Is your marketing department getting overwhelmed by mundane tasks that are hindering growth and creativity? Then take advantage of the many ways in which you can automate marketing. According to Adobe | Marketo Engage, 91% of marketing automation users share that it’s very important to use automation for marketing success.¹
Why is Marketing Automation Important?
Automation is a vital ingredient for scaling businesses of any size. Auden Digital suggests implementing an effective automated process when your business is small. By starting early, your business will promote quicker growth and keep customers engaged. In addition to this, it is important to keep in mind that it is vital for employees to have a chance to become familiar with automated systems before they become more complex.
According to 88% of marketers, digital marketing automation improves ROI, customer retention, productivity, reduces the length of the sales funnel and improves “ease of use.”² Therefore, it’s a no-brainer to invest resources and time into making company-wide changes and introduce automation. All that’s left to decide is which of the many automation options you’ll invest in first.
Automation platforms like Hubspot, Marketo and Pardot have tackled the digital marketing automation problem head-on.
Automation platform benefits include:
- Increased ROI: upsells, cross-sells and follow-ups are automated, which means you can squeeze the maximum amount of revenue from each lead.
- Reduced overheads: automation means fewer staff members are needed, and therefore less office real estate is required.
- Creativity: the reduction in monotonous tasks means marketers time is freed up to engage in more creative tasks. These are the tasks that add the most value to acquiring new customers.
- Effectiveness: marketers will be more enthusiastic when working on creative higher-level tasks instead of getting bogged down with low-level monotonous ones.
- Processes: automation platforms allow CMO’s to set up workflows that ensure vital steps aren’t missed. It also helps team members to understand their roles and what tasks they need to get
Choosing the right marketing automation platform is important since they come with unique pros and cons. Check to see the limitations of each platform and what integration options they provide. The platform must offer the functionality to meet your marketing goals and be compatible with your CRM of choice. Finally, consider the costs to see if it’s within your budget.
Successful email marketing campaigns give the appearance of 1 on 1 communication. Achieving this in an automated fashion requires the use of data captured by CRM systems. Such data will allow you to create personalized campaigns. This is how 75% of email revenue is generated.³
There are different types of automated email marketing campaigns to capture sales across various scenarios. Here are the main ones you should know about:
You’ll want to get the ball rolling as soon as a new lead signs up to your email autoresponder series. The first email should welcome newcomers and inform them of what they can expect moving forward.
The internet is a distracting place to shop. In fact, research shows that up to 69.57% of online shopping carts are abandoned. However, if you play your cards right you can still get the lead to finish the journey to the end of the sales funnel.⁴
You can create an email series that specifically targets users that have abandoned their shopping cart. This strategy is limited to the leads that have provided their email address in the past. The email series should include a reminder of what they left behind, tackle objections they might have and offer a discount or other incentive.
Email receipts get an open rate of 70.9%, which is significantly higher than the industry standard of 17.9%. Therefore, you have a big opportunity to continue selling from an email that traditionally gets overlooked by marketers. Here you can add product recommendations based on what they purchased.⁵
The majority of buyers require seeing an offer several times before they pull the trigger on the purchase. The drip-feed campaign is designed to nurture a lead by providing useful and relevant information. Delivering value ensures leads are more receptive to offers.
Site Behavior Emails
Your email service provider must be connected to your CRM to deliver personalized emails based on data. Conversion rates shoot up dramatically when personalized campaigns are created over generic ones.
CRM software is a valuable tool that helps you provide the best customer experience. For example, chatbots are used to instantly answer commonly asked questions. It alleviates the burden on your customer service team. The customer is also satisfied since they got an answer without waiting for a customer service representative to connect.
Every interaction with a specific customer is recorded by CRM software, which allows marketers to understand how far along the sales funnel they are. This information enables marketers to perform actions that will nudge the lead further along the sales funnel and meet them where they are.
As mentioned in the previous section, you can create personalized email campaigns using data harnessed with CRM software. Emails can be created automatically once there is a template. The CRM software will fill in the gaps.
CRM software also reduces the amount of data entries required so marketers can get on with higher-level tasks. Captured data is also shared between departments, which facilitates the automation of various marketing tasks.
Scheduled Social Media Posting
A constant stream of engaging social media posts works wonders for capturing attention. Social media integrated scheduling tools and third party services can be used to automatically release posts at strategically set times. Ideally, the content should be put in front of the audience at the time of day/week they are most receptive.
This depends on your specific audience. You can use A/B split testing and analytics software to figure out when your social media posts are getting the most interactions. Choosing the right posting schedule maximizes the ROI of each post.
Consistency is a key ingredient to getting social media automation right. Make sure you have a healthy stockpile of content queued up to avoid having to constantly manually post. You can also recycle evergreen content to get the most out of each piece.
Marketing workflows allow CMO’s to create a structure so deadlines/goals are met, no steps are missed and the need for micro-management is reduced. New team members can easily be added when there are clear workflows.
The type of workflow you create depends on the project, industry, resources and limitations. Successful marketing workflows share the following characteristics:
There must be a logical sequence to workflows so each step is a natural progression from the last. Workflows must be easy to understand so they are self-explanatory. Confusing workflows do more harm than good.
Access to workflows should be straightforward. For example, you can use tools such as Monday and Trello to create visually simple dashboards. They are designed for simplicity and typically don’t take long for users to understand the steps of the workflow.
Good workflows should have the flexibility to accommodate changes. It’s crucial to remember that the ideal workflow might undergo hundreds of changes before it’s optimal.
Automation is a key ingredient that modern competitive businesses have mastered. However, companies must maintain a balance as too much automation can seem impersonal. Generic marketing campaigns result in frustratingly low conversion rates. The trick is to appear that you’re communicating directly to the customer, which is better than using detailed data tracking and personalized campaigns.
75% of companies surveyed by Pepper shared that it took less than 6 months to implement their marketing automation platform. What does this mean? Simply that it doesn’t take long to complete what can be the most important step of your marketing department.⁶
¹ Adobe: Marketo Engage | ² YourStory | ³ Moosend | ⁴ Baymard Institute | ⁵ Shopify | ⁶ Pepper
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Alex is a serial entrepreneur and enterprise digital strategist. Alex is passionate about his work and is a superstar in two areas: As an ADDY Award-winning developer with over 15 years of experience including custom solutions for enterprise and government applications, he designs easy-to-use digital solutions for marketing goals, while answering difficult marketing problems with creative technical solutions that are easy to use for both the end-user and the client.