When Marketing Automation Can’t Help

We are becoming the generation of quick fixes.

The internet has created an ever-evolving database of information and solutions to any problem we might encounter, and it is all neatly organized and waiting just a google search away. No matter what our personal or business woes, it seems like there is a quick tip or new technology to set us straight.

This ability to solve all of our problems so quickly has given us a sense of learned-helplessness, often opting to forgo tough changes in favor of a quick fix.

Well, what if you’re thinking “that doesn’t sound like me at all!”? As tough as it may be to believe, most marketing and sales departments are doing this every day.

We are all working from an outdated playbook. From batch-and-blast style emails to broadcasted “push” messaging, we all know that the sales and marketing games have changed. Marketers have made attempts to throw out the old playbook, adopting new strategies and technology, but the old behaviors still remain.

Automating Bad Processes

Many companies are turning to technology like marketing automation to fix their marketing and sales problems as more and more companies are seeing automation transform their sales and marketing for the better. While automation can revolutionize the sales and marketing process for a company, if that company is still holding onto bad marketing habits, there is little automation can do to help. Automation is not a silver bullet, designed to fix your broken processes. Automation necessitates a much-needed shift in marketing habits and processes in order to experience maximum results.

Here are four common ways automation users often fail with outdated process:

  • Unqualified Database: If marketers have been buying lists or failing to qualify leads, the quality of their database is so low that they have handicapped themselves from the start.

  • Spamming: Even if marketers have a high quality database, they can still lose leads by using automation to spam instead of tailoring campaigns to the customer journey.

  • Poor Content: Content is the engine that drives automation, and unfortunately, automation cannot create it for you. Marketers need to have a significant store of content to nurture leads.

  • No Targeting: Automation can deliver an exceptional experience to users with dynamic content, segmentation, nurturing. If you are not targeting, you’re ignoring biggest benefit.

So how can you make sure automation is a success? Here are 3 new habits you need to adopt to ensure that you’re using automation to its full potential.

Create Great Content

Get in the habit of creating valuable content. This will help you to engage your audience and build a more qualified database. This will also allow you to make your interactions with prospects during nurturing campaigns more meaningful and valuable and allow you to address real problems for your audience.

Get Targeted

Bust out of the broadcast mindset of the past and use automation to make every interaction with your company feel like a one-to-one interaction. Score your prospects to make sure they are qualified, grade them to assess buying stage, and segment them by their interests and needs.

Understand Customer Journey

Finally, you need to understand your customer journey. Without insight into your sales cycle, even the most valuable nurturing campaigns will still be shots in the dark. Tools like lifecycle reporting can give you an idea of how your customers move through the sales cycle and where the weak points in your funnel are.

Automation can fix many of your sales and marketing problems, but it also demands a change in the behavior of it’s users as well. So whether you are a long time automation user or just looking to get started, make sure your marketing and sales processes are not stuck in the past and holding you back from true automation success.

Want even more great tips on using marketing automation? Check out our free eBook “The Art of marketing Automation.