Some business owners struggle to think of ways that they can use marketing automation in their business. Depending on the marketing automation platform, there can be an overwhelming amount of features so it’s easy to lose sight of what you are trying to achieve.
The most important thing to think about before deploying marketing automation in your business is the actual problems that you will be solving using marketing automation.
Are you looking to systemise your business?
Do you want to free up time?
Do you want to generate more leads?
Are you looking to increase the lifetime value of your customers?
These are a few questions to get you started, but let’s take a look at 5 use cases of marketing automation in your business.
1. Generate More Leads
Most businesses are constantly looking for their next lead. Marketing automation allows your business to deploy a lead generation strategy that works around the clock – even when you are sleeping!
Marketing automation can be used to insert forms on your website that trigger a welcome sequence once someone signs up using the form. These new leads can be “warmer” up using the welcome sequence and their level of engagement can be measured, allowing you to identify the prospects who are most likely to respond to being contacted.
Marketing automation can also systemise your sales funnel so you make better use of the leads you generate, increasing conversion.
2. Automating Task Allocation
Many businesses manually assign tasks to their team as they pop up. The problem with this is that if you have a human assigning tasks, then there is a chance that mistakes can be made – since to be human means that we are subject to making errors occasionally.
My personal belief is that systems are as reliable as humans are not.
It is possible to map out your sales funnel and identify every task that is likely to be generated as a prospect reaches each stage of the sales funnel. With marketing automation, it’s possible to automatically assign tasks to team members as prospects reach certain stages in the sales funnel.
For example, if you need to contact a prospect after they have opened and replied to a specific email, then that is possible with marketing automation.
Struggling to get in contact with a prospect? Set up automatic reminders to follow up after a specific period of time.
3. Scheduling Round-The-Clock Tasks
Your business may operate across time zones… you may even have clients all over the world. The challenge with this becomes communicating with your audience at the most appropriate time for them. You can enable marketing automation to send messages/emails to your audience at a specific time in their timezone, as opposed to yours.
You can also use marketing automation to schedule your social media posts. Whilst your team may only be able to manually publish posts during business hours, automation can help you post at times outside of these regular hours.
There are many other tasks that you can use marketing automation to schedule in advance.
4. Nurturing Leads
We covered off generating more leads in point 1, but what about those leads that do not instantly convert to a client. Smart marketers will actually nurture them using a number of techniques. One way is to use nurturing sequences or re-engagement sequences as part of their email marketing strategy. The good thing about using marketing automation to fulfil this strategy is that you only need to write the emails once… you can then plug them into an automation and they will be delivered according to the timing set up in the sequence.
Many marketing automation platforms actually have a ‘lead scoring’ system that places an individual score against a contact as they engage with your content. This lead scoring system can actually trigger another automation once a client reaches a certain score. This may also involve automatically assigning a task to one of the sales team to call the prospect once they have expressed enough of an interest in your product or service.
5. Onboard New Clients
Delivering a consistent client experience to every single new client can be difficult. A solid onboarding strategy sets the scene on how you will work with your new client. Imagine if every new client knew how to engage with you, where to go to for help, and exactly how you will be helping them.
Well, with marketing automation it’s completely possible to establish an onboarding sequence/workflow to make sure that every single client gets treated exactly the same. You may choose to shoot some videos for introducing your business and the values you stand for.
Once the new client has viewed that email, you may trigger a welcome pack to be sent out. This could be either an automatically assigned task to a member of your team, or it could instruct a fulfilment service to send out the pack.
A few days after the pack has been sent, you may set up a task for one of your support team to contact the new client to confirm that they received the pack and whether they had any questions so far.
A solid onboarding experience will help client retention and will teach your client how best to work with your business. I strongly suggest that you spend some time building a rock star onboarding sequence.
Remember… It’s Always Human-To-Human
Whenever I speak about automation, a common concern that some people have is that they do not want to remove the personal touch from their business. I think that this is a fair concern… however, marketing automation can be used to enhance the personal touches, rather than replace them.
For example, marketing automation should handle all the routine and mundane tasks but when it comes time to reach out to someone, automation just triggers the reminder for a human to reach out to their fellow human.
Another way of thinking about marketing automation is that any automation system in your business should be designed to deliver the right message to the right person at the right time.
Now, this list is definitely not exhaustive. There are plenty of other use cases for marketing automation, and if you know of any, feel free to post them in the comments. I’ve simply provided a list of a few of the use of marketing automation to get your creative juices flowing. If you have any questions or if you have a specific problem that you are trying to solve, just let me know and I would be happy to write a blog answering your question.