Marketing Automation platforms are being used by businesses of all industries at an ever-increasing rate. Those that opt to automate are enjoying many benefits. In 2017, it was estimated that 51% of companies (both B2B and B2C) were using marketing automation and that number is expected to increase for 2018. For those who haven’t yet adopted a marketing automation strategy, they are quickly finding themselves left behind. It is simply not possible anymore to continue using legacy or manual processes and compete with the feature benefits of this technology. Because of not automating, the customer experience is compromised and companies find themselves wasting time on tasks that could otherwise be optimized.
We know that the manufacturing industry can be slower to adopt new marketing technologies – for some it’s the sheer size of the business, for others it’s precious budget that needs to instead be focused on production. While those are both valid points, the data is showing us how beneficial it really is to consider automating your marketing efforts – particularly when it comes to allocating budgets, controlling spend and tracking results.
Budget and Spend Management
We have discussed many other benefits of marketing automation platforms in previous posts. In case you missed them, start here. In this post, however, we are focusing specifically on how much easier it is to manage budget and monitor spend – especially when you are working with outside distribution teams or perhaps other branches within your company.
Below are ways that TOTUS helps manufacturing marketers with spend management:
Centralized dashboard - All sales and marketing materials housed in one place making it easier for everyone to know what is available
Budget assignments - Marketers can assign spend limits to individuals or certain groups (i.e. branches, teams, etc.). The user is alerted when they reach that threshold and then can choose to use other payment alternatives or wait until the next spend cycle starts.
Credit card payments We all know how much the process is slowed down when checks or cash are involved. Our credit card payment feature is highly popular and allows groups who may have gone over their allotted budget to easily purchase additional materials.
Configurable console Every company operates differently and, therefore, has unique needs. Our console can be configured and customized to meet those specific needs.
Marketing Automation has become an integral tool, not only in streamlining and simplifying budgets and spending, but also in data collection and gathering actionable insight. Reporting is built-in and can also be customized according to business needs. In addition to knowing the basics (who are your active users, when those users are logging in, how many users you have, etc.), marketing automation platforms give us visibility into other telling data points:
- Number of orders that are being placed
- What documents are most/least popular
- How many users are going over budget
- Materials inventory
- How many contacts are being managed at any point
While we’ve shown how budgeting and spend management features of marketing automation directly benefit manufacturing businesses, it is a small piece of the puzzle. As we mentioned earlier in this post – every operation is different and some features might be more valuable than others. We recommend that you keep exploring those benefits.
To learn more, explore our complete capabilities or contact us today!