In ‘The Myths and misunderstandings of Marketing Automation – Part 1’, we looked at and debunked four common myths and misunderstandings that people have about the growing art of marketing automation. In part 2, we’ll look at four more…

Myth 5 – Marketing Automation only works for email marketing

Many business owners believe that marketing automation can only be used for email marketing and that it’s a very limited means of marketing.

Myth 5 – Busted!

When marketing automation was in its infancy, it was primarily email only, but this now couldn’t be further from the truth. While email marketing is still one of the primary strengths of marketing automation, these days you can also utilise the power of marketing automation for:

  • Blogging
  • Engagement Scoring
  • Event Management
  • Landing Pages
  • Lead Generation
  • Lead Nurturing
  • Management Activities
  • Metrics and Analytics
  • Online Surveys
  • Paid Advertising
  • Sms and Mobile
  • Social Media Marketing
  • Video – and even more!

So as you can see, there are a ton of channels that marketing automation is relevant to beyond email marketing. Of course, the real bonus is that with marketing automation, the results of all these marketing strategies can be measured! Once marketers and business owners realise that marketing automation adds so many benefits to other channels, as well as streamlines processes and draws in so many leads, they are hooked.

Myth 6 – marketing automation is lazy and lacks creativity

Some people suggest that marketing automation is a lazy shortcut and that there’s no room for creativity, meaning that only inexperienced or slothful marketers use it.

Myth 6 – Busted!

This myth is one of those misunderstandings that marketing automation experts just shake their head at. Firstly, marketing automation does make things easier by allowing auto-scheduling of content, but that definitely doesn’t mean it’s for lazy marketers. There’s a whole lot of scheduling, monitoring and measuring metrics, as well as strategising needed to perform quality marketing and follow up leads. In fact, the extra leads that marketing automation produces will ensure you’re kept super busy.

Dedicated marketing automation professionals don’t just click send and then sit back – they are continuously aware of what message their content relays to the audience and they monitor and reply to the responses. They develop methods of better personalising each future message and reviewing the results of past messages in order to hone the ability of the automated marketing strategies being used.

Secondly, the increased opportunities that marketing automation creates and the streamlining of monotonous tasks ensures you’ll have plenty of freedom for creativity. Think of it like this; if you were an artist and happened to have a personal assistant running around doing all your housework, laundry and bill-paying, how much more time would you have to think of and create beautiful works of art? If this same situation applied to your work using automated marketing, you’d have an amazing opportunity to focus solely on the aspects of your work that really mattered – such as effective campaigning, strategic marketing and impact measurement – and not have to spend all your time coding etc.

So as you can see, marketing automation isn’t lazy and doesn’t block creativity; however, it does make the task of marketing much, much easier. For those of you who actually do want to be a bit lazy (and let’s face it – everybody does sometimes) or who don’t feel they have that creative streak, you can just use the multiple pre-built templates most platforms offer and customise them for your company.

Myth 7 – Marketing Automation is just ‘Set and Forget’

Many old school marketers claim that marketing automation is just a set and forget tool that leaves customers hanging. Similar to the above myth, they say that this allows automation marketers to charge exorbitant amounts of money for doing very little work and that the results leave customers ignored and angry.

Myth 7 – Debunked!

As the answer for myth # 6 explains, you simply can’t be lazy and effectively run a marketing automation campaign – it’s just not feasible. Constant awareness and attention is needed for marketing automation and if your marketing strategy doesn’t include following up on customer enquiries and responses, well then, it doesn’t matter what type of marketing it is – it’s going to fail.

As an example of why you can’t just set and forget marketing automation, think of it like A/B testing, where you send out multiple versions of an email or test multiple website pages to see which one your customers respond to better. Automated marketing relies on this type of testing to ascertain what your customers are engaging with and why, so you can ensure you’re hitting the mark with them. Meaningful interaction with customers is the key and it has been shown over and over again that this increases conversion rates – a marketer’s role is a fluid one that requires constant engagement with the results and the customers.

Myth 8 – Marketing Automation is spam and only draws in dud leads

Finally, the last myth is that marketing automation is just spam and only draws in unprofitable leads.

Myth 8 – Busted!

There is a chance some people may be using marketing automation to send spam, but marketing automation in itself is nothing like spam – which is unsolicited, generally unwanted and a total waste of time. Of course, it stands to reason that the quality of the content distributed by marketing automation is completely up to the person using the platform. If you’re sending junk, you’ll get junk in return. If you’re only sending relevant material to people who have opted-in and ensure you include an unsubscribe option in all your correspondence, you’re not sending spam.

In regards to the quality of your leads, you’re able to funnel your information down to your audience based on what they like, what they need and who they are (for instance), so you’re targeting customers with exactly what they want to be targeted with. Research has shown that there’s over 450% increase in qualified leads (i.e., the ones you definitely want!) when using marketing automaton – you truly can’t go wrong!