Like any new tool, marketing automation takes time and training to use effectively.
Digital Nation spoke with Racquel Collard, branding manager at Ethernet cable provider 4Cabling, about the opportunities and challenges she faced while implementing four different marketing automation platforms.
Collard says automation tools can help marketing scale, as well as drive better results for customers.
“We’ve had different systems over time, but what we’re seeing are things like Welcome Journeys, if they’re really well structured, they actually help set expectations for parties on both sides,” says Collard.
“Since we implemented marketing automation, we’ve been constantly setting a budget. Every time we change it, we find that we get a little bump again, and that’s fair, that’s a lot of small steps, but it definitely adds to the whole.
While all automation vendors have journey templates, Collard says they almost always need to be customized.
“I was never able to use just one ready-made template,” she says.
“Initial training is usually pretty overwhelming because you’re usually doing platform training, doing your onboarding and onboarding with your consultants at the same time. They never have a process where you retrain later and just go through review items you may have forgotten.
According to Collard, without quality data, marketing automation tools add little value to organizations.
She says there’s often a disconnect between marketing automation vendors and business users.
“It’s also a lot of companies that tend to waste a lot of time, money and energy because they usually hire a consultant to do an integration. So you have your automation vendor, you have your business unit or your IT staff, and then you have a consultant sitting in the middle,” she says.
“Data integration is always the piece that makes or breaks you. It’s good if you have a fabulous looking marketing automation system, and it says it can do this, and that it can do that, and that it can do that, but if you don’t have access to the data that triggers those trips, then you’re dead in the water anyway.