2019 Marketing Automation Mistakes (part #2)

Marketing automation is a wondrous invention – if you manage to avoi the various automation mistakes. Instead of wasting time on small but time-consuming tasks, companies can leave it to smart software and focus on more demanding tasks.

Instead of doing several things on a “gut feeling”, marketers get a clear and accurate report on what is working for their audience and what isn’t. And yet plenty of companies don’t even know such systems exist!

What is marketing automation?

To put it simply, a marketing automation system is a special set of tools created to help marketers with automating several of daily marketing actions. For example, sending emails, tracking website users activity and more.

Those tools help marketers lower their workload and work more efficiently. If they no longer need to spend their time tracking website users, they can focus on more important tasks. This way they can increase both their work productivity and efficiency.

No wonder the marketing automation market grows every day. According to Emailmonday, 51% of companies are currently using Marketing automation systems. What’s more, 75% of marketers say they currently use at least one type of marketing automation tools.

By 2023, companies are expected to spend over $25.1 billion on marketing automation systems.

A common problem is learning how to use the system effectively though. Plenty of marketers are either scared of using all features of marketing automation or made an automation mistake and now have to fix problems caused by poor use.

I already mentioned 10 Major mistakes marketers make while using MA in the previous article. But, as there are even more pitfalls ahead, it’s time to mention them too.

Mistake #1: Buying email lists

So you bought a marketing automation system for your company, hoping it will help with increasing sales. There aren’t many people on the mailing list in though. How could you get more?

Most marketers will say that you should attract your new leads by offering them high-quality content. It’s also good to have an enticing lead magnet given in exchange for their email address.

Plenty of “experts” will claim though that building an email list is a waste of time and there’s a way to get email database much faster and easier. By buying them.

It’s one of the most commonly marketing automation mistakes made. While it is definitely a fast and convenient way to get plenty of email addresses, it’s also incredibly risky.

The quality of those lists is often very poor (with inactive or made up email addresses). But even if there are active users on the list, they are unlikely to be interested in your product or service. So sending a newsletter or an offer to these emails is wasted money.

Besides, using bought or scraped email lists is illegal in many countries. Under the Can-Spam and GDPR act, sending newsletters to random emails can quickly land you in huge trouble, both financial and legal.

Mistake #2: Creating boring content

Marketing automation tools can do many things but creating good content isn’t one of them. If the content in your newsletter or on your website is boring or filled with errors, subscribers or website users will leave as soon as they came. And no marketing automation system will change that.   

To write good content, you have to think about what your website users or subscribers would want to read. What’s the use of posting an article or an infographic about something no one is interested in?

You need an eye-catching headline, and CTA button prepared too – it’s hard to achieve marketing campaign success if customers don’t even notice the CTA button.

Mistake #3: You are not testing at all or testing more than one thing at the same time

The best though not the easiest way to know what works for your marketing and what doesn’t is testing your ideas whenever possible.

Your CTA button might be doing well, but with a small change, it might be doing much better. But how will you know what to change without testing?

With marketing automation tools, doing A/B tests has never been easier so it’s worth it to test all you can. Your CTA button, headline, lead magnet or text copy.

Be careful though. Plenty of marketers go overboard and test several things at the same time (and are confused about the results). Don’t test more than one variable or more than two-three versions at a time.

If you are working on improving your headline, for example, having tested 2 headlines with different text will give you precise results on which version is working.

However, if you change both the text and the font, you will be forced to guess which thing improved the clicks. Would it be the new font or the new text? So stick to only improving one thing at a time.

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Mistake #4: Not using customer data to your advantage

You might not have realized it yet, but you are very likely to have a hidden treasure trove in your company, full of things that can help you improve your marketing strategy and increase your sales.

This treasure trove is the customer’s database. You surely have tons of information on your customers inside it. Besides their name and address, there’s probably plenty of data about their interests, issues or favourite products. 

By using this data in your marketing strategy, you can give your customers content that is interesting and useful for them.

Take time to look at your customer’s data available and then use it for segmenting (dividing your customers into groups based on their interests, job position, or location) and personalization strategies. They are top strategies for 2019, so it’s definitely worth a try!

Mistake #5: Picking too big or expensive system

Marketing automation is no longer a system affordable just for large enterprises. Companies of all sizes and budgets can now find a tool that will work best for their company. But picking a good system for a company, one that will be both useful and affordable, is no easy task.

Plenty of companies (especially on the smaller side) think they will save time if they pick the first system they find. And since haste makes waste, they end up picking the tool that turns out to be too complicated or too expensive.

Large companies are susceptible to making mistakes in haste as well. In some cases, factors like detailed analysis of the customer journey, targeted advertising via social media, even the ability to encrypt certain emails for things like HIPPA or CCPA compliance, can be included. If these needs aren’t understood by the leadership team that’s in charge of rolling out this software, crucial needs could be missed.

Small businesses can’t afford to make a hasty decision on marketing systems. Getting a system not fitting their needs might put their whole company in danger of closing, rather than helping them grow.
That’s why it’s especially crucial for them to pick a system wisely. Fortunately, there’s plenty of platforms dedicated to startups or SMBs (such as our User.com).

Are there other mistakes you made while picking or using marketing automation? What did you learn from them?

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