salesforce, and HubSpot cites how 59% of B2B marketers say it’s their most effective channel for generating revenue.
Making B2B email marketing deliver optimum ROI, though? That’s a matter of leveraging all the tools in the email toolkit. From deploying welcome and onboarding emails through transactional, account updates, milestone, or real-time-triggered emails, the martech companies that have surged to the front of the pack have made a habit of putting together fully integrated campaigns that hit all the right marks. Here are a few examples.
Onboarding on the right foot
HubSpot does a superior job of bringing new customers into the fold, just like you’d expect. It’s not just because of what they do right; it’s what they carefully avoid that makes a difference, too.
Here’s a welcome email that goes out to a new customer immediately after they’ve confirmed their HubSpot Marketing Free account. Friendly and conversational, and offering ways for the customer to get started ASAP – but hey, no pressure!
The next day, another onboarding email shows up that does something important: It puts a human face to the HubSpot brand, giving the user the idea they’re getting personal(ized) service.
One thing that doesn’t happen during the onboarding period with HubSpot? New customers aren’t bombarded with a blizzard of messaging trying to push them into using HubSpot.
It’s a wise strategy in a couple of ways. First, it doesn’t inspire annoyance on the part of the customer, unlike some onboarding cadences we’ve seen that seem to want to shame new users into action (“Do you know what you’re missing?”).
Second? It may actually help filter truly interested users from less-committed ones since more of the initiative falls on them to make the first move. That way, reps like James get a better idea which free users are willing to follow through – who be migrated into paid accounts.
But if a martech company wants to prompt new users to begin using the product, it helps to give them inspirational cheerleading like that in this Campaign Monitor example to nudge them into action by focusing on ease of use, friendly support, and feel-good case studies.
Triggering deeper engagement
Triggered emails can be used in any range of ways, and can drive martech customers to engage on any number of fronts. Here’s a for-instance from Kissmetrics.
Let’s say you’ve sent out an email to existing opt-ins much like the second one above from HubSpot, providing links to resources, to learn about products, etc. A subscriber clicks on one, or you’ve tracked them at your website hovering on a product page or downloading related content.
Any of those scenarios can trigger an email that offers up a free demo of your product, and who can resist that? Especially if you can tailor the email with additional personalization based on other data you might hold about the recipient.
As Marketing Sherpa once pointed out, 72% of people like receiving promotional offers via email.
If you’re in martech, you’re probably making regular product upgrades, releasing studies or white papers, appearing at industry events – newsworthy developments you can announce to your subscribers via email.
(If you don’t have anything worth announcing? You’ve got problems that even email marketing won’t fix.)
Here’s an example of how MailChimp announced the addition of a new feature to its mobile app.
The secret sauce here? Be judicious. Not every new feature or event appearance is worthy of an announcement, or follower fatigue will quickly set in. Save these emails for real news and valuable information they’ll find interesting and useful.
Uniquely proving your product
It’s an imaginative way to demonstrate your offerings’ value, and it won’t work for every platform or solution. Yet you should always look for outstanding ways to use email to tangibly bring home your advantages or benefits.
Here’s an interesting example from demand gen provider True Influence for its Account Based Marketing (ABM) platform, InsightBASE.
First, they used InsightBASE to find decision-makers who were visiting sites and pages related to ABM across the web. Then they sent those targets emails like this one to clearly prove what the product was capable of: it had identified the recipients as prospects, exactly as those recipients could use the product to find their own high-quality leads.