On any given day, you have too much to do and too little time to get it done. Whether you work for yourself, run a company, or work in an organization, it’s the same.
As technology has accelerated, work has become more machine-like. With downsizing since the financial crisis in 2007, many jobs that took two people are now done by one person—often someone who was already overwhelmed by their original job.
However, unlike machines, our biocomputer is subject to the vicissitudes of mood swings, blood sugar levels, and lower back pain. The world has got faster, but we haven’t caught up with it.
While we may perform well at the start of the day, as the day wears on, our brains gets confused and our emotions get out of whack. Yet despite this entropic breakdown of logic and order, we’re surprised when we have trouble remembering our phone numbers on the UPS order form.
Ironically, the solution to our dilemma is right under our nose.
If the ubiquity of computing machines has made our lives more mechanical, then we should let them do more of the uncreative work that bores us to tears. Evolution designed human beings for inventing things, it did not design us for writing variations of the same article for multiple media outlets to avoid Google’s duplicate penalty.
The solution to speed things up is to use marketing automation. It’s easy enough to get your hands on a guide for making a marketing automation comparison to figure out what to use for your projects.To make the best choice, you need to discover the different products out there for your automation needs and compare them with metrics important to your business.
How Marketing Automation Can Help You Out
So what exactly is marketing automation, anyway?
Here’s a useful definition from Hubspot: “At its best, marketing automation is software and tactics that allow companies to buy and sell like Amazon — that is, to nurture prospects with highly personalized, useful content that helps convert prospects to customers and turn customers into delighted customers. This type of marketing automation typically generates significant new revenue for companies, and provides an excellent return on the investment required.”
However, there is a right way and a wrong way to use marketing automation.
The Right Way to Use Marketing Automation
So how do you use marketing automation correctly?
Here are 3 instances when to use marketing automation.
1. Use it to save time on repetitive tasks.
For example, a repetitive task is personalizing each email with the user’s first name. It would take a few hours to personalize a welcome email to 1,000 subscribers. It takes no time at all to let software match first names with email addresses.
2. Use it for timely contact with new customers.
Imagine how boring it would be to manually send the same welcoming email to every subscriber as soon as they had signed up for your list. An autoresponder will provide this timely service for you.
3. Use it to do your work well ahead of the time you need to distribute it.
If you need to send 100 social media posts this month, you can write them all at once and schedule where you want them to go, and on what day and at what time.
Marketing Automation Is Not Marketing
Marketing is a complex, multichannel process that requires human ingenuity every step of the way. In many instances, it’s possible for software to mimic human intelligence, but it does it badly.
One thing you have to remember is that automation is not designed to replace what you, as a human being, excel in—creativity, originality, and even a dash of warmth and charm.
Marketing automation does not do marketing for you. It just helps you perform repetitive marketing functions faster and more accurately.
Although this may seem to be laboring an obvious point, you can find many instances online where marketers rely on marketing automation to clone their marketing skillsets.
For instance, if you need to generate leads and nurture prospects, hoping to convert them into rabid buyers, its easy enough to buy a list of names from a list broker and plug them into an autoresponder.
This is a perfect example of how not to generate leads and build up a relationship with prospects.
You have to nurture your own leads to get significant results. Buying leads worked well in direct marketing, but not as well online. People like to receive emails only from vendors they know, like, and trust.
Another example, where marketers have used marketing automation to do their work for them is in content creation.
A content spinner can rewrite an article you wrote into an original article by mimicking the rules of human grammar and synonyms. Google busted up this game of tricking the search engines to entice people to read blogs loaded with gibberish.
Compare a spun article to an article written by a human being. Original articles have wit, wisdom, and the right selection of words in the right order of importance. The writer is speaking directly to you in an intelligible way.
Minds vs. Machines
Marketing automation is wonderful when used in the right way. However, when using it, you have to distinguish between creative and repetitive tasks. It’s tempting to let algorithms do your thinking for you, but your marketing results will always be less than optimal. Marketing automation is not on par with artificial intelligence and can’t substitute for human ingenuity.