Everyone knows how important email marketing is. Marketers take advantage of it daily reaching out to leads, nurturing them, converting into clients, onboarding them, and re-engaging.
One of the key strategies for any marketer is automation. More than half of all marketers use this technique to improve their performance. Email marketing is not an exception.
Yet, some professionals (often, newcomers) may be dubious about its effectiveness. This is the reason why I’ve decided to collect the 12 most common email marketing automation myths and get them debunked.
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What is an email marketing automation
Email marketing automation is the act of streamlining the process with the help of special tools. They are created for email marketers and marketing departments to set repetitive tasks on autopilot. All in all, these instruments help professionals set their hands free as most tasks are performed automatically.
Email marketing automation tools are used for various purposes. You need to find the appropriate tool for your task. Such instruments support marketers in:
- Identifying the target audience
- Lead generation
- Lead qualification
- Moving through the sales funnel
- Converting leads into prospects and prospects into clients
- Onboarding customers
- Designing email content
- Sending personalized email campaigns and more
When using an automation tool, you have more free time to focus on other tasks. For example, you can analyze the campaign performance and work on its optimization.
Email marketing automation advantages
There are many advantages to using EMA tools. They are profitable due to:
- Improved customer experience: when sending auto-campaigns, you send personalized emails that have a positive impact on the customer experience
- Saving money and optimizing your team: you don’t need to hire a bunch of people to cope with numerous tasks as with an automation tool, you need a few people only
- Saving time: surely, that’s the aim of automation tools, to save you time
- Affordability: they are not as expensive as you might be scared. But that’s a separate matter for the myth #4 we’ll talk about further on
- Better traffic, more customers, and higher retention: EMA tools allow you to analyze your work better and work on its improvement. The more you improve, the better leads and customers feel
- Increased conversion rates: according to research, the conversion rate is improved by 180%
As you see, email marketing automation is important for professionals.
Now that we are done with what it is, what you can do with automation tools and their benefits, it’s time to debunk the email marketing myths.
Myth 1: I don’t need an automation tool
I’m independent. I can do it manually. Manual work is not that bad. Why would I spend money on an EMA tool? Why should my boss pay money to me if everything is automated? My team won’t need me anymore.
Let’s face it, some kind of written above came to your mind. I must admit, I thought the same at some point in time.
Yet, if you dive deeper, you’ll realize, that’s a myth. Automation tools help and support you but they do not make you useless. There are still some tasks for you remaining. For example, an email finder helps you generate leads faster, but you are still working. Canva (a design platform) lets you create appealing content faster, but it doesn’t do it instead of you.
There’s another myth, close to this one. Some suppose EMA is lazy marketing. Let’s debunk this myth too.
Myth 2: It’s lazy marketing
If I use an automation tool, what will I do then? Nothing? Not for me, sorry.
Some professionals may think that automation makes marketing lazy. As if you just click the Start button and may rest on your laurels doing nothing. Hardly so!
Automation allows you to have more free time on other tasks while a few simple repetitive ones (like sending emails) are done automatically.
Firstly, you still have to spend some time setting the project. For example, if you are sending email campaigns, you still have to find leads, define their needs and pains, build email sequences according to your buyer personas, compose and/or design the emails, search for ways of improvement, etc.
Note: you can perform all the mentioned tasks with other automation tools too. You can use an email finder to generate leads in a matter of minutes, an email drip campaign tool to send email campaigns, etc.
Secondly, even when the last button is tapped and your email campaign is launched, there’s still something for you to do. You need to analyze the email campaign performance.
But that’s already the myth #3.
Myth 3: I won’t have to do anything
Ha, easy-peasy! Push three buttons, and I’m free!
Though EMA tools are easy-to-use and supportive, there’s still a bunch of work for you to do once the email campaign is launched. There are two things you need to do: monitor and experiment.
Analyze the email campaigns in all the details: sent emails, opens, clicks, the unsubscribe and spam rates, conversions, etc. This information is vital for you as you need to know what works and what doesn’t, which elements are ok, and which ones need improvement.
Learn from your own mistakes.
The campaign stats provide you with valuable data of what evokes emotions in your recipients. With this data, you can conduct an A/B test. They are more informative as you test two similar campaigns with slight differences. An A/B test gives information on what resonates with your audience more.
Finally, engagement is what keeps the customers and subscribers loyal. If they reply to an email, they are waiting for a response and communication. You need to be reliable, fast in reply, and sociable.
Myth 4: Automation is expensive because it is for enterprises only
Money doesn’t get out of nowhere. I’m not ready to spend hundreds of dollars each month on automation only.
When it comes to automation, you may think of some enterprises that provide tools at high prices. They appeared long ago and now, are much-hyped and recognizable. Their target audience was the same large companies.
Yet, what are you supposed to do if you are a small or medium business? Paying thousands of dollars per month is not the solution for you because you will spend all the money you earn on the EMA tool (if not more).
The digital world develops fast depending and adjusts itself to marketing needs. Moreover, every professional understands the SMB’s budget, so the prices are affordable.
There dozens of cheap email marketing automation tools on the web and you need to find the one created for you.
As you see, the pricing plans are not that expensive meaning that even solopreneurs can afford an email marketing automation tool. The best thing about them is that some of them offer free trials or freemium. So you can test the platform out to see if it suits your needs.
Myth 5: It is time-consuming
What’s the point in EMA? Compose an email, add the email recipients, and click the Send button!
Well, yeah. But there are too many drawbacks to such email campaign performance. Your sender reputation is not safe, the spam rate may be high, and some other reasons. With an automation tool, all the emails are sent independently, so everything is ok, you are on the safe side.
In fact, any new tool takes some time to puzzle out. Nevertheless, when you get how it works, everything becomes much easier and faster.
Moreover, AI has conquered the hearts of many people. The best and the most important thing about it is self-education. You need to set a few campaigns and let the AI tool learn on its own. Then, things will get even easier and you will spend even less time on marketing automation.
Myth 6: Automation is too technically complicated
I’m not tech-savvy, it’s too difficult.
Well, yeh, probably some of the first automation tools were demanding technical knowledge and experience. But now everything becomes simpler and easier-to-use. This opens doors to the opportunity of using them by namely anyone.
Let’s take email drip campaigns as an example. A drag-n-drop campaign builder with a user-friendly interface is super-easy to use. Obviously, you simply drag and drop the campaign elements onto the field, connect the elements, and launch the campaign. Anything complicated? Seems nothing.
Myth 7: Automated campaigns are impersonal
Cold and impersonal. Every email you send through an automation platform is cold and impersonal.
Let’s face it. Impersonal messages are the result of a reckless work approach.
In fact, everything is the opposite. Manually sent messages may sound more robotic. Emails sent by means of email marketing automation tools are highly personalized (if you bother to make them sound like that). There are four reasons for that:
- Into every email, you insert personalization variables that are replaced by the information you have on the recipients
- You segment your audience into smaller groups which makes every campaign closer to what your subscribers need
- Thanks to triggers in your email sequence, every email is sent to the customer when personally they perform the necessary action
- When analyzing the campaign results, you value each number and when you notice someone ignoring you, you reach out to them in person and re-engage
Still think automatic emails are impersonal? Doubtfully so.
Myth 8: Automation is non-creative
Automation? Nah, too boring…
Creativity doesn’t deal with manual work only. You can use your imagination on and implement it with an automation tool to the fullest.
Creativity opens doors for professionals and can make your marketing campaign succeed and prosper:
- Create exclusive email templates
- Compose outstanding and captivating email texts
- Write brilliant blog posts and freebies and shot videos to educate, onboard, and nurture leads and clients
The customers today are toyed and demanding so it becomes more and more complicated to surprise them and attract their attention. Creativity is what will help you do that and move your email campaign to success.
Myth 9: Automation is spam
Automated emails? Bluck! That’s spam, for god’s sake!
Do you think so too? That’s great as I’m here to debunk myths.
Mistakenly, mere mortals attribute automated emails to spam by default. Yet, there’s a grand abyss between these two.
Spam is unsolicited, irrelevant, and untargeted emails sent in bulk to people. Automated email campaigns differ in targeting and segmentation, your recipients are waiting for emails from you.
In this case, email marketing automation tools help you reach out to them in a personal way. There’s no place for spamming people. You set up an email sending (according to a schedule or triggers) and that’s all!
Email marketing automation is all about personal approach (see myth #7).
Myth 10: Automation is over when a sale is closed
Phew! Finished, it’s all over!
Oh no, dear, that’s not the truth. Some professionals think like this but they are not right. Your work, as well as using an EMA tool do not end when you close a sale.
It doesn’t mean that if you were professional and persistent enough so that a person has bought from you, they will continue doing this again and again. Your work doesn’t end here. It keeps going and you need to show not only that you love them but that you value them.
Onboard them, evaluate their choice, prove that they were not mistaken when chose you. Additionally, you need to cross-sell, upsell, engage, and even re-engage customers who got lost somewhere.
Also, you can choose the most loyal clients and offer them to be your affiliates and share their experience with others. Firstly, you will show how important to your business they are if you ask them to be your ambassador. Secondly, you will get more new customers as people are more favorable to what others say about you than to what you say about yourself.
Myth 11: Automation tools and CRMs are the same
I already have a CRM, what for do I need an EMA instrument?
They are close but still, there’s a slight difference between them. And the key here is the purpose they serve.
Marketers most use email marketing automation tools within the awareness stage of the sales funnel. Thus, they communicate more with leads, qualify, and nurture them. With it, you reach out to targeted segments of your audience. Once leads convert, you move them from a marketing automation tool to CRM.
As the name suggests, CRM (Customer Relationship Management) is supportive when you already have converted leads into paying customers. Such tools allow your sales team to communicate with clients one-on-one.
Despite their similarities, EMA tools and CRMs differ in their aim and are used at different stages of the sales funnel.
Myth 12: All automation platforms are the same
What’s the difference? They are all the same except the price!
Hell no! They may be similar but not the same. Like a cat’s noseprint, like a snowflake, like a fingerprint, like a person, every email marketing automation platform is unique.
Firstly, they all have different packages of tools. Some offer you a toolkit for automated lead generation. Others provide a tool for email campaigns. And there are some that have all the necessary instruments under one roof.
Secondly, depending on the tools the platform provides, the pricing plans vary either. Some may cost $9 per month, others – up to $499. Quite a difference, yeh?
And finally, they differ in the implemented techniques. Machine learning, artificial intelligence, blockchain and so much more!
As you see, EMA platforms are different, not the same.
Automate to the fullest
Finally, 12 email marketing automation myths are debunked. As you see, EMA is not as awful as it seems to be. Summing up:
- It sets your hands free but you still have enough work to do
- EMA tools fit SMBs too, not only enterprises
- They are affordable and even solopreneurs can use them
- Marketing automation instruments are easy-to-use
- They allow you to design creative personalized campaigns
Aren’t these reasons enough for you to try it out right now?
If you are biased against email marketing automation, let us know in the Comments section below and let’s debate!