Should you switch your marketing philosophy to one based on marketing automation? On its surface, given the many tangible benefits of the concept, the answer is a clear yes. But reality is not all that simple.
Changing the way you generate and manage your leads requires organizational change management, which makes many established marketers hesitant to undertake the switch.
And yet, your situation might make the decision for you. Here are 6 signs it's time for your company to implement marketing automation software (such as HubSpot), and improve your lead generation, management, and conversion as a result.
1) Your Website Does Not Generate Leads
Let's begin with the most obvious point. Marketing automation is specifically designed to help you improve both the quantity and quality of your leads. So if your website does not pull in enough leads to be meaningful, you probably need a more automated system that enables you to create a convincing landing page alongside an automated lead nurturing campaign tied directly to new sign ups.
2) Leads Don't Convert At High Rates (Or You Have No Idea)
Speaking of lead nurturing: it's a crucial bridge between leads and customers. 79% of incoming leads never turn into customers, probably because only 27% of incoming leads are actually ready for a sale. The rest need to be slowly nudged in that direction, through lead nurturing.
In short, low lead-to-customer conversion rates is a telltale sign you need marketing automation in your life. But even if you don't know your conversion rate, the same thing applies. If you don't know where you stand, how can you improve? Thanks to their in-depth analytics, marketing automation systems can help you answer that question.
3) You Have Too Many Leads to Handle
It sounds like a good problem to have: you have so many leads flowing in that you don't know what to do with them. Especially if you're used to personally following up with leads as they come in, a certain threshold of lead generation makes it difficult to engage with all of them individually.
Marketing automation solves that problem for you, allowing you to set up a system that communicates with your leads and moves them through the sales funnel dynamically. You still have the control to connect with your most engaged leads, but can focus on your efforts to convert the most likely leads into customers.
4) Your Cross-Channel Consistency is Lacking
Consistency is key in marketing, as promoting the same message and brand identity regardless of channel is the only way to stick in your target audience's mind. But especially if you use individual systems to handle your digital presence, or if multiple individuals manage your individual channels, that consistency can be difficult to come by.
Marketing automation systems, on the other hand, allow you to schedule email, social media, and even blog messages ahead of time, using one to promote the other. Because they're in the same system, you can more easily ensure consistency in both your message frequency and throughout your individual channels.
5) Your Messages are Impersonal
Similarly, marketing fails often because your audience feels promoted to, rather than engaged with. Consumers have become increasingly cynical toward 'traditional' promotions, preferring instead to engage in a personal relationship with their brands of choice.
That personalization can be difficult to achieve. In fact, 70% of companies still use emails that are not personalized, despite the fact that even basic personalization rates would improve their transaction rates no less than 6 times. Marketing automation helps you achieved so-called 'plausible personalization,' consisting of automated messages that include custom elements to make it seem like the email could have come from a human being.
6) Sales and Marketing Can't Get On the Same Page
Finally, marketing automation offers a solution to one of the oldest problems in the biz dev world: aligning marketing and sales
Too often, companies have separate marketing and sales departments that don't promote the same messages, inviting friction within the buyer's journey. Thanks to the ability of automation to nurture leads, that alignment is a bit easier to achieve...especially when integrated with a CRM solution. Adopting a lead nurturing mindset means marketing takes the responsibility to increase the quality of leads before they arrive in the sales department, while information gathered through sign up forms can help sales agents make more informed pitches. If your sales and marketing department cannot seem to get on the same page, consider marketing automation software.
In short, switching to a marketing automation strategy may seem like a comprehensive process that takes more effort than it's worth, but in reality, the concept brings with it so many benefits that the switch will be well worth it.