Photo by Sean Hickin
To be a good marketer involves some forms of guess work. Creating a successful marketing campaign takes careful predictive research mixed in with some hard work. Within the digital age being able to make sound predictions on how things will play out is becoming increasingly difficult. Certain marketing phases have come and gone (viral marketing), while these marketing methods can still produce results, it is always better to stay ahead of the crowd than trying to catch-up.
I believe that 2016 will be the year of automation.
What I mean by automation is the adoption of marketing automation systems by an increasing number of small to medium size companies.
While large organisations have been enjoying the benefits of marketing automation for some years now, many small to medium size organisations have begun implementing automation software. By the end of 2016 having a marketing automation system will become the norm.
Why do I say this?
Well when you begin to look into the facts it all begins to point in one direction.
According, to Software Advice (Gartner) 98% of the businesses they spoke with are looking for a marketing automation solution (http://www.business2community.com/marketing-automation/businesses-want-marketing-automation-01418821#Oh8uqDcTmYWFxvTd.97). Also 84% of these businesses had a turnover of 5 million or less. Therefore, marketing automation systems are becoming more accessible for smaller firms and is no longer reserved for massive global companies. 98% is an abnormally high percentage of businesses to be looking for a marketing automation solution, understandably this is only the companies Software Advice had spoken to. Even though this is only a small selection of organisations, 98% is too high a percentage to ignore. So why are smaller organisations adopting marketing automation systems?
Well, another 2014 report by Software Advice goes on to say that companies are looking for marketing automation to improve organisational efficiency.
The below table represents a sample of a survey conducted by Software Advice.
Photo by Software Advice (http://www.softwareadvice.com/resources/marketing-automation-buyer-report-2014/)
When looking at global scale, internet adoption rates are driving the need for marketing automation software. According to Internet World Stats, the percentage of the global population that has adopted the internet has increased by 4% from December 2014 to December 2015. With an estimated 46.4% of the world’s population now connected. At this rate by the end of 2016 just over half of the world’s population will be connected to the World Wide Web. This creates an enormous number of business opportunities online, which makes having an automated marketing system crucial as we move toward the end of this year.
Obviously, these are not the only factors towards adoption of an automated system. Improved organisational efficiency, improved customer satisfaction, greater lead qualification are just some of the benefits to a marketing automation system.
As 2016 begins small business owners, marketing managers and CEO’s all need to start asking the question of marketing automation. The question is no longer “Do we need marketing automation?” it has evolved into “Can we afford not to be automated?”.