Due to the speed at which the digital world is evolving, businesses cannot rely solely on methods that worked even a few years ago. To paraphrase the Red Queen, “today, companies must run as fast as they can, just to stay in place, and if they wish to get ahead, they must run twice as fast as that.”
Businesses outsource tasks to AI tools, leaving employees time to do more high-value work. This process is called marketing automation. Globally, 56% of companies are already implementing this practice, and 40% plan to do so in the next 12 months.
What Is Marketing Automation?
In a nutshell, marketing automation is a process that helps optimize routine marketing tasks. The main reasons marketers use automation are: to streamline marketing and sales efforts and improve customer engagement and experience.
There are thousands of marketing automation tools available today. They process large amounts of data, provide faster services, and eliminate the risk of human error. The advantages and disadvantages of separate marketing automation tools are subject to discussion, but overall, this practice has proven to be hugely influential.
Now let’s look at five marketing processes that major companies have already automated.
Email Marketing Automation: Makes It Send
One of the first things people think of when it comes to automation, and not without good reason. Email marketing automation can gather data about clients, group them by their activity, interests, and critical milestones, and then send appropriate messages across their online journey. For example, a welcome email upon them signing up, a kind reminder about sales, a happy birthday, and so on.
By setting up marketing automation correctly with personalized messages and the proper intervals, brands can gently and subtly guide customers from the top of the funnel to conversion.
Social Media Automation: Makes It Post
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, TikTok, YouTube… how to maintain a consistent presence across so many platforms? Social media automation to the rescue. Some tools collect user data, suggest the best posting time, and then analyze the effectiveness of campaigns for further improvements.
All businesses need to do is create content and let automation take care of posting at the proper times and answering customers’ basic queries. Some tools can create content, like the much-hyped ChatGPT and DALL-E 2.
By automating social media publications, brands can significantly reduce their time maintaining and growing social media accounts while maximizing their reach and impressions.
Media Buying Automation: Make it Advertise
Like brands can automate an email or a social media campaign, they can launch advertising campaigns via real-time bidding. RTB protocol helps to automate media buying by matching relevant audiences to the ad with little-to-no effort.
For that, brands need to create an account on a demand-side platform, which offers a simple setup and traffic-to-work target. Such platforms also help spend budgets wisely with auto-optimization algorithms. Then, all that remains is to upload creatives and watch ads served across different channels, from mobile apps to CTV.
Customer Service: Make it Help
Customer service automation minimizes the need for human intervention when answering basic customer questions. As a result, customers are assisted by self-service tools, proactive messaging, and virtual chat conversations, freeing people to work on more high-value tasks.
Brands must invest time and resources into developing smart onboarding, and automated tools will then take over, guiding clients through the online journey and answering their questions. Not only does this help avoid spending time answering routine queries, but it also helps scale.
Chatbots: Make it Respond
The younger siblings of customer service, chatbots are a stellar example of an automated marketing strategy. There are chatbots for customer service, sales, shopping, marketing, etc. While most customers prefer to get human help when it comes to complex queries eventually, 74% of users prefer chatbots when looking for answers to simple questions.
The right chatbot marketing strategy ensures that all the customers’ questions are answered quickly and that if an issue cannot be solved, the customer is redirected to a real person.
Welcome visitors with a personalized email, show them social media posts and ads solving their pain points, onboard them with a guided help desk, and make a sale via a friendly chatbot. All this without your interaction.
Yes, marketing automation can increase reach, engagement, and sales. It saves time, optimizes human resources, and reduces budget. In addition, automation is no longer new to marketing and has become more affordable, so even startups can afford a tool to automate critical processes.