Wouldn’t it be nice if your buyers were predictable? If they’d always follow the same path to purchase, and you could easily predict their behaviors and purchasing patterns? It would make marketing and closing deals much easier, that’s for sure.
But as you know, prospects and customers aren’t predictable. Their buying patterns, channel interactions, and more change quickly. That’s why keeping up with them using manual efforts is a frustrating task — and it’s also why you gotta use marketing automation.
On average, businesses that use marketing automation to nurture prospects experience a 451% increase in qualified leads. If you think that’s impressive, consider that those leads spend nearly 50% more on purchases than their “non-nurtured” lead counterparts.
Maybe you’re already using marketing automation to some degree, and you’d like to use it more but aren’t sure where to start. Or perhaps you’re just figuring out how the heck to meet your huge marketing goals for the new year. Regardless, understanding the hottest marketing automation trends for 2023 can help you get ahead of what’s next.
1. Fixing the “Doing More With Less” Problem
Do you feel like you’re being asked to do more with less? If so, you are not alone. An article published by Ad Age explains how the pandemic and recession worries are influencing “marketing spend and budget.” Some marketing departments have brought previously outsourced responsibilities in-house without increasing their head count. More work, the same amount of staff.
Increased pressure to do more with less will spur many departments to create new strategies to offload mundane tasks and free up valuable hours — such as leveraging marketing automation. For example, the growth of marketing automation increased from 22% in 2021 to 29% in 2022, and this growth trend is expected to continue as it transitions from “nice to have” to a must-have tool.
2. Marketers Will Zero In On Customer Retention Using Automation
You know the cycle: you identify a new lead, nurture it until it becomes an opportunity and then close the deal. But as all good marketers know at this point, your job isn’t over, it’s just begun.
Increasing customer retention by as little as 5% can more than double your revenue. Yet interestingly enough, many companies still struggle with customer churn. The average churn rate across all industries is up to 30%.
We predict that in 2023, marketers will increasingly solve retention challenges and capture more revenue by leveraging marketing automation. Using this tool, marketers will:
- Collect and act on more customer data.
- Improve customer onboarding.
- Deploy re-engagement strategies.
- Automate follow-ups for faster responses.
- Build communities among prospects.
Additionally, more marketers will use automation to improve engagement through multiple channels, engaging customers where they spend time, on their terms, and through their preferred communication methods.
3. Optimizing Data Will Become More Critical
Your data is a gold mine. But you can’t “strike gold” if you don’t have the right tools to help you dig in the best spots. And this is where automation becomes important.
An old story exists about a man who caught “gold fever” during the gold rush. He staked a claim and got to work. Eventually, he found gold, but he lost the vein shortly thereafter. He labored to find it again but finally gave up and sold the claim. A new owner took a different approach using different resources and tools. He hired a mining engineer to run calculations and quickly found the gold vein — just three feet from where the prior owner had stopped digging.
What’s the point?
Marketing automation helps you find critical information; it knows where to “dig.” What’s more, data-driven automation will be “hot” in 2023, with one-third of enterprises prioritizing data-driven automation, according to Forrester research. Using automation, you can pinpoint a customer’s exact location along their journey so you can send them more relevant content and move them further along the path to purchase. Capabilities such as automatic lead scoring have a potentially huge impact on your marketing team and allow them to zero in on the leads most likely to convert.
4. Accuracy of Data Gets More Attention
The problem has never been having enough data. You have a ton of it. The challenge is that your brand-new data gets old fast. People change jobs and get promotions, and changes like these can quickly erode data quality.
During the height of the “Great Resignation” in 2021, over 47 million Americans voluntarily quit their jobs. That year alone, marketers likely experienced a huge amount of data decay. Under normal conditions, data decays at roughly 30% per year — costing businesses millions annually.
With data becoming outdated so quickly, it only emphasizes the need for good data hygiene practices. Create rules around activity to monitor if someone should be included on a list based on their engagement. A helpful tool to execute on rules and make sure your lists are clean and organized is marketing automation. It supports your internal audit processes so you can get the most from your marketing efforts.
5. Omnichannel Marketing will Advance
Improving customer experiences across multiple channels isn’t new to marketers. You’ve been working on this task for years. But we predict that omnichannel personalization will become more of a requirement and expectation moving forward. Consider that:
- Omni-channel campaigns that use at least three or more channels boost their order rate by 494% compared to a campaign that only uses one channel.
- Over half of brands invest in automation tools to help promote their products across multiple channels.
- Organizations that don’t promote products and services across multiple channels miss up to 30% of potential sales.
Omnichannel personalization isn’t just about email nurturing, it’s about targeted ads, SMS, strategic phone calls, and more, to personalize the buyer journey. Marketing automation helps to collect a variety of data to understand the customer journey from start to finish. As a result, marketers understand the prospect’s needs in the moment of relevance, and deliver on the personalization that customers expect.
Staying a Step Ahead
You likely have big marketing plans for 2023. Marketing automation helps you squeeze more out of your resources to get the right content into the right hands at the right moment. It helps you meet prospects where they’re at, and create serendipitous moments where a customer feels like, “Wow, this company really gets it.” As a marketer, that will help you meet goals more easily, especially if you’re already navigating the “doing more with less” challenge many marketers will face in 2023.