A substantial proportion of marketers is using marketing automation to send triggered emails based on recipient actions, according to BtoB's survey. Such customer behaviors as registering for a webinar or downloading a white paper are the most common actions that prompt an automatic follow-up email, cited by 69% of marketers. Other actions that trigger email messages include requests for product demos (36%) and call-center interactions (15%). “We have automated follow-ups linked to whatever is going on with our site,” said Rachel Rodenborg, marketing manager at Insite Software. “If someone searches for us or our products and winds up on one of our landing pages, we'll generate an automated response.” Rodenborg carefully customizes her email messages to recipient segments. The reason: Her target audience for Insite's main products—integrated b-to-b e-commerce platforms and shipping software—isn't always within the IT department, she said. “It's often driven by an executive or marketing initiative searching for opportunities,” she said. “With email, you have to be very smart and refined about your target audience and relevant messages.” Mercury Computer's Donahue also uses triggers and is especially careful with them, given his key targets. “We market to defense contractors, and we're all under the gun about cyber security,” Donahue said. “Their servers are getting very touchy. Sometimes those triggered emails can get blocked.” Among industry sectors participating in BtoB's survey, technology companies comprised 31% of all respondents. Manufacturers (9%), financial services companies (9%), consultancies (9%), advertising agencies (8%), publishing/ media companies (5%) and healthcare companies (5%) also were well-represented. Company size was diverse, although weighted toward small-to-midsize companies: 72% of respondents reported annual sales of less than $100 million; on the high end, 14% work for enterprises with more than $1 billion in annual revenue.M For information about obtaining the complete research findings, go to Purchase the report">www.btobonline.com/emailstudy.
E.J. Schultz on 08.28.2014