3 Marketing Automation Benefits for Associations

Time is the most valuable resource. Association professionals never have enough time to do everything you have to do—never mind all the things you want to do.

 But imagine having an invisible group of assistants who take care of repetitive redundant jobs for you, like emailing, compiling, exporting, importing, processing, and all the other mind-dulling manual entry tasks required to keep things rolling.

 Sounds like a dream, right? Well, that dream is a reality thanks to marketing automation.

 What do we mean by automation?

Automation is made possible by workflow software—or a workflow engine—that automates complex (and simple) business processes. You can automate workflows used by one piece of software or shared by multiple systems, like your AMS and:

  •         Email marketing platform
  •         Marketing automation platform
  •         Learning management system
  •         Online community

With automated marketing, you can automatically run an action in response to a trigger or when certain conditions are met. For example, when a website visitor downloads a media kit, a staff person receives a notification email and the visitor’s contact information is added to a prospective advertiser list.

You don’t have to be a tech geek to put automation in action. Modern AMS solutions come with pre-built templates for many common automation scenarios. It’s easy to create automated workflows using a drag-and-drop tool or to completely revamp your email marketing strategy. You don’t have to rely on outside developers or the IT team to take advantage of automation.

What can automation do for you and your association?

Automation makes existing processes less time-consuming and more efficient. Even better, you can create new workflows that weren’t even conceivable before. Automation expands your capabilities, thanks to that team of invisible assistants: tell them once what you want to do and they’ll take care of the work for you.

Create time for meaningful work

By automating your digital marketing strategy, you eliminate manual tasks. The software does the tedious work for you, turning repetitive tasks into multistep workflows—and reducing human error too, a nice bonus.

For example, you can set up an email automation trigger every time a jobseeker uploads their resume to the career center. They’ll automatically receive an email telling them about an upcoming workshop or networking meetup.

As soon as new committee or board members are appointed, they automatically receive a series of emails. One could come from DocuSign with confidentiality and conflict of interest agreements to sign. Another could contain orientation content from a SharePoint or Dropbox folder.

With automation, your marketing team gets to spend time on satisfying work, like reviewing data to better understand members, developing new strategies for member engagement, and researching non-dues revenue ideas. You might even find time to eat lunch away from your desk, imagine!

Do you need to update records with CE credits, upload suppression lists, and copy or move data between systems? Automate it. Seriously, it’s all possible now.

Automation software raises the talent level. You no longer have to hire people for tedious administrative tasks and then watch the light go out of their eyes.

More rewarding work means a happier staff. You can hire people who are capable of more than admin work, which means your association’s capabilities have been leveled up too.

Make what was once impossible possible, even for one-person teams

Automation makes business transformation possible, even for small staff associations. No longer stretched to the limit, you breathe a sigh of relief as you cross thankless marketing tasks off your list. They’re still getting done, but by your software minions, not you.

Now you have time to do all the things you never thought possible with your tiny team. Automation expands your marketing capabilities by providing hands-off personalized treatment at scale. For a new member onboarding email campaign, you can set triggers that respond automatically to the recipient’s clicks. Depending on the links they click, they’re tagged by size of business, position, or career stage. In future emails, you can send even more targeted, relevant information.

When someone attends a webinar, automatically tag them for that interest and send a follow-up email recommending an upcoming program or article on the same topic.

You can even use marketing automation tools to expand your following on social media and increase the brand awareness of your association! Social media marketing is made simple when you are able to automate your posts to go out on certain days on different platforms.

At the end of a non-renewal grace period, automatically update their record, take away their members-only access, remove them from member newsletter and email marketing lists, and move them into a new campaign for lapsed members.

Live up to the expectations of members, customers, and prospects

Automation puts you on a similar playing field as other brands in a person’s life. You can now provide the interaction and experience they expect: you appear to know them and their history with your association.

When a prospective member downloads a resource, they’re automatically put into a content marketing campaign designed to nurture membership leads. Every two weeks, new prospect information is sent to membership ambassadors who contact them to talk shop and chat about the association.

When someone registers for an event, they stop receiving registration promotions. Instead, they receive emails about pre-event virtual meetups or exhibiting tips, depending on their registration type.

If someone abandons the registration process, an automated follow-up email encourages them to go back and finish. After a customer purchases a product, a few weeks later, they receive an email suggesting similar content, products, and/or events.

All this is possible with automation. Your association can nurture relationships and serve members, customers, and prospects in a hands-off but personalized way.

Automation is no longer a nice-to-have technology

Your association can’t afford to settle for the traditional tech stack. A marketing automation solution is must-have technology. You can’t run a modern association without it. Otherwise, you waste far too much time (and money) on tasks that are easily automated.

After a few months with automation, you’ll find it hard to imagine how you went so long without it. Don’t take it just from us. Listen to these association professionals talk about how Impexium’s workflow engine helped them go from outdated to automated.

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