Automation has tremendous potential to streamline processes, improve responsiveness, expand your reach and wring more out of your marketing budget. However, making the transition from entrenched traditional workflows to automation is a complex challenge from both a technical and strategic standpoint. Luckily, there’s a way for innovative businesses to implement automation without a crippling long-term commitment; marketing automation staffing.
Ultimate marketing automation usage statistic: on average 49% of companies are currently using marketing automation. With more than half of B2B companies (55%) adopting the technology. – Emailmonday “The Ultimate Marketing Automation stats” (2016)
Designing and executing an automation strategy requires substantial expertise—an investment into talent that many businesses find inhibitive. Most marketing budgets, even of very large companies, don’t have the capacity to just add marketing automation professionals to their full-time headcount.
Organizations lagging behind on automation are stuck between a rock and hard place. Every day they go without, they’re at risk of diminishing ROI and falling far behind their competition. Yet great marketing automation professionals are hard to find and don’t come cheap.
An Interim Solution for Interim Challenges
Staffing is a particularly effective solution to the automation challenge thanks to its nature. In general, the most difficult aspect of implementing automation is the initial establishment of systems, processes and technology. Once all these key pieces are in place, maintaining, updating and optimizing your automated systems is a much more manageable task.
For instance, imagine you wanted to build an automated email drip campaign to all newsletter subscribers or customers. From an automation standpoint, the most complex and involved aspects of establishing such an initiative will come upfront: choosing an email distribution service, determining triggers and touch points, developing response and unsubscribe systems, building a process to instantly add new contacts to the mailing list, tracking the campaigns’ performance metrics, etc.
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It would likely require an extremely experienced automation expert (or perhaps several) to construct all this infrastructure quickly and without making any crucial errors. But once established, a well-built digital marketing department should be able to adjust distribution timings, email copy, list segmentation, and much more.
Why Scaling Your Automation Needs Is Wise
In most cases like this, your greatest need for automation expertise is at the beginning of your initiatives and at times when technology failure causes an error. It’s important to be able to quickly scale your capacity up and down to deal with these spikes in demand while maintaining a steady core of digital talent to optimize your automated systems.
Marketing automation staffing is a good way to get access to that talent for a specific amount of time to get your projects going or fix one-off technical issues without having to commit to a full time hire.
Other Advantages of Contracting Your Marketing Automation Work
An In-House Answer
Many other aspects of digital marketing, from certain aspects of SEO to advertising, can be outsourced to an agency if you’re not prepared to handle them on your own. That’s not a practical solution for automation, though; it’s an internal challenge that requires an in-house solution. External third parties won’t be able to fully understand how things work in your business to build the most effective automation systems, but staffing talent works right alongside your team and gets a firsthand perspective.
The Value of Flexibility
What’s the ideal way to tackle your unique automation needs? Do you need a marketing automation consultant to help you build a strategy from scratch? Some experts to train your current marketers? A large team of experienced automation professionals to update your entire department at once? Whatever your situation calls for, staffing makes it possible with varying contract lengths, levels of talent, and fields of expertise. A good marketing automation staffing firm with plenty of experience placing talent can work with you to develop a custom talent formula to get your marketing on the path to automation.
More Freedom to Experiment
Interested in trying an experimental automation system or strategy? That’s great–but it can also be risky. Adding on full-time staff for a new initiative that you’re not 100% sure will work can be costly. With marketing automation staffing, there’s less commitment required on your part. If things don’t go according to plan, you can simply let the contracts expire and try something else.