I’m always surprised when I talk with someone about all the wonderful things that marketing automation can do for their organization, and at some point during the conversation I realize that their expectations are way off.
Usually the problem is not that the person expects too much in terms of bottom line results for the organization. We all pretty much agree at this point that marketing automation works beautifully, especially in the B2B space, to push sales and increase a company’s bottom line.
The ability to create precise marketing campaigns, with carefully sequenced and highly targeted messages and content, is priceless of course. Rather than blasting emails and essentially spamming prospects, your marketing automation system helps you to get to know them , their needs, their behavior and their response, in a way that enables you to turn your messages from spam to a service, from bad marketing to good marketing.
Having said that, prior to investing in a marketing automation system, it’s important to realize that one thing the system will not do for you is content creation. The system can help you sequence your messages according to individual prospects’ needs, increasing the chances that these prospects will eventually become buyers. But no marketing automation system can create content for you. Content is still king, and you will still need to create, or pay someone to create, relevant, high-quality content, including emails, white papers and landing pages for your website.
The real power of marketing automation comes from the ability to create different types of content for different prospects, and drip them in the right amount and at the best timing. Organizations that combine continuous creation of high-quality content with a good, easy to use marketing automation system, are positioning themselves as leaders in their industry.
Back in 2009, Ian Michiels wrote, “The value of marketing automation is that it has the potential to impact the top and bottom lines of an organization. Marketing management capabilities address operational efficiency, productivity and cost savings — the bottom line. Customer engagement helps maximize the demand for products and services — the top line.” His words still apply: your high-quality content will engage prospects. Marketing automation will make sure that high-quality content is delivered in a targeted and timely manner, and will help you measure your campaigns’ results.Google+