Research suggests only 48% of companies that have implemented marketing automation would do so again…

…even though they are achieving a positive return on investment averaging 28%

VentureBeat & RazorSocial 2014

Automating your marketing sounds like a no brainer doesn’t it? Especially if it saves central resource lots of time and hassle getting campaigns out and sales in? So why are some companies investing in automation, only to retreat back to the old manual ways?

If companies fail to plan every aspect of their campaign or customer journey to ensure they reach people at the right time with relevant propositions, automation quickly becomes a waste of time, money and resource.

Simply blasting an upsell email to customers who have just purchased from you when the average frequency of purchase is high, means they’ll become disengaged from your brand very quickly, when a thank you message would have been appropriate.

And that customer which you’ve just annoyed could have been the best customer you never had!

Using marketing automation software must never mean sitting back and letting technology do all the work. A brand needs a strategic plan and must be able to adapt its marketing activity and campaigns based on results.

“You must still test different messages with different segments, so it is vital to have robust reporting. Automation helps us to send time-appropriate messages and offers to the right people at the right time”.  Tony Lewis (Head of member marketing, The Caravan Club)

Marketing automation can be invaluable when it’s done right. For example JCT600 (one of the UK’s largest car dealerships) used automation to control it’s after-sales communications for 50 branches across 21 brands. Upon launch JCT600 saw a 280% increase in customer bookings! Click here to read our case study.

Technology gives marketers options, but before investing in automation, set measurable objectives, work with clean reliable data and be willing to test and learn, adapt and test again!