Content Marketing & Automation: How to Use Them Together
The two words marketers and business owners often come across are content and automation. Everyone knows what content is and its numerous advantages for a business. The same goes for automation. However, very few people are aware of the incredible benefits these two provide when integrated to create amazing content for your marketing strategies.
Content marketing is exploding like anything, and many marketers feel that content marketing in its current form has reached its limit. Now brands and marketers need to go beyond the essential content marketing and think out of the box to win over their audiences. Automation can help you to personalize your content.
Let’s look at how you can make content and automation work together to seamlessly achieve your goals.
What Is Content Marketing Automation?
Content marketing automation is all about eradicating repetitive content marketing and automating tasks through tools and softwares to improve efficiency. You can employ content marketing automation at any stage of the process to achieve better results.
How Does Content Marketing Automation Help With Personalization?
There are three stages in your content marketing journey where you can introduce automation to personalize your content. They are:
Stage 1: Creation
The first step of content marketing strategy is content creation, which often starts with the idea that you implement using various tools. When thinking about automated content, you are wrong if you think of bots that can create content for you. Although bots can do that, the result is quite dull as they lack the personal touch and creativity human writers add.
However, multiple automation tools can analyze and interpret audience data to give insights into what your target audience will like. You can create laser-focused blog posts and other content on your website and other platforms. It can also help create a long-term content strategy using the information.
Step 2: Curation
Content curation is a great way to attract your audience by leveraging the content created by others. Curated content can save you time and energy to create original content. You can always find content relevant to your niche and, using an automated tool, choose the correct type of curated content for your specific target audience group. Not all curated content will work for your entire target audience. Hence, you will need to divide the content according to their interests.
Step 3: Distribution and Analysis
The primary facet of the content process where you can successfully incorporate automation is the distribution and analysis of your content. Whether the content is curated or original, it is helpful to your business only when it reaches the right target audience.
Using the most appropriate content distribution channel is critical for the success of your content marketing strategy.
However, the number of distribution channels is so extensive that it can be confusing to discern where you will quickly find your target audience. It can be through social media channels, blog posts, sponsored content, or native ads.
AI-based content distribution tools can help you pick your content’s most effective distribution channels.
There are various content automation tools that you can use to analyze these channels and collect data on your audience and analyze it. You can determine your audiences’ likes and dislikes, and by making interpretations, you can alter your upcoming content marketing strategies for better results.
How to Automate Your Content Marketing Process?
Now that you know all things you can automate in your content, you may want to know how to incorporate them into your business. Here’s how you can do so.
Step 1: Determine What You Want to Automate
Before you begin, you need to pick the areas in your content process that you want to automate. Let’s say you want to automate generating content topics for your blog posts. You can do so by using Google Alerts. It enables you to identify relevant blog content for specific target keywords of your business. However, if you prefer to manually do the research, you can implement automation in the next step of creation.
Step 2: Have a Content Workflow Process
A workflow organizes your content process, making it easier to keep track of things and stay on schedule. You can use multiple content workflow tools to automate your workflow. These tools will tell you when and for which channel content needs to be created, what tasks are due, and what is taken care of, making the whole process smoother and faster.
Step 3: Social Media Postings
Sharing updates on social media channels is a critical part of any content marketing strategy. And to get the best results, it needs to be consistently done at the correct times. Tools like Buffer and Sprout Social can help create posting schedules and automate them, so you don’t have to worry about anything except creating the content. These apps will automatically post your content as per the set schedule.
Step 4: Automate Digital Advertising
Advertising on various platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Google, can help you boost your sales, lead generation, and even branding efforts. However, you don’t have to do everything manually. Using tools like Zemanta and StackAdapt, you can easily identify the platform for your marketing goals and how to advertise on them to get the most out of your ads.
Step 5: Automate Your Email Newsletter
Email marketing is one of the top ROI-generating marketing techniques. You can automate your email newsletters to subscribers using email marketing automation tools like MailChimp. You can personalize your emails to specific audience groups to get higher responses. These tools help nurture your email leads.
Step 6: Set Up the Analytics
Automating your analytics is critical to the success of your content marketing strategies. You can use tools like Google Analytics to gather all the information from your website and present it in an understandable form to know what is working and what needs to be changed.
Step 7: Opt for an All-In-One Tool
If you feel that managing all these multiple automation tools is getting on your nerves, you can opt for an all-in-one tool. They are designed to cover numerous tasks such as email marketing, lead tracking, lead segmentation, providing sales intelligence, web marketing, and more under their umbrella software.
What Are the Things to Keep In Mind When Using Automation in Content Marketing?
Content marketing automation is indeed highly beneficial and lucrative. However, something so good does not come without a certain risk factor. Knowing and mitigating these risks can help you enjoy the maximum benefits of content marketing automation.
Here are the risks associated with content marketing automation:
- Ensure that the content you are targeting complements your target audience’s customer journey, intent, and interest; otherwise, it can backfire.
- The ease of use of automation in content marketing makes it more complex to implement as there is a large variety of tools you can choose and it is difficult to pull off complex strategies without proper implementation.
Methods to Mitigate the Risks
1. Strategize for the Future
Relying upon hand-to-mouth to drive your content strategy is not the best way to go about it. You need to thoughtfully strategize and plan your content months before the publishing time. Doing so helps you to integrate any changes or trends in your content without sabotaging the entire process. It also allows you to incorporate long-term goals into your content marketing strategy.
2. Be Proactive
Customers are no longer willing to wait for things they want; therefore, a business must anticipate their needs and deliver the product or service beforehand. Automation can help you anticipate those needs and get ahead of your competitors. But for that, you need to take a proactive approach and leverage your data automation and AI tools.
3. Respond Spontaneously
While planning and creating content in advance is essential for your long-term tactics and easily achievable through automation, let’s not forget that marketing is a field with many variables. Hence, if any variable changes, the market conditions can quickly change, and you need to spontaneously respond to them to ensure minimum damage. Being flexible is critical to successfully working with content marketing customization.
If you want to get results from your content automation tactics, it is essential to introduce data segmentation in your business. You need to build customer profiles that are segmented not just on a manageable term but in depth according to varying interests, patterns, and statistics. Be as specific as possible to ensure the best results.
5. Utilize Reporting
Most advanced automation tools come with incredible reporting systems that you can utilize to understand what works for different channels. Every marketing channel is different and needs different strategies for you to get the most out of it. Mindlessly using automation and doing the same thing on every platform can backfire pretty quickly.
6. Be Human
Automation can make your job easier and more efficient. However, marketing involves dealing with humans, and in a bid to gain more automation, you cannot lose the human touch in your content or marketing strategies. Being human makes the most amazing beings on the planet with conscious thoughts and creativity. Don’t leave those behind when you integrate automation into your content.
Automation is the future of content marketing, and as early as you incorporate it into your business, better are the rewards you can reap! Eventually, it is all about combining human creativity and technology in a balanced equation.