Corporate Eye

6 Sins of Marketing Automation

Today’s post is by Ryan Chester, who wanted to talk about automating marketing – and how it can go wrong. Over to you, Ryan!

marketing-automationBesides being the current buzzword, marketing automation has become a large thing, and a real thing. There are many billion dollar players in the space.

As an executive in a large corporation you’re constantly evaluating what software to invest in, and among them marketing automation software sits near the top. It has become the most in-demand tool for marketing professionals. It helps large companies turn leads into customers by nurturing them correctly, and create additional sales from existing customers.

It’s becoming undeniably useful, and helps you manage everything from landing pages, content marketing, email marketing and the list goes on!

While you’re starting off in adopting these things for your corporation, you want to make sure you avoid a few things that could cost your company some big bucks or worse – some jobs!

1st Sin – No Strategy

You can’t use marketing automation and not have a documented strategy. How do you expect your marketing team of 25+ people to know what to do?

This is where you take your company’s goals and tie it into the strategy. You have to work hard in the beginning to make sure there is good alignment. It’ll enable an easier time later managing and achieving your goals.

It doesn’t matter whether you use Hubspot, Marketo or Infusionsoft, make sure you have a strategy! The best tool can only do so much.

2nd Sin – Treating everyone the same

Even if you’re only using email marketing tools like Mailchimp or Constant contact, you’re able to segment your audience. This is one area that you can’t make excuses since it’s considered a rudimentary practice. Forgetting this, is like forgetting your own birthday.

You don’t want to blast everyone with the same content. If you’re asking why; it’s because you want to make sure your message is customized for every time of customer group. If you’re a large electronics manufacturer, your customers could be anyone from Boeing, Tesla, Northrop Grumman or Apple. Each one has a different set of needs, behaviours and interests.

3rd Sin – Just using the email marketing function

Most marketing automation tools are more than email marketing tools.

Traditional form of email marketing (or as I call it blasting) is dead. Now you have to be smarter, you have to segment and you have to customize your message based on the audience receiving it.

Today’s marketing automation tools will let you send specific emails based on the pages they visit on your website, or if they complete a specific sequence of events they perform such as visiting your website, downloading an eBook and signing up for a webinar. Make sure you use these tools to the full extent to gain your competitive advantage!

4th Sin – No good content

Content is king. This has been true for the last decade and will continue to be true for the foreseeable future. Think about it for a second. What else would you be sending your audience besides content?

Don’t just churn out any old content, put some deep thought into it and make it useful! If you’ve segmented your audience, you should also define a buyer persona for each group. This will give you an idea what type of content to create them. Additionally look at gaps in your content, and fill them! This way you won’t have difficulty turning visitor to a customer.

5th Sin – Absent marketing and sales process

If you’re like most companies, you’re using your marketing automation to generate leads for your sales team. This requires you to have an effective way of managing everything. If you don’t set up a process, then you might as well not use these tools.

Of course, this doesn’t substitute for an efficient sales team. You need closers still. Marketing automation will guide them, educate them and spark their interest, but it is still up to your team to close the deals.

6th Sin – Not nurturing

Lead management is key to help your sales team close deals. Lead nurturing is essential to keep them warm throughout the buying process, and to make sure your competitors don’t sneak in!

When your prospect comes to you in the beginning, you want to nurture them by sending useful content in forms of blog articles they should read, email notifying them of webinars, etc… This way you lead them out of the “interest” phase of the purchasing funnel right into the “desire” phase.

Thanks, Ryan!

Ryan Chester is a digital marketing connoisseur who loves anything related to search engine optimization, growth-hacking, pay-per-click, analytics or email marketing. He works at , developing digital marketing strategies for enterprises worldwide.

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