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Benefits of marketing automation

Benefits of marketing automation

Tell an old-school marketer about the automation solutions out there and you’ll likely get an earful – one akin to a lecture from your grandpa about ‘when he was a boy’.

There’s no denying it – modern marketers have it good. With the automation software available,  we can slash hundreds of tasks from the daily to-do list and eliminate the margin for human error almost entirely.

Marketing automation refers to platforms like Hubspot and Pardot that are designed to help marketers work more effectively by automating repetitive tasks and organising campaigns. But there’s more to the technology than time savings and convenience. While automation software benefits us – the weary marketer – it can also do a great deal for the customer and your bottom line.

7 reasons automation is vital to your marketing strategy

1. Increase the scale of marketing campaigns

When every aspect of your campaign must be done manually, you have two choices:

  1. Scale down
  2. Compromise on quality

This is simply the reality of being human – you’re limited by your own time and ability. Therefore, campaigns must be designed according to your team’s time, ability and budget.

But add a powerful marketing automation platform into the equation – one that can generate and score leads, create sequences, and basically organise the campaign for you – and this conundrum no longer exists. That’s because with the right marketing automation tools, you can organise and execute campaigns beyond the scope of your team. This doesn’t necessarily mean your job will be easy, but that with the right preparation, you can do more with less time and perhaps fewer resources.

Bear in mind, however, this is only an advantage if you’re fluent with your automation software. Rolling out a massive campaign without an understanding of your automation systems is the definition of biting off more than you can chew and will only lead to backlash.

2. Generate more qualified leads and nurture them better

According to Gartner research, companies that automate lead management see a 10 per cent increase in revenue or greater in 6-9 months.

Automation software doesn’t just help you get more leads, but better leads as well. This often boils down to lead scoring, a function that automatically generates a perceived value for each lead and uses that to determine how your organisation will engage with that lead moving forward.

Once a score has been assigned, marketing automation can help you nurture leads with various tactics, including:

  • Personalised emails
  • Drip emails
  • Messages on social media
  • Targeted content

3. Boost customer loyalty and increase lifetime value

In addition to helping you obtain more customers, automation software can also assist in taking better care of your existing ones. Marketing automation can help you implement retention and loyalty strategies like exclusive offers and re-engagement campaigns. This not only builds customer loyalty, but revenue as well by encouraging customers to spend after their initial purchase.

4. Increase revenue

Ever left an item in your shopping cart only to have it appear in your inbox or Facebook News Feed later that day? This isn’t the Illuminati, it’s marketing automation at work.

If you have an e-commerce site, automation software can help you chase lost revenue and boost sales with personalized product recommendations across your website, email and social media channels. By getting to know your customers’ online behaviour, automation software can encourage them to spend more and increase your average order value.

5. Gather better data

In marketing, big data equates to big business. Collecting, storing, analysing and using all that data can be challenging, however, especially for a mere human. That’s where automation software comes in.

How do automation platforms personalise messages, make recommendations and create super targeted campaigns? By knowing your customers better than you ever possibly could. Automation software uses machine learning to monitor the interactions your users have online and store them, creating an arsenal of data you can use to predict customers’ behaviour and win their business.

6. Ease conflict between sales and marketing

It’s an office tale as old as time: sales reps are hungry for more leads – expecting marketing to bring them in. Meanwhile, marketing is annoyed, critical of sales for mishandling the leads they have acquired. And, of course, neither trusts the other to ‘just do their job!’.

Luckily, there’s automation. Automation software can strengthen the relationship between these two critical teams in a couple of key ways:

  1. It helps marketing generate more leads, which sales wants
  2. It helps sales nurture leads better, which marketing wants

Plus, there’s the third layer: CRM, which enables the two teams to define their processes and eliminates sales funnel rockiness, which can cause customers to drop off or disengage. Plus, CRM adds an excellent layer of transparency and accountability to any business.

7. Get more strategic

So far, we’ve talked a lot about how great automation is – but what about you? As a marketer, you may worrying about your job security at this point, but don’t. While software can help us accomplish a great deal, there’s still very much a place for people in the marketing sector.

In fact, there probably always will be because, well, your customers are people too. In many ways, automation software takes care of the mundane, administrative tasks so you can strategise, be creative and find meaningful ways to amplify your content. Good software will create space and time for marketers to focus on the bigger, more human side of business.

Getting started with marketing automation

Keen to give marketing automation a go? Start by identifying your organisation’s needs and matching them with the right software.

Adopting a platform with a suite of amazing automation tools can go one of two ways: you can either enjoy all of the benefits we’ve just mentioned or become completely overwhelmed. The former is, of course, preferable, so start small and work to find a solution that meets the requirements of your sales and marketing teams.

 

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Natalie Fortier About the author