Robotic Process Automation Use Cases in Marketing and Sales
RPA stands for robotic process automation, which is the automation of business processes using software tools that perform repetitive tasks. There are various robotic process automation use cases which can lead to significant gains in both efficiency and time. Specifically, RPA adoption can reduce repetitive tasks by nearly 80%. With 59% of business processes expected to be automated by 2022, this means that humans will have much more time and space for creative and non-repetitive tasks. It also means that you might have to look for a new job, but let’s not get into this now.
Automation is playing an increasingly important role in marketing and sales, something facilitated by the typically easy integration of RPA within existing IT infrastructure. So here are some ways to implement this technology effectively within these departments.
Storing Existing and New Customer Information
A notable RPA use case is that it enables one to store customer information in an organised and accessible manner. Automatic classification of different categories of data, as well as easy company-wide data visualisation, can save one time versus manually entering this information.
Extracting Marketing and Sales Data from Different Formats
Data entry professionals may be the first to go (sorry Fred from accounting). As data appears in a variety of formats from un-editable text to notes on paper, it can be difficult to read and enter all these different pieces of information. RPA is able to use optical character recognition technology to read information from different sources and automatically enter it into your CRM system without losing accuracy.
Sales Order and Invoice Processing
Ensuring all data is consistent within an organisation is a very time-intensive task. Sales professionals spend vast amounts of time entering data into the CRM system, which then has to be entered into a different system for the finance department. These transfers of information lead to notable reductions in accuracy, consistency and productivity. RPA can automate sales order tasks on an end-to-end basis, such as entering sales orders and creating their respective invoices. It can also automatically process invoices from different formats into consolidated data into a single database system. Not only can RPA automate the data input but it can process different levels of decision making and check for distinct errors.
RPA can be used to automatically nurture leads from a variety of different channels. By enabling instant follow-ups and interactions with leads, RPA can lead to easier and faster lead nurturing to increase sales. Providing prompt responses to information can be facilitated by RPA as well as generating friendly and appealing replies to advance the conversation.
Pricing and Competition Monitoring
There are various RPA solutions that enable one to track competitor websites and prices in real-time while receiving notifications when there is a change. This can enable businesses to adjust their prices accordingly without having to manually browse competitor websites.
Business Intelligence Reporting
There is such a myriad of marketing and sales data available to your business, that trying to manually process it would take far too much time. On the other hand, RPA can be used to set business defined rules to automate these processes. For example, new market entrants, relevant events, campaigns and competitor messaging can all be tracked with RPA bots. Most importantly, insights into existing account activity can enable sales reps to outreach at the right time. For instance, if a current customer hasn’t renewed and is near the end of their subscription, RPA can be used to automatically notify the respective account holder to follow-up with the client and to attempt to obtain a renewal.
Data Aggregation and Management
One of the most common robotic process automation use cases is to automatically aggregate contacts and update your CRM system so that your sales staff doesn’t have to spend time searching for missing critical information. Crawling the web with RPA bots and other software programs can fill in missing contact information and enable more in-depth account mapping.
Facilitating the Transition from Old to New Solutions
With the ever-increasing amount of marketing and sales software available, from sales acceleration to marketing automation, companies are increasingly switching from legacy systems to new solutions. As new software continues to arise, and programmers with long beards, Hawaiian shirts and sailor Jerry tattoos become increasingly present in the office, it can be very time-consuming to transfer all the old information. On the other hand, companies that have implemented RPA can easily convert from one system to the other while avoiding businesses disruptions alongside any mistakes resulting from human interference.