Are you automating these 8 marketing activities?
Most digital marketing activities are intensive and prohibitively time consuming. This ends up in increasing the resource requirements and thereby costs of an organization, very quickly.
However, automation is changing this landscape and moving organizations away from delegation. If an activity could be automated, it should never be delegated, as such activities are usually repetitive and monotonous and move the employees away from the core requirement of creativity.
In this post, we list down some marketing activities that should be automated to increase organization efficiency.
However, it will be prudentto know what marketing automation is,to explore the benefits of automation and build a case for introducing automation in your digital marketing workflows.
What is Marketing Automation?
Marketing Automation refers to leveraging enabling technology that automates marketing work flows that are repetitive and mundane.
Some examples of marketing automation include:
- Scheduling and publishing posts on social media
- Setting up email campaigns to go out without you hitting ‘Send’
- Running online advertisements
- Empowering lead generation, and so forth
In a recent survey of iCubesWire workforce, we found that 89% of our Digital Marketers are using some form of automation in their work flows and the depth of such automations are increasing significantly each year. Marketers are automating lead generation, segmentation, nurturing, scoring, customer retention, ROI measurement, and much more. Users across all our offices have reported significant increases in their productivity, since the adoption of automation in their workflows.
Digital Marketers, in our recent study, stated that the most important objectives for a marketing automation strategy are:
- Optimizing productivity (43%)
- Increasing marketing ROI (41%)
- Improving campaign management (40%)
- Improving database quality (39%)
- Acquiring more customers (39%)
- Measuring performance (37%)
- Aligning marketing and sales (24%)
It is certain that productive marketers see themselves using marketing automation currently and with greater depth in the future. Also, the objectives of automation strategy are in alignment with the expectations of the marketers and their optimization requirements, as per our recent study.
So, let’s dive into the list of 7 things you can automate today to increase the efficiency of your digital marketing workflows.
- Email Automation
This is probably the most intuitive use case of marketing automation. What can organizations automate in emails?
Inbox Automation: Marketers have to spend an enormous amount of time in checking their inboxes and sifting through junk. Each email notification has to be glanced over, even though for few seconds, to make sure that they do not miss an important communication from a client or a lead. Multiply this with number of emails you get, and this quickly adds to major chunk of time-consuming activity in your workflow. Automate this workflow with freely available tools. You can create an automation workflow that will notify you when only specific people email you. Users can add direct email addresses from fellow employees, clients or senior management in this list. It also really gives the user a chance to ponder over what emails are important to them and which users are these emails coming from. This insight can help you marketers cut down the clutter.
Standard Lifecycle Email Automation: These are also sometimes called ‘Set and Forget’ emails. These can include items like Welcome Emails, Thank You Emails, New Inbound Leads, Autoresponders, Holiday Emails and much more.Such standard emails can be automated with the use of freely available tools that will automate your entire email lifecycle of such standard use cases.
- Content Promotion Automation
Content is vital for organizations in today’s age. Organizations spend thousands of editorial hours each year to create content that is original and evokes genuine readership. However, it is vital, once the organizations have content, they promote it in an efficient way. Most marketers resort to social media for promoting content.However, it is a time consuming and herculean task. A recent report found that the majority of marketers take around ten to eleven hours per week on promoting content on social media. Marketers can use tools to automate the content distribution of their brand. Such tools lets you automate how and when your new blog content is pushed to your social media handles. It takes into account the date and time of publishing and marketers can create intuitive rules around publishing that content on social media handles. Marketers also want to push content to leads and clients for brand building impressions. This involves marketers sending out emails to CRM contacts with content links. Automate this process is easy withnew cutting edge CRMs. Such platforms allow marketers to automate emails to CRM contacts whenever new content is published on their organization’s blog. They can set templates and design for such emails as well along with the necessary personalization elements like first name, last name and much more.
- Automate Marketing Analytics and Reporting
Reporting is one of the most time-consuming tasks for marketers. However, it is very important as the metrics ultimately help the stakeholders in taking decisions that optimize the ROI of their digital marketing activities. The challenge with analytics though is that digital marketing is probably one of the most distributed ecosystems in today’s technology landscape. Marketers have to deal with Web Analytics using Google Analytics, Facebook Page Statistics, Facebook Advertising Platform, Google Ads, Instagram Page Statistics, Twitter Analytics and much more. Automate the preparation, collation and delivery of these reports to stakeholders with tools like Delta. Delta brings in the analytics for your organization’s digital presence into one platform and automates the collation and delivery of reports to stakeholders in a neat manner. It specializes in identifying the KPIs that matter and is good at removing the clutter from analytics, so that marketers can focus on insights that matter.
- Automate Campaign Optimization – Facebook and Google Ads Platform
Facebook and Google Ads are one of the most important distribution channels for marketing campaigns. However, to optimize these campaigns to select the right set of audience, budget and bids is a painful process of trial and error. Introduce artificial intelligence into this workflow with AI based campaign optimization tools. Such platforms plug into your existing marketing tech stack, so you still have access to your accounts, ads, search, social, etc. You see everything. They leverage existing business logic you already have in platforms, and maps tracking and attribution to optimize your Facebook and Google Ads Campaign.
- Social Listening Automation
In this era of digital, conversations are happening across the distributed landscape of internet. Users could be talking about your brand on forums, social media handles and much more. Use listening tools to trackyour brand, related keywords, hashtags and competitors. Marketers will get every possible mention for the keywords they set up – whether it’s a brand mention, a hashtag, a blog title, a URL, or even an API call. Some listening platforms also recently introduced a new feature that can auto respond based on an AI engine to your brand’s mentions with generic messages based on the detected sentiment of the mention.
- Automate your Lead Flow
Generating leads is the most important activity for business success. However, nurturing the lead to conversion is now both an art and science. It is also a very time-consuming activity. Automate your Lead Flow with cutting edge supercharged CRMs. Such CRMs allow you to set up custom kick back emails based on lead stage.
- Chatbot Automation
Chatbots are possibly one of the hottest automation trends in digital marketing today. Automate communication with your landing page visitors with chatbots and help them find your brand’s services and products. Use iCubesWire InstaTalk to easily create chatbots for various use cases in your digital marketing workflows, without even writing a single line of code.Instatalk lets you interact with the ad instantly which can easily be touted as the win-win situation for the brand as well as the customer.
- Polygon Targeting Automation
Ad Targeting automation has been at the forefront of innovation when it comes to automation. Beginning from intent based targeting automation on platforms like Facebook and Google, to hyperlocal targeting. Take targeting automation one step further with latitude and longitude based targeting with Polygon. Track KPIs like site visits and store foot fall with automated ad serving to users in the proximity till POS purchase. Use iCubesWire NXT to experience the fruits of proximity targeting.
Marketing Activities are time consuming and tedious, unless we automate them. Automation is efficient, profitable and easy. Digital Marketing is a hotbed for automation innovation and new tools are arriving on the landscape each day.
A good point to start off, for any digital marketer who is new to automation, is to begin with email automation and slowly, but steadily, explore automation tools.
Are you using any automation tools that have helped you tremendously?