Marketing Automation Challenges

I recently read a great piece in marketing automation challenges by industry analyst, Susan McKittrick with the Patricia Seybold Group.  (read an excerpt here – download with quick registration) The premise is straight forward:  marketing automation has been proven to yield positive impacts including revenue increases, cost reductions and marketing accountability.  Yet in Susan’s estimation, about a third of marketing automation implementations fail to improve marketing results.  The culprit:  systems don’t get used or they are used to do marketing in the same way as before implementation.  In other words, marketing automation becomes an expensive email engine.

Why does this happen?  McKittrick digs a bit deeper:

  • Lack of sales and marketing alignment
  • Clear objectives for the technology purchase are not established
  • Processes from lead management and data management are broken
  • Lack of important skills
  • Poor use of marketing metrics

I think Susan hit the nail on the head with this piece.  As we recently discussed in our blog post, Marketing Automation isn't Easy, in order to success with marketing automation, marketers need to establish the people, process and technology to ensure success.   Additionally you need to look especially at the marketing process before you choose the technology.  Time and time again, marketers choose the technology first and then work on the process, only to find that their technology choice doesn't work with the process they want to implement.

So, this begs the question:  How can you get the most out of your investment in marketing automation?  Start by downloading this great perspective by Susan at the Patricia Seybold Group.  Next, keep an eye out for more pieces by her in the upcoming weeks as she'll be offering antidotes and recommendations on marketing automation best practices.  Finally - be sure you're thinking about all the components you need to be successful with marketing automation - not just technology.