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The Difference Between Email Marketing and Marketing Automation

email_marketing1Email marketing is literally just the process of educating (in a forcible way) the people on your mail list. Marketing automation is about removing a lot of the burden of marketing, of which some form of email marketing may be used. If you are in business and want to do a little online marketing, then this article may help you because it goes into a few details about email marketing and marketing automation.

Email marketing is about getting a message out to people

You take up your mail list, add to it, trim it a little and then send out your emails to the people on it. Hopefully, they are responsive to what you write on your emails and so get back to you and buy some stuff.

Marketing automation is about getting a message out to people

You can use marketing automation to get a message out to people, but it is more about selling an idea to them or educating them. Email marketing has just one clear goal, whereas marketing automation may have numerous goals.

Email marketing is easier to track

This is true because it is just one element and that element may be monitored. You could do something such as put a tracking number on the links in the emails so that when a person clicks on the links then it appears in your analytics reports. Failing that, you can also send out emails with discount codes so that you know which emails are the most effective by which discount codes are entered the most.

Marketing automation is harder to track

When you automate your marketing you make it hard to track the results. If you tailor a campaign from start to finish, then it is easier to integrate your goals into it and create ways that you can measure your results. With marketing automation you are putting a few tasks in the hands of software, and this is going to mean that tracking is harder. It means you are going to have to work out what the marketing automation does and when, and then craft the way you monitor your results around your marketing automation process.

Email marketing can be more personal

You can personalize your email marketing in a way that logically appeals to your consumer. If you have staff work on your email marketing, then they can send emails to specific people about specific things and it can make it appear as if your company is the most cuddly and caring company on the planet. You can make friends with your customers and fall just short of asking them how their day was.

Marketing automation can create a faux personal feeling

Marketing automation can make people think that you care about them personally, but it is far harder to pull off. This is not a bad thing however, since some of the marketing automation that you do may bring you back some customers in the future. It is possible for marketing automation to automatically draw in extra profit. Here is a quick example of how.

You get someone to buy something and they do not uncheck a box that says it is posted on their Facebook page. It is posted and your marketing automation automatically clicks on “like” when they do, and maybe even writes on their wall to say, “enjoy our product,” (if possible); this seems like you care. Two days later your marketing automation sends an automatic email to the buyer to say, “Hope you are happy with your purchase, and since this is your first purchase with your new account, please accept a 20% discount on your next purchase.”

It is even better if in that example the discount was on an upgrade to what the person just bought, or is on accessories for the item the customer just bought. This is all done automatically but the consumer thinks that you are taking care of them and you are increasing your chances of them making a post-sale purchase.

Which is the best?

Marketing automation is great if you can set up systems to communicate with your consumers to do things such as follow ups or things such as warming up leads. Email marketing is something you should do if you are able to make it personal. People are so used to junk mail that marketing emails are ignored in the thousands. If you can get people to agree to be marketed to (which is hard) then you cannot mess it up by sending template emails that are of no interest to most recipients. In conclusion, both email marketing and marketing automation is good if used in the right way.

What do you think? Did this strike up any new marketing ideas for you? Leave a note in a comment below.

About the Author

Kate Funk is a freelance writer at She is mainly focusing on technology, gadgets and all the latest SEO trends which are interesting for networking enthusiasts.

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