What Your Boss Needs to Know About Marketing Automation

Hey there, marketing masters and mavens. Have you ever noticed that yours is one of the only professions where calling for automation can make you seem lazy? For your boss, manufacturing automation is seen as inevitable. Sales automation is a blessing. In marketing however, automation can conjure up less appealing concepts, like auto-dialers incessantly cold-calling everyone in the phone book.

Understandably, not many CFOs will jump at getting you the automation you need with that sort of imagery in their heads. If you want the top brass to greenlight marketing automation for your department, steer clear of anything that reminds them of the cold-calling solutions of the past. Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to do just that. If you’re looking for a good reason to start a conversation with your boss about integrating automation into your marketing strategies, look no further.

Automation is about agility. Rather than a one-size-fits-all approach, marketing automation has evolved into the single most adaptable way to reach out to potential customers in a scalable way. It gives you the power to build multichannel strategies, target diverse groups, and capitalize on social media trends—all from a single place. Let your boss know this isn’t about lessening your workload, but about giving you the tools to reach out to more people in a personal and proactive way, even as the ways those people expect to be contacted change.

It’s about expanding the pipeline. You can now monitor customer engagement and sentiment, and qualify leads during the life of your campaign. Tracking customer interest and engagement levels will let you know who’s ready to buy and when. By forwarding these strong leads to sales, you’ll help them maximize their conversion rates.

Increased productivity is an understatement. Social listening, the same technology that lets you monitor customer engagement, also monitors when you can’t. It’s like having a multilingual, slang-savvy ear to the ground—24 hours a day. The ability to analyze each of the social media comments that your campaign generates gives you a better look at sentiment than ever before. You’ll be able to generate new leads and nurture your existing connections from a single desk, all while giving each customer the personalized attention they need.

You’ll take the guesswork out of return on investment (ROI). By giving you an automated marketing hub and integration with sales, your boss will also give you the power to see how much return you’ve gotten out of each of your campaigns. You’ll also be able to track ROI as it happens, gleaning insights into how you might be able to improve sales midstream. If, for instance, customers are demanding specifications on your new technology, you can integrate those details into your existing strategy. Your customers will know you’re listening to them, and you’ll be able to report a better ROI to your boss.

Finally, another way to talk your boss into implementing an automated marketing solution is that it’s a jumping-off point for other customer resource management tools. Your boss could use your department as a stepping stone toward utilizing more holistic software companywide. This, in turn, will let you get even more out of your new marketing software. With that in mind, there’s no time like the present to schedule that meeting with the brass. We’ve even worked up a handy-dandy fact sheet (PDF) to help sway their opinions.