Marketing Automation: What is it and Why Does It Matter? + FREE eBOOK!

2018/12/14 08:00

what is marketing automation

Discover the power of marketing automation and what it can do for your brand in 2019.

Even though the term “marketing automation” has been around for quite some time, there still seems to be some confusion around what it really is and when you would use it.

When used correctly, marketing automation can be a powerful marketing tool and can make your brand more relevant amongst audiences that demand a more personalized experience.

If you’re planning to relook at marketing automation in 2019, here are a few facts that will help get you started.

Marketing Automation: What It Is

Marketing automation refers to technology that helps brands manage their marketing processes and campaigns across different channels.

Marketing automation tools make it possible to target customers with automated messages across platforms such as social and email. Since these messages are sent out automatically, they need to be paired with workflows to ensure that the right message is reaching the right customer at exactly the right time.

Along with maximizing efficiency and revenue, marketing automation tools can also help with lead generation and nurturing, website and campaign personalization and the measurement of campaign ROI.

While any business can benefit from marketing automation, the technology becomes particularly useful when your customer base has become much larger than your sales team.

Marketing Automation: What It Isn’t

All too often, marketing automation is associated with spam, which is not how these types of tools are designed to be used. It should also not be seen as a replacement for your marketing and sales teams. Instead, marketing automation should be used to empower your teams and make them more efficient.

If you look at it in terms of campaigns, marketing automation software can send your campaigns out in a timely manner to the right target audience but it can’t put time and creativity into the actual development of the campaign.

Another common myth is that marketing automation is just for email campaigns but the reality is that it can be used across multiple channels, including social media and even direct mail.

Implementing Marketing Automation in Your Business

How you use marketing automation software is all dependent on your business goals. It can be used for everything from automating processes such as lead qualification to creating a central space for the implementation of your online campaigns.

Think of marketing automation as a way to simplify some of the tasks that take up a lot of your sales and marketing teams’ time.

The main goals of marketing automation software are to help businesses establish an audience and create content and campaigns that are automatically triggered according to set criteria, schedules or specific customer behavior, leaving your teams with more time to grow your business.

How Marketing Automation Impacts the Customer Journey

Customers thrive on having more personalized experiences and marketing automation makes it possible to personalize every interaction that your customer has with your brand.

Marketing automation tools give brands the opportunity to reach customers at every stage of their journey by delivering relevant and timely content that speaks to their motives at that stage of the sales cycle.

From delivering messages at scale and sending out personalized emails that go beyond subject lines and introductions to incorporating push notifications and group messaging into your marketing campaigns, marketing automation gives you the chance to design and enhance each customer’s journey.

Marketing Automation: Getting it Right

Here are a few best practices that will help guide your marketing automation strategy:

  • Have a goal in mind. If you’ll need to justify the investment in a marketing automation system, be sure to have a clear idea of your business goals.
  • Present the bigger picture. Since your marketing automation software will benefit several teams as well as the business as a whole, it helps to paint a bigger picture that incorporates your goals as well as the potential ROI.
  • Consider your customer data. Before you decide on a marketing automation system, decide how you will be using your customer data.
  • Build up your content. Now that you have a view of how you will be using your customer data, start creating a content library that contains relevant and engaging messages and designs that you can use during your roll out. Be sure to consider every stage of the customer journey when developing your content
  • Start slow. Instead of going full steam ahead, it’s best to launch your campaigns in stages as this will give you a chance to test and optimize.
  • Don’t forget to keep testing. Even once you’re up and running, it’s still incredibly important for you to keep testing and optimizing to make the most of your marketing automation system.

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