Twenty years ago you could get by without automated marketing simply because nobody had it. Today, with all of the things people can give their attention to (let’s call those distractions), it’s impossible to be effective at marketing without using both people and automation.
Why do you need both manual and automated marketing? Let’s take a look at what each one looks like if used on its own.
Manual Marketing Only
Let’s say that we stayed in ‘1980 Lawyer-Mode’ and did everything manually. For one, it’s not scalable. There are only so many hours in the day and your time is your most scarce resource, right? Doing everything yourself will cause you to inevitably hit a ceiling.
You may think that if your margins are good enough, then just maybe you could hire enough people to help you with manual marketing. Ultimately though, you aren’t going to be able to reach the million-dollar plus mark without doing some form of automation.
Another downside to solely using manual marketing is that things can slip through the cracks. We are imperfect humans. It’s simply who we are. Stuff gets in the way, we forget things, and even if you’re neurotic about using checklists like I am, some things will still slip through the cracks. Every time something falls through in your marketing means that you’ve possibly lost a potential client or a relationship is not nurtured.
The other issue manual marketing is difficulty in tracking the return on investment. If you’re a numbers-nerd like me, this is a big deal. Even if using an elaborate system for logging your billable, marketing-only hours, you’d be forced to track these independently of your law-practicing hours to get an accurate ROI. It’s inherently imprecise. Incorporating automated marketing, like pay-per-click ads, allow you to track ROI efficiently.
Automated Marketing Only
If you look at these downsides of manual marketing, only to throw it out completely in favor of automated marketing, then we’re going to run into some serious problems. Most importantly, we can become ‘tone deaf’ to our relationships. While it’s possible to nurture some relationships through automation, we’re ultimately not going to get the kind of feedback that’s telling us how impactful our marketing really is.
And, while scalable, automated marketing alone won’t allow us to nurture some high-value relationships that require manual nurturing. Of course, you’ll eventually learn whether you’ll need to be doing this personally or if you can have someone do it for you, but without the human touch in a service-based industry like we’re in, we won’t be able to scale optimally.
We’re going to need both human beings and our friends the machines in order to be truly effective in our marketing approach. Finding the right mix is another issue altogether!