Top 9 Best Practices of Marketing Automation

Tamara is a passionate SEO content writer at SayNine. She enjoys making genuine and authentic content that people can easily connect with. When she’s not working, you will likely find her traveling and enjoying concerts in different corners of the world. But don’t be mistaken, she's usually an introvert whose favorite thing is to stay home, enjoy the latest Netflix shows, and, like any other gen-z, scroll through TikTok. 12 minute read

Businesses are constantly looking for ways to simplify their operational processes, and luckily, in today’s world, there are so many tools and methods to help them. Out of all these methods, what I want to talk about today is marketing automation. 

Studies show that 76% of companies use marketing automation. Automation might seem scary and complicated at first; however, that is entirely true. As with almost any other task, the hardest thing to do is to start it, but once you lay the groundwork, the only thing you will regret is not starting sooner.

Automations are here for one reason and one reason only: to make your life easier by taking the boring, time-consuming, repeated tasks off of your shoulders. Whether you are a skilled marketing specialist, a beginner just dipping your toes in the automation pool, or maybe even neither, let’s discover the world of marketing automation together. 

What is Marketing Automation?

When talking about marketing automation, we usually have some type of software in our minds. These software are the tools that handle different tasks with little to no human intervention and help marketers automate repetitive and monotonous tasks like sending out emails, scheduling posts, and even ad campaigns. 

Why is Marketing Automation So Vital?  

Marketing automation has become the best friend of so many businesses, so let’s look at some of the reasons why they give it so much importance.

  • Lead Nurturing and Conversion

Lead nurturing is where marketing automation shines, helping prospective clients go through the sales funnel. Automated workflows can score leads based on engagement, send follow-up emails, and distribute information that is specifically tailored to increase the chance of conversion.

  • Efficiency Boost

Having marketing automation in place helps free up valuable time for marketing specialists, which can be spent much more efficiently. It will allow them to be occupied with higher-level tasks, such as developing strategies and coming up with creative ideas. 

  • Timely Communication

Automated emails, SMS, and push notifications ensure that the customers get the right messages at the right time of their customer journey. 

  • Personalization

Adding a personal touch always shows results because everyone is sick and tired of generic communication. Automation tools help businesses tailor their messages based on individual customer preferences, behaviors, and demographics. This, without a doubt, enhances customer engagement and builds stronger connections.

  • Cost-Efficiency

Yes, these tools require an initial investment, but their long-term benefits outweigh the cost! Automating repetitive tasks and optimizing campaigns helps achieve a higher return on investment (ROI) and distribute resources more efficiently.

  • Consistency Across Channels

Maintaining a consistent brand image across various marketing channels plays a huge role in building trust. Marketing automation ensures that messaging and branding elements are consistent across email, social media, and other platforms, creating a cohesive and recognizable brand identity.

No matter what kind of business you’re running, whether big or small, and however you operate, marketing automation is always there to give you a hand.

So, let’s see which principles you can use to gain the most out of your marketing software.

Marketing Automation: 9 Best Practices

Like with any other tool, simply installing marketing automation software is not a solution. There are steps you need to take for it to serve its purpose fully.

  1. Understand Your Audience

Before implementing any strategy, it is essential to fully grasp who your audience is and identify their preferences and behavior. Create buyer personas and always try to get in their minds and think from their point of view before making big decisions. Here’s how you can gather the information you need about customers.

  • Surveys and Focus Groups

These are great ways to get insights straight from the source, ask for their opinion before even launching new ideas into the market, or get their feedback after they have already used your service or product.

  • Social Media Listening 

In today’s world, it is essential to monitor social media to find out what people are saying both about your brand and about the industry as a whole. Keeping tabs on social media conversations helps get an understanding of the sentiments, trends, and discussions that shape public perceptions.

  • Website Analytics

Explore and analyze the data provided by different website analytic tools. This can help you identify your customers’ patterns, preferences, and interests.

  • Customer Support Interactions

Your customer support team is on the front lines of customer interaction. Analyze customer support interactions, including common queries, concerns, and feedback. This type of real-world data can drive your strategies.

  1. Set Clear Objectives

Ever heard of the SMART model? It’s the secret ingredient to make your goals as straightforward as possible. This method suggests that your goals must be Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound. 

Specific: The desired outcome is clearly stated.

Measurable: The success is quantifiable.

Achievable: The goal is realistic and attainable within the given timeframe.

Relevant: The goal is well aligned with broader objectives 

Time-Bound: The target is set for accomplishment within a specific time frame.

Here’s a pro tip: Try summing up your goals in one sentence by using SMART. Make up different sentences for different goals, and you’ll have a roadmap to follow.

Let’s get real here. Imagine you set specific KPIs right from the start. No more head-scratching later, wondering if your results are A+ or just meh. It’s like having a crystal ball that tells you, “Yep, you nailed it!” and who wouldn’t want that?

  1. Build and Regularly Update Your Database

Having a tidy and up-to-date database is at the core of automated marketing campaigns, so make sure your database contains all the necessary information, is clutter-free, does not contain any duplicates, old data, and, overall, things that don’t spark joy. 

Regular updates are essential here, so set up a coffee date with your database occasionally to see how it’s doing. Remember, trends come and go, and so do customer preferences. Updating your database is more than just maintenance.

  1. Segment Your Audience Based on Preferences

Audience segmentation is basically where you tailor your strategies like a custom playlist. It’s definitely not rocket science, but it can be your ticket to increased customer engagement.

Segmenting your audience means showing a personalized approach to different segments and forgetting about the one-size-fits-all approach. Do you recall the buyer personas we talked about earlier? You can create one for each segment, and they will help you connect with them on a more personal level.

Automation is your sidekick here; just set up automated workflows that deliver targeted content based on the preferences and behaviors of your segment and watch the strategies work on their own.

  1. Use A/B testing

A/B testing, in its essence, is a marketing experiment. Although you won’t be mixing any liquids to create a new one, the results of this testing are just as exciting. Let’s look at an example of this to understand its use fully. 

Let’s say you’re running an email campaign for your online store and want to find out which email subject line boosts open rates. To set up the test, you must have two versions of a subject line for the same email that contains the same content and call-to-action. For instance, you have new deals and want to let your customers know:

Version A: Subject Line: “Discover Hot Deals Inside!”

Version B: Subject Line: “Unwrap Exclusive Discounts Today!”

Then, you randomly send Version A to one group of your subscribers and Version B to another. After a few days, you dive into the data and check the open rates. 

Version A: Open Rate 25%

Version B: Open Rate 14%

We have a winner! 

Now, armed with this data, you roll out the winning subject line to the rest of your subscribers, knowing it’s more likely to catch their eye and drive your open rates through the roof. That’s the beauty of A/B testing – turning guesses into informed decisions based on actual audience responses.

  1. Combine Your Marketing Automation Platform With CRM

By integrating your marketing automation tools with CRM, you get the dynamic duo of the marketing world. It’s a perfect match that takes your strategy to a whole new level.

Marketing automation handles the creative stuff – sending emails and tracking engagement. CRM, on the other hand, is the organized brain, storing customer data, managing relationships, and keeping everything in check.

In the end, it’s all about that sweet synchronization. When your marketing automation and CRM work in sync, you get a 360-degree view of your customers. Every click, every purchase, it’s all neatly stored.

The result? Leads generated from your marketing efforts seamlessly flow into the CRM. Sales and marketing teams are cooperating, working from the same playbook. More importantly, personalization is at its peak – when your marketing automation knows what your CRM knows, you create hyper-targeted campaigns. Isn’t this the dream of every marketing specialist?

  1. Personalize, Tailor, and, Yet Again, Personalize

I mentioned personalization quite a few times in this article, but it still deserves its own point. Personalization is not just adding a name to an email; it’s about creating an experience that feels like it was crafted just for that exact customer. You are turning on the spotlight and giving faces to an otherwise faceless crowd.

Treat your clients like VIPs. Of course, starting by using their names in your messages is fine, but do not even think about stopping there. Keep in mind that they are human, and humans, believe it or not, are very predictable, so just by paying a little attention, you will find out their unique tastes and preferences. Look at what they click on, what they buy, what they ignore entirely, and no, it is not considered stalking (I think?).

One of the best examples of a brand setting up automated workflows that deliver personalized content based on user behavior is Netflix. Let’s look at how they do this.

Netflix essentially has a massive database about the preferences of their users. I don’t know a single soul that rates the movies or TV shows they watch on Netflix, but the fact that you watched something tells them that this is a genre that you are interested in. So later on, you will probably see movies in the same genre pop up on your recommendations page, and all this is thanks to the automated workflows.

In the case of Netflix, correctly executing marketing automation transformed it into a predictive force, anticipating consumer interactions rather than just reacting to them. In simpler terms, based on the collected data, Netflix not only knows which movie you will enjoy, but it also knows what kind of movies they can produce for you. So, they know what you will like even if you have yet to learn it. Mindblowing, right?

  1. Monitor and Track Your Metrics

When it comes to marketing automation, staying on top of your metrics is crucial. There are a number of analytics tools that you can use to get insights about the efficiency of your automated campaigns. Analytics tell you all you need to know about open rates, click-through rates, and what content is stealing the show for your audience. 

What do you do with all this information? Make decisions based on them! They are your compass; when something isn’t hitting the right notes with your audience, it tells, and when something fits like a glove to your users, it tells you that, too. No more guessing!

Making decisions in the corporate world can be overwhelming, but if you have all the data you need in the palm of your hand, you can make informed choices with little to no risk.

  1. Innovate and Be Agile

Nowadays, embracing innovation and being agile to change can make a big difference, especially when it comes to automation. 

Whether it’s automation in marketing or any other department, and regardless of the extent to which you’ve already implemented automation, additional tasks can always be automated. Maybe these tasks haven’t been automated before, but that is just an opportunity for you to explore and innovate.

Now, agility? It’s an essential skill in any aspect of life. Being quick to adapt to changes is a must in this ever-evolving world. In marketing, you have to be able to quickly adjust your strategies to the changes and unforeseen challenges of the market. For example, let’s say there’s a crisis happening globally, and your automated emails are still going out. It does not take a genius to see how this is not a good look for the company.

While innovation serves as the foundation for progress, agility ensures fluid responsiveness. Together, they guarantee that your business will not only meet today’s needs but will also be ready for whatever the future might hold.


As we wrap up our journey in the world of marketing automation, it is evident that this field is not solely a set of tools but rather a strategic powerhouse. So, whether you’re diving into A/B testing, fine-tuning your database, or crafting SMART goals, remember that marketing automation is your ally in the quest for relevance, efficiency, and excellence.

I hope you carefully read all the points above and took notes on the ones that fit your strategy best. Thanks for reading, and I hope you found what you were looking for!