Marketing automation is a powerful, but often misunderstood tool. The confusion is generally the fault of software companies with large budgets and influential bloggers who are writing about something they lack experience with, just to gain attention. Here are four of the more common marketing automation myths we have encountered.

1. The software does all of the work

Just because it is called marketing automation, does not mean it happens all by itself. The system still requires a skilled marketer behind the wheel effectively developing the strategy. The system is merely a tool the marketer can use for efficiently accomplishing their goals of lead generation and nurturing. The data and insight provided by the system allows companies to optimize their processes on an ongoing basis. This requires someone who is analytical enough to sift through the data and creative enough to develop a plan of action based on the information.

2. It is only for email marketing

Email may be the most thought of and dominate channel for automation, but it certainly is not the only channel. Smart marketers will leverage the platform to go beyond email marketing and use it to connect with leads across multiple channels. Social media, personalized landing pages and onsite chat features are all contact points that marketing automation can strengthen for converting qualified leads into sales.

3. It is too impersonal

This is only true when a bad marketer is in control of the marketing automation system. Good marketers can deliver automated messages that are timely, relevant and personalized. A sophisticated lead scoring system can even alert them when it is time for an actual salesperson to take the reins. This allows sales to focus on leads that are ready to buy, instead of those still only gathering information.

4. It is only relevant for new leads and prospects

Just because marketing automation is mainly popular for effectively and efficiently generating leads and nurturing them throughout the buying the process, it does not mean that is all it can do. Automating the onboarding process is a great way to cross-sell and upsell existing customers. This can help you turn a one-time customer into a repeat customer and an advocate of your brand.

Do you have any other questions about marketing automation? Ask us in the comments below and we are happy to answer them!