What is Market Automation?
Marketing Automation is the process of using technology to automate marketing activities. The marketing automation software manages marketing processes and multifunctional campaigns, across multiple channels, automatically. With marketing automation, businesses can target customers with automated messages across email, web, social, and text. By automating many of these tasks, users can more effectively send the right message, to the right user at the right time. Many marketing departments automate repetitive tasks such as email marketing, social media posting, and even ad campaigns - not just for the sake of efficiency, but so they can provide a more personalized experience for their customers.
Marketing automation is all about understanding your audience so you can adapt the way you communicate to them based on their unique buying journey. Marketers can scale their processes and campaigns so they can reach more people, with less effort.
How does marketing automation do?
In its most basic form, marketing automation is a set of tools designed to streamline and simplify some of the most time-consuming responsibilities of the modern marketing and sales roles. From automating the lead qualification process to creating a hub for digital campaign creation, automation is all about simplifying a business world that is growing far too complex, much too quickly.
Good automation tools help you identify your audience, design the right content, and automatically trigger actions based on schedules and customer behavior. Once your campaign rolls out, you can focus on other tasks, then analyze and tweak your marketing plan as results start coming in. An automated marketing strategy can save time and resources, driving revenue and ROI while you focus on growing your business.
In order to effectively aid marketers in fully understanding customers and subsequently developing a strategic marketing plan, marketing automation tools (MAT) are designed to perform eight key tasks:
- Development and analysis of marketing campaigns and customers
- Management of marketing campaigns
- Appropriate customer data organization and storage
- Moving contacts from leads (marketing prospects) to customers
- Lead scoring to qualify leads by measuring their engagement level
- Integration of multiple touch-points such as email and social media
- Campaign performance analytics (i.e. open rate or click-through rates on emails, conversion rates on landing pages)
Dos and Don'ts of Marketing Automation:
Don’t just automate your current process without revisiting your goals: Because marketing automation can make our lives easier as marketers, for many of us, the first step when integrating this into our strategy is to just automate everything we already do. While this very well might be the right way to go, take a moment to revisit your goals before you get started.
Don't just blast or broadcast general messages: With marketing automation, there is no need to send a general, broad message to your entire contact list that will end up getting deleted or marked as spam because it’s not relevant.
Don’t forget about your customers: Selling new business and closing contracts is hard work. So many companies are focused on generating new revenue, that they forget about their current customers: The group of people that already have an affinity for what they are selling, and most likely want to buy more.
Do integrate marketing automation with your inbound marketing strategy: Inbound is about providing valuable content that aligns with your customers needs and interests. This should not change if you start using marketing automation. In fact, it should enhance the communication, as you can provide the content they need at the exact time that they need it.
Do send highly-targeted and specific content to a narrowed audience: Say that you’ve engaged with a company; maybe you’ve downloaded a piece of their content and really loved what you read. The next email you get is for a completely different topic that has nothing to do with what you just read. Wouldn’t it be more impactful if you received an email that continued to dive further into the topic that you are interested in? You’d be much more likely to buy from that company since they’re answering your questions.
Do set up customer engagement campaigns: It’s much easier to sell to someone that has purchased from you before. Keeping your customers engaged with content marketing is an essential piece of growing your company. Nurture those relationships by sending segmented, customer-only content, that will educate and encourage them to continue to come back to your company for thought leadership and expertise.