There is no comparison to what you can do live versus automated.
Automation is a popular topic nowadays, for everything from self-driving cars, to self-run vacuum cleaners, to marketing automation software. The main reason I hear for why people don't incorporate automation into their life or business is that they aren't sure it's right, or that it will work FOR THEM.
So people know automation works, they just aren't sure it will work for them, or if they can do it. As far as marketing automation for your business is concerned, here are 8 ways it definitely will work to help grow your business for you.
I was going to title this post "The 8 Biggest Advantages of Marketing Automation", but I wanted to bring the advantages down to Earth and show how they can literally help your business TODAY.
8) Saves You Time
Time is NOT money, time is infinitely more valuable
Full disclosure, marketing automation does take a decent amount of up-front time to set up, but it's more than worth it because that time investment's entire purpose is to save you time in the future.
Automation allows you to schedule your content, your onboarding, your welcome series, your lead nurturing, and more. With those time-consuming tasks accounted for, that gives you the opportunity to focus on more important things.
Automation allows you to switch from outbound marketing (you go to them), to more inbound marketing (leads, calls, applications come to you).
While you should continuously optimize your automation processes, saving time is the name of the game, and time is your most valuable resource as an entrepreneur or marketer.
A webinar lets you speak while you sleep. It lets you reach audiences you wouldn’t in person. It multiplies the value of your presentation. It is versatile, efficient, and can be entirely automated.
7) Saves You Money
While I'm not advocating firing your existing staff, it's easy to see how automation can do many of the tasks that takes up marketing staff's time. So if you're considering hiring a marketing assistant or agency for extra manpower, consider employing automation first.
Marketing automation also allows you to perform in-depth lead scoring, lead nurturing, and segmentation which saves you money by sending the right messages and materials, to the right people, at the right time, which reduces redundancies and marketing waste.
Automating is also great for following up, which is great since it costs 10-30x more to sell to a new customer than to an existing one. Detailed tracking and analytics also allow you to discover and expand the campaigns, tactics, and messages that are working best.
6) Improve Customer Experience
Don't try this at home
While some worry that automation makes your messaging robotic or impersonal, the truth is that it allows you to make your messaging more tailored, customized, and personalized than ever.
Automation allows you to track all your prospect's actions, which allows you to send them relevant content and offers that they will likely be interested in. Your leads will appreciate that you "remember" their interest in mountain bikes, or yoga, or Pokemon Go, or whatever.
This improves your customer relationship which leads to trust, appreciation, and sales.
5) Shorten + Simplify Sales Cycle
Many businesses have very manual, hands-on sales processes which involve appointment setting, sales calls, sending materials by mail, advertising, and many more steps. While that's all fine and good, marketing automation allows you to simplify, streamline, and even improve these processes.
The path from cold prospect to customer can get pretty complicated, which can also take a lot of time. Automation can shorten this sales cycle and do much of the tracking and selling for you. This helps to minimize the possibility of human error at any step of your sales process.
Any way you slice it, the faster a cold prospect can become a customer, the better. Automation allows you to optimize all 5 steps of the customer journey including traffic generation, lead capturing, lead nurturing, selling, and following up.
4) Increased Growth Potential
Realize your potential. -Mom
One of the many myths about marketing automation is that it can only benefit and is only for big, established businesses. The irony of that misconception is that automation is not reserved for after you grow, and it is actually the best way TO grow.
Nowadays, some form of marketing automation is required to scale and grow just about any type of business. Especially if you sell a product or productized service, automation gives you the room and opportunity to grow quickly and save time.
Not to over-sell it, but it's a fact that some businesses that incorporate automation quickly begin to suffer from lead or sales overload. It sounds like a rosy idea, but every business should ask themselves if they can handle a sudden order of 1,000 units or 100 new clients.
While some business choose to specialize and not scale, automation gives you to opportunity to grow quickly, if you want to.
The reality is the best marketers are using both inbound marketing and marketing automation together, and they are getting great returns.
3) More Leads and Sales
Speaking of growth potential, most businesses first buy in to automation by the fact that it flat-out increases your lead-generation and sales. This doesn't mean that automation can save your business from a weak offer or bad business model, but it can definitely grow existing sales numbers.
Creating an automated marketing funnel essentially creates a system that serves as a 24-hour salesperson. Your sales process can remain much the same as it was before automation, except that each step can run with much less direct input from you.
Not only does automation increase the total amount of leads, but equally importantly, analytics and tracking improve the quality of those leads. It also allows you to recover lost sales and expand your sales opportunities.
2) Harmonize Sales & Marketing
Now play nice
If you have separate sales and marketing departments, then you already know that they are often at odds with each other. For those unfamiliar, salespeople tend to blame marketing for low-quality leads, while marketing people say that salespeople don't do enough to close the good leads provided.
Marketing automation solves this age-old problem harmonizing marketing and sales into a single system because an automated sales funnel performs marketing and sales tasks, all in one package.
As a quick reminder, marketing is everything you do before a sale, and sales is the actual transaction. Automation allows you to systematize your traffic generation, lead nurturing, selling, and follow-up to finally make peace between marketing and sales.
Automation is driving the decline of banal and repetitive tasks.
1) Increase Actionable Knowledge
One of the best and most important benefits of marketing automation is the (actionable) data it provides you with. It allows you to track and record many data points on each prospect, including web pages visited, emails opened, links clicked, purchases, entry point to your marketing, and much more.
This is crucial information which allows you to improve your lead scoring, offers presented, lead segmentation, follow-up messaging, and more.
Not only can you see data points on your leads, but you can also analyze your own sales process. You can see where the most valuable leads come, which messages lead to sales, which lead to unsubscribes, and similar important data.