The Top 5 Mistakes Online Influencers Make with Marketing Automation


Marketing automation mistakes can be confusing, frustrating, and embarrassing. You work so hard to draw in your ideal client, only to have them not open or click through your emails, or worse – unsubscribe.

I see this all the time as an ActiveCampaign Certified Consultant. Over the past three and a half years, I have worked with amazing influencers and brands and I’ve learned that you could have 50k email subscribers, or well over 100k, but still be making the same mistakes with marketing automation. 

I have compiled a list of the top marketing automation mistakes I have seen from top influencers, and how to correct them. These are simple, actionable steps you can take to improve your marketing automation, no matter where you are with your business or brand.

The Top 5 Marketing Automation Mistakes

Mistake 1: Not knowing what is going on

This is easily the top mistake I see influencers making with their marketing automation. 

They don’t know who their customers are, what they want, and how to move them along in their customer journey. They might have an enormous email list, but if subscribers aren’t progressing towards making a purchase, or are simply unsubscribing, then there are absolute gaps that need to be filled.

Email is the number one marketing communication channel – 99% of consumers check their emails daily. A solid workflow can help you reinforce your customers’ journey to ensure people are moving from one stage to the next. 

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I recommend creating a very clear workflow, with consistent documentation, when you start your marketing automations. Be certain of each step you want your customer to take, and fill any potential gaps you foresee. 

Documentation is key when trying to avoid marketing automation mistakes. You can easily do this yourself, but it is doubly important to have clear documentation if you choose to outsource this work. Whoever you bring on board for this task should provide sufficient documentation for the automations they have set up, so that you can oversee the workflow for your brand as a whole. 

Mistake 2: Not engaging their audience

Influencers do a lot of work to grow their marketing list… only for their subscribers to never hear from them again. Or, if they are creating great content, it doesn’t have any clear, clickable calls to action. 

While open rates are important, click through rates are equally valuable in creating a dialogue with subscribers, thus building a relationship with them. Forgetting to invite people to click can be detrimental to your emails’ deliverability. 

Thankfully, this is one of those marketing automation mistakes that is relatively easy to rectify. I recommend sending a teaser of some great content, like the introduction to a blog post, or a trailer to your latest vlog. Then, add a big, clear Call to Action button they can click to find the rest of the content. 

I always recommend having a “home base” for your content – this will usually be your website, but could also be one of your social media channels. Once you have a clear button directing your subscribers, you will see click rates skyrocket. This is so important to build that connection with your subscribers and allows them to get to know you better through your awesome content.

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Mistake 3: Not re-engaging their audience

Re-engagement is different from engagement but no less important for your marketing automations. 

Engagement is when someone performs an action across your platforms – this could be your website, email, or social media. If they are completing an action, liking opening or clicking on things, they are engaged.

Disengagement is essentially inaction. This can have a real negative impact on your deliverability. One of the biggest marketing automation mistakes I see influencers making is forgetting to re-engage with subscribers who have gone quiet on their email list. 

I see so many influencers continuing to send emails to subscribers who have not opened them for 6, or even 12 months. This is only hurting their deliverability, because the more unopened emails they send, the less sender authority they have. 

It is really important that you perform regular check-ups of your contact list before it can negatively impact your sender health. Take the opportunity to remove contacts from your list who bounce, unsubscribe, or just generally go stale.

While it might seem scary to remove subscribers, you can always re-engage with them and invite them back to your contact list. You could do this through a targeted Facebook ad, or another targeting method of your choice.

Don’t be afraid to remove disengaged contacts. It is better to have a smaller email list, filled with super-engaged consumers than a huge list of people who don’t open your emails and harm your deliverability.

email for marketing example

Mistake 4: Sending everything to everyone

I touched on email segmenting earlier, but I can’t stress enough how important this is in creating that relationship between your customer and your brand.

Without a segmentation strategy, you cannot send your contacts the content they want. It seems obvious, and yet these marketing automation mistakes arise time and again, even with top influencers!

Subscription management is the key to knowing who your audience is and what they want so that you can deliver them exactly what they came to you for. This allows your contacts to choose not only the types of content they receive but how frequently. By giving your contacts a level of control, you create a better customer experience and encourage them to continue to engage with your emails.

According to a recent survey, segmented email campaigns received 14.6% more opens and 59.99% more clicks than non-segmented campaigns. A segmentation strategy is so vital to creating a valuable experience for your subscribers. Not having one is one of the biggest marketing automation mistakes influencers make. 

Mistake 5: No cohesion between marketing automation and other channels

It’s very common for influencers, entrepreneurs and small businesses to outsource their digital marketing to a team of contractors. They might have one person for Facebook Ads, one for SEO, another for ActiveCampaign, and so on.

Not having a cohesive strategy for a team of individuals is one of the big marketing automation mistakes I see so many top influencers make. 

You might be paying top dollar for the best of the best in marketing automation, but if they don’t know what Facebook Ads are being sent, or who is subscribing to your email list, their services are drastically limited.

The best marketing strategy is a cohesive one. If you are ready to bring on board new members to your team, it’s time to start thinking about automating your business. You can automate the onboarding of new workers, and give them all the information they need to create a united strategy across the board.

Your marketing team should be just that – a team of experts, not a group of individuals working independently.

Start sooner rather than later

There is no better time to fix your marketing automation mistakes than right now! Learn from the mistake of others to see results in your marketing sooner rather than later.

Have questions about mistakes you might be making in your marketing automation? Leave a comment below – I’d love to help!

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