Automation, especially in Digital Marketing, has been around for longer than you think. I think since its inception, we digital marketers are trying to automate things as much as we can so that we can focus on bigger things and not waste our time doing menial jobs. There are tons of bots out there that automate pretty much everything.
I can easily say that the guys who were into DM back in the day are pioneers in terms of online automation.
But i think there is hope.
Your biggest asset is your randomness
Mainly a large part of the digital marketing workflow revolves around creativity and evoking emotions through human connections.
At the end of the day artificial intelligence is, after all, artificial.
I am pretty confident that a robot will not be able to write the way I have written this, let alone an amazing copy for your FB Ad.
Of course, it might be able to automate it and churn out multiple “templates” by analyzing copies across the web. But then again, this can turn out to be counter-productive for the bot cause then it is levelling the playing field again since pretty much every copy out there will pretty much have the same essence to it.
This brings me to my third point.
You probably know, Bentley still stitches their upholstery with their hands.
It always been perceived value of something that is hand made is far more than for something that is automated. So Special Automation o DM will not leave that kind of personal impact in comparison with human touch
The biggest advantage you have as a human is that you are inconsistent, sporadic and random. And this is what makes you unique and stand apart.
Career in Digital ? More then a job its a SKILL.
Once you have this skill, you can apply it whenever and wherever and make a living off it.
You can be a Youtube, Influencer, consultant, Copywriter, Visualizer, Strategist…. The possibilities are endless.
Just to make you more feel more better, a recent study conducted by McKinsey, only 13% of your job can be done by a robot and a marketing job is 85% safer than other jobs.
Main thing is Continuously invest in ourselves and always be innovating.
The way I see automation/AI in Digital Marketing, is that it is creative destruction. It is making way for something bigger. New jobs will and are created for which new skills are required.
I still remember my school teachers telling me that computers will take away all your jobs and it will be very difficult to get ourselves a job. And what has happened?
Computers are Internet has helped humanity take a leap into the future. I have a feeling the same will happen with Automation/AI.
Businesses today spend a lot of time and money in marketing their business and products. If you are still hung up to the old conventional methods that takes lot of your time and efforts then you need to hold on. Take a sneak peak at the following simple steps that would actually automate your marketing processes.
The study from Smart Insights – GetResponse states that not many businesses are tapping into the power of Marketing Automation tools. 54% of businesses use limited marketing automation while 20% aren’t using it at all. The technology tools like PPC and SEO are now a thing of the past but they are very much here to stay. Along with these, there ought to be a marketing strategy that automates the routine tasks with precision and find exact data that will help you score over your competitors.
To start with Marketing Automation, it may seem like a cumbersome task but mixing all the ingredients like an email platform, leads source, CRM full of client data can help you kick start.
Let’s look over at the fundamental strategies that you can use for Marketing Automation:
Good dynamic Content – Businesses already have good amount of customer information about B2B clients in their CRM systems. With this information, companies can deliver personal content that reflects the behavior and history of the customers. CRMs and emails systems could be integrated together to make different segmentations.
Segmentation can dramatically improve click rates by 62% higher that utilize information in your email database.
Drip Campaigns – Drip campaigns are very effective for businesses with long sales lead-times. They are basically timely emails sent to your audiences that help to introduce business to the new clients. Drip campaigns have 98% conversion rate and helps to educate clients, new leads and new customers.
Drip campaigns are simple to set-up but it requires effective managing. We have to check if the email platform really supports timed automatic triggered sending of emails to give consistent experience for all the contacts.
Nurturing the Campaigns – Nurturing the leads is one of the most important aspects that need proper watering. Audiences can choose their own journey through automated campaigns. Dynamic content will help change the email based static fields and nurturing will segment your audience based on their interactions with your communications. It will automatically send them in the direction of their interests.
This automation level is simply spell-bound and can help generate more leads at lower costs rather than using non-targeted static campaigns. Nurturing is particularly good option for leads that have engaged with your site but are not really ready with a direct proposition.
For a successful nurturing of campaigns, there should be a lot of Calls-to-action and links in the emails for audiences. Audiences are looking forward for your interaction with them on social media and other search options. More marketers are looking forward for an integrated marketing solution.
Trends for business-to-business marketers need to follow in the year 2017
Innovation is the main starting point for reviewing all marketing trends for the New Year. Marketers assess the marketing techniques giving them uplift in the business. The top techniques are well focused in getting aligned B2B sector. The most important it is, to realize the importance of new technologies such as real time personalization, mobile and marketing automation.
1. Marketing Automation
Automation is one finest technology when it comes to B2B marketing. It’s an automated process of scoring and nurturing the leads with relevant content along the customer journey. Not many businesses are exploiting marketing automation since they are still on at earlier stages of maturity.
Dave Chaffey of Smart Insights is going to speak at B2B Marketing Automation Expo 2017 where he is going to cover the best ways to start automation. Here are few of the key techniques that he spoke in the last year’s show:
A welcome sequence with multi steps that can have more relevancies with dynamic content.
Lead scoring and grading to put more relevant emails or outbound calls when the prospects are qualified.
Re-marketing on third party sites that will help nurture prospects showing interest in product or services.
2. Content Marketing
Content Marketing technique has been prevalent since last several years in B2B marketing but the popularity of inbound marketing has given more importance to sharing the blogs and social media. Last 3 to 4 years, readers have voted for content marketing against any other marketing activity. The main element in inbound marketing is getting the right balance of content quantity, quality and the frequency. Content Marketing is greatest method used by B2B marketers because longer customer journey would mean customers would want to do plenty of research before making the purchase decision.
3. Web Personalization
The personalization of the website is a long standing tactic for Ecommerce site but was less used conventionally for B2B marketing. Personalization of emails involved using dynamic content insertion technique. SaaS products like BrightInfo and Evergage make web personalization services affordable for smaller companies. It includes automation features to recommend most relevant piece of content.
4. Channel Integration
Several digital marketing channels are available hence there is always a tendency to focus on individual channel. Integrated nurturing process helps earn dividends. The key trend here is the integration of different channels. Other trend on this includes generating B2B leads by Ascend; this proves that B2B marketers are not chasing the latest fast by not spending too much time on channels that deliver the vast majority of leads or sales.
Marketing Automation enables businesses to join customer journey between website and emails. It concentrates on not just email sequences but also identifying when the prospect downloads the content in future and showing their interest and follow up further.
Other form of integration is through re-targeting or re-marketing in Google Adwords where the ads are served to previous site visitors on Google’s display network. This option has been available for last many years with social media. LinkedIn is more important within B2B marketers; Facebook and Twitter have extended their retargeting option.
5. Account-Based Marketing
Account based marketing (ABM) is an established approach in B2B marketing, within larger organizations having structures and processes to target key accounts. ABM was pioneered by ITSMA 10 years ago, they define it as “more than a sales or marketing approach; it is a collaborative strategy that engages sales, marketing, subject matter experts and delivery professionals, as well as key executives
in the chosen client account to determine where and how to best meet the client’s unique business challenges. With deep insight into the client’s business and key goals, this collaborative team creates a well-orchestrated marketing and sales campaign for a single account.”
Initially, ABM was an approach that was supported by Marketing Automation service that focuses on individual customer records. The trend is for automation services that include ABM features that make it easier to nurture groups automatically through emails and re-targeting.
6. Mobile Marketing
The shift towards mobile is the latest trends for B2B Marketers since last many years now. Google notes that businesses have responsive sites hence it’s no more a trend. The change that affects B2B marketers in 2017 includes Google’s new mobile-first index and potential penalties for pop-ups.
Mobile covers almost half of web traffic today where in the past B2B companies used to assume that their customers are researching about them on desktop devices. The new breed of business owners use mobile device to research solutions on the go that means B2B marketers needs to be sure that the content is mobile optimized that ensures smooth processes for users on different devices.
Almost half of B2B businesses have mobile sites and apps this shows that industries are finally starting to come together on mobile. For some industries, mobile apps are not necessary but all industries should have mobile responsive sites. Even if customers are not logging on the mobile device, businesses still need responsive site with Google’s “Mobilegeddon” update or else you may be penalized for the same. B2B buyers on mobiles are increasing as shown in the chart below; hence mobile optimized sites are absolutely necessary.
7. Social Media
As per the research, B2B businesses tend to get best results from LinkedIn and Twitter although they are present across wide range of social networks. YouTube and Slideshare are particularly effective; Google+ is ineffective since majority B2B is using it. The eMarketer chart below shows 2015 data and the second chart show the data for 2016.
While it is extremely easy to set up a social network it is often important to prioritize. It requires good efforts to run it effectively focusing on the best tactics.
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