Why Content Marketing and Marketing Automation Go Hand in Hand
The goals of the modern marketer are timeless: create new opportunities to grow sales while keeping your existing customers happy and coming back for more. And content marketing plays a big role in this. When you provide information that is relevant, reliable, insightful, and actionable, you harness a proven, powerful method for reaching your customers, not to mention marketing goals. But trying to do it all manually is a daunting task that can easily keep you up at night.
To get the best results, your content marketing efforts need to run like a well-oiled machine so you can focus on the big picture, do your job better, and achieve more. Marketing automation helps you amplify your voice and speak to your audience with content that is relevant to them depending on each individual’s unique attributes and behaviors. Together, content marketing and marketing automation can help you create a cohesive, efficient, and effective engagement marketing powerhouse.
Here are three ways that content marketing and marketing automation go hand in hand:
1. Engage and Stay Top-of-Mind Across Channels
Marketing automation is not a one-and-done tactic. Rather, it orchestrates the use of multiple touchpoints (social media, email marketing, inbound marketing—as well as traditional sales efforts) to engage in continuous conversations with your buyers.
Before, during, and after the sale, marketing automation helps you easily engage across various channels, by connecting browsing habits to landing pages, email messages to website engagement, and social media usage to lifecycle nurturing efforts. Your marketing automation platform keeps track of every prospect and client, to deliver personalized content on every channel.
Each content campaign should, for example, interact with users on one channel, greet them at their stage of the buying cycle on the website, and continue the conversation on the next channel to nudge them farther along in the buying cycle.
Below are a few examples of how marketing automation and content marketing work together on different channels:
- Social media—Your social media marketing content gives users a chance to interact with a campaign on their own turf. Marketing automation can help you learn about customers as they engage, so you can better understand which content nurtures relationships and drives sales.
- Email—Email is still one of the most powerful channels for your content, and marketing automation can make sure those messages are always personalized and relevant.
- Web—Your brand site is the hub for your content marketing, and marketing automation makes it more than just a library. Convert more anonymous visitors, deliver strategic pages to users you do know, and target visitors from certain accounts.
- Mobile—Content is becoming more and more mobile, and marketing automation can make it more and more personalized as well. Create a seamless mobile experience and communicate with customers based on real-time location.
Marketing automation can track and monitor the content that each user views and engages with across every channel, so duplicates are never sent and each touchpoint advances the relationship.
2. Deliver Relevant, Personalized Content to Every Buyer
Buyer A is not at the same stage of the buying process as Buyer Z. Marketers must tailor content to buyers in every stage of the funnel, rather than blindly distributing content to the masses. Marketing automation nurtures specific customer personas with targeted, meaningful content that helps you turn prospects into customers and customers into fans.
If you’ve been trying to manually catalog all of your available content, marketing automation eliminates that task, and more, with several smart features:
- Predictive content and analytics use AI, or machine learning, to automatically put the most relevant content in front of each prospect when he or she visits your site.
- A/B testing delivers the best batch or triggered emails to each contact to help drive click-thrus and engagement.
- A streamlined, synchronized database automatically updates your CRM in real time, based on online and offline customer behaviors.
- Retargeting uses all of the data you collect on your audience to create more personalized, targeted ads on every popular ad platform, including Google, Facebook, and YouTube.
- Web personalization collects behavioral insights on each visitor, even the anonymous ones.
Every prospect and customer has unique needs and preferences. A growing company can’t keep track of each relationship, but consumers increasingly expect to be treated like individuals.
Marketing automation is the secret weapon making sure that all the hard work you put into each piece of content doesn’t go to waste. Deliver the right content to the right user every time.
3. Garner Insights From All of Your Campaigns
Marketing automation is essential to executing any long-term marketing strategy, but which content is actually working? Are you drawing in qualified leads? Are your content marketing efforts actually driving sales? Can you accurately measure ROI?
Marketing automation provides the data to answer your questions and improve your processes, allowing you to:
- Identify the most effective channels and campaigns with A/B testing and custom KPIs.
- Easily view and share analytics by creating simple, custom reports featuring the data you need most.
- Demonstrate how your content influences buyer behavior, and even tie revenue directly to particular campaigns, with revenue cycle analytics.
Marketing Automation Takes Content Marketing to the Next Level
Automation in any environment frees up time and ensures that the most important tasks stay on track, so nothing and no one falls through the cracks. The same is true for your content marketing strategy.
Marketing automation can help easily create and track content across every platform. It can deliver the right content to every user, so your hard work isn’t wasted and relationships are efficiently nurtured. And a good marketing automation system can report back on how your content is performing on every channel, in every situation. If you’re ready to take your content marketing to the next level, but you’re not sure where to start, check out our Marketing Automation Checklist to help you decide what you need.
In what other ways have you used marketing automation to improve your content marketing? Tell me about it in the comments. I’d love to hear about your experiences.