Marketing automation is a great tool that should be taken advantage of by most, if not all, marketing departments. There are a variety of benefits to using this software, including automation workflows, increased productivity, metrics and analytics, social media management, and more. You can easily send email campaigns to hundreds of contacts, and track a variety of metrics. Produce analytics and reports based on the data from your campaigns, and use this to inform future strategy changes. Nevertheless, while marketing automation is a useful enterprise software solution, it’s easy to make mistakes when implementing it. This guide should help you avoid some of the most common pitfalls when it comes to using marketing automation to its full potential.
Spamming your contacts with too much information, too frequently
One of the greatest benefits of marketing automation is how easy it is to create email campaigns and send large batches of messages. With just a single click, you can send hundreds of emails to hundreds of your contacts. This is a double-edged sword, as it is extremely easy to abuse the ease of this communication. Just because you can easily send emails, doesn’t mean you should be doing so any more than you did before buying your marketing automation software.
Be wary of overloading or overwhelming your target audience. Being bombarded with messages and information will only lead to the loss of customers. This is particularly important when you first start to use marketing automation. Start out slowly, and make sure to focus on the quality and content of your emails, instead of how many campaigns you can run at once.
Forgetting the humanity in your marketing
Marketing automation gives marketers and other business professionals a chance to optimize their workflow. Automating certain tasks and work processes is a great way to save time, and allows employees to focus on high priority assignments. But it’s important not to let this automation take over every aspect of your work, particularly when it comes to the actual content of your emails.
Customers want to feel like they’re receiving a personal message, that the marketer thought about them specifically while creating an email campaign. Make sure that you’re not sending generic messages, or listing the wrong names in the body of your text. Let the automation make your job easier, but don’t let it affect too many things.
Ignoring your metrics
Metrics and analytics are important to keep track of when it comes to marketing automation, particularly with regards to email campaigns. It’s easy to gravitate towards vanity metrics, like open rates. They’re important, and should definitely be considered when reviewing marketing strategy and email campaign content. But make sure that you’re considering every metric that your marketing automation tool provides.
Conversions, click-throughs, and unsubscribes are just as important to keep track of, and it’s important to track their relationship with each other. Do you have high open rates but low conversion rates? High conversion rates but high unsubscription rates? Make sure that you’re always aware of the situation, so you can address problems as they come up.
Testing too rarely
Customers can be fickle. Their tastes and personal opinions can change unpredictably, while different people respond well to different things. To make sure that your marketing is performing at an optimal rate, make sure that you’re performing A/B testing to monitor which aspects of your marketing campaigns are doing the most work.
If you change too many things between versions, it’ll be hard to keep track of which changes are the most impactful. Make small changes and experiment with different version of your campaign over long periods of time to get the most accurate data. The results can be used to inform future campaign and strategy changes.
Not segmenting your audience
As mentioned before, personalization plays an important role in creating well-performing marketing materials. Customers want a balance of personal material that encourages them to spend and helps them through the decision-making process. This personalization can be further achieved by segmenting your audience. Segmentation allows you to create different content that depends on the range of audiences you’re trying to reach.
Your customers all come from different industry verticals, or different countries, or different socioeconomic backgrounds, or a variety of other factors. If you segment and categorize your various customers, you’ll have a much better time creating targeted, personalized material. This will in turn create happier, more loyal customers and generate more leads.
Setting your automations and never touching them again
Implementing marketing automation for the first time might seem a little bit intimidating. Being able to automate tasks that you previously had to do by hand is extremely handy, but you’ll need some time to figure out what works best for your business.
Make sure that you’re regularly checking in on the performance of your campaigns and reassessing the way you’re utilizing your marketing automation software. It’s not enough to initially set up your automation workflows and never revisit them again. As time goes by and you change your marketing strategy and adjust your email campaigns, touch base with your automation and make sure they’re still serving you in the best way they can.
Not paying attention to presentation and formatting
With email campaign automation comes potential formatting and presentation complications. Depending on the email clients that your customers are using, emails may look different on different platforms. Make sure that you know what your email campaigns and marketing materials look like on every platform that you’re sending them to. Programs like Microsoft Outlook don’t display messages in the same way as services like Gmail.
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