The benefits of using marketing automation for your small businesses
Think about how much time your marketing team spends every day or week repeating the same mundane but necessary tasks. By integrating marketing automation software with your website, marketers can delegate the repetitive day-to-day marketing tasks to give you more time to focus on growing your business and creating better customer engagement.
What Is Marketing Automation?
Marketing automation software tracks, analyzes, and executes marketing activity. The functionality and benefits of marketing automation provided for small businesses are many but put in simple terms, it saves you loads of time, money, and effort.
These tools allow you to automate and manage repetitive tasks like:
lead nurturing, tracking, and scoring
social media posts and listening
landing page design
marketing campaign tracking and so much more
Marketing Automation Helps Optimize Each Phase Of Your Marketing Funnel
Fuel your growth with end-to-end sales and marketing automation tools.
At the top, using tools like Visitor ID and forms, you can identify and capture more leads. In the middle, lead tracking, lead scoring, and sales notifications enable your sales team to close more deals. And at the bottom, closed deals (won and lost) are analyzed to eliminate waste and identify successful tactics – allowing you to drive more leads with the same pricing.
Additional Benefits Of Marketing Automation For Small Businesses
A study found that almost 60% of small businesses list their biggest challenge as lead generation. Not surprisingly, when most of them admitted to relying on spreadsheets to track prospects and marketing strategy efforts.
It’s important to understand, marketing automation is not some futuristic technology that is out of reach for small businesses. If your marketing workflow needs help with any of these issues, it’s worth taking a closer look at marketing automation for lead management:
You have trouble staying on top of repetitive tasks which sometimes fall through the cracks
You find yourself cutting and pasting the same email messages to new prospects, and even clients
You’re not able to or it’s time-consuming to personalize your client and prospects messages
Capturing contact information and identifying visitors isn’t possible with your current site
Either you don’t have a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tool or your CRM doesn’t allow you to track people through the sales process
Your social media management tool isn’t integrated with your site reporting tools
You’re not able to trigger automation and lead scoring rules based on social interactions.
You don’t have a website chatbot or it’s not integrated with your email marketing tool
You struggle with getting the right message in front of the right people at the right time
Tracking contacts through the entire sales funnel is a chore, never mind measuring the end-to-end ROI of integrated marketing campaigns.
With marketing automation, the possibilities are endless. From creating workflows to lead nurturing, providing smart chatbot to converse with visitors; to CRM, and managing social media, blogs, landing pages—automation exponentially raises the efficiency of your marketing workflow, giving you more value for your marketing dollars and helping you grow your small business faster.
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Marketing Automation Strategy Is Paramount To Success
Marketing automation will free up time by taking care of all those tedious tasks you hate doing, however, automating random things on your to-do list without a real plan is not the best idea. Sure, you’ll have more time, but to recognize the most return from your automation investment you need to develop a comprehensive strategy.
The first step to developing a good marketing automation strategy is to set specific, measurable goals. “Raising brand awareness” might seem like a specific goal, but when you dig deeper, what exactly does that mean? Could it be more visitors to your website? More engagement on your social posts? More email addresses from your lead magnets? Be specific.
Then break down how you will use marketing automation to achieve your goals, and what metrics you’ll use to measure success and failure.
You can drill down further with marketing automation to define audience personas for your goals, with targeted messaging for each audience type, journey mapping to nurture a lead through their journey using set triggers, rules, and actions to decide what messaging goes out, and when.
The most important part of a marketing automation strategy is analyzing the performance and adjusting your messaging, budgets, and tactics according to what’s working best for the goals you’ve decided on. Define which Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are important to you to establish what a successful marketing campaign looks like. Set up these goals to be tracked, such as email open rates, demo requests, time on site, conversion rates, etc.
Difference Between A CRM Vs. Marketing Automation
A CRM is a tool that stores all your customer data and information. Information like name, title, company, contact information, customer start date, touchpoints, etc. The list here is endless.
On the other hand, marketing automation software helps you leverage the information within your CRM to ultra personalize communication with your clients and prospects.
When considering a marketing automation system for your small business, be sure that a CRM can be integrated and you’ll recognize several benefits, including:
Increased organization: You can get rid of sticky notes and spreadsheets. With a CRM, you can access all your customer data in a single place and easily review interaction history.
Personalized communication: Create personalized communications with your customers and prospects based on criteria such as personas, geolocation, or stage in the buying process. You can also include A/B test fields in your emails to increase engagement.
More sales: Let’s face it, not every lead is ready to buy from you. Marketing automation gives you the ability to nurture leads down the sales funnel, sharing information or promoting limited-time deals at the right times, and the right channel –until they’re ready to make a purchase.
The Best Tools For Marketing Automation For Small Businesses
There is a whole laundry list of marketing tasks that can be automated, and an even longer list of tools to help you do so. When it comes to marketing automation for small businesses, it’s important to find a tool (or tools) that will help you balance the need, the cost, and the complexity just right.
Our favorite is a Swiss army knife of marketing automation, and we rely on it to do the heavy lifting on a lot of our own marketing too. Built to deliver “all-in-one” marketing automation, SharpSpring is loaded with features packaged into an intuitive interface — from behavior-based email, campaign tracking, and dynamic landing pages and blogs to CRM, sales automation, analytics, and Anonymous visitor ID — all at a fraction of the cost of competing for marketing automation platforms.
How Does Marketing Automation For Small Businesses Help Increase Reach?
Simply put, as a small business, you need to know precisely who you are marketing to. When your marketing efforts are streamlined, you can drive more leads with the same marketing dollars. Marketing automation tools help you not only understand better who your customers are but also help you to reach prospects more easily.
Marketing automation tools help increase reach by allowing you to set up your marketing efforts to integrate multiple channels and work seamlessly, across your website, landing pages, email marketing, social media, PPC ads, and more. This faster, multi-channel integration means you can reach a larger audience, boost your customer support, and spend less time and money doing so.
Should You Invest In Marketing Automation For Your Small Business?
Marketing automation can be a real game-changer for small businesses. If your business is focused on profitable growth, an investment in marketing automation will help make your campaigns more targeted and empower your sales team with better leads, which will ultimately help you achieve greater ROI.
And if you don’t have marketing automation experience, consider engaging an agency partner that does. This will help you avoid frustrating complications and unnecessary delays.
Marketing technology has improved in leaps and bounds over the last few years, with major advances in the tools available, the ease of use, and affordability, putting marketing automation well within reach of the average small business. So there is no real reason to rely on antiquated methods for what are likely the most important parts of the business – sales, marketing, customer relations, and brand building.