Marketing Automation 101: Behavioral Triggers

December 21, 2020

Automating your marketing is one of the most effective strategies to apply in this fast-paced environment. This involves streamlining manual marketing tasks using innovative tools/platforms. Automating your marketing campaigns unlocks your potential by boosting productivity and increasing efficiency.

Brands that embrace automation enjoy more revenues. They also attain better marketing metrics, including email open rates, email click-through rates, lower bounce rates, better deliverability rates, more conversion, higher engagement, increased customer lifetime value, better marketing ROI, more qualified leads, etc.). When you automate your marketing operations, it’s easier to align sales and marketing goals.

At the core of the most successful automated campaigns is behavioral triggers. A behavioral trigger is an action set into your automated workflow once a prospect displays a specific action.  One way of optimizing your automation efforts is by using behavioral triggers. When a potential customer displays desired behavior, the automation system’s trigger executes a corresponding action.

This post explores the place of behavioral triggers in successful marketing automation. It also explores ways to include behavioral triggers in your marketing mix.

Behavioral Triggers: The Low Hanging Fruit of Marketing Automation

Trigger marketing is a crucial component of marketing automation. When you have set up a workflow in your marketing platform to respond to a potential customer’s behavior, you’re leveraging behavior triggers. Such triggered actions not only streamline your marketing campaign but also maximize the personalization of your messaging.

 For instance, when a customer visits your website and subscribes, you can send them an automated welcome email thanking them for subscribing and suggesting some offers that might interest them. This is an automated action triggered by the potential customer’s behavior.

Behavioral triggers are the low-hanging fruits in marketing automation, but most marketers haven’t started leveraging this tactic. For instance, if a customer signs up to receive notification from your brand and doesn’t receive any confirmation email, this is a lost opportunity for lead generation.

Behavioral triggers are the low hanging fruit of automation, yet most marketers haven’t started leveraging its benefits.  Using behavioral triggers can help overcome this challenge. If you use an automation system, it allows you to set parameters such that a prospect’s behavior triggers a specific action.

Sometimes, the trigger is actually a lack of specific behavior. For instance, if a lead doesn’t complete checkout, you can have a trigger email providing other payment options available at your store. Unlike ordinary marketing emails, triggered emails aren’t purposed to sell or promote products. They provide value to the customer, and therefore they play a crucial role in lead generation.

The email sent to each recipient is unique and depends on a pre-defined automation trigger. Each lead receives a tailored email depending on factors such as basic customer attributes (age, location, last visit to your site). Personalization can also depend on specific actions such as signing in, viewing a particular product/service, using a specific site feature, or completing checkout.

The basic premise of behavioral trigger campaigns is simple; you aim to nurture prospects based on their specific interactions with your company. Instead of sending stock, mass emails, you instead send triggered, timely, relevant emails. This ensures your brand stays on your prospect’s mind even if they have not completed check out.

The idea is to achieve better outcomes in the sales journey through more involved prospect engagement. Your marketing campaign achieves more positive outcomes from higher click-throughs, more sales, and higher retention to improved overall customer satisfaction levels.

Types of Email Automation Triggers

  • Welcome Email: This is the perfect opportunity to start building a lifetime relationship. The trigger can range from a visit to your website, social media page, or even a click on your video.
  • Onboarding Emails: With this triggered email, you urge the visitor to sign up or subscribe.
  • Early Activation: If a subscriber hasn’t started engaging, an offer/discount can motivate them.
  • Reactivation Email: This is an email to re-engage with a subscriber.
  • Remarketing Email: This triggered email is designed for abandoned carts to attract these potential customers back.
  • Transactional Email: This is the most important triggered email and offers confirmation or additional information to an engaged customer.
  • Account Email: Tell your subscribers something more about their accounts to keep them engaged.
  • Personal Event Email: Personal occasions are special, and you can appreciate your subscribers through personalized triggered emails on their birthdays, wedding anniversaries, etc.
  • Milestone Email: Has a subscriber been with you for five years? Celebrate them with a personalized triggered email.
  • Real-time Automation Triggers: Show your subscribers you care by providing real-time updates about offers, the weather, local events, etc

Shopping cart abandonment email and Feedback request email are other examples of behavior triggered emails.

Setting up Behavioral Triggers

Businesses continue investing heavily in marketing automation, but many complain about poor results. If you want to harness the power of automated marketing, here are the best tips for using behavioral triggers:

  1. Gather data: At the heart of every automated campaign is data. Your business should continuously collect customer data by increasing touchpoints in the sales funnel. This data helps you personalize your messaging.
  2. Planning your touchpoints: Where do you expect to have contact with your target customer? Make sure you have a call-to-action (CTA) on each touchpoint to boost the chances of engagement.
  3. Tracking activities: For effective use of behavioral triggers, narrow down the customer behaviors that your platform should track. This could range from preferences, demographics, purchases, time spent on your website, feedback, and more.
  4. Review your current marketing programs: An audit of your marketing structure helps identify weaknesses and strengths. You also find how compatible it is with the automation software you choose. Check data already on your database and determine how useful it is.
  5. Develop personalized emails: When setting up your workflow, remember to personalize the emails to create a meaningful connection with your target customer.
  6. Lead scoring: This helps qualify your leads each time the visitor takes a specific action.
  7. Build and test: As you build your campaign, keep checking the performance stats, KPIs, and metrics on your triggered campaigns.

Final Thoughts

Behavioral triggers for your email marketing strategy is one of the smartest decisions you can make in the volatile and fast-paced marketing landscape. It unlocks your marketing potential by boosting productivity, enhancing engagement, and increasing qualified leads through the sales pipeline.

If you want to optimize your marketing programs, contact ONE12th today. Your go-to consultant for everything marketing data and automation.  

    What Are the Different Types of Attribution Models?

    There are several types of attribution models. Which you choose depends on a range of factors.

    Last-Click Attribution

    Last interaction attribution gives full credit to the last touchpoint the consumer interacted with before converting or making a purchase. This is a crude way to determine attribution, as it only tells you a small part of the consumer’s journey. The path to that final interaction might have included Facebook and Twitter. But if the consumer’s last touchpoint was Google, that’s where the credit is attributed.

    The Pros and Cons of Last-Click Attribution

    Last-click attribution is a simple approach that measures what might well be the most important touchpoint on the road to conversion. 

    But this type of model doesn’t tell you the whole story. There will be other marketing messages that aren’t getting the credit they deserve. And if you don’t recognize this, you might be missing out on higher conversion rates. The decision to convert rarely involves just one touchpoint. 

    First-Click Attribution

    First click attribution relies on the assumption that the consumer decided to convert due to the first message they saw. This model doesn’t take into account any subsequent touchpoints after the initial advertisement or message. 

     The Pros and Cons of First-Click Attribution

    First-click attribution lets you know how people are discovering your business online. This approach is simple and easy to implement. 

    But this model only gives you a very small part of the conversion story. That first click gives you an idea of why the consumer was first drawn to your brand, but it doesn’t tell you about why they chose to convert. 

    Linear Attribution

    Linear attribution tells the story of the consumer’s journey to conversion. Each touchpoint is given an equal weighting, so each marketing message is given equal credit. 

    The Pros and Cons of Linear Attribution

    Linear attribution tells you more about the consumer’s journey to conversion. This model can teach you a lot about how your customers think and make buying decisions. 

    But linear attribution gives equal weight to all touchpoints. It doesn’t tell you which channels or messages were most important on the road to conversion. Time Decay Attribution

    Time Decay Attribution

    Time decay attribution gives each touchpoint to conversion different weighting. The most credit is given to the marketing messages nearest the point of conversion. 

    The Pros and Cons of Time Decay Attribution

    This model gives extra weight to the touchpoints nearest conversion. This is particularly handy if your sales process is relatively long, as the funnel often mirrors the steps consumers take during a specific time period.

    But this model doesn’t weight touchpoints accurately. For example, imagine a consumer clicked a touchpoint a month before converting. This model wouldn’t reward that initial click with sufficient credit. 

    Position-Based Attribution

    Position-based attribution gives most credit (40%) to the first and last interactions along the route to conversion. The remaining credit is attributed equally among the transitional touchpoints in a linear fashion. If there are only two touchpoints, however, both are given 50% credit. This is sometimes referred to as the U-shaped attribution model.

    The Pros and Cons of Position-Based Attribution

    Position-based attribution models give weight to the first and last clicks. This recognizes the fact the initial attraction to your brand and the decision to convert are the most important stages on the journey to conversion. 

    But this model might undervalue the various touchpoints between the first and last. If you’re using remarketing ads, for example, this model will deliver a skewed impression of what’s going on. 

    W-Shaped Attribution

    The W-shaped model is similar to the position-based model (U-shaped), but it includes an additional touchpoint called the “opportunity stage.” The first interaction, last interaction, and the opportunity are all given 30% credit. The remaining 10% is divided equally among all the remaining touchpoints. 

    The Pros and Cons of W-Shaped Attribution

    This model gives equal weighting to the middle of the conversion journey. This is particularly beneficial if you’re generating leads.

    Customer journeys to conversion are growing increasingly complex. This model doesn’t tell a complete story. Modern consumers frequently switch between channels, messages, and devices before converting. The W-shaped model fails to capture these nuances.

    Data-Driven Attribution

    All of the other attribution models in this list work on the assumption that a particular click is the most valuable. But with the data-driven attribution model, you use your end goals to determine the efficacy of each marketing message on the route to conversion. Then, each channel is weighted based on how effectively it helps you to achieve these goals. 

    For example, it’s possible that a consumer’s path to conversion includes social media, a display ad, email, and paid search. The data-driven attribution model ensures each of these touchpoints gets the credit it deserves.

    The Pros and Cons of Data-Driven Attribution

    Data-driven attribution takes into account several issues when attributing credit. Over time, attribution software collects and analyzes data in order to create a model that’s accurate for a specific product, service, or business. 

    But for data-driven attribution to deliver accurate results, you need high levels of traffic. 

    Which Attribution Model is Best for My Business?

     An experienced marketer with a proven track record of success will utilize most types of attribution models. But how do you know which model to use, and when to use it? 

    Ask yourself what your marketing end goal is. Are you selling a specific product? Are you building an email database for a regular newsletter? Are you looking for customer registrations? What will persuade your target consumer to convert? Will it be the initial impact of a display ad? Or will it be a sponsored post that gives the consumer value and detailed information on your product?

    Once you can answer these questions, you can decide which attribution model is the most effective “measuring stick.”

    Choosing the best attribution models for driving your business’s online marketing strategies is a complex, time-consuming process. Let ONE12th manage all your data-driven digital marketing needs, so you can focus all your efforts on running your business. 

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