A Business Owners’ Guide To Marketing Automation

A business owner sitting at her cluttered desk, looking at her phone to see her marketing automation progress

Marketing automation involves the use of specialised software to integrate the tasks involved with digital inbound marketing (e.g., email marketing, social media, blogs), and automate a range of manual marketing activities. This can include everything from creating intricate drip feed email marketing workflows for multiple buyer personas to scheduling social media posts in advance, to even auto-importing data from lead generation forms into your CRM and sending thank you messages when someone signs up for your newsletter. 

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How To Use A Marketing Automation Platform

Marketing automation has huge breadth and scope for any business that uses digital marketing – helping nurture leads and drive sales through the pipeline and improve customer retention and loyalty.

A marketing automation platform is most effective when integrated into a holistic digital inbound marketing strategy. When used in this way, marketing automation can help you achieve your marketing goals more efficiently and effectively, saving significant time and money.

  • Save Time and Resources: By automating a range of repetitive and time-consuming tasks – e.g., updating your CRM and manually replying to emails – marketing and sales teams can focus on more strategic initiatives that will deliver more tangible results.
  • Personalised Communication: Another benefit is that marketing automation can help you to improve your customer relationships by creating personalised content strategies for each of your buyer personas and every stage of their buyer journey. Automation does not mean standardisation – quite the opposite. By tightly segmenting your customers and tailoring your marketing messages to specific concerns, search queries, and pain points, you can create a more personalised and therefore effective marketing strategy that yields more conversions and higher revenues.
  • Greater Productivity: Finally, a marketing automation platform can also help you to generate more leads and close more sales through all your digital marketing channels. By automating your marketing tasks, you first ensure that no important details are missed. Secondly, by centralising your marketing activities within one platform, you obtain better visibility and collaboration potential with team members, ensuring that no efforts are duplicated and reducing the need for unnecessary meetings and repetitive communication. Thirdly, by reducing the administrative burden on your marketing and sales staff, you create more productive time in each working day. This priceless resource can be deployed to achieve tasks that require human input, such as addressing non-standard sales enquiries and directly engaging with late-stage prospects.

How Do I Get Started With Marketing Automation For My SME? 

If you are new to marketing automation, the first step is to choose the right software solution for your business. There are numerous different vendors active on the market, so it is important to do your research and select the application that best meets your needs and those of your team. 

HubSpot is widely considered to be one of the best, featuring a comprehensive suite of marketing tools that can be used to automate a wide range of tasks to maximise the value of your marketing budget. If you do choose to invest in HubSpot, you may wish to consider using the platform through an experienced Partner Agency – such as JDR. A HubSpot agency partner will be able to assist you, not just with implementation and set-up for your new software, but also in using the platform to your best advantage to optimise your marketing strategy and increase your online revenues.

Once you've selected your software, the next step is to start building your marketing automation campaigns. You will need to decide what tasks you want to automate first as a priority and then create the necessary marketing assets (emails, landing pages, etc.) to achieve your KPIs. Again, it may be more cost-effective for you to work with an agency for some or all of this, rather than attempt to do it all in-house. Once your campaigns are up and running, you will need to monitor the performance of each campaign and individual assets and make adjustments as needed to ensure they are delivering the best value.

Find Out More

If you're not sure where to start or whether marketing automation is right for your business, then consider speaking to a marketing consultant or agency, such as JDR, who can offer advice and guidance on marketing automation and other digital inbound marketing strategies. Feel free to call one of our experienced marketing professionals for an informal discussion of your needs at 01332 343281.

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