Making the Case for Marketing Automation

Content creator. Email developer. Customer experience expert.

The list of roles today’s marketers need to master goes on and on.

There’s no all-encompassing solution to shrink that list, but marketing automation allows marketing and sales teams to be more efficient, convert more leads to sales and create better customer experiences by automating labor-intensive tasks.

By streamlining tasks and improving the performance of marketing initiatives, marketing automation is one of the fastest solutions for accelerating ROI.

What is marketing automation?

Marketing automation uses technology and customer insights to automate marketing processes, reducing the number of tasks that marketers have to juggle. Companies use marketing automation to help generate more leads, drive more sales and optimize spend. It utilizes data to deliver a more personalized customer experience — increasing customer loyalty, satisfaction and retention.

Marketing automation is a growing strategy. “The Ultimate Marketing Automation stats” from EmailMonday states that, on average, 51% of companies are currently using marketing automation, and more than half of B2B companies (58%) plan to adopt the technology.

And it’s not showing signs of stopping — spending for marketing automation tools is expected to reach $25.1 billion annually by 2023. (Martech Today, 2018)

This growth isn’t surprising when you consider the positive impact marketing automation has on business objectives. Nearly 90% saw success, according to a SharpSpring study:

How successful is your marketing automation strategy at achieving important objectives?

Implementing automation strategies can help improve a number of marketing efforts — here are five of them:

1. Improve team efficiency

According to Neil Patel, there are 3 big areas of online marketing that you can automate: email campaigns, social media and landing pages. Streamlining and automating these repetitive tasks allows your team to focus more on marketing strategy and closing sales. According to a report by TFM&A Insights, 36% of marketers use marketing automation to make room for more meaningful and exciting projects.

Adestra’s Marketer vs. Machine report states, “Marketers say the biggest benefits of automation are saving time (74%), increased customer engagement (68%), more timely communications (58%), and increased opportunities, including up-selling (58%).”

Saving time is a significant benefit of marketing automation as it is important to respond quickly. Harvard Business Review shows that firms who tried to contact a lead within an hour of online form submission were seven times more likely to close the sale.

2. Improve customer experience

Consumers today expect a personalized experience. We shouldn’t treat returning customers like new customers or vice versa. Marketing automation allows you to create personalized messaging and communicate based on the behaviors and interests of your audience.

Ultimately, this customized messaging can make all the difference between a completed sale and a lost opportunity. Epsilon research indicates 80% of consumers are more likely to make a purchase when brands offer personalized experiences.

Furthermore, 48% of customers that abandoned a brand made a purchase from competitors because they were not offered a personalized experience, according to Accenture’s Personalization Pulse Check Report.

3. Improve marketing and sales alignment

Not being able to show the ROI of their campaigns or marketing activities is a common problem for marketers. That’s often because marketing and sales goals are not aligned, and marketing has little visibility into what happens to the leads that they’ve generated for sales.

Marketing automation provides a unified platform where you can see the entire timeline and journey of a lead. This visibility gives everyone involved an understanding of what tactic drove the lead to the site and what ultimately led them to go from a marketing qualified lead to a sales qualified lead to a customer. It also helps marketing teams identify which channels are best for finding customers so that they can optimize their ad spend.

Marketo and Reachforce research showed that sales and marketing alignment can help businesses become 67% better at closing deals.

4. Improve campaign performance and ROI

Marketing automation includes systems that allow for better campaign tracking and more visibility into the performance of your marketing campaign. 91% of users believe marketing automation is “very important” to successfully marketing across multiple channels. (Marketo)

By unifying your campaign tracking and seeing how all your channels are influencing your customer, you gain insights into which tactics are impacting sales. This information puts you in a better position to make better business decisions and scale accordingly — leading to greater ROI. In fact, Wishpond’s State of Marketing Automation shows that 75% of all businesses that use an marketing automation system see positive ROI within the first year.

5. Improve sales

All these improvements lead to more leads and sales. According to VB Insight, 80% of marketing automation users saw their number of leads increase, and 77% saw the number of conversions increase.

Marketing automation tools can also assist with the nurturing of leads, which is critical to the sales process. It allows you to develop stronger relationship with your customers when they might not be ready to purchase your product. Rather than rushing a prospect into a sales call prematurely, lead nurturing focuses on providing your prospects with information that addresses their needs. By adding value and being a constant resource for your prospects, you’ll be in a better position to close the deal when your lead is in the market for a product.

Marketing Automation Strategy Survey

Businesses who nurture leads make 50% more sales at a cost 33% less than non-nurtured prospects. (Strategic IC, 2017). Leads that are successfully nurtured through marketing automation also have a long-term impact on your business; Wishpond found that they spend up to 47% more than non-nurtured leads.

Employing marketing automation tools can help streamline your efforts in a way that not only frees up your team but also leads to a greater return on your investment.

And marketing automation doesn’t have to be difficult. Marketing automation platforms like VantagePoint 365 are designed to work with your marketing strategies, so you can track the ROI of your campaigns to ensure you’re maximizing your marketing spend.

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