As a savvy marketer you’ve certainly heard about marketing automation. Maybe you’ve even done some research or talked about implementing it in your business. But when is the right time to invest? We’re here to help, with a step-by-step guide covering everything you need to consider.
YOU HAVE THE BUDGET AND ONGOING RESOURCE
Implementing marketing automation requires up front investment. However, the variable price of marketing tools allows you to be flexible with your budget. Enterprise solutions like Pardot or Eloqua suit larger or fast-growing businesses, while cost-effective options like Sharpspring are better suited to smaller businesses and start-ups.
You might even find that your current patchwork of tools is already costing the same amount as a centralised tool. And if that isn’t the case now, what happens when you start to scale? Let’s say you’re using Mailchimp for email. There’s a huge jump from $10 a month for their Growing Business package to $199 per month for their Pro Marketer solution. Marketing automation platforms generally won’t penalise you like this when you scale them, meaning you’re future-proofing your business.
After choosing your preferred marketing automation tool, you might want to hire an experienced consultant to help you with set up and onboarding. This makes sure you’re getting the most value from the tool you’re paying for.
In addition to software and implementation costs, you’ll also want to have dedicated marketing resource to manage and execute your strategy. The size of your organisation, level of activity, and complexity of your strategy will dictate how much resource should be allocated to marketing. If you’re ready to invest fully in marketing automation, we’d certainly recommend that you have at least one full time dedicated marketing employee working exclusively on digital marketing.
YOU’RE USING A ‘PATCHWORK’ OF DIFFERENT TOOLS
Does this sound familiar? You use one tool for your analytics, one for your email, one for your lead generation and tracking, and one for your CRM. Trying to manage multiple tools can lead to all sorts of problems:
- Costs mount as you scale.
- Different tools overlap functionality. Which tool do you use when you have multiple options?
- It takes time for team members to learn how to use multiple tools effectively.
- The danger of compliance issues and data breaches increases as personal data is stored in multiple systems.
- The information individual tools provide isn’t synced. This means you’re not getting the full picture of how your marketing is working.
Why make things more complicated than they need to be? Centralising your marketing system is a great way to future proof a growing business. Simple processes are easier to scale, and it’s much easier to extract and report on your data.
YOU’RE USING MULTIPLE MARKETING CHANNELS (INCLUDING PAID)
If your marketing arsenal consists of your website, email, multiple social media channels, PPC, display ads, affiliate programmes, or more, you need to implement marketing automation. Not only will you be able to streamline all these different processes at once, saving the business time and money, but you’ll also be able to see with certainty which channels are driving the most traffic, leads, revenue, and sales. Armed with this information you can be smarter in deciding where to invest your budget, increasing your marketing ROI.
YOU KNOW YOUR MARKETING IS WORKING, BUT YOU AREN’T CLEAR ON ROI
Your analytics show you’re doing well, but do you know exactly what your marketing ROI is? Can you confidently make informed decisions about where to change your budgets on a monthly or seasonal basis? Do you know how much value individual customers are delivering to your business?
If you are using a patchwork approach with multiple tools, then the answer is probably no. Marketing automation can help you organise and analyse your data, which means better decisions when it comes to budgets.
SALES AND LEAD GENERATION IS A KEY BUSINESS FOCUS
Do you have a sales team of more than one? Is your sales cycle longer than average, requiring ongoing management? If so a marketing automation platform can help you organise and keep track of your leads more effectively.
Marketing automation can give everyone in the sales team visibility of where individual leads are in the pipeline, and what communication they’ve had. This allows your team to prioritise those most likely to convert, target them with the right messages, and increase opportunities for conversion. Even better, the data is live. That means there’s no need to manually extracting reports, the information you need is always right there at your fingertips.
Think you’re ready to invest in marketing automation? Book a free no-obligation consultation with us, and let’s talk about how we can help your business.