Automation in 2020 – Beyond Drip Campaigns

It's a new decade and it's time to think about the automation differently.

Traditionally, automation in marketing and sales meant a 3-step process after a lead was collected:

  1. Tag the lead based on the source.
  2. Add them to a drip campaign.
  3. Update tags based on interactions with the campaigns and maybe update the email sequence based on tags. 


That's not true in this day and age with the VAST number of solutions readily available.

Here's the question – how many of your employee's daily tasks could be partially or fully automated? Depending on the job and the role, automation isn't always the answer but I firmly believe that every job can stand to use some automation.

My Company Goal: 10-to-1 Bot-to-Employee Ratio

Yes, my company goal is to have a 10-to-1 Bot-to-Employee ratio. Why is that? The tasks that can be automated are the worst tasks devised by man. They drain our energy, they drain our creativity. They don't add value to the process, but they have to be done in order to complete the process. 

How many processes can be standardized and automated and those employees re-allocated to higher-valued tasks?

Automation Project Ideas for 2020

The most valuable thing that we possess is time and it's my MISSION to drive automation from the ground up. There are too many tasks that we are doing that just take too long, don't drive enough value, and can be easily automated.

Competitive Intelligence

This is often the last thing on a company's list of task automation, but arguably should be first. Business is a contact sport and not understanding your competition is often the first area of failure. Automation focused on collecting data and information from competitors such as: creating KPIs on competitors (blog post content, social posts, ad history, following, wayback machine).

Lead Intelligence

Lead intelligence focuses on enriching lead information with some additional information, to learn more about them and pre-qualify them prior to sales and marketing engagement. Learning about what potential customers including firmographics, lead scoring, and respond automatically to trigger events (such as when a contact has joined a new company or when a new key employee is hired.)

Content Workflow

Creating content spans beyond just creating an article and it's usually a multi-step process every time. Several of these tasks can be automated with very few steps including content ideation based on trends and competitive intel, graphic asset searching and resizing, and social media publishing. Additionally content can be tracked based on engagement and the ROI can be calculated from any marketing asset created.

Freelancer Workflow

Sometimes it's best to hire a freelancer for a project, but it's challenging to find one, qualify them, get them up-to-speed on the project in addition to company goals and history. I might want to hire one freelancer to create copy for an ad campaign while another identifies target audience segments. By automating key tasks around freelancer hiring, onboarding, and creative approval, it makes it easy to manage a large number of tasks for freelancers, rate their work, and communicate new freelancing opportunities.

Outbound Sales

Most outbound sales boils down to trying to make contact with a company that matches some LinkedIn search criteria. Prior to contact though, good outbound sales should be focused on researching the prospect and pre-qualification. There are many, many channels to reach someone and many ways to do this well. I often see companies connecting to me via LinkedIn that have done ZERO research on my company. With some lead intelligence, it's easy to automate an outbound campaign and then tweak the copy if it's not working. (Not only that, but by automating it, you can also measure the response rate and the ROI.)

Ad Workflow

Most ad management tools are clunky, you can't re-use the same copy across different audience criteria, certain ad types can't be edited after you create it. Then, once the campaign is set up, you need to manually monitor click-throughs and update where you want the ad displayed and tweak the audiences and keywords based on what you've found. By automating crucial processes around ad management, you can automate disabling underperforming campaigns, automatically remove keywords that aren't converting, and can measure the true ROI on a campaign.

Sales Chatbots

Chat is a tremendously powerful tool and can be used to gather a lot of intelligence. Most people don't want to provide their email get added to your spam-cannon, they don't want to get a quote, they just want to answer a few questions to pre-qualify if your company is a fit for them from a budget perspective or from a feature perspective. By analyzing chat data, you can determine better ways to improve your lead prospecting and acquisition strategies.

Prospect Alerting

It's not a secret that new leads can often be triggered by personnel changes or company events. If a company management change happens - prospect alerting can discover the organizational changes and re-engage the prospect.


Personalization is the next great barrier to the sales and marketing experience. The the next frontier is to target personalized landing pages for ad campaigns and outbound sales based on hyper-specific attributes. Then the next layer is to personalize content throughout the site based on the lead source, what content they looked at, and interaction with the sales chatbot.

Want to Learn More?

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