When it comes to improving web experiences with the help of marketing automation -- our editorial theme for February -- are you really getting the most out of your tools/processes? Does your company have a well-thought out plan for how you target your audience, how you will create and evolve the messages they see and understand how it all impacts their engagement online? Or does your organization collect leads but is ineffective at tracking them?

Getting Real About Marketing Automation

In the infographic below, we aim to highlight the benefits, challenges and future of marketing automation

For every action there is a reaction. You've probably heard that before, right? For marketing, this is especially true. Whenever a customer comes in contact with your brand or company, their next move shouldn't come as a surprise. Whether they engage with you at a trade show, attend a webinar, download a white paper, what happens next? Where does their information go? How do new leads get nurtured? In theory everyone wants to create an effective process through which prospective customers are turned into paying customers, but in reality not everyone is doing this, or knows how.


Thanks to sophisticated customer relationship management solutions, automating the marketing process is easy. There are several platforms we can use to track and identify, segment and profile, and nurture relationships into successful sales. But like any automated process, if you don't understand why you're using it or how to use it smarter, it's mostly just there for your entertainment and you're not reaping the full extent of its benefits. This is the case for marketing automation. A majority of sales and marketing professionals say they're using it or that they plan on using it, but a majority of CMOs say that they don't even have a formal marketing automation plan.

Put Your Marketing Automation to Work

Marketing automation can help you run your marketing campaigns like a well-oiled machine. It can segment audiences, send custom messages based on actions, send alerts, track and measure so that you can effectively improve the quality leads you reach, while shortening the sales cycle, while making you more money. So why is your company's marketing automation process rusty and broken down? Chances are it's because you don't have the right content, or the right leads, or because you haven't thought proactively about what it is you want your customers to do.

Remember that customer life cycle experience we discussed last month? Your marketing automation process could be helping to keep your customers on the right track by delivering relevant messages to them when they want them on the right platform.

Lucky for you then that we're spending this month discussing best practices and trends aimed at helping you better understand what marketing automation is and what it can be. Marketing automation is only getting stronger and more sophisticated with more companies indicating that they'll be growing their budgets and adopting better tools. If your company has been going through the motions of marketing automation, it's time to pay attention and put your process into gear.