Marketing automation empowers organizations with the ability to more accurately predict the ROI of proposed marketing engagement campaigns. The question, “Does this marketing initiative have the potential to succeed?” can be answered ten times over by companies who have access to the right customer data. It’s become imperative to have these insights, “The best engagement plans contain proven strategies. The initiatives have to be tested, measured, and validated as successful before full implementation.”
We can all learn from our failures, but isn’t it so much more exciting to build on our successes?
The historical and predictive customer insights from the marketing automation platform ensure that your teams are spending their time on engagement campaigns and produce worthwhile end-results. When teams understand that automation has greatly reduced the likelihood their hard work will be met with lackluster campaign results, morale goes up. Creative energy well spent behaves like an accelerant that fuels future initiatives.
With the benefits of optimized campaigns at the forefront, your teams should be motivated by your organization’s implementation of marketing automation. So why aren’t they? At least, why aren’t all of them? More often than not, it’s your creative team that is having a harder time getting on board with the benefits of automation.
MarTech’s article, “The marketing leader’s case for arming creative teams with technology” shares why this technology can be frustrating for some creative teams. “This (exasperation) is because the modern digital marketing environment has increased the demand for creative content.” The article’s author, Alex Withers, goes on to explain that the competency automation lends to campaign creation often comes with the counter cost of an increased production load for your creative team. “Business has augmented sales and marketing with sophisticated technology that’s boosted efficiency — but also increased the need for more content to match the swell in channels and nuanced stages of the buyer’s journey.”
Helping your creative team to see that marketing automation has the potential to bring more than just an increased workload is imperative. In fact, when the workflows within your automation system are well executed they can actually make life easier for all members of your team. Below are three ways you can help your creative teams to understand how marketing automation can be one of their greatest assets. .
Marketing automation can improve your creative team’s workflow
In the MarTech article, Withers showed us how the increased speed with which marketing teams can churn out effective campaigns is tipping the scales for overworked creatives. He shares, “Consequently, the creative team, tasked with fulfilling that demand, is often stuck managing exponentially growing workloads by sorting through emails and spreadsheets to make sense of more requests on tighter deadlines.”
One of the benefits of marketing automation is that materials are able to be centralized and viewing permissions can be set. This means that the appropriate parties are looking at and giving feedback to the same campaign materials (like design, copy and html mock-ups) in real-time. Eliminating multiple iterations and email reply chains while the creative is under review is a huge sanity saver.
Design templates or themes can also be centralized so that part of the campaign creation process includes pre-selecting graphic elements that have been loaded in by your team. This isn’t viable for every campaign but using templates for ongoing, high-volume email and mobile campaigns frees up your talent’s time.
Marketing automation produces better creative briefs
Marketing automation gives your campaign team a framework to work within during ideation sessions. They can come to the table with a clear idea of who they want to engage with as well as what the customer’s needs and preferences are. Eliminating the guesswork prior to a brainstorming session means that more of what comes out of the collaborative process is applicable. Since the dreaded, vague, creative brief can usually be traced back to a campaign idea that wasn’t well vetted – expect to see briefs that are more thorough when your team begins the process with customer engagement insights in-hand.
When the creative direction is on target, the back-and-forth between campaign management and creative is also markedly reduced. Clearly written creative briefs take away the guesswork from content writers and graphic designers who require an understanding of the target audience. UX professionals and web developers are also empowered by upfront, end-user data.
Marketing automation can take creativity to the next level
The Harvard Business Review’s article, “Selling the Brand Inside” does a great job of summing up how leadership can use change to fire up their organization. “At certain turning points, times when the company is experiencing some fundamental challenge or change, employees are seeking direction and are relatively receptive to these (new) initiatives. Such moments can create either positive or negative energy—enthusiasm for new programs or unproductive rumor-mongering.”
The implementation, or re-launch, of marketing automation systems within your organization can be looked at as an opportunity to inspire creativity. Encourage your marketing and creative teams to take a look at companies that are already using this technology to parlay their creativity to the next level.
Check out the 5-step visual blueprint to learn how you can combine creativity and intelligence in your organization. There is also a complete “The Future of Marketing Is Creative” report that covers how marketing leaders deal with the intersection of EQ and AI, and an action plan to transform your organization.