When you are using marketing automation to improve connections with your prospects and customers, you are always trying to do better. No matter how long you have been doing it, there are always new lessons to learn. These lessons are everywhere if you are just paying attention.
I gave myself a challenge for this blog post just to prove that point. Many content creators use stock photos and sometimes you get tired of the same images over and over. And not just on your own blog, but on everyone's blog. If I see one more finger touching the inside of my monitor I think I will scream.
So not only did I start by searching for images I hadn't seen before, but I chose images that I couldn't imagine anyone using. Ever. Some made me laugh out loud. All of them made me shake my head. Why do these even exist?
And now, here are 10 marketing automation lessons from bad stock photos.
1. Don't Look into My Eyes
Everyone has something they fear about marketing automation. It could be setting up your lead scoring correctly, figuring out how often to send your nurture emails, or even just mapping out the logic of your campaigns. You are not the first person to do this, so seek help from others or even download some marketing automation resources.
2. Punch Your Way Through the Holidays
The year is filled with holidays that drive both marketing campaigns and activity slowdown. If you are a global company, your prospects and customers might be celebrating holidays that you don't even know about. The way to handle these ups and downs is to stick to your plans, knowing that everything will balance out across the year.
3. Too Many Phones are Ringing
Someone once said that you have to prepare for success as well as failure. What happens when your campaigns are too successful and you don't have the staff to handle both the inbound and outbound call volumes? You could slow down, or pause your marketing campaigns, but a huge upside is just like a huge downside. You are better off continuing with the plan. It's like investing, and you always invest the same amount no matter if things are up or down.
4. Don't Beat Up Your Prospects with Too Many Emails
Everyone gets too much email, including your prospects. If your open and click through rates are going down, and the content of the emails has not substantially changed, then you might be emailing too much. Consider slowing down the flow of communication to try to get the numbers back up.
5. Sometimes A Lead Can Seem Too Hot
We are all looking for hot leads, and when a lead looks to be on fire, you just can't get it to sales fast enough. While there may be some leads where that is true, take a deep breath and realize that it is probably not true this time. Sales can likely use their normally follow-up process.
6. Babies Should Not Sit in a Pile of Vegetables
This is an example of two things that really don't go together. You need to make sure that the content in your email campaigns is really appropriate for your prospects. If you are gathering activity data and online data about them, then you know what they are interested in. Use that information to determine what will catch their attention.
7. Sometimes It's Hard to See What's Right in Front of You
Lots of marketers still struggle with metrics and reporting, which means they don't know what success looks like. No matter what marketing automation system you use, there are metrics. Start with standard reports while you are figuring out what's important to your business, but ultimately you are trying to get to things that are important to your executives.
8. In the Box is Better for Some People
How many times have you heard to think outside the box? Sometimes the box really is the place to be. There are standard ways to do things and it makes sense to follow best practices. Do something different if that doesn't work, but start with the tried and true before you deviate.
9. Cotton Candy, Ice Cream, and Marshmallows Can Make Your Day
These are things that make you happy. It's good to remember that our prospects are also people. And they like to be happy too. What if your next email was more about making someone smile instead of clicking a link? It could be a different way to start building that relationship where they trust you.
10. Think of Your Sales Team as Partners, Not Combatants
After someone responds to a marketing automation campaign and they get qualified, that lead is passed on to sales. There is often animosity between marketing and sales over quality of leads, however, marketing automation has helped that some. We should think of sales as our partners and work to improve alignment between the two teams.
While some of these stock photos may have a mythic quality to them, download the latest ebook to get back to your own reality.
This post originally appeared on the Modern Marketing Blog.