5 Marketing Automation Mistakes

Posted by on Feb 13, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

5 Marketing Automation Mistakes

Marketing automation implementations can easily go wrong if they lack a clear strategy, trained personnel and goals. The platform can be grossly under-utilized if its multiple facets are not explored and shared across different teams. Whether you are eyeing a marketing automation platform or already have one in place, be sure to avoid these pitfalls.

1. No Strategy. No Goal

Without a strategy or goal, marketing automation is bound to be the white elephant in the marketing department. It is vital that you demonstrate ROI from it, lest all future budget demands get stalled. You need to chalk out your revenue creation process and see how it can be made more efficient with marketing automation.

Chalk out your short-term as well as long-term strategy, goals and implementation plan.

Be sure to cover the following points:
– Why did you purchase the software? Because “everyone else has one” isn’t a good reason.
– Which marketing campaigns will you use it for – email, webinars, social, PPC, SEO?
– What processes will you automate?
– Who will be the primary users and advanced users?
– What reports and metrics will you generate?
– What do you plan to achieve – jump in qualified leads, lead velocity, increase in revenue?

2. Use Marketing Automation Only for Email Marketing

If you only want to send out email blasts of your monthly newsletter use an email marketing service provider. You can do that for just $50-100 a month depending on the size of your mailing list. Don’t bother with marketing automation.

But if you desire more, here are over a dozen things you can do with marketing automation:

 1. Identify anonymous website visitors
2. Website analytics
3. Integrate live chat with your website
4. Grow your email lists
5. Build complex lead nurturing programs based on audience behavior
6. Prioritize leads with lead scoring
7. Cross-sell and up-sell to existing customers
8. Create landing pages with no help from design/IT
9. Manage your social media presence
10. Integrate into CRM
11. Get in-depth reports on your marketing campaigns
12. Lead attribution
13. Calculate ROI of different marketing campaigns

Boy that’s a lot more than email, huh?

3. Keep Sales Out

Is sales a mere bystander to marketing automation? In many organizations marketing and sales operate in silos and marketing automation becomes confined to the marketing team.

Ideally, sales and marketing should make a joint presentation to get management’s approval and funding to purchase marketing automation. After all, sales and marketing want the same thing – as many high quality leads as possible, as fast as possible. Marketing automation is the key to getting that.

Integrate marketing automation with CRM to give sales complete lead history and comprehensive lead intelligence. Armed with this lead intelligence sales can deliver nuanced pitches that focus on the lead’s business problem instead of the usual spiel.

If you have kept sales out so far, open those doors.

4. Stale Content

Marketing automation is a beast that devours content. You will be amazed how much content is required to run a decent lead nurturing program. Without good content you will send sales pitch after sales pitch. This will initially irritate your leads and ultimately provoke an “unsubscribe”.

Have a team in place to constantly churn out high-quality content in varied formats aimed at all parts of the funnel such as blogs, webinars, product videos and case studies. Fresh content is the cornerstone of inbound marketing. It can attract suspects and prospects, help earn their respect, establish credibility and turn them into paying customers.

5. Run It on Autopilot

You could run your marketing automation on autopilot:
• Automate your email campaigns for the year and forget about it.
• Automate social media posts and never look back.
• Send MQLs directly to sales. Don’t bother with lead qualification.

But more than likely, this will give you a mountain of unsubscribes, a steep decline of followers and hate mail from sales.

In your first month with marketing automation train and educate your primary users and your advanced users. Make use of your vendor’s onboarding and training capabilities. Set tasks and milestones for each user.

Since the platform has a multitude of capabilities choose an areas of focus for every three months. Say it is lead nurturing in the first three months. Devise your lead nurturing programs, automate, test, observe results and recalibrate. Build methods, systems and accountability to make the whole process more efficient. Then move on to another area of focus.

Remember if done right, marketing automation can greatly improve the efficiency, scale and provide comprehensive measurement for your marketing campaigns.

 

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