Marketing automation: How FX brokers can make sales teams more productive

Broker automation is a very hot topic now in the forex world. It is about a lot more than cutting out (personnel) costs. Done right, automation is about making processes more productive – especially essential ones such as sales.

Yael Warman, Content Manager at Leverate, takes an interesting look at how marketing automation can make your sales team more productive.

How marketing automation can make your sales team more productive

Yael Warman, Leverate

Yael Warman, Leverate

You buy thousands of leads from an affiliate, you distribute them amongst your sales team and just wait for the cash to flow in.

Does this sound like your marketing and sales strategy?

If this is working for you, I’m happy for you, you are lucky. That’s right, you are not good, you are just lucky. Why? Because the FX market is a red ocean, competitive as no other industry and relying on affiliates over 7 times more than any other sector and if this strategy is working for you today, it may not work for you in the near future.

If you study the activity of your sales team, you may come to realize that roughly 80% of their time is being invested in non-revenue-generating activities. Sales personnel can actually get lost amongst a sea of leads who are not necessarily qualified and get discouraged when they contact potential clients who turn out not to be interested in what you have to offer. You see, in most brokerages, marketing passes on all the received leads onto sales without those leads being pre-qualified in any way. According to Marketing Sherpa, 61% of marketers give all leads received to the sales department, however, only 27% of those leads passed are qualified. The result: a whole lot of time wasted by sales personnel and a whole lot of discouragement.

What if you could increase the productive time of your team by providing them with leads that are actually interested? Perhaps you could reduce the number of sales agents your company needs. Perhaps you could keep the same size team but triple your sales.

How can you make your sales team more productive? With marketing automation

The first thing you need to understand as a manager is that the effort of converting a lead into a client is not of marketing or sales, but rather it is an effort of marketing AND sales. In order to optimize the sales funnel, there needs to be an alignment between both departments. From set-it-and-forget it e-mails and messages, to systems that best identify strong prospects, marketing automation can make sales teams a whole lot more profitable.

Forget cold calling

Most customers today make purchasing decisions way before they engage in a phone conversation with a sales rep. By the time the phone call occurs, they’ve made research online, asked their peers, and have pretty much settled on how they want to proceed. A 2015 study by International Data Corporation reports that 65% of buyers only engage a vendor when they have already made a Purchase decision. Imagine how much more value a sales person can provide to a customer, if he/she knows what the specific pain points of the customer are, what the hesitations may be, what their interests are? When a sales person knows when a customer is clicking on a certain link, which link they have clicked on, what type of content they are reading, that first call is not a cold call anymore, it is an informed call, and informed calls have a substantially higher ROI.

Know when to call

Have you ever received a sales call in the middle of dinner? I would bet it all and say that call didn’t result in a sale. You see, even a customer who is interested in your service will either not pick up your call or pick up to say he cannot talk when you contact them at an inconvenient time. Marketing automation, allows sales reps to know where in the funnel a customer is and if and when they are engaged with your site, so you contact them at the right time, when action is required.

Why reinvent the wheel?

Sales reps spent hours on end writing up emails and other types of messages to clients. What if you could give your sales team, access to a series of marketing-developed templates? According to how a lead interacts with your brokerage’s marketing efforts, automated marketing qualifies these leads and segments them according to their actions. For example, a lead reads a blog on your site, another visits your pricing page and another quickly clicks from one page to the next and bounces out of your website. According to these three different actions, marketing automation assigns each of those leads a score, which indicates their level of interest. According to their level of interest, the system can automatically generate a series of emails and messages that best target the customer’s needs. What’s best, these messages can be personalized not only to the recipient, but also to the sales rep, so when that first phone call comes in, the customer already knows the sales rep who is calling.

When clients are not ready… yet

Through marketing automation, you may end up with a segment of potential customers who are simply not ready to invest just yet. You want to nurture these leads so they can become your customers in the future, but you don’t want to invest valuable resources on them (a.k.a sales team’s time). You can unobtrusively begin sending them valuable content, such as educational materials, tips, etc, so when they are ready to invest in Forex, your company will be at the top of their list.

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