With the introduction of web analytics and predictive marketing campaign management software in the 90s, marketing automation made its appearance. But it wasn’t until the middle of the 2000s that the industry really started to take shape. From then on, the evolution has been rapid and businesses started to incorporate a wide variety of tools and strategies that have since recorded money and time savings across the board. And one question has been top of mind: what is marketing automation and how does it impact the customer journey?

In just 5 years, marketing automation has grown into a $1.65 billion industry. Mass penetration of marketing automation software is no longer just a probable event, but an absolute given. 

So what is marketing automation exactly?

Marketing automation is the technology and the automated strategies that help your Marketing team manage their processes and multifunctional campaigns, across multiple channels. Adding automation to the processes can help businesses target customers with automated messages (whether through email, web, social, or even text), and can set up ad campaigns, facilitate lead enrichment, and even help provide market research. 

At its core, marketing automation is a set of tools that are designed to simplify and provide consistent results to your team and to your customers. It removes the most time-consuming tasks of modern marketing and sales roles like your lead qualification process and creating digital campaigns.

Marketing automation can work directly with your CRM and it will help Marketing and Sales departments to strengthen their lead generation, nurturing, prospecting, and scoring. Good marketing automation platforms are designed to scale alongside your business—to grow, as you grow. 

What does marketing automation mean for the customer journey? 

When your customer is interacting with your team or your brand, it is normal to be apprehensive about losing an element of customization and personalization when adopting marketing automation. With how far we’ve come over time your team can now tailor every interaction based on both customer data and on input from your team. New approaches— like at Wrk with our Hybrid Automation Delivery Platform—we enable your team to find the balance between automating tasks and not losing the crucial human input, without sacrificing your time and requiring additional costs. 

Marketing automation drives a 14.5% increase in sales productivity and a 12.2% reduction in marketing overhead. 

Automate AND turn customers into brand ambassadors

Sure, marketing automation can save time and money, but many believe it comes at the sacrifice of providing a unique experience and building trust with your customers. A good marketing automation strategy will touch several teams, this will include the teams that are specialized in forming relationships with customers like Customer Success and Client Onboarding teams. 

With an automated marketing system, you can analyze and correct as you go. Use some of the time back to dig deep into analytics, research where your customers are and what their needs are. With the time you have you can focus on the high-value tasks that require your expertise and input. Good automation strategies take the best of both worlds, human empathy, ingenuity and creativity, and relationship building combined with automated tasks operating in the background. Gathering enriched records, providing quick responses and quotes, as well as product updates to your customers or prospects gives you time back to interact, engage, and communicate with the best parts of your effective marketing strategy.

When a customer is happy with their experience and knows that they can get consistent results from your company, they are more likely to advocate for you. One of the side effects is that you will effortlessly turn customers into brand ambassadors.  

Want to learn more about our automated marketing solutions? Check out our Marketing Hub today!