It’s true: I love a little automation. From simple things like Google Calendar reminding me to take my garbage out, to bigger things like drip marketing strategies, automation can make your life a lot easier.

Except when it makes you look like a fool. Which can sometimes happen because technology isn’t a person. As a result, it often cannot see obvious gaffes that a person would.

For instance, Pinterest recently sent me an email it probably thought was very clever. Based on the type of content I pin, it suggested a person I should follow. We have so many of the same interests, we HAD to enjoy each other’s content, right?

The only catch? I already own a business with that person.

That’s right, they suggested I follow the one and only marketer extraordinaire, Liz Jostes.

Bad marketing automation

So, yes, Pinterest, you are correct: I share a lot of the same interests with this person.

But here’s the thing: I already follow Liz. In fact, we have a number of shared boards on Pinterest. When you suggest I should do something that I clearly already do, you look a bit silly. What’s more, you show that your super sly algorithm is not that well thought out.

If you’re going to automate your marketing, you need to be absolutely certain you’ve thought it through. While any system will need tweaking over time to get things “perfect”, doing thorough testing and using focus groups is incredibly important when it comes to automation rollouts. Because no matter how talented your programmer is or how brilliant your idea, you don’t want something small you may have overlooked to leave you with egg on your face.

About KristinZaslavsky (283 Posts)

Kristin has spent her career designing marketing applications that are easy to use, making technology adoption easy on businesses and their clients. She loves nothing more than to patiently show people that technology doesn't need to be scary (even though it sometimes feels like it does).


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