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Blame the Message, Not the Messenger

It’s kind of human nature for us to blame other things when something goes wrong. Burnt toast? Toaster must not be working right. Late for work? Damn traffic. Realized your fly has been down all day? Well, none of your (former) friends told you.

We do this with marketing, too. These campaigns aren’t working so clearly we’re using the wrong tools/the tools aren’t set up correctly/something must not be working. I’m going to tell you something, and it’s going to sting a bit: it’s not the tools. It’s us.

Marketing automation, like any other tool or resource you use to help execute your marketing, is only as good as the intent and skill behind it. But all too often the promise of automated follow-up and tracking has eased us into a state of complacency. There is no “set it and forget it!”

The reality is, marketing automation can’t fix all of your ills on its own. So when you go searching for the reasons your campaigns aren’t working, don’t duck in horror at what you see—that’s just your own reflection. Your platform is only doing what you told it to do. So if you’re not seeing results, well, it’s your fault, my friend.

The good news is, we can turn this ship around!

Look at your strategy. Hey, maybe you just didn’t start with a very good strategy. Maybe some tried-and-true method just isn’t cutting it anymore. Maybe your funnel isn’t well-designed. Be honest with yourself, and ask others to chime in. Brace yourself for some uncomfortable truths —but the improvements will be worth it.

Look at your content. Maybe it’s just not very good. Yep, I said it. Old, rehashed topics. Generalities. Materials that ramble on, unspecific and untargeted. These clunkers happen to the best of us. Shake things up with some stronger ideas and more relevant, laser-sharp messaging. Use your MA more effectively with meaningful, personalized emails. Evaluate your content at every stage of your funnel to make sure you provide the right information at the right time.

Look at your marketing automation setup. OK, sometimes it is an issue with your marketing automation system. MA only works as well as the humans behind it. So fix it! Revisit your setup—or consult with a company like, oh, I don’t know, LeadMD—to help you identify any mistakes you’ve made and analyze new strategies for using the system more efficiently and effectively. These are powerful tools but you gotta know how to work them to get the best results.

Don’t get too down on yourself if you do discover some mistakes and oversights. Recognizing them is the first step – and the improvements you’ll make will be worth the trouble. It’s just a matter of assigning blame to the right place and, of course, recognizing that this happens to everyone. In the immortal words of Stuart Smalley, remember that you’re good enough, smart enough, and doggone it, people like you. Or they will, once you fix your content.

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