Lead Generation

What is marketing automation and how can it help you?

Sell to Win Team
Contributor
Sell to Win Team
Contributor
Marketing technology workflow

Technology never stops evolving, especially when it comes to automation. So, why should you?

When roosters at dawn became too annoying, we created alarm clocks. When our hands cramped from handwriting paper copies, we made machines that did the work in less time. 

Marketing is no exception to this automation trend. While there are still a handful of marketing tasks that are best done manually, many can be automated thanks to the ever-evolving tech landscape. So, what is marketing automation exactly?

Marketing automation is digital tech that automatically performs marketing functions for you. Keep reading to learn more about automated marketing.

What is marketing automation?

To put it simply, marketing automation is any sort of digital technology that performs certain marketing tasks for you automatically, rather than you having to do it manually.

The tasks in question can vary. Some of the most common types of tasks you might automate include:

  • Sending out emails
  • Gathering and organizing customer data
  • Updating product inventory
  • And more!

How can marketing automation benefit you?

The core benefit of marketing and sales automation is that it saves you time and effort that is better spent elsewhere. Without automation, you’d have to perform each marketing task manually. Talk about a hassle!

Without automation, you’d spend hours sending out the same email to countless recipients or manually updating your product inventory with each purchase.

With automated marketing, you can use a tool that automatically performs those time-consuming tasks for you, allowing you to focus on the more complex tasks at hand.

Automation can also lead to a better experience for your customers. Let’s say that a customer performs an action that requires a follow-up email; marketing automation ensures they’ll receive that email immediately, as opposed to having to wait for you to type it all out again.

Tips for using marketing automation

When you use marketing automation software, there are still some things you’ll want to do to ensure you’re getting the most from your automation. Here are a few best practices to keep in mind:

1. Segment your audience

Marketing automation is great for email marketing. With automation, you can set emails to go out to large lists of customers all at once. Our tip for using email marketing automation is to take the time to segment your audience

Audience segmentation is where you divide your audience into different groups based on factors like location, age, or place in the sales funnel. By segmenting your audience, you can send different materials to each group that are specifically tailored to them.

Not sure how to execute this? Here’s our best practice: Create a separate email for each group. Since the emails are more specific, your audience will respond better to them and may be more likely to convert.

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2. Run tests and analytics

Another tip to keep in mind is to test out different tactics for your marketing automation. Creating the perfect automation takes time. Every marketing strategy requires fine-tuning, especially automated ones.

An SMS campaign, for example, needs to be measured and tested to ensure that text frequency doesn’t bother the audience. This may take multiple tries, but will likely yield a better result in the long run. 

For any automated marketing campaign, keep testing out different options and analyze the results as you go to make sure the automation is working out for you.

3. Rely on customer action points

Finally, when you set up your marketing materials to send out automatically, it’s best to schedule them based on specific customer actions.

If you want to send out an email to a customer to let them know about a new deal on one of your products, you could opt to send out that email when the customer signs up for a free trial.

Their action indicates an interest in trying out your product, making it the perfect time to send out an email about long-term paid plan options. This type of scheduling makes the automation less likely to over or under-message users.

What types of marketing automation software are there?

You aren’t likely to find any single tool that can automate all your marketing at once. To make this process easier, you could ask yourself what you’re trying to automate. 

There is one type of tool that’s particularly useful for handling sales automation. It’s called a customer relationship management (CRM) platform, and it’s designed to help you gather and analyze data about your customers.

Bear in mind that not every CRM will have sales automation features. Be sure to look for one that not only stores audience data, but can also help you get in touch with those users, and can automate as much of that process as possible.

Give your marketing automation a boost with Nutshell

If you’re looking for the perfect sales automation CRM, consider Nutshell. Nutshell can handle a variety of marketing tasks, from storing customer data to compiling custom reports to sending out emails.

And, of course, Nutshell can automate many of those tasks. When you import audience data, Nutshell can automatically sort it for you based on each person’s place in the sales funnel. You can also set up your marketing emails to send out automatically.

Want to try out Nutshell for yourself? Check out our free 14-day trial!

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