Marketing automation is a customer acquisition technique that has been around since the 2010s and is still trending. But what does it have to do with sales? It can be used to create sales funnels that automatically generate new leads. In this article, we will show you what marketing automation can do for your IP firm.
What is marketing automation?
In marketing automation, multiple marketing strategies and software are combined to help businesses convert prospects into customers and then customers into repeat customers through personalized processes. As a result, it has the potential to drive significant revenue growth and produce a very high return on investment.
It is not yet profitable for startups to automate part of the marketing and sales process because there is not enough attention to each customer at their level. However, as the number of customers grows and solutions become more complex, the focus on lead generation decreases. Although the entire process for IP companies cannot be automated in the same way as for e-commerce stores, lead generation funnels can be created that adapt to the customer and provide the best possible experience.
The best use-cases of marketing automation for IP firms
● Newsletters: It may come as a surprise that the long-buried newsletters are still around, but they are still very effective in attracting customers. However, the important difference is that the days of blindly sending mass mailings are over because no one will really read them. Instead, you can send personalized newsletters to your potential customers, who will then receive precisely the content they want.
● Automatic landing pages: Landing pages are websites that focus on a specific topic and are therefore particularly suitable for attracting customers. This could be a landing page created specifically to showcase your patent management service. You must design the page so that even someone unfamiliar with your company or your other services can get all the information they need to get inspired. The landing page design can not yet be "outsourced" to AI. Still, the data collected here will automatically feed into your CRM system, and you can build processes around it that bring you closer to acquisition. To continue the example above: When the customer clicks on the "Learn More" button on the patent application landing page, they receive an email with helpful advice on why it's important to entrust their patent matters to a professional. With a few newsletters, you can build your company's expert image in the minds of prospects, who will then sign up for a free consultation on their own. Instead of cold calling, customers will contact you themselves - does not that sound better?
The two examples above are just the tip of the iceberg, as there are now countless ways for an IP company to automate its presales activities. As a result, not only can you save time, effort, and money, but you can also dramatically increase efficiency, which can lead to a big jump in revenue this year and in the future.
In any business, whether a small start-up or a large multinational, there comes a time when managers want to get a credible picture of performance to improve it. Key Performance Indicators are indicators that serve this purpose - including in the areas of sales and business development. In this article, we explore which KPIs are worth implementing and how they can drive revenue growth for IP firms.
Key Performance Indicators
A KPI is a measurable value that shows how effectively a company is working toward its goals. Companies look at different KPIs to see how effectively they are achieving those goals. Higher-level KPIs show the performance of the entire company or business. At the same time, lower-level indicators provide insight into the effectiveness of smaller departments or divisions (e.g., marketing, customer service, sales, IT, etc.).
A KPI can only be as valuable as the activity or process it measures. That's why it's vital to consider your own processes first when establishing a set of indicators for sales (or other IP firm-related activities). There are many examples of real estate sales, e-commerce, and traditional B2B services in the online space, but these do not always translatable to intellectual property businesses.
What are the key IP firm business development KPIs?
You should start building your KPI system backwards, as this is the best way to see what activity is required in what quantity to make a sale.
● Initial contacts: From this KPI and the closures index, you can calculate the effectiveness of your employees. A common misconception is that the higher the number, the better. It depends on individual skills as well as the speed of the market. It can even vary within a team.
● Lead qualification: Naturally, not all contacts will lead to more extended, productive conversations. However, one of the keys to effective selling is to eliminate from the funnel those companies that will certainly not be, or currently are not, customers. Proper qualification begins before the first contact, but essential details are not known until after the intro.
● Number of closed deals: It indicates the end of the process, i.e., how many deals were closed in a given period. This KPI should be continuously monitored at both individual and team levels.
● Sales cycle length: The cycle length indicates how long it takes a customer to go from initial contact to closing. This is influenced by many variables, including service type, location, and even the customers' size - because while smaller companies decide faster, it can take up to several years to win a deal with a multinational company. In the B2B services market, such as intellectual property services, be prepared for a longer sales cycle. This KPI is also critical for revenue planning and setting expectations for the sales team.
The entire sales process can then be broken down further depending on the type of service, which helps management better understand where there are weaknesses that need to be improved. For example, this could be the number of companies that drop out after adequate qualification, an indicator that can be reinforced by inadequate pricing or presentation.
KPIs are the core of a sales process, but don't let them overtake every action and decision - sometimes, it's also worth relying on intuition.
As technological developments increasing around the globe—even as the patenting of human genetics comes under serious discussion—countries, companies, and researchers find themselves in conflict over intellectual property rights (IPRs). Robots, drones, artificial intelligence, quantum computing and emerging technologies are changing the legal landscape in the intellectual property world.
About a hundred years ago, the significant inventions of the 20th century were vacuum cleaners, automobiles, disposable razors, radios, and the telephone. All of them are mechanical devices with physical existence. But the technology and economic development have taken a big leap in the 21st century, with Artificial intelligence and knowledge of skills being the key ingredients. This fundamental shift in technology is rapidly making the current system of intellectual property rights unworkable and ineffective.
What is the problem
Today, it is more important than ever to protect intellectual property rights and more challenging to do so.
To understand why consider this case: a physician noticed the relationship between the elevated level of a particular human hormone and a syndrome. He was awarded a patent for this observation, even though he thought the test had too many false positives to be useful.
But later developments showed that if his test were used along with two others, they would accurately forecast that disease. So today, the physician is suing to get a $9 fee from every laboratory that uses his part of the test. If he wins, the cost of testing will more than double.
Should the physician who just noticed how the hormone works get some intellectual property rights? Probably. But they should not be the same kind of rights as those granted to someone who invents a revolutionary invention. Noticing what an existing hormone does is simply not equivalent to a revolutionary invention.
Such distinctions are necessary, yet our patent system has no basis for making them. All patents are identical—you either get one or you don’t.
New technologies have both created new potential forms of intellectual property rights (can pieces of a human being be patented?) and made old rights unenforceable (when books can be downloaded from an electronic library, what does a copyright mean?). As a result, there is a need to rethink fundamentally what should and should not be appropriable as private property. At the same time, we need to generate new ideas and technologies to protect intellectual property rights adequately.
We also need to differentiate between fundamental advances in knowledge and logical extensions of existing knowledge, and each deserves a different kind of patent. One of the objections to the “first to file” system, used outside the United States, allows smart, knowledgeable people to guess where technology is going and file patents on things that have not yet been invented. If they guess right one out of ten times, they more than cover their costs of filing multiple patents.
What is the solution?
● There should be a single global central body without any discrimination and inequity.
● This system must strike the right balance between the production and the distribution of new ideas.
● The optimal IP system should not be the same for all industries, all types of knowledge, or all types of inventors.
● Laws on intellectual property rights must be enforceable globally, or they should not be laws.
● The system must be able to determine rights and resolve disputes quickly and efficiently.
● To accomplish society’s interest in expanding knowledge as rapidly as possible, certain classes of knowledge ought to be in the public domain and freely available to everyone.