Inbound Marketing

5 Biggest Marketing Automation Fails & How to Avoid Them

As a busy advisor and business owner, we know your days are jam-packed. But just because you have a lot on your plate doesn’t mean your marketing has to be put on the backburner. Using marketing automation tools can decrease the time you spend on social posts, email blasts, and any other content in your strategy. But be warned… relying completely on these tools can lead to big marketing flops. These 5 mistakes can be embarrassing, so steer clear of them! 

Mistake #1: Placeholder Copy

If you’re a person that likes to work ahead, this is an important one for you. Sometimes you’ll jump the gun and write something before all of the information, like the specifics of a promotion or a link to a blog, is accessible. So you write “(DELETE ME AND INSERT LINK HERE)” in the caption of your post with the intent of coming back to fill in the details. But somehow, it gets missed before scheduling the email to send. Spell check is great, but it won’t pick up on these kinds of things.

Twenty Over Ten takes a Monday flop with the classic *add link*

It’s especially important to prevent this in email marketing. Email is a great way to spread the word about promotions, but if you choose to use it, make sure to update the text!  54% of people surveyed said they would unsubscribe ASAP when an irrelevant or nonexistent offer hits their inbox. Not only is this frustrating for clients, but it also makes your firm seem untrustworthy.

To avoid this, hold off on scheduling or sending anything until you have all of the pieces you need to include. And always read through everything twice… or even three times.

Mistake #2: Personalization Slip-Ups

In today’s digital age, consumers are expecting more and more personalization. Automation tools are making this much easier for marketers, but a slip up in words can make a very impersonal impression. We’ve all gotten an automated email that starts with “Dear FirstName LastName.” This blunder seems to happen all the time and also involves other personalized fields such as company names, industry, or location. Regardless of what field is missing, this never looks good.

Personalization is great, but it has to be done right. An effective way to collect personal information is to include optional checkboxes or fields to fill out on your submission forms on landing pages. You can then create and manage multiple lists in your email automation service based on the personalized information provided.

WealthKeel backs their email personalization by including personal information on their landing page for their lists.

Mistake #3: The All-For-One Email Blast

Staying on the topic of email, it’s never a good idea to automate the same message to every person in your system. Inbox clutter is frustrating for everyone, so you should never be sending a lead an email that isn’t relevant to them. Although automating emails is a great way to reach your potential clients, you should first take the time to segment your contact data into different lists to target them with more relevant messages.

Different clients have different needs. For example, young couples will have very different pain points and areas of interest than retiring business owners. Similarly, you may have clients interested in different services, such as estate planning, investment management or education planning. These kinds of clients should be getting different marketing messages from your firm. 

MailChimp is a great automated email service that can help you create your newsletter and segment lists. You are able to filter and group subscribers based on any criteria that you choose, but the goal is to target each segment and provide them with the most relevant content possible.

Mistake #4: Wrong Time, Wrong Place

We always preach the necessity of editorial calendars. Planning everything out in advance is a great way to ensure consistency and takes a lot of time out of content creation. However, if you’re sloppy about scheduling everything as you’d originally planned, your editorial calendar is useless.

There are certain times that garner more attention and engagement with content. For example, posts sent out in the morning or at the very end of the workday on LinkedIn tend to reach more people. If you mean to schedule a LinkedIn post for 8 a.m. but you accidentally schedule it for 8 p.m., this can have a huge impact on the post’s success. This might seem like a small mistake, but it can do huge damage to your social presence.

To prevent this, be sure to double or even triple check over the time, day, and platform you scheduled your content for. Once you’ve loaded everything in and hit “schedule,” go through and check each post alongside your editorial calendar. 

Hootsuite is a great automation tool for your social media posts. You can pre-schedule posts on any social media platform. It can save you tons of time, but make sure to use it carefully!

Mistake #5: Relying Completely on Automation

As much as we love them, relying completely on automation tools isn’t a great idea. Although they save us time and energy, you still need to devote time to a crucial part of any marketing strategyengagement.

This means when potential clients interact with your posts or emails, you need to be acknowledging them fast. Reply to shares, mentions, and comments as soon as you can. Past your own profile, be sure to engage with others’ posts on your feed. Follow and engage with other advisors, thought leaders, and associations in the financial services industry to humanize your online presence. Don’t just talk at your followers – make them feel like they’re a part of the conversation!

An easy way to do this is to keep notifications for your profiles on your phone. This will tell you when someone has interacted with one of your posts. In addition to this, setting aside 5 or 10 minutes at the end of each day to go through each of your social accounts and feeds is another great way to keep up engagement.

Auctus Advisors share a Facebook post they were tagged in to engage back with their followers.

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About the author

Blair Kelly

Blair is a digital marketing assistant at Twenty Over Ten and has a passion for uncovering what drives online traffic and the highest engagement. She follows more animals on Instagram than humans and her greatest achievement is her daughter, Grey.