Nothing is without challenges, and it seems that marketing automation was designed to prove that. Automation tools can give you a real advantage in direct competition when they are part of a model that results in optimized profit margins. But when they are used incorrectly, they can cause a drop in profitability.
There are plenty of tools on the market, and it seems no two solutions are alike. It certainly makes it more challenging to compare these platforms to decide which is best for you. However, the advantages you can gain from using automation in your marketing strategy and program are too numerous to simply forego.
So here are eight of the top marketing automation challenges and how to avoid them:
- Picking the wrong tool – selecting the right tool for the job is not an easy task. Having a clear idea of what you want to accomplish before you start comparing different options makes it a bit easier.
- Using subpar data – as they say, garbage in means garbage out, so make sure your data is as valid as possible (and that you validated it). That means stop buying lists and create a list-building strategy.
- Not using the automation features effectively – use automation at the right time for the right reason(s). Not all tasks should be automated, but not automating anything defeats the purpose.
- Lack of ROI – using the wrong metrics, not using the tool as it is designed, or buying a platform that has more features than you can or will use are the top causes of this. So is the next bullet …
- Lack of engaging content – the more engaging your content is, the better the tool can work for you and the higher the ROI.
- Misaligned sales and marketing teams – if the goals of your sales and marketing teams are not aligned, not much will help.
- No one is managing the solution – these tools are not “set it and forget it” systems. They need to be monitored and tuned to accomplish the goals you set.
- Not starting with a strategy – this is like going on a road trip without a map or plan for getting to a specific destination.
When used properly, marketing automation provides a great advantage to your business. It can help you find additional leads, save you time and money for marketing efforts, and even shorten the sales cycle. But if you are not approaching it the right way, it’s just going to be another way to spend your budget. And, especially in this year, no one has excess budget they can afford to waste.