Content marketing has become crucial in the digital marketing efforts of most businesses. The key to success for digital marketers lies in creating high-quality content that engages readers and encourages them to take action.

Usually, a digital marketing manager hires writers who can create compelling copy and editors to review it for accuracy and consistency. But as technology advances, as well as artificial intelligence learning, automation of these services seem to be upon us.

This article covers the basics of content marketing automation, its advantages and disadvantages, and whether or not it makes sense for businesses of any size to go this route.

What is Content Automation About?

Content automation refers to the process of using software to automatically generate online content without the use of human intervention to create said content. Automation allows marketers to scale their efforts across channels while keeping quality high.

These online tools allow you to focus on what matters most instead of spending hours manually copywriting or searching for available writers to handle incoming orders and requests.

The technology behind this type of marketing automation is still relatively new, with many marketers still trying to figure out how best to implement it within their strategies. As a result, different vendors offer slightly different versions of automated marketing tools.

Some focus primarily on email marketing, while others provide broader capabilities across multiple channels, the generation of content briefs, and more. Some are focused on providing solutions for small businesses, while others target larger enterprises.

Common Use Cases for Marketing Automation

Most would agree that content generation for all types of copy is unwarranted. Still, there are content request types that can run smoother with the use of this type of tool.

So, when is it beneficial to use content marketing automation? Here are examples of the utilization of content automation for different purposes, including:

• Creating an editorial calendar that automatically generates content based on data from your CRM or other systems

• Generating a list of articles and blog posts to publish at regular intervals

• Sending out emails with links to new content as it’s published

• Sending targeted emails to customers who have opted-in to receive them

• Updating outdated text content on your website

• Automatically updating the status of your business in Google Places

• Generating content in response to customer activity (e.g., when someone visits a certain page)

• Scheduling social media posts and tweets to coincide with events

• Responding to negative reviews or comments on review sites like Yelp or TripAdvisor

What are the Pros of Content Automation?

Able to save time

Automated content saves you time. Whether creating posts manually or using writers to create content, you may still spend hours editing articles, selecting pictures, formatting, and optimizing text. But if you automate your content creation process, you can free yourself up to focus on other tasks.

Allows the scaling of processes

Automated content creation is great for scaling and repeating tasks, helping everyone in your team stay on the same page no matter the project. In a sense, you gain control of the process. Having a queued system allows you to generate how-tos and standard operating procedures for existing or future onboarding members.

You can control or decrease the overall expenses

Automated content is a great way to decrease costs without sacrificing quality. With generated content, marketers no longer need to manage or pay writers and editors to produce copy for the intended project. Automated content is helpful for B2B businesses like marketing agencies because it saves money and increases efficiency.

The Cons of Content Marketing Automation

Poor usage of online tools

Automated content creation tools are great at helping businesses save time and money. However, if you incorrectly handle them, they can end up hurting your content instead of helping it. Poorly-used automation tools can cause problems ranging from duplicate content issues, broken links, false information, and missing assets.

No foundational content strategy

Content marketing automation tools are great at automating repetitive tasks. But if you don’t have a clear plan for what you want to achieve, these online tools are wasted resources. Your content strategy should come first before mapping out a way to utilize this software in your workflow. Otherwise, you risk spending too much time figuring out what to do next. The best way to get started is by thinking about the types of content you can automate regularly using these resources, then setting up a content calendar of sorts. Once you know this information, creating a strategy that fuses AI and content management should be second nature by then.

Can be rather difficult to learn for some

Being able to adapt to content automation software can be arduous at times. There is a steep learning curve involved with using any technology. However, if team members find themselves struggling, they may not have an understanding of how the software works. These AI tools come with free online tutorials and walk-throughs for how to properly use their system.

Is Automation Worth It?

Does content automation have a place within your company or agency? As with most solutions, it depends on your priorities and overall goals.

Experts remain divided on the verdict as it may go against their overall marketing concept. Some prefer a faster turnaround time on client orders, while others will continue to argue quality over quantity.

 Still, it may help to ask yourself these questions to figure this out on your own:

  • How would you go about automating your content marketing strategy?
  • Do you want to automate everything or just some parts of your workflow?
  • How much time are you willing to invest in research and development?
  • Would you prefer outsourcing or hiring someone to handle these content orders?
  • What are you sacrificing by streamlining this part of your marketing processes?
  • Will your team be able to adapt to the implementation of a new system?
  • Do the results these automation tools provide you satisfy your clientele?
  • Will an editorial touch be enough to mask any imperfection in the copy?