The Database Diva - BenchmarkONE
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Lori Feldman picture

Lori Feldman

President @ The Database Diva
Our drip marketing messages are hyper-targeted because of BenchmarkONE's tagging feature. We use BenchmarkONE's Tag Rules to launch our drips based on individual contact-generated tags. This has resulted in an average open rate of 50%+ and a click thru rate that has been as high as 25%. That's amazing!

What was your greatest business or sales & marketing challenge before using BenchmarkONE?

One of our biggest challenges was reducing the number of software programs, apps, plugins we used to run our business.

For example, we do a lot of webinars and needed 6 different pieces of technology to automate our sign-up process.  It took 2 people way too long to set up a meeting – keeping track of who signed up and who didn’t, who attended and who didn’t –  so we could automatically show those results in our CRM in real time and market to them properly.

With BenchmarkONE’s combination of sales and marketing automation and its integration with Zapier, we are now down from 6 to 3 pieces of technology (so far). Now we can set up a webinar in about 15 minutes with no extra time on the back end after an event. And I can use my tags to look up my attendance activity. We can actually do more marketing now because it isn’t so exhausting.

What solutions/tactics did you try before you started using BenchmarkONE? What were the results?

Previously we were Act consultants who also used Act CRM and email marketing to run our business. Although our mission is to help clients with lead generation using database marketing principles, we found ourselves, instead, helping clients fix their broken software and training them how to use it more effectively. That was so tiresome for our technophobes–and so expensive–that many didn’t want to take the next step with marketing.

We realized about 3 years ago that, although Act invented the first CRM in the 80s, the company had stopped being an innovator. Our progressive, marketing-driven clients were leaving us to move to the cloud, and were left with a client base that was risk-averse to change because “that’s the way they’d always done it.” At the same time, it was taking us longer and longer to execute our own lead-generation strategies because we were working with outdated software that had no scoring and no website tracking. We knew it was pointless to do good marketing and not be able to see the results. So we made the decision to find a better system. We ended up researching, vetting and trialing more than 35 different CRM/marketing automation systems before we found and fell in love with BenchmarkONE.

How has the one-two-punch of email marketing and CRM specifically addressed your challenges?

First of all, an email template used to take me 2 hours to create “perfectly.” In BenchmarkONE it takes 15 minutes, including the follow-up actions. On a good day, we generate 10 times more good marketing ideas than we can possibly implement. But we definitely implement more now than we could before. And BenchmarkONE makes it easy to get real-time feedback on your ideas so you can change them on the fly if they don’t work, or ramp up more like them if they do.

No one has time to clear their calendar for a “marketing day.” With BenchmarkONE’s automation, you can string together a series of 15-minute sales and marketing tasks everyday. This has helped The Database Diva achieve a company goal of everyone in our database getting at least 2 touches per month–initiated by our contacts, not by us, either via a webpage visit, a submitted online form or a reminder email. BenchmarkONE’s Actions notify us automatically to review each prospect’s contact info to see their score and determine if and how we should follow up.

What measurable results have you seen through incorporating your email marketing with CRM?

Our drip marketing messages are hyper-targeted because of BenchmarkONE’s tagging feature. We use BenchmarkONE’s Tag Rules to launch our drips based on individual contact-generated tags. This has resulted in an average open rate of 50%+ and a click thru rate that has been as high as 25%. That’s amazing!

We have also gone “online form crazy.” There is a correlation between the number of fun, creative, and valuable downloadable offers on your website and the number of leads generated. With our old CRM software it was way too hard to add HTML form code to our website. BenchmarkONE’s HTML code loves WordPress, so it’s super simple to add new forms. And we’re no longer forced to wait for our IT department to find time for us.

What specific problems has integrating email marketing with your CRM addressed that other small businesses might be able to relate to?

When we switched ourselves and many of our clients to BenchmarkONE, some of my former colleagues said, “how will you ever make money selling cloud CRM and email marketing?” But I always felt bad when the CRM software I sold “broke” and clients had to pay me more money to make it work as designed. BenchmarkONE doesn’t “break.” And the company’s support team is amazingly responsive when you ask for help–for free. So instead of having to throw good money after bad (there’s no ROI on repair fees), BenchmarkONE users can invest in experts, like The Database Diva, to help them drive top-line revenue. BenchmarkONE’s integrated sales and marketing software delivers measurable marketing results for a very reasonable monthly subscription (and did we mention support is fast and free?)

What is the single biggest reason you would recommend/why you love pairing email marketing and CRM together with a product like BenchmarkONE?

If you understand your sales process, know how to push your customers’ buttons to make them buy, attract the right prospects to your website and believe in consistent communication with people who like and follow you, marketing automation is your next big business game-changer. The gulp-worthy stat is “If you follow up with web leads within 5 minutes, you’re 9 times more likely to convert them” (Source: BenchmarkONE gives you the power to do this everyday, not just when you or a salesperson have time. The net effect of an instant response is a faster sale, less competition, and a higher transaction because you’re responding to a motivated buyer who found you. And who doesn’t want more of those?

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