Let’s Define Marketing Automation
Marketing automation refers to automation of marketing actions with the use of certain specific software. Marketing automation is becoming increasingly important as it saves time by automating repetitive tasks such as emails, social media, and other website actions.
General Misconception About Marketing Automation
People have the impression that the term “marketing automation” refers to a software that consists of ALL of the digital marketing tools necessary for growth, including those needed to generate new leads. This is a misconception that leaves many marketers with sophisticated tools to automate, but no solution to generating new leads to nurture in the first place.
In layman’s terms: Marketing automation gives all the tools to digitally market to an audience, but does NOT provide an audience. This leads to the marketers buying lists of email addresses to nurture instead of generating inbound leads. This seems like a quick and easy fix, but is not a feasible long-term solution.
What marketers actually need is a healthy, long term relationship with customers who are genuinely interested in what is being marketed. This, obviously, is not attained by buying email lists. This can only be achieved by generating new leads and would mean that the marketer has to start off slow and build up a database of prospective customers. Generating a databased of prospects can be time-consuming, but the rewards of having genuine, long-term customer far outweigh the perks of quick (and uninterested) customers.
At its best, marketing automation is software and tactics that allow companies to market to customers or prospective customers with highly personalised, useful content that helps convert prospects to customers and turn customers into delighted customers. This type of marketing automation typically generates significant new revenue for companies, and provides an excellent return on the investment required.
How do you know if its time to invest in marketing automation?
In general, if you are producing effective marketing content, and are generating a steady flow of new, organic leads, then its time invest in marketing automation that can help convert these leads to paying customers.
What are the keys to successful marketing automation?
The two key principles to keep in mind while developing a marketing automation strategy are:
- Understanding that marketing automation does not automatically do the marketing and lead generation for you, but can help scale your efforts.
- Recognising that a real person is at the receiving end of your campaign, and centring your marketing messages around it.