Marketing automation is just clever software, which if implemented and managed in the right way can save you time and money - automating your marketing and ensuring the right person, gets the right message, at the right time. More relevance means more engagement. More engagement means more sales. And the really exciting thing is it can be used as a framework, to manage the risk of your marketing spend by increasing visibility of your marketing channels, A/B testing and lowering the burden of operating a multichannel campaign. The marketing industry is moving more towards cost per click and even cost per lead models. gone are the days where unless you had enough budget many channels were not even worth trying. New channels for content distribution, article spreading, banner adverts, video, podcast open up every month and the ultimate model is a self serve platform where you pay for each click or even each lead you receive. If you only pay for clicks, or even leads, you can manage the risk on your marketing spend because if a particular channel doesn’t work you change it. So adding new channels to your marketing strategy could be adding £300 a month or even £50 a month to your costs. You optimise and then move on to the next channel. Each channel you add grows your reach, grows your leads and grows your market. Marketing automation helps you in 3 ways Firstly automation reduces cost and keeps things simple because otherwise you are giving yourself more and more to do. Each time you add a channel you have more work to do. With automation this is greatly reduced. Secondly, marketing automation is essential because it creates visibility of marketing funnel. Getting a clear simple picture of one end of the marketing funnel to the other is critical to lowering your risk. You need to know where the bleed is, where you are losing people in the funnel and how to optimise to improve results. With all the analytical tools around it is still really hard to get this complete view. If marketing automation is set up in the right way you can tracks prospects from unknown visitors at the top of the funnel to sales at the bottom – automatically. Thirdly, as you add channel after channel you need to be able to optimise each one. A/B testing helps raise the performance of advert titles, refine the layout of landing pages to reduce bounce rate, monitoring email engagement to tweak your messaging. To do this with 3 or 4 different tools, takes more time and can be glitchy. To have one centralised system where this all takes place gives you speed, and allows you to effectively grow and optimise your channels with the greatest efficiency.