Perfecting the Balance Between Marketer and Automation
The right creative marketing campaign can quickly put your business on a good path to generating leads. Modern marketers have a plethora of resources to boost their success. One trending resource is marketing automation.
Since creativity comes at a much higher cost than simplicity, businesses are regularly asking themselves, “To use marketing automation or not to use marketing automation?” Marketing automation keeps digital marketers efficient. Alternatively, automation allows businesses of all sizes to grow while increasing profits.
Marketing automation, such as white label marketing, is without a doubt a great tool for digital marketers. Automation has taken over some pretty important responsibilities, but until robots take over the world, we still need a living and breathing marketer on the set.
Deciding where a human element is necessary and delegating the rest will give you the most productive automated marketing methods. Below is insight on keeping a good balance.
Can Automation and Personalization Coexist?
When marketing methods are automated, you end up with blanket approaches. Every company knows that their customer base is made up of individuals. To cut costs or catch up on the latest trend in automation, many of those same businesses will end up using methods that lump everyone in their audience together at one point or another.
Segmentation is an important practice, especially as your company grows. New product lines or an expanding array of services may necessitate the shift faster than others. Testing can, too.
Then again, the tests should be vetted by an experienced marketer. Why? Your customers are smart. Marketing tests based on simple algorithms are likely to be found out- some might even be considered offensive.
Though the actual test might be automated, its design is key to its success.
Automation Can Make Your Employees More Valuable
Without automation, your brand or business is being bogged down by minutia. Plenty of day to day tasks can easily be automated, increasing efficiency and reducing costs overall.
Any brand is lucky to have an experienced marketer on their side, let alone a team of them. These professionals will, ideally, be able to use every tool available to increase their efficiency and enhance business. That includes some form of automated marketing in every case. It might be a simple task like content scheduling or something as complex as detailed market segmentation, but there will be some form of delegation to an automated system.
Here are some important things to consider.
Dear [First Name]
Have you ever received an email that started like that? Or maybe one that said something along the lines of, “Thank you for your donation, Friend”? In many cases, automated marketing methods are only as good as the people setting them up. Of course, cases like this could be the result of a glitch or failure to capture information, too.
The good news is, more often than not, these mistakes are caught by marketers or their editors during the testing phase. Then the automated marketing method is given the go ahead to deliver the marketing materials and collect relevant data. But, the lesson is, you still need to balance that automation with the human eye.
Listen to Your Customers and Don’t Overshare
Have you ever mentioned a business on social media and been sent an automated message from the company? If so, it was likely a message about making reparations and winning back your business- even if what you posted was complimentary.
Bots make mistakes. They’re only as smart as the people who set them. To complicate matters, setting them up can be tricky. AI, at this point, is only so advanced. Yes, it’s getting better and becoming an increasingly popular way to handle these kinds of things, but humans are still better at discerning exactly what other humans mean.
Language can be complicated. Chatbots may work well for directing people to the right customer support channels. Still, they’re a long way from being ready to handle the more complex social situations presented on social media.
However, data collection and automated testing can also help people from making human errors. For instance, a marketing team may think a daily newsletter sounds like a brilliant way to connect with a given group of customers. The marketers may be at a loss as to why, weeks later, their unsubscription rates have skyrocketed.
With the implementation of a supporting automated survey, or the option to collate daily newsletters into weekly digests, they may have seen those numbers go down. In this case, automated methods gave the customer control over which materials they received and that improved their experience.
Remember, Your Customers are People
Some things can’t be automated, like content creation. Blog posts made by AI don’t make for particularly compelling reading. Furthermore, they can result in content that too closely resembles its initial sources resulting in penalties. Initial email outreach can suffer from this problem, too. Unsolicited canned responses are spam and will likely be canned by any half decent prospects.
Some things must have a human touch. Personalization should not be overlooked. Automated software that deviates from the norm that has personalized messages for even the simplest customer activities like purchases or “abandoned cart” reminders significantly increase customer engagement and eventual revenue.
Personal attention, too, is something that can’t be faked. Calling up clients or meeting them for consultations can be an important aspect of a marketer’s job. Even this can be automated somewhat. With certain systems, be it an efficient white labeled program or old-fashioned pen and paper, client interactions are optimized. Automation doesn’t have to mean a closed system. In fact, marketing automation may work best in many cases as a simple support- just enough to allow each team member to excel in a given task even if it was just assigned to them or they have minimal prior experience.
In the future, AI may make it so more tasks may be automated, freeing up more of everyone’s time. That time can be spent on developing bigger picture ideas like new strategies and technologies to make your brand stand out and help your business thrive. Though basic tasks and data collection can be automated, there’s no way to replace a marketer’s creativity or duplicate their innate humanity. That in and of itself should explain why, even as technology advances, there will always be a place for marketers.