As a marketer, you're busy. And, even though you probably already know that automating tasks and workflows can free up a lot of time, it takes a lot of focus to set up, right?
Well, not necessarily.
With all of the marketing automation tools at your fingertips, it's simpler and speedier than ever to streamline your workflows.
To maximize your automation strategy, we've compiled some of the best marketing tasks that you should automate in your workflow.
35 Marketing Tasks to Automate
1. Delivering Content Downloads
One of the most effective areas of your marketing strategy to automate is email. As one example, you can set up automated emails to deliver content opt-ins such as reports, ebooks, and free templates.
This can be instead of (or as well as) triggering the download in the person's browser. It also has the added benefit of enabling you to add a 'next step' CTA in the email body.
2. Email Newsletters
There's a wide spectrum of what you can do to speed up the time you spend on email newsletters.
You can start by streamlining simple things such as creating email templates or easily duplicated header designs to speed up your production process.
But your automation options don't end there. There's plenty of options of complex automation you can implement to suit your specific needs.
3. Drip Campaigns
Email drip campaigns are a pivotal part of any digital marketing strategy. By automatically enrolling contacts in a campaign based on defined criteria (such as opting into your mailing list or purchasing a specific product or service), you can automatically send tailored content at set intervals.
Most drip campaigns work effectively when there's a 'goal' for the lead to reach — such as subscribing to one of your paid plans. When they reach this, you can automatically unenroll them from this drip campaign and even enroll them in another one instead.
Here's a simple example of a drip campaign made with GetResponse:
4. Smart Personalization in Emails
All top email marketing platforms offer personalization tokens to customize your content for every recipient.
Take a closer look at your automated emails and regular newsletters to identify where and how you can put them to the best use.
5. Cart Abandonment Emails
Savvy marketers know to keep an eye on leads that are nearly converting but need a nudge to cross the line.
If you have an ecommerce store, this can be enabled with an automated cart abandonment email, just like what Shopify offers:
6. Customized Email Campaigns
Rather than having email drip campaigns for only one stage of your funnel, take time to create customized email campaigns for the entire customer lifecycle journey. You can create campaigns that share:
- Top-of-funnel content for new leads unfamiliar with your product or service
- Middle-of-funnel content that mentions your product and shows ways it can help them to solve their pain points and reach their goals
- Bottom-of-funnel content with a deeper product focus
When these three types of campaigns are used together, you can seamlessly guide new leads to become paying customers — at the right pace and without more manual work on your plate.
7. Email Follow-Up
Fed up of manually chasing people who haven't got back to you? Many CRMs enable you to automatically follow up after a set interval (such as one week) so you don't have to spend hours on tedious follow-up.
Lead Generation Tasks
8. Minimalist Lead Generation
If you prefer a subtle approach to automated lead gen, there are countless tactics and brands to inspire your strategy.
On their simply-designed website, podcasters and writers The Minimalists show that lead gen doesn't have to be sleazy. It can be, well, minimal:
9. Website Banner Promotions
Got a webinar coming up or an offer expiring soon? Pin a minimally intrusive banner to the top of your website to feature an offer to visitors who land on your website.
10. Landing Page CTA's
Ask yourself: how can you encourage your website visitors and blog readers to stick around and explore other pages?
This "New here? Click me" button on the bottom right of Marie Forleo's blog headers is a good example of finding creative solutions to boost time-on-site:
11. Recurring Webinars
The online business platform Kajabi offers daily educational and Q&A webinars to provide trial users with more value.
This can be a really effective way to convert more people into customers — especially if you can introduce automation to boost ROI.
Many of Kajabi's sessions are automated, including weekly sessions for 'Create and Sell a Product' and 'Marketing Pipelines.'
12. Dynamic CTAs
One of the most powerful features in HubSpot's Marketing Hub is Smart CTAs. By adding a Smart CTA to your website — such as in a blog post or sidebar — you can display the most relevant call-to-action to every visitor.
You could promote a product-focused webinar to sales-qualified leads while showing new visitors a more top-of-funnel content upgrade.
14. Slide-in CTA's
If you have created downloadables such as ebooks, worksheets, templates, or other resources, you can use these as a powerful tool for automated lead gen on your blog posts. One way to capture new leads and get more downloads is with a slide-in CTA connected to a form.
Social Media Tasks
14. Facebook Bots
An impactful and highly personalized way to automate lead generation is with a Facebook bot that guides new leads through a conversion process.
This example shows a simple use case that automatically delivers a content upgrade via Facebook Messenger:
15. Social Media Scheduling
A super helpful way to save time scheduling your social media posts in advance is with a social media management app like Buffer.
In your Buffer Analytics, there's also a handy 'Share Again' button that you can use to reschedule the same posts that worked well the first time.
16. Dynamic Content
With dynamic content on your website, you can boost conversion rates by automatically showing the most relevant content to each individual lead.
As one example, with HubSpot you can add smart content to your emails, website pages, landing pages, and templates.
After adding a smart content area, you can then automatically show different content based on:
- Device type
- Referral source
- Preferred language
- Contact list membership
- Contact lifecycle stage
17. Content Production Queue
Trello is one of the most popular and straightforward ways to manage your team's content queue. But did you know it also provides a ton of options to automate project management, including keeping your content pipeline on track?
With Butler, Trello's automation feature, you can create hundreds of rule-based and if-this-then-that automation to keep your content team on schedule.
18. SEO Site Audit
Not every marketing team has the resources to hire an in-house SEO specialist. Even if you do, there are many tools to help you streamline your SEO and stay on top of website problems and opportunities.
Although it's not the cheapest on the market, Ahrefs is one of the most popular and feature-rich SEO tools to optimize your search presence.
As one stand-out feature, it delivers a Site Audit to crawl every area of your website, list all issues, and categorize these by type and priority level. You can then resolve these one by one and re-run the Site Audit when you're ready to check for improvements.
19. Keyword Research
Another area where Ahrefs shines is keyword research. It's super simple to track the keywords you're currently ranking for, look for opportunities related to your relevant topics, and even identify what your competitors are ranking for that you aren't.
20. Upselling Customers
Marketing isn't just about leads, it's also about your existing customers. Automation is a powerful ally when it comes to upselling customers at the ideal time with products and services similar to those they have already gained value from.
21. Live Chat
Live chat has moved from being a nice-to-have to a must-have for many businesses. Your customers and potential customers want to easily and quickly get in touch with you.
With live chat apps such as what Drift offers, you can create automated chatbots that are configured to bring in marketing leads, not just sales-ready prospects.
22. Lead Qualification
GetResponse is another handy tool for strengthening your marketing team's bridge to sales and helping them identify quality leads.
With a marketing automation platform, you can make sure your leads are sales-qualified before proceeding through a pipeline.
23. Lead Scoring
With lead scoring tools, you can effectively track engagement and know which leads to follow up with or enroll in a workflow that's further down the funnel.
ActiveCampaign makes it easy to reward points and deduct them based on specific behavior and engagement, such as when a lead downloads content or visits your pricing page.
24. Good-Fit Leads
ActiveCampaign also notifies you when leads are becoming more engaged. It automatically triggers email notifications and assigns tasks based on lead score changes.
25. Automated Product Demo Video
As an example of automated sales-qualified lead gen, Marketo gates its demo video behind a form to collect data from qualified leads.
26. Lead Assignment
With sales automation you can automatically distribute your new leads and deals based on:
- An evenly distributed round-robin
- Based on value (to ensure all sales reps get about the same amount of value over time)
27. Trial Extension Offers
If someone signs up for a trial of your product but doesn't convert, consider sending them a trial extension offer.
This effective example from Kajabi is generous and highly personalized to encourage conversions.
Management & Organization Tasks
28. Contact Management
Your losing a lot of time in your workday if your business doesn't have an automated way to organize contacts from all channels
Your answer to this is a cloud-based CRM system with built-in pipeline management and automation capacities, such as what Copper, HubSpot, and Pipedrive offer.
29. Inbox Filtering
You don't have to reach inbox zero, but you can clear up a lot of the chaos in your inbox using automated inbox filtering. Here's a quick WikiHow tutorial on how to use Gmail's priority inbox feature.
30. Sync New CRM Leads
Two of the most important tools in your marketing stack are your CRM and email marketing app.
Your CRM works best when it's at the center of your stack with contacts from other apps instantly synced. It's also important to ensure that the right leads are in your newsletter list. You can achieve both of these goals by keeping your CRM and email platform in sync.
As well as syncing relevant new CRM contacts with your newsletter list, you can also instantly remove leads from your mailing lists if they opt-out in another app.
31. Marketing Reports
It's easy to spend a lot of your workweek on reporting: finding the right data, creating visualizations, and sharing these with your team.
Here's a free Google Data Studio reporting template that shows how you could automatically connect your data.
32. Updating Meeting Slides
Instead of manually updating Google Slides with the right data ahead of meetings, you can automatically sync charts and data views in Google Sheets with Slides (and Docs) to free up time and reduce scope for error.
33. Slack Reminders
If you're a regular Slack user, you have lots of automation options to streamline your workflows. You can take advantage of this by setting up a weekly Slack reminder to prep for upcoming team meetings.
34. Team Progress Updates
Another example of how to take advantage of Slack automation is by asking for updates on important projects at the start of every week. Similar to Slack reminders, you can message your team on a recurring basis so you're always in the loop.
35. Project Management
Like Slack, Trello is another app that you can quickly level up with automation.
For instance, if your editorial team has a content planning board, whenever a blog post is moved to the 'Editing' column on Trello, the due date is automatically updated and the right team member is assigned to make sure each piece is edited on time:
36. Contact Data Enrichment
Do you find yourself having to manually find out information about a new lead? Use Clearbit to automatically enrich the data you have for every new lead that enters your CRM and marketing apps.
37. Automated Data Syncing
Manually exporting and importing data between apps will never be the highlight of any marketer's day.
To free up time for what really drives your KPIs while improving data quality in all of your marketing apps, set up a two-way data sync between your apps. This will keep the customer data in sync not only across your marketing apps, but throughout your entire tech stack, too.