Growth is oftentimes one of the hardest challenges many small businesses face today. Not because they lack the necessary talent to get there, but because they have a restrictive budget that only allows so much forward momentum. This is especially true when you’re already working with a skeleton crew and still can’t manage to get all of the essential bases covered.
While you may be thinking exponential business growth is only reserved for the “big guys”, marketing automation can help level the playing field. Contrary to popular belief, marketing automation is accessible to businesses of all sizes and fairly easy to get the hang of. In this article, we’re going to be exploring the various benefits of marketing automation for small businesses.
1. Win Your Time Back
Let’s face it, trying to juggle multiple marketing campaigns while simultaneously tracking results is time-consuming, to say the least. While that would be fine if it were your only job, as a small business, you have countless other tasks that require attention. With only so many hours in the day, marketing automation can help free up time and allow you to focus on key growth factors.
Implementing even a few simple marketing automation systems can take the lengthy process of building a campaign, deciding on the best schedule, and comparing split test results that would normally take days and allow you to knock everything out in as little as a few hours. Only by stepping out from behind the driver’s seat will you be able to focus on why your business hasn’t been growing.
2. Better Customer Experiences
Modern consumers care more than ever about the “experience” they have with a brand rather than just buying a product or service. With the help of marketing automation technology, it’s now possible to customize the experience for each customer no matter where they’re interacting with your brand. Whether browsing through their social media feed, checking emails for the day, or spending some time on the website to see what you’re all about, the more personalized you make the experience, the more likely they are to buy what you’re selling.
Because there are so many moving parts to the customer experience, normally, it would be a full-time job in itself trying to manage content, handle all customer interactions, monitor/track advertisements, and send emails. Marketing automation, when set up correctly, can handle all of this for you and much more.
3. Better Lead Nurturing
Small businesses owners often spend so much time trying to get new customers in the funnel, that they forget to nurture the ones that are already interested. Managing the customer journey from start to finish requires a lot of attention and different steps before the end goal (purchase) is reached. Marketing automation will allow you to optimize the journey and analyze each step so you can easily see what’s working and what’s not.
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Rather than having to spend hours collecting information so you can get a clear idea of what’s going on, let marketing automation tools do it for you. This way, you can take elements from successful funnel stages and apply them to the rest, increasing overall conversion rates. By that same token, if you find a bottleneck in your pipeline, you’ll know exactly what needs work.
4. More Efficient Workflows
Workflow efficiency is one of the main reasons small business owners look into marketing automation in the first place. Even with the best team behind you, your overall output is only going to be as efficient as the processes you have in place. You probably don’t have to dig very deep to come up with a least a dozen menial tasks that slowly but surely steal time away from you and your team.
With marketing automation, you can easily streamline various workflows, cut costs in various areas, and get more done with fewer resources. By simply sitting down and analyzing the different areas of your business, you’ll be able to identify the ones that should be optimized first. If your budget is tight, focus on the ones that will have the biggest impact on your bottom line.
5. Optimize Your Marketing Team
As a small business owner, even if you haven’t been dealing with the marketing side of things personally, you can still greatly benefit from marketing automation. Most people get into marketing so they can combine their passion for creativity with business. When your marketing team is bogged down because they have to do everything “by hand”, they’re not performing at the top of their game.
By introducing a few simple marketing automation systems, you’ll be freeing up your marketing team to focus on what they love —coming up with successful campaigns that attract lots of customers to your business. We’re not saying you have to go all in and automate every aspect of your marketing department. Rather, talk it over with your team to see what areas they would benefit from most.
6. Expand Without Hiring
In the world of business, it’s only natural to think that expansion means you must onboard new employees to handle the extra workload. While this is true eventually, a lot of business growth can be achieved without hiring new staff thanks to the power of marketing automation. Not only will this help save you the additional overhead, but it also allows your existing employees to “double up” on roles.
For example, if your marketing team has a lot of free time since automation tools are handling the busy work, maybe they can double as sales reps. Marketing automation tools are designed to open new doors for your business while helping to spur growth in just about every aspect.
Automation is Easier Than You Think
With modern marketing automation tools, it’s never been easier or more affordable for small businesses to reap the benefits. Because you can pick and choose the automation tools that will have the greatest impact on your business, controlling cost is fully transparent.
To make marketing automation even more accessible, it’s easy to learn. It may take a little practice to hang the hang of things, but once you have the basics, you’ll be well on your way to becoming an automation master.
Speaking of automation, have you checked out our Guided Marketing Platform? Click below to book a free demo.