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4 Ways to Automate and Streamline Your Marketing With Advanced Tech – ReadWrite



Frank Landman

When marketing becomes too much to handle, most businesses assume that they need to hire an employee or outsource to a contractor. But don’t be so quick to grow your payroll. It’s possible that you could automate many of these tasks with streamlined digital solutions.

4 Powerful Ways to Automate Your Marketing

By its very nature, marketing is an activity of scale. In order to successfully build up your business and grow your brand, you have to get in front of as many people as possible. But if you’re trying to handle all of your marketing efforts manually, you’re probably exhausted. There’s simply too much for any one person (or department) to handle alone. And this is where automation comes into play.

Automation – which is basically the strategic combination of software, applications, and artificial intelligence to streamline time-consuming processes and produce results at scale – is a powerful tool that is not deployed nearly enough by small businesses and growing brands. But if you can pick the right spots to automate your marketing, it could change everything.

Whether you’re nursing a small startup or you have a booming business that’s bursting at the seams, the following solutions could provide exactly what you need at this precise moment in your company’s life:

1. Automate Email Campaigns

Did you know that more than 68 percent of businesses spend seven days or more on the production of just a single email? (It takes 14 percent of businesses a month or longer to push out an email!)

Or did you know that most companies are in the process of producing between one and five emails at a time?

We’ll let you do the math…but that’s a lot of time spent building and sending emails. And yet nobody is denying the value of email. So the question becomes, how do you automate your email campaigns so that you can enjoy the benefits without unnecessarily wasting hundreds or thousands of man-hours each year?

One answer is to leverage an email marketing platform that allows you to use automations and triggers to streamline these touchpoints. Any major email marketing platform is going to have similar features, but we’ll use a tool called ActiveCampaign to illustrate how effective this can be.

Within the ActiveCampaign platform, you can create individual campaigns that are automatically managed using “triggers.” A trigger is any event that your business can track – like subscribes, unsubscribes, form submissions, email opens, web pages visited, links clicked, purchases made, or specific dates (like a birthday or customer anniversary).

Once one of these triggers is “tripped,” you can create an automated email sequence that’s sent out to that user. This sequence can include anywhere from one message to a dozen or more (sent out at predetermined times and intervals).

Once you draft the email copy and create the campaign, it all happens automatically…at scale. Whether you have 10 people on your email list or 100,000, everything happens flawlessly. It can literally save you thousands of hours every year.

2. Automate Content Promotion

Content promotion is another time-consuming element of marketing that we hear a lot of people complain about. And while it is time-consuming, it can be automated without much effort. You simply have to develop a plan and create the right processes on the front end.

Here’s one dead-simple process you can replicate:

  • Step 1: Sign up for a social media management tool like Buffer or Hootsuite, which allows you to manage all of your accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc.) from one place.
  • Step 2: Create an account for a tool called Zapier. This is an automation service that makes it easy to connect apps and create powerful automated workflows. It works great for marketing and content promotion.
  • Step 3: Create an automation process (called a “Zap”) that connects your blog’s RSS feed to your Buffer or Hootsuite account. Optimize it so that your blog post is shared to each of your social networks every time the RSS feed refreshes with a new blog post.

That’s just one example of how you can automate content promotion using Zapier. There are literally dozens of other ways to spread your content without lifting a finger. If you haven’t explored these opportunities yet, you’re doing yourself a disservice.

3. Automate Customer Feedback

Customer feedback is the lifeblood of successful companies. Unfortunately, most businesses don’t collect enough data to produce meaningful insights and takeaways. And of the companies that do, just a small percentage are able to make sense of the data they collect. Automating customer feedback and analysis could be a vital decision for your business moving forward.

There are plenty of ways to automate your feedback loops, but we’ll touch on just a couple. The first approach is to use an advanced SMS text survey software like Delighted to procure instant customer feedback in a convenient and streamlined process. Here’s how it works:

  • You craft a simple survey within the Delighted platform and initiate a campaign.
  • Each customer receives the survey in an SMS format.
  • Customers reply with a numerical score to each question.
  • The Delighted platform responds with a free-form follow-up question.
  • Customers can provide a more detailed explanation in their own words.
  • Data is organized for easy analysis.

If you have a Zapier account, you can trigger surveys to be sent out after specific actions are completed in a customer’s lifecycle.

You may also find it helpful to automate feedback related to customer churn. (This is especially important for subscription businesses that rely on customer retention to sustain revenue.) There are tools that can be leveraged to send out exit surveys any time a customer cancels a subscription and/or fails to upgrade from a free trial. These surveys won’t do anything to keep the customer, but they can give you a good idea of why people are leaving.

A third option is to automate your feedback analysis by using a “customer sentiment” tool. Services like MonkeyLearn can “read” your feedback and effortlessly organize all responses into general theme-based buckets. This lets you identify and group common pain points, which makes it easier to track customer sentiment and address pressing issues as quickly as possible.

4. Automate Lead Generation

You might assume that automation stops at lead generation, but you’d be wrong. While there are certain aspects of lead generation that can’t be handled by an algorithm, this list is growing smaller by the year. Thanks to advanced technology and artificial intelligence, lead generation automation is more practical than it’s ever been.

Chatbots are among the fastest-growing technologies in this niche of advanced tech. They can be used to automate and enhance the overall customer experience by increasing engagement and initiating high-value touchpoints that would otherwise go ignored.

One of the more impressive use cases for chatbots involves the use of Facebook’s native Messenger platform. Because regardless of how much experience you have or what type of skills you possess, you can create interactive chatbots with no coding required.

Facebook chatbots are basically automated customer service agents/sales reps that empower your business to engage with Facebook prospects at scale. And while you’re probably not going to close deals on Facebook Messenger, these bots are excellent “setters.” They can indoctrinate prospects into the funnel and provide a steady flow of pre-qualified leads to your actual sales team.

Here are some examples of powerful ways you can leverage Facebook Messenger chatbots to assist with lead generation:

  • Blast out content and share it with your most loyal followers
  • Conduct quick webinar signups and get people to show up to live events
  • Automate your drip campaigns and nurture leads
  • Send out appointment and event reminders so that people never miss an engagement
  • Provide powerful customer service (including answering FAQs and giving out directions)

As mentioned, you can build your own bots for free (and it’s relatively easy for anyone to learn). Rather than having to code, you simply create logical workflows that operate on an if/then basis. These bots can take some time to build (depending on how intricate you want to go), but will ultimately save time when deployed on a large-scale basis.

Reduce Bloat With Automation

Automation can’t solve everything, but it can provide relief in areas where you need it most. Advanced technology, like the solutions outlined in this article, prevents bloat and allows you to scale without having to continually add more people to the payroll. It’s an efficient way to manage resources and grow in a timely and sustainable manner that respects both the brand and the bottom line.

You don’t have to implement each of these solutions today, but it would be wise to take action as soon as possible. Pick one area where you stand to improve the most and put that strategy to work.

Then, once you have that piece in place, move on to another one. It’s through this diplomatic yet proactive approach that you’ll find results.

Frank Landman

Frank is a freelance journalist who has worked in various editorial capacities for over 10 years. He covers trends in technology as they relate to business.


Fintech Kennek raises $12.5M seed round to digitize lending



Google eyed for $2 billion Anthropic deal after major Amazon play

London-based fintech startup Kennek has raised $12.5 million in seed funding to expand its lending operating system.

According to an Oct. 10 report, the round was led by HV Capital and included participation from Dutch Founders Fund, AlbionVC, FFVC, Plug & Play Ventures, and Syndicate One. Kennek offers software-as-a-service tools to help non-bank lenders streamline their operations using open banking, open finance, and payments.

The platform aims to automate time-consuming manual tasks and consolidate fragmented data to simplify lending. Xavier De Pauw, founder of Kennek said:

“Until kennek, lenders had to devote countless hours to menial operational tasks and deal with jumbled and hard-coded data – which makes every other part of lending a headache. As former lenders ourselves, we lived and breathed these frustrations, and built kennek to make them a thing of the past.”

The company said the latest funding round was oversubscribed and closed quickly despite the challenging fundraising environment. The new capital will be used to expand Kennek’s engineering team and strengthen its market position in the UK while exploring expansion into other European markets. Barbod Namini, Partner at lead investor HV Capital, commented on the investment:

“Kennek has developed an ambitious and genuinely unique proposition which we think can be the foundation of the entire alternative lending space. […] It is a complicated market and a solution that brings together all information and stakeholders onto a single platform is highly compelling for both lenders & the ecosystem as a whole.”

The fintech lending space has grown rapidly in recent years, but many lenders still rely on legacy systems and manual processes that limit efficiency and scalability. Kennek aims to leverage open banking and data integration to provide lenders with a more streamlined, automated lending experience.

The seed funding will allow the London-based startup to continue developing its platform and expanding its team to meet demand from non-bank lenders looking to digitize operations. Kennek’s focus on the UK and Europe also comes amid rising adoption of open banking and open finance in the regions.

Featured Image Credit: Photo from; Thank you!

Radek Zielinski

Radek Zielinski is an experienced technology and financial journalist with a passion for cybersecurity and futurology.

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Fortune 500’s race for generative AI breakthroughs



Deanna Ritchie

As excitement around generative AI grows, Fortune 500 companies, including Goldman Sachs, are carefully examining the possible applications of this technology. A recent survey of U.S. executives indicated that 60% believe generative AI will substantially impact their businesses in the long term. However, they anticipate a one to two-year timeframe before implementing their initial solutions. This optimism stems from the potential of generative AI to revolutionize various aspects of businesses, from enhancing customer experiences to optimizing internal processes. In the short term, companies will likely focus on pilot projects and experimentation, gradually integrating generative AI into their operations as they witness its positive influence on efficiency and profitability.

Goldman Sachs’ Cautious Approach to Implementing Generative AI

In a recent interview, Goldman Sachs CIO Marco Argenti revealed that the firm has not yet implemented any generative AI use cases. Instead, the company focuses on experimentation and setting high standards before adopting the technology. Argenti recognized the desire for outcomes in areas like developer and operational efficiency but emphasized ensuring precision before putting experimental AI use cases into production.

According to Argenti, striking the right balance between driving innovation and maintaining accuracy is crucial for successfully integrating generative AI within the firm. Goldman Sachs intends to continue exploring this emerging technology’s potential benefits and applications while diligently assessing risks to ensure it meets the company’s stringent quality standards.

One possible application for Goldman Sachs is in software development, where the company has observed a 20-40% productivity increase during its trials. The goal is for 1,000 developers to utilize generative AI tools by year’s end. However, Argenti emphasized that a well-defined expectation of return on investment is necessary before fully integrating generative AI into production.

To achieve this, the company plans to implement a systematic and strategic approach to adopting generative AI, ensuring that it complements and enhances the skills of its developers. Additionally, Goldman Sachs intends to evaluate the long-term impact of generative AI on their software development processes and the overall quality of the applications being developed.

Goldman Sachs’ approach to AI implementation goes beyond merely executing models. The firm has created a platform encompassing technical, legal, and compliance assessments to filter out improper content and keep track of all interactions. This comprehensive system ensures seamless integration of artificial intelligence in operations while adhering to regulatory standards and maintaining client confidentiality. Moreover, the platform continuously improves and adapts its algorithms, allowing Goldman Sachs to stay at the forefront of technology and offer its clients the most efficient and secure services.

Featured Image Credit: Photo by Google DeepMind; Pexels; Thank you!

Deanna Ritchie

Managing Editor at ReadWrite

Deanna is the Managing Editor at ReadWrite. Previously she worked as the Editor in Chief for Startup Grind and has over 20+ years of experience in content management and content development.

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UK seizes web3 opportunity simplifying crypto regulations



Deanna Ritchie

As Web3 companies increasingly consider leaving the United States due to regulatory ambiguity, the United Kingdom must simplify its cryptocurrency regulations to attract these businesses. The conservative think tank Policy Exchange recently released a report detailing ten suggestions for improving Web3 regulation in the country. Among the recommendations are reducing liability for token holders in decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs) and encouraging the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to adopt alternative Know Your Customer (KYC) methodologies, such as digital identities and blockchain analytics tools. These suggestions aim to position the UK as a hub for Web3 innovation and attract blockchain-based businesses looking for a more conducive regulatory environment.

Streamlining Cryptocurrency Regulations for Innovation

To make it easier for emerging Web3 companies to navigate existing legal frameworks and contribute to the UK’s digital economy growth, the government must streamline cryptocurrency regulations and adopt forward-looking approaches. By making the regulatory landscape clear and straightforward, the UK can create an environment that fosters innovation, growth, and competitiveness in the global fintech industry.

The Policy Exchange report also recommends not weakening self-hosted wallets or treating proof-of-stake (PoS) services as financial services. This approach aims to protect the fundamental principles of decentralization and user autonomy while strongly emphasizing security and regulatory compliance. By doing so, the UK can nurture an environment that encourages innovation and the continued growth of blockchain technology.

Despite recent strict measures by UK authorities, such as His Majesty’s Treasury and the FCA, toward the digital assets sector, the proposed changes in the Policy Exchange report strive to make the UK a more attractive location for Web3 enterprises. By adopting these suggestions, the UK can demonstrate its commitment to fostering innovation in the rapidly evolving blockchain and cryptocurrency industries while ensuring a robust and transparent regulatory environment.

The ongoing uncertainty surrounding cryptocurrency regulations in various countries has prompted Web3 companies to explore alternative jurisdictions with more precise legal frameworks. As the United States grapples with regulatory ambiguity, the United Kingdom can position itself as a hub for Web3 innovation by simplifying and streamlining its cryptocurrency regulations.

Featured Image Credit: Photo by Jonathan Borba; Pexels; Thank you!

Deanna Ritchie

Managing Editor at ReadWrite

Deanna is the Managing Editor at ReadWrite. Previously she worked as the Editor in Chief for Startup Grind and has over 20+ years of experience in content management and content development.

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