In today’s highly competitive marketplace, one of the fastest ways small businesses across Africa can sustain and survive the market is by achieving more with less. Marketing automation is your best bet towards realizing more with less time, effort and resources. Business leaders, therefore, have a responsibility to fulfill and that involves investing in the right market for their businesses.
Considering the world we find ourselves in, marketing automation is no longer an option. It has grown to become more of a necessity for businesses. Actually, it’s almost impossible for a business to survive without marketing its products and services. Maybe the bigger players can but the smaller ones definitely cannot.
So much ink has been spilled on marketing automation already. And as a business leader, you may be asking, what is it by the way? And why should I even care?
Marketing automation is nothing more than programming your repetitive tasks. Similarly, HubSpot (one of the best marketing automation firms) puts it in a nice way; software that exists with the goal of automating marketing actions.
Most marketing divisions have some repetitive tasks they will like to automate; emails, social media, and other website engagements. This is where marketing automation comes in to make them easier and that is all there is to marketing automation. It’s really nothing to be scared of.
Once someone signs up for your newsletter, you automatically send them a ‘Thank You’ in response. Perhaps, someone just purchased one of your products, you automatically send them an email with links to other products they may be interested in.
It’s possible you’re too busy to sit on Twitter and Facebook the whole day engaging with your audience. But you can robotize all these operations with marketing automation software.
Now, you know what it is. You’re fit to go. But, hang on a little.
At this point, you are probably asking yourself if this is the right time for your business to invest in marketing automation. Actually, you should know that many entrepreneurs are already running their businesses with these powerful tools. So why get left behind?
A 2013 research showed that most marketing automation investments failed fatally. Never mind, we are in 2017 and all that has changed and is changing rapidly.
Maybe you’re still wondering whether or not you should really spend your resources investing in marketing automation software for your business. However, the benefits of a marketing automation strategy below should help you make that decision even faster.
1. Cuts down your marketing cost
Being a small business that is barely trying to get on its feet, you will want to cut down on your marketing department’s cost. Unless you want to bring your business down to its knees by spending more on marketing, you’ll need to sign up for a marketing automation software.
One employee in your company has the ability to compete with a 25-man marketing team in another company just by setting up lead nurturing and marketing campaigns that are automatically triggered based on certain criteria.
In a short period after setting up these automated marketing campaigns, your business would be able to send out hundreds of custom-made emails every day on autopilot.
But you may be wondering how possible it is to cut down your staffing cost without spending on the software that will help you achieve that.
As a small business, you may not have enough financial resources to purchase premium marketing automation software. Your best bet will be to grab an open-source marketing automation software and there are a couple of them you can choose from.
You don’t really need a 10-man marketing force and your sales representatives wouldn’t need to waste valuable time discussing with each lead. Rather, they only focus on those who are most likely to convert to customers.
2. Time-Saving is Essential
Every marketer likes to ‘schedule it and let it run’. Besides, “time is money” and every second you spend posting to social media platforms, you are losing money. You should use that time to do other business activities that could fetch some income for your business.
Thanks to automation software, you can schedule all your social media posts for the day or even ship emails to new subscribers and buyers ahead of time.
3. Makes your business consistent
Being consistent in providing your customers the information they need is key. It is a proven fact that the more active you are on social media platforms, the more traffic you drive to your website and business as well.
Posting content on a regular basis is critical to improving your customer engagement and driving traffic back to you. A good way to become consistent in whatever your business does is by automating the entire process. You’re not guaranteed to always have time for posting these regular content. That’s the job of marketing automation software.
When a visitor subscribes to your blog or newsletter, for instance, your marketing robot can automatically send an email including benefits of subscribing. Or perhaps, outline special offers for new subscribers. By scheduling these automated posts, you are sure to provide your audience with regular content while focusing on other marketing tasks.
4. Helps you track leads
When it comes to building a large customer base for your business, what you don’t want to do is lose track of any leads you get. When someone demonstrates an interest in your product or service by subscribing to your blog or site, he/she receives an activation email (in most cases).
You don’t want to end there and forget about the lead. Your automation software can re-engage that lead and deliver the content that the lead needs to convert into a customer.
See how GetResponse tracks its leads with its marketing automation software.
Considering that converting leads is a top priority for 70% of marketers, it is critical to follow up on these leads. Marketing automation is one great way to do that.
5. Marketing Automation means being effective
It doesn’t matter if your team is small. You can still become effective with your current team size once you decide to invest in marketing automation software to help with some of your mundane jobs.
What if every member of your team focuses on one thing? Of course, they get to specialize in it. Why? Because some marketing robot is doing the other 20 tasks they were supposed to be doing. Of course, it makes you a pro at what you do. By automating your business activities, your entire marketing team is gaining invaluable skills in becoming very effective at the few jobs they now do.
Marketing automation happens to present itself as the future of online marketing for any company that intends to be successful. With the right automation software in place, doing just the right job, your business has prospects of achieving a speedy growth.