While automation of any kind typically delivers a wealth of benefits including increased efficiency, greater consistency, and higher quality to name just a few, when paired with marketing, as in “marketing automation,” the term gives some people pause. Marketing is considered by many to be an “art,” as there are nuances to the practice that can only be mastered with much time and effort. Consequently, there can be some reluctance to introducing the science of automation to the process.
And rightly so. If marketing automation leaves your audience feeling like they’re being courted by a cold, calculating robot, you’ve failed in your mission to draw them in and establish a relationship. But, there are actions you can take to ensure that your target personas know that there are well-meaning humans behind the messages, and that you are truly trying to make your prospects’ lives better with your product or service.
Here are some tips for using marketing automation to connect on a personal level.
- Start small and build gradually. If you set your sights on reaching tens (or hundreds) of thousands of people grouped into hundreds of buyer personas right out of the chute, it’s very likely your messages will have a somewhat fabricated sound. They almost have to in order to hit all the issues that are important to such a large group. You’re better off to start with a smaller target audience, learn how best to utilize the technology to interact with them, and then expand your efforts.
- Avoid the temptation to buy a list—build one instead. It’s easy to think that paying top dollar for a high-end list of prime contacts and blasting your message to them is an efficient and effective way to build your business. The truth is, it’s neither. Marketing to a list that has grown organically, and therefore includes people with a genuine interest in your company, is far more practical and profitable in the long run.
- Use insights from your sales team. For all the market research you do, and all the time you spend trying to understand your prospects, the fact is nobody knows them better than the sales reps who spend time on the phone or in meeting rooms with them. Consequently, nobody knows better the kind of messages that will resonate with them and help you connect with them in a more human way. Always seek input from sales on the messages you are crafting.
- Invest in killer content. Mindlessly spewing facts, figures, and features related to your offerings is going to do nothing to help create a true connection with your prospects. Taking the time to understand what they want and need in order to trust you and to understand how you can help them, on the other hand, will pay huge dividends. Be sure your content marketing program is focused on producing high quality, actionable content above anything else.
- Communicate on multiple channels. The science fiction movies of yesteryear all portrayed robots as having ver-y mon-o-tone voi-ces—a reflection of their inhuman-nature. If you only utilize marketing automation to “speak” to your audience in a certain way, via email blasts for example, the “automation” aspect of your communications will be very clear to them. To humanize your organization, connect with prospects in a variety of ways, from more traditional approaches like email and your website, to social and experiential marketing.
When used the right way, marketing automation tools like HubSpot not only make your marketing efforts more streamlined, they also help you create a very open, honest, and human relationship with the people who make up your target audience. Wondering how you can get the most out of HubSpot? We’re experts in using its many powerful features to help companies in Colorado Springs, throughout the front range of Colorado, and around the country expand their reach and grow their business. Give us a shout!