Of all the marketing trends making an effect right now, I believe marketing automation has the most potential.
Marketing automation allows marketers to leverage software to handle, coordinate and automate marketing activity. It handles the greater repetitive marketing tasks for you – such as posting to social networking or sending emails – based on a pre-determined plan and schedule. But more importantly, it delivers a highly-personalised customer experience, enhancing your chances of converting leads into customers.
Many small- and medium-sized businesses may consider marketing automation to be too complex, too expensive or too intimidating. In fact, the opposite is true. As a Hubspot partner, we've seen our clients benefit from it in a number of ways. It can reduce your cost per acquisition, streamline your marketing activity and improve your ROI.
So, is marketing automation right for you? Here are some of the reasons why you should consider introducing it into your marketing strategy.
Ensuring marketing is well planned and managed
When marketers use marketing-automation tools, there's nowhere to hide. There's no room for activity to fall through the cracks. Everything must be planned in advance. This forces your marketing activity to be strategic, purposeful and well-considered, instead of ad hoc.
We all know how time-consuming the more repetitive marketing tasks – such as setting up ads, posting to social media or sending emails – could be. By leveraging marketing-automation software, businesses can help to save time, deliver efficiencies and release resources to spend on more strategic marketing activity.
Delivering a personalised customer experience
Using marketing-automation tools requires you to definitely closely examine the sales funnel for every single potential customer. By understanding each lead, their interests and motivations, you are able to deliver a highly personalised journey – leveraging targeted content delivered via social networking, email or ads – to transform that lead into a customer.
Ad hoc marketing activity is a terrible approach to nurturing leads, as it’s inconsistent and impersonal. Too often leads fall through the cracks. Marketing automation establishes sales funnels to nurture leads, ensuring that you are maximising your chances of conversion and reducing the chance of leads dropping out of contention.
Ultimately, you only get out of marketing automation what you put in. It's important to focus on prospecting activities such as SEO or PPC to make sure you have high quality leads entering the top sales funnel. You also want to make sure you are developing personalised, high-quality content to share with leads along their journey. Don't just set and forget – conduct A/B testing to see which content, frequency of communications and messages resonate probably the most, and adjust your approach accordingly.