More than half (51%) of companies currently use some kind of marketing automation according to research by emailmonday.
Another 58% plan to use it within the next few years.
There is no question that marketing automation technology has many benefits for both B2B and B2C companies.
Coupled with a packed content marketing strategy, marketing automation tools can make the process of publishing and promoting content much easier, as well as streamlining the customer acquisition and lead nurturing process.
One of the key benefits of marketing automation is that you can build a bank of content and periodically schedule it for publishing and promotion way in advance, allowing you to plan your content strategy and make running campaigns easier.
But, while it can be tempting to plug in your marketing automation, schedule your content and then let it run, you need to make sure to build in some flexibility into your content plan to deal with unforeseen changes.
This is true now more than ever.
Reviewing your content marketing automation
The biggest problem with marketing automation, is that the world doesn’t stop moving around it, and like the last few months have shown, a lot can change in a short amount of it.
You might have your content marketing automated for the next few months, but you should still run regular reviews of what you’ve scheduled to go out on any given week.
Particularly on social media - where events change at light speed and even the most innocently mistimed post can land your brand in a “social media storm”.
Especially now, the biggest piece of advice to give your marketing team is to review everything you have scheduled to go out in the next few weeks and make sure it is not going to go against the current mood.
Your customers might enjoy your weekly “top holiday destinations” content normally, but it’s not particularly what they want to hear right now.
Empathy is the new King
We all know the old adage “Content is King” and while it hasn’t been completely dethroned just yet, empathy and tone are making a big play to replace it right now.
We’ve mentioned before the importance of getting your messaging right in a time of crisis and having some agility built into your content marketing plans. Don’t underestimate the importance of this right now.
Your social media schedule might be filled with some of your best puns, jokes and barbs but if you wrote it a few weeks ago it is likely not relevant anymore to what your audience wants and (worse) could be taken as insensitive and showing a lack of awareness.
Timing is everything
If content marketing is about getting the right content, with the right message in front of the right people at the right time, then now is definitely when you should be reviewing your marketing automation strategy.
Unfortunately it’s all too easy for a social media post you planned weeks ago to slip through the gaps and go live at the worst time.
Right now you should be focusing on reviewing all the content you had planned and making sure it is still relevant to what your audience is looking for and (more importantly) that it won’t land you on a “biggest social media screw ups” blog at the end of the year.
If you’re not sure what you should or shouldn’t delay in your marketing automation schedule just think, “are people going to find this useful and relevant right now”.
If not, you might want to think about postponing it.
For a few examples of some of the worst social media disasters, have a read of this article by PCMag.
This is a point applicable at all times to social media, not just during a time of change. This blog on how to improve your social outreach strategy gives some good advice.
Getting your message across in a human, empathetic way has never been more important, and video is an essential tool for doing it effectively.
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