Marketing is rapidly evolving these days. With the rise of digital channels and social media, marketing teams now have access to more consumer data and touchpoints than ever before. However, all of this added complexity comes at a cost. Many marketing departments are dealing with rising workloads, tight budgets, and limited resources. Teams are stretched thin just keeping up with day-to-day tasks, leaving little time for strategic thinking and innovation.
This is where robotic process automation (RPA) comes in. By automating repetitive, manual marketing processes, RPA allows your team to work smarter and more efficiently. Instead of getting bogged down in routine tasks, you and your team can spend more time on high-value initiatives that drive business growth.
In this guide, we‘ll explore four ways that RPA can transform your marketing operations in 2023 and beyond:
One of the most important yet time-consuming marketing tasks is pricing products and services. Teams need to regularly analyze competitive landscapes, conduct market research, consider margins and profit goals, and test different price points.
This pricing process requires significant manual effort but is prime for RPA automation. RPA bots can be easily programmed to scrape competitor websites and collect real-time pricing data. Natural language processing (NLP) enables the bots to "read" and extract key information from the scraped content.
The data is then fed into algorithms that determine optimal pricing based on your internal goals and external factors like competitor prices. As the leader of the marketing team, you define the rules and parameters for the algorithms while the bots handle the heavy lifting of data collection and analysis.
This ensures your pricing stays competitive while aligned with overall corporate strategy. According to a survey from Revionics, 92% of retailers say automation helps them react to competitors‘ pricing strategies faster.
As an example, competitor monitoring platforms like BrandTotal use RPA bots and artificial intelligence to automatically track competitor pricing across channels for brands. The solution delivers daily price updates to support your data-driven decisions on pricing optimization.
By adopting RPA pricing software, your marketing team can benefit from pricing that is scalable, efficient, accurate, and data-driven. RPA eliminates the need for manual tracking and analysis, saving your team significant time. This allows you to focus on other high-impact marketing initiatives beyond just day-to-day pricing tasks.
In the world of marketing, you need to know what your competitors are up to across all channels and markets. Monitoring competitor activity provides invaluable intelligence to inform your own messaging, positioning, product development, and more.
Of course, manually searching for and compiling competitor data is extremely labor-intensive for your marketing team. RPA provides a solution to make broad, ongoing competitor monitoring much easier.
RPA bots can be programmed to scrape competitor websites, social media pages, YouTube channels, press releases pages, and other digital sources. With help from machine learning and computer vision, the bots build a detailed picture of competitors‘ latest strategies and activities.
For instance, bots can analyze competitor Facebook ad creatives to determine what messages and imagery resonate most with your shared target audiences right now. Or they can scrape and compare product images across competitor sites to identify current trends in colors, styling, and photography.
This level of broad competitive intelligence simply isn‘t feasible for a human marketing team to gather manually. You can let the bots handle the grunt work while your team focuses on deriving strategic insights from the data.
According to research from eMarketer, 78% of companies using RPA improve their competitive advantage. Competitor monitoring is one of the highest ROI applications.
As a modern marketing leader, you probably deal with exploding amounts of data from sources like web analytics, social media, CRM, email campaigns, and more. Making sense of all this data to draw actionable insights is a huge challenge faced by marketing teams everywhere.
This is another area where RPA can make a big difference. RPA bots excel at aggregating, organizing, standardizing, and consolidating large volumes of marketing data.
Bots can fully automate many tedious data tasks that previously required manual work:
- Logging into dashboards and downloading reports
- Renaming and formatting files
- Combining data from different sources
- Uploading aggregated datasets to databases
With your marketing data in shape thanks to RPA, you‘re equipped to leverage the insights for tasks like:
- Personalized customer communications
- Predictive modeling and forecasting
- Attribution modeling
- Campaign performance analysis
Let‘s consider an example. Say you‘re a marketing director at a major hotel brand with properties worldwide. You could use RPA bots to compile customer booking data, online reviews, and social media interactions. This aggregates into 360-degree customer profiles for each guest.
Your team can then leverage these profiles to develop hyper-targeted email campaigns and special offers that delight guests. The RPA-powered data collection leads to deeper customer insights that weren‘t possible previously.
According to recent research by Resulticks, using RPA improves data quality by up to 90%, while cutting costs by up to 70%. The efficiency gains from automating data tasks with bots are immense.
Social Media Sentiment Analysis
Your marketing team likely wants to know what consumers are saying about your brand across social media. Monitoring social sentiment helps guide reputation management, crisis communication, product development, and more.
While social media management tools can provide some level of listening and analytics, RPA can take your social monitoring much further.
Specially programmed bots can extract unstructured conversational data from across the social web – Twitter, Reddit, review sites, forums, and anywhere people may mention your brand. Natural language processing enables the bots to "read" text and categorize it with a sentiment score – positive, negative, or neutral.
The end result is an invaluable real-time pulse on how consumers perceive your brand. No manual searching can match the scale and comprehensiveness of RPA-driven social listening.
If your marketing strategy includes paid search advertising on platforms like Google, Bing, or Facebook, you know that optimizing PPC campaigns is crucial but challenging. It requires constant fine-tuning of bids, ad copy, target audiences, and more to maximize ROI.
RPA can take over many of the routine optimization tasks to make your PPC spending more efficient. Pre-programmed bots can connect to advertising APIs to collect performance data, analyze it, then implement bid changes and creative tests per rules defined by your team.
For example, if your campaign data shows conversions spiked among women ages 18-24 over the weekends, your RPA bot can automatically ramp up bidding for that audience segment during that time period. The human marketing team defines the overall goals and parameters, while the bot handles ongoing optimization as campaigns run.
This enables a truly data-driven, agile approach to PPC that responds dynamically to shifts in customer behavior. According to Digitate, PPC powered by RPA achieves 10-25% higher ROI compared to manual management.
Marketing is only growing more complex as teams are asked to manage more responsibilities, tools, data sources, and channels than ever before. RPA provides a solution to automate the repetitive, manual parts of the marketing workflow.
From pricing to competitor research to data wrangling to PPC bid management, RPA handles the tedious but necessary grunt work – while enabling you and your team to focus on what matters most: strategy, creativity, and revenue growth.
As explained in McKinsey‘s research, RPA adoption is accelerating across industries, with over 50% of organizations piloting or implementing programs. The firms reaping the greatest benefits are those that take an in-house approach to building RPA capabilities, rather than relying solely on external consultants.
Developing an internal RPA CoE (Center of Excellence) creates institutional knowledge and allows your marketing department to take a phased approach to automation. Start with a few high-ROI use cases like pricing and campaign analytics. As your team becomes more adept at applying RPA, expand into additional marketing processes.
The time is now to start exploring how RPA can transform your marketing operations to drive productivity, growth, and a true competitive advantage. Reach out if you‘d like to discuss starting your RPA journey!
To learn more about RPA in marketing and other business functions, download our free RPA white paper: RPA Use Cases and Vendor Guide.