Myth A – It’s Too Expensive
Let’s start with the most common automation myth – the cost. You read someone telling you that automation is simply too expensive, and it puts you off. This is a common misconception, though, because marketing automation tools are designed to make up for what they cost.
Yes, it may cost you a fair investment, depending on which CRM you want. However, just like any other kind of marketing, when done right the ends justify the means. You will get a whopping return on investment when using marketing automation properly, whether you’re thinking of transaction and service emails or of newsletters.
Instead of looking it as another marketing cost, view marketing automation as a worthwhile investment. If you have this same ‘it’s too expensive!’ mentality around all of your marketing, then you will never get anywhere- what if you never made flyers and posters because of printing costs? Or if an outbound call centre didn’t hire call handlers because they had to pay them!? Take it from us – marketing automation done right is a very worthwhile expense, just like everything else ‘marketing’.
Myth B – Your Staff Need Complete Re-training
Now, we aren’t going to say that automation doesn’t necessitate any re-training at all. That just isn’t the case. When you put CRM software in place, you’re going to have to help your staff learn to use it. That’s because it’s so easy to fall foul of a few common pitfalls and simple mistakes, and because ineffective CRM doesn’t help you achieve your aims.
It will take time to get up to speed, especially if you have a large workforce. But that shouldn’t be a problem. If you’re thinking of setting up marketing automation for the very first time, you have a plethora of choice: there are some tools which do everything, or some tools which specialise in one thing or another (like just newsletters, or just invoicing). In the same way, there are CRM systems which are very complicated, and some which are really simple to use- and picking simple, entry-level marketing automation tools will let you cut down on the time needed for training!
Myth C – It’s Set and Forget
Our next myth is one that doesn’t necessarily stop you from setting up automated email marketing, but it is one that can make it less effective when you do. The idea that you set it up one day and never touch it again. Not only is this fanciful in the extreme, it could not be further from the truth.
Marketing automation needs constant tweaks. When set up and working well, you still need to spend as much time as you can, looking closer at how it works and how it could be better. This is what A/B testing is for: even if what you’re doing is working, you test it against other ideas and see what works. That’s how you continually improve what you do.
It should not be something that you intend to implement if you are hoping it can mean you never need to consider marketing strategy again. If you do that, well, one of two things will happen: either it’s a success, but that success is never capitalised upon; or it’s a failure from day one. Either way, you’d be shooting yourself in the foot by not getting the best out of what you’re paying for.
Bottom line – don’t expect automated marketing to be a set and forget plan. It does not work like that.
Myth D: Automation = Spam
The last myth we want to take a look at is the idea that automation isn’t effective because it comes across as spam, either to the customer or to their email client. This isn’t true. What is true is that it depends how you use it: email your customers every day with ‘clickbait’ email subjects, or without getting their consent, and you’re spamming. Use it right, and you’re not.
You can instead use automation to help you avoid sending spam. How? Because you can use it to send out specific, particular and tailored messages. This is based on everything from interests, location, where the customer found you and various other factors. With such a level of personalization in every automated message, you’ll actually be connecting with customers better than ever before.
Done right, you’ll find that automation is your ticket to long-term marketing success. Well, do long as you don’t expect it to just work without any effort! Put the time in, though, and it can be one of your main tools. So the next time you have an in-house chat about marketing, then, be sure to think about myths like these and how they may be holding you back. Automation is one of your most powerful marketing allies – don’t ignore it due to misconceptions like these.