One of the most common misconceptions surrounding marketing automation is that once it’s setup, it begins working instantly and there’s nothing more to be done. However, marketing automation is like any other machine, it requires maintenance, monitoring and adjustments. In fact, it’s a marathon of sorts.
Here are three things to focus on to ensure your journeys are on the path to success.
Often times, businesses new to marketing automation launch workflows as individual projects that aren’t a part of the overall marketing strategy. Whether you are launching a simple nurture workflow, or a full-blown marketing automation campaign based on a prospect’s behavior, the end goals should tie into the organizational marketing strategy. Marketing automation should be thought of as a tactic, much like a print ad, TV spot or digital ad. When placed into a silo, automation tends to be an afterthought and not incorporated into a businesse’s overall marketing plan.
We tend to overuse the phrase “don’t set it and forget it” when discussing marketing automation but consistent monitoring and metrics ensure the success of your campaigns. Sure, open and click-through rates are important, but there are other ways to temperature check the relevancy and value of the content in your workflows. Real time feedback such as Facebook polls and surveys are great avenues for collecting data on what your audience finds relevant and applicable to where they are in the buying cycle. Prospects enter marketing automation as a direct result of their level of engagement with your brand so continuing to provide content they find valuable is imperative. Update and replace content based on consumer feedback and behavior and include metrics such as survey responses and social media engagement in your strategy for improvement.
Knowing prospects don’t look for the same content at the same time in their decision-making journey makes understanding who your audience is during each step of the process necessary. Taking the time to develop personas and understand who your audience is ensures workflow content that is relevant, educational and appreciated. Marketing automation software not only enables you to email market but integrates into your CMS, giving you a snapshot of your prospects behavior and engagement level. A historical timeline of actions helps you publish content that corresponds to what they may not understand or what they want to know at any particular step in their journey. As user behavior changes on the website, marketing automation content should be altered.
Marketing automation is a time commitment that is worth doing accurately and thoroughly. Setup, strategy, analytics and personas may take quite a bit of time but laying the foundation and putting in the metaphorical endurance will only increase your ROI.