For the past several years, the catch phrase “real-time marketing” has been tossed around casually in marketing circles. While the term “real-time marketing” has had multiple different meanings over time in the media, marketers still think of web personalization for the most part.
At Socedo, when we talk about real-time marketing, we’re talking about the ability to send a specific call-to-action or offer at the exact moment when it would be most effective, based on an action that a lead takes. Moreover, it’s about tailoring messaging to fit what that potential buyer is interested in right now.
Implementing this kind of contextual marketing takes a lot of behavioral data on your leads: what content are they visiting, which CTAs are they clicking, and most importantly, what are they currently talking about online?
While there are many avenues we could take with real-time marketing, we chose to start with the area that we think of as a low hanging fruit– sending existing leads in our marketing automation system contextually relevant email messages, as soon as they express interest or intent, based on their social media activity.
The average person spends about 2 hours every day on social media. Research has shown that 55 % of B2B buyers turn to social networks when making purchasing decisions. Social media activity holds many of the insightful behaviors we need to personalize our messaging and offers. Here’s what we’re doing.
Lead Acceleration on Twitter Keywords
Using our own Social Lead Acceleration solution, we monitor all of the leads in our database and match their email addresses to their Twitter profiles. Since a large portion of our lead database are socially active leads we synced through our own lead discovery system, we can cover most of our database. We’re also able to match email addresses to Twitter handles from our other lead sources.
From there, we track 39 keywords, including a sampling of our brand and employee handles, competitors, conference hashtags, influencers, and relevant industry terms like #LeadGeneration. Every time a lead Tweets one of these keywords or engages with a handle, Socedo adds a timestamped activity into their lead record in Marketo.
How do we determine which keywords to monitor?
Some of these keywords are “no-brainers”. Anyone who engages with our corporate Twitter handle or our executives’ Twitter handles have shown an interest in us.
Then, we asked ourselves: “what topics do our audience tweet most about?”. Since we’re looking for B2B marketers, we identified the key domains of B2B marketing, such as lead generation and content marketing, both of which come with trending hashtags.
Our target audience is one that’s actively learning by attending conferences and events. The great thing about events is that they get a lot of social media engagements, as everyone is using the same event hashtag to comment on their experience and share key learnings. We track engagement with the hashtags of the biggest, most active events and conferences attended by our target audience.
Lastly, we track our leads’ social engagement with the industry influencers, the folks who are actively spreading knowledge of the B2B marketing by distributing content on social media.
Real-Time Email Campaigns
Because we’ve added a timestamped behavioral activity on our lead records in our marketing automation system, we can use that timestamped data to trigger real-time marketing actions.
We spun up three automated campaigns that trigger an email when a lead uses a target hashtag. Within an hour of using a target hashtag, the prospect receives an email from our marketing team. Our message mentions the hashtag used and includes a link to another offer that is relevant to the context.
Below is a sample email that we’ve been using for one of our campaigns.
Now, in addition to our social media team keeping up with conversations online, we can follow-up with leads in another channel that’s more conducive to having deeper conversations and send them a more direct call-to-action.
We found that our emails triggered by real-time social media behavior have an average 47% open rate and 5.7% click-through rate. Compared to our weekly nurture emails, that’s more than double the open rate and 6-8 times the click through rate! On certain emails, we’ve reached 55% open and 6.8% click-through rates. Even more impressive, we have had no unsubscribes from these emails in the past 3 months.
We’re also using this method on the hashtags of upcoming conferences that Socedo is sponsoring, as well as the Twitter handles of influencers with whom we’ve done webinars with.
Better Attribution & Increased Revenue
Not only are these real-time email engagement rates through the roof, they have full funnel impact too. The keyword #ContentMarketing has helped drive 63 Marketing Qualified Leads over the past 90 days and 3 new customers already.
By tracking these 39 keywords, we’ve been able to add social lead scores to almost all leads in our database. This means that whenever a lead mentions one of these keywords, we assume that their level of interest in us has increased a bit and we add a few points to their lead score. This helps us identify the most qualified incoming leads, send them to sales faster, and increase revenue for our business.
By running an analysis to see which keywords bring us the highest percentage of net new leads, we’ve been able to get a deeper understanding of our audience’s interests and figure out what topics we should focus our content around.
For example, out of all the leads who engaged with @Marketo or #Marketo, 49% of all leads’ engaged with this keyword before they visited our website and before engaging with any other Socedo content. This tells us that these keywords are an important lead generation source for us, not only on social media, but likely across search marketing as well.
Because we integrate with Marketo and can share with leads the benefits of leveraging both of our products, we can reach out to leads who engaged with this keyword in a natural way and get great results. In fact, leads from Marketo keywords also convert into opportunities at double the rate as our database average. This means that we can increase their lead scores and use real-time triggered campaigns to get them over the line to sales faster. Finally, this tells us that we should continue to investing in new content that’s relevant to Marketo users.
By using Social Lead Acceleration, we’ve entered a new era of marketing where we can send leads contextually relevant, real-time messages to drive more qualified leads through the demand generation pipeline and creating a better customer experience.