Marketing Automation Does Not Automate Lead Generation

Category: Online Marketing

It’s amazing how often we are asked about marketing automation and how it can be used to automate a company’s marketing. Unfortunately, that’s not how it works. Marketing automation is about developing a lead you have generated, not about generating the actual the lead.


Back in the day we used to help affiliate-marketers setup marketing automation platforms, so we are more familiar with them than many of our peers. We have helped develop marketing automation programs that have been amazing and many that included multi tiers of automation. Anyway, we digress….

What is the difference between generating a lead and developing a lead? And how does marketing automation fit into the puzzle?

The answer is simple. Many tasks that are used to develop a lead are repetitive or follow a specific process. Things like a series of emails or direct mail pieces that go out over a period of time are systems that move a lead from one stream to another until they are ready to make a purchase decision. This is what marketing automation does and is designed to do. If done well, marketing automation can be extremely effective at turning a lead into a customer.

The only problem is that marketing automation is not designed to generate that lead. It’s not designed to feed the funnel, it’s simply designed to develop it. You still need marketing, you still need lead generation and you still need to make sure that you are feeding that marketing automation funnel.

For your marketing automation to work, your marketing has to be able to deliver!