What is Marketing Automation?
Like all forms of automation, the goal of marketing automation is to streamline processes, free up time, and eliminate tedium. Marketing automation typically allows businesses to market across a broader range of channels, in a shorter amount of time. Likewise, it streamlines and organizes the critical process of personalization. So far so good, right?
Unfortunately, this simple description doesn’t do justice to a common phenomena; marketing automation falling through the cracks in your business’s CRM and marketing plan. When marketing automation fails to deliver, the failure can be attributed to several key missteps, which we’ll cover here.
When Integration is Off
A leader in this field of missteps is poor integration. When your CRM and MAP (Marketing Automation Platform) are not properly synced, a wealth of information and time-saving connectivity gets lost in the process. Leads, contacts, account records, and information about which stage of nurturing your prospects are in will not flow into your CRM as intended without proper integration. Having a CRM and MAP from the same company or software provider isn’t enough, the infrastructure of both need to match. Items like custom fields need to be created within both systems so that one can map onto the other, this takes diligence and a deeper understanding of how automation softwares use data to provide value. Mismatching data, and fields that aren’t mirrored across both systems are going to leave businesses wanting for smoother, more robust automation benefits. So it’s crucial to put your CRM and MAP in lock step with one another, to get the most out of both. This misstep is a more technical version of Marketing and Sales teams being misaligned, covered in an earlier post.
Another common culprit is not taking full advantage of Personalization. Personalization is the name of the game in digital marketing today. As most people, when they encounter digital marketing, are having a one-on-one experience with their chosen device. The ability to speak directly to consumers in this way is a newer phenomena, and a child of the information age. The personalized experience runs the gamut of complexities, from simple things like Personalization tokens which allow marketers to automate the process of inserting personal details into marketing emails like the reader’s name, company, or birthdate. The real magic these days however, comes from knowing when prospects are checking out your products and services and their pricing, this information is available through savvier automation tools, and can trigger more finely targeted content or calls to action, when used properly, to move your prospects through the funnel. Many marketing automation platforms don’t do enough to tally and relay information about repeat visits to crucial checkpoints like products and services pages. Worse yet, automating the personalized triggered content can more often than not prove too technically complicated for marketers, as setting the most nuanced personalized triggers often takes web dev skills.
Contacts that Don’t Care
Finally, an all too common flaw: dead weight in your contacts list. Too many unengaged contacts are a huge drain on your marketing strategy and on your ability to automate effectively. While it may seem like a benefit to have a lot of contacts in your reserve, if these contacts are chronically ignoring your marketing emails, you’re hurting rather than helping yourself by continuing to send to them. It damages your brand, it damages your strategy, and you’re flowing attention in the wrong direction by not aiming for the right people; those who are engaged and curious about your brand.
That being said, this is where Marketing Automation really shines. The golden ratio of marketing in 2021 is as follows: getting the right message, to the right person, at the right time. When used properly, marketing automation can deliver these timely personalized messages by making appropriate use of click data, so that prospects are nudged and nurtured through automated content, effortlessly!
Team ASAR is happy to discuss your CRM and Marketing needs, and how we can help you get more from your current system. Contact us to schedule a no-cost consult, or reach out here via the comments section.