Marketing buzzwords are those trendy terms that get heavily thrown around today and then eventually lose relevance tomorrow. However, the importance of certain buzzwords can grow over time, even at an exponential rate. Marketing automation is one such term that has outlasted other previously reliable jargon, such as “synergy” and “paradigm shift”— and with good reason. Read on to find out why many businesses today see marketing automation as critical to growth.
But first, what exactly is marketing automation?
Marketing automation is the use of software and other technology to automate and simplify marketing tasks. In marketing automation, technology is leveraged to act as your personal assistant. Imagine being able to delegate all the repetitive tasks of sending email drip campaigns, replying to standard queries, posting on social media, etc. The value of marketing automation in enhancing productivity and efficiency in business cannot be overstated.
When did marketing automation start?
Marketing automation started in the late 1980s, alongside the development of CRM. It wasn’t until the past two decades that the term “marketing automation” was catapulted to its present status as a substantial growth driver of the marketing industry. Today, when you talk about marketing automation, it means much more than just the automatic sending of emails to the target market during the heydays of direct marketing campaigns. Along with the revolutionary developments in technology, marketing automation has also grown by leaps and bounds.
How much is the marketing automation industry worth?
The marketing automation industry was valued at $3.9 billion in 2020, an astounding number considering the economic effects of the pandemic. With a projected CAGR of 12.7% from 2020 to 2025, it is no wonder that any business worth its salt today has adopted marketing automation as a major growth strategy.
What are the advantages of marketing automation?
Here is the breakdown of why you, too, should join many top corporations and industry leaders in incorporating marketing automation as a major tool for business success.
1. Marketing automation allows better data analysis
In the past, one significant advantage large corporations had over SMEs was their ability to access and process data. That is no longer the case today. Technological advances have made it possible for even small business marketers to adopt marketing automation at scale. Business intelligence such as lead information can be enriched with data enrichment tools that combine authoritative third-party data with first-party sources. With the availability of larger and deeper data sets in real-time and the use of sophisticated data analytics techniques, predictive marketing becomes easier, faster, and more accurate. Thus, marketing automation helps marketers draw better insights to make more informed decisions and develop better strategies.
2. Marketing automation improves communication
For any marketer, effective customer communication is key to maximizing customer interactions, gathering vital customer insights for better product innovation, and ensuring customer loyalty and growth. However, combining scalability and personalized engagement can be challenging. Marketing automation helps businesses expand and yet still maintain personal touchpoints. For instance, several email platforms can help you personalize communication content. A clear example is how Netflix, the streaming giant, leverages behavior-triggered emails to encourage the renewal of canceled subscriptions or find which content you particularly like or dislike. Personalizing content can also increase your open rate and click-through rate.
Regular communication is also critical. In the highly competitive world of marketing, out of sight is definitely out of mind. Continuously engaging your customers will not only help you understand them better but also enable a high recall of your products or services. With marketing automation, you’ll be able to send out customized messages, regardless of scale, at the frequency best suited to your objectives.
3. Marketing automation improves cash flow and helps control spend
Fundera has reported that in the year 2018, 82% of startups went down the drain because of cash flow problems. Yet, there are several that have gone from zero to hero. And this is in no small measure due to the funding and expense management solutions provided by corporate credit card companies. Powered by algorithms, a corporate credit card can provide access to flexible financing and the ease of transacting across different currencies and countries. You can likewise customize card spend limits per individual or department. Marketing automation, when incorporated in finance management, can also consolidate real-time data and provide readable reports. These reports allow you to gain an eagle’s vision of your business, from the overall perspective to the minute details. This gives you tighter control over your business and also quickly shift course, should you need to address bleeding departments or increase investments in opportunity areas.
4. Marketing automation improves operational efficiency
With marketing automation, no one needs to act like a robot nor a human CCTV. The various software platforms can help reduce the time and effort it takes to do repetitive tasks. And there are many such to-dos: responding to standard queries, manually creating email campaigns, placing online ads, data gathering, organizing, and analysis, and lead generation, etc. Marketing automation not only saves precious work hours. It can also leverage artificial intelligence to create customized content, which can be efficiently delivered regardless of scale and location.
Orison Swett Marden, a 19th-century American inspirational author, said that “success is the child of drudgery and perseverance.” While that part about perseverance still rings true today, the drudgery bit may no longer be as relevant. With marketing automation, your business can have the right tools and strategies to go from tedious to efficient and productive in no time at all. Shall you hop onto the marketing automation bus today?