Automation is a buzzword that often brings up images of robots taking over human jobs, or complex software that requires a lot of technical expertise. However, automation is much more than that. It is a powerful tool that can help small and midsized businesses (SMBs) improve their efficiency, productivity, and competitiveness in the digital economy.
However, many SMBs are still hesitant to embrace automation, due to some common myths and misconceptions. In this blog post, we will bust 10 of these myths and show you how automation can benefit your business.
Automation in Sales and Marketing:
This refers to using software to automate repetitive tasks and business processes, such as email campaigns, appointment scheduling, sales pipelines and other simple repetitive tasks in sales and Marketing.
MonkeyPesa provides a platform to help with automation in sales and marketing
Now to dive into the myths:
Myth 1: Automation is costly
One of the main barriers to automation adoption for SMBs is the perceived high cost of implementing and maintaining automation solutions. However, this is not necessarily true. There are many affordable and accessible automation platforms and tools that cater to the needs and budgets of SMBs. For example, MonkeyPesa's automation capabilities are available starting from just $19.99. All packages have automation capabilities only restricted based on usage.
Check out: monkeypesa.com/automation
Moreover, automation can actually save you money in the long run, by reducing errors, increasing efficiency, and freeing up your time and resources for more strategic tasks. According to a ServiceNow study, companies that rely heavily on automation are nearly six times more likely to experience revenue growth of more than 15% compared to companies with low automation.
Myth 2: Automation is difficult
Another common myth is that automation is too complicated or technical for SMBs to implement and use. However, this is also not true. Automation does not have to be complex or intimidating. There are many user-friendly and intuitive automation solutions that do not require any coding or technical skills. You can easily create workflows and automate tasks with simple drag-and-drop interfaces or pre-built templates.
Additionally, you do not have to automate everything at once. You can start small and simple, by automating some of the most repetitive and mundane tasks in your business, such as sending emails, scheduling appointments, or updating spreadsheets. You can then gradually expand your automation scope and complexity as you gain more confidence and experience.
Myth 3: Automation is risky
Some SMBs may fear that automation will expose them to more risks, such as security breaches, data loss, or compliance issues. However, this is also not true. Automation can actually help you reduce risks and enhance security in your business. For example, automation can help you:
Encrypt and backup your data automatically
Monitor and alert you of any suspicious activities or anomalies
Enforce policies and rules consistently across your processes
Generate audit trails and reports for compliance purposes
Of course, automation is not a silver bullet that can eliminate all risks. You still need to follow best practices and standards for data protection and security, such as using strong passwords, updating your software regularly, and limiting access permissions.
Myth 4: Automation will replace humans
Perhaps the most pervasive myth about automation is that it will replace human workers and make them obsolete. However, this is also not true. Automation is not meant to replace humans, but to augment them. Automation can help you automate the tasks that are boring, tedious, or error-prone, so that you can focus on the tasks that are creative, strategic, or relationship-oriented.
Automation can also help you improve the quality of your work and the satisfaction of your customers and employees. For example, automation can help you:
Deliver faster and more accurate results
Provide personalized and consistent service
Enhance collaboration and communication
Increase engagement and motivation
Automation can also create new opportunities for learning and development for your employees. By automating some of their tasks, you can free up their time for training and upskilling, so that they can acquire new skills and competencies that are relevant for the future of work.
Myth 5: Automation is one-size-fits-all
Another myth is that automation is a one-size-fits-all solution that can be applied to any business process or function. However, this is also not true. Automation is not a magic wand that can solve all your problems. Automation needs to be tailored to your specific business needs, goals, and context.
Myth 6: Automation is impersonal
Some SMBs may worry that automation will make their business lose its human touch and personal connection with their customers and employees. However, this is also not true. Automation can actually help you enhance your personalization and engagement with your stakeholders. For example, automation can help you:
Segment and target your customers based on their preferences and behaviors
Send personalized and timely messages and offers to your customers
Collect and analyze feedback and sentiment from your customers and employees
Provide 24/7 support and service to your customers via chatbots or self-service portals
Recognize and reward your customers and employees for their loyalty and performance
Automation can also help you create more opportunities for human interaction, by freeing up your time from routine tasks and allowing you to focus on building relationships and trust with your customers and employees.
Myth 7: Automation is inflexible
Some SMBs may think that automation will lock them into rigid processes and workflows that cannot be changed or adapted to different situations or needs. However, this is also not true. Automation can actually help you increase your flexibility and agility in your business. For example, automation can help you:
Streamline and standardize your processes and workflows for consistency and efficiency
Automate tasks that are prone to human error or variation
Monitor and measure your performance and outcomes
Identify and resolve issues or bottlenecks quickly
Experiment and test different scenarios or options
Automation can also help you adapt to changing customer expectations, market conditions, or business opportunities, by allowing you to modify or update your processes and workflows easily and quickly.
Myth 8: Automation is one-time
Some SMBs may assume that automation is a one-time project that can be done once and forgotten. However, this is also not true. Automation is an ongoing journey that requires continuous improvement and optimization. Automation is not a set-it-and-forget-it solution, but a dynamic and evolving one. For example, you need to:
Keep track of the latest trends and technologies in automation
Evaluate the effectiveness and efficiency of your automation solutions
Seek feedback and suggestions from your customers and employees
Learn from your successes and failures
Iterate and innovate your automation solutions
Automation can also help you with this continuous improvement cycle, by providing you with data, insights, and recommendations that can help you make better decisions and actions.
Myth 9: Automation is for everyone
Some SMBs may feel pressured to automate everything they can, because they think that automation is for everyone and everything. However, this is also not true. Automation is not for everyone or everything. For our case as an example, we only use it in sales and marketing processes. In accounting and everywhere else, we do not need it. This could change later but for now we do not need it. Automation is for what makes sense for your business, not everything. For example, you need to.:
Assess your business needs, goals, and challenges
Identify the areas or processes that can benefit from automation
Prioritize the automation opportunities based on their value and feasibility
Align your automation strategy with your business strategy
Involve your stakeholders in the automation process
Automation can also help you with this assessment and prioritization process, by providing you with tools, frameworks, and best practices that can help you make smarter choices.
Myth 10: Automating my communications will take away the human touch
Most people imagine that automation automatically is Robotic. They imagine emails, SMS or communication that looks the same for everyone. However, automation has grown miles and leaps since its inception. It has the ability to contextualize and provide the right information to the right person at the moment that its needed.
With MonkeyPesa for example, using #[Name], #[Company] or other automated texts will automatically pick the persons name, company or any other details in the system. The email will include the persons name and details making it more personal regardless of it being sent automatically.
Automation is a powerful tool that can help small and midsized businesses improve their efficiency, productivity, competitiveness in the digital economy. However, many SMBs are still hesitant to embrace automation due to some common myths and misconceptions.
In this blog post, we have busted 10 of these myths about automation for SMBs. We hope that this will help you overcome any doubts or fears about automation and encourage you to explore the benefits of automation for your business.
If you are interested in learning more about how automation