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Less Funnel Hacking, More Relationship Building



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New school digital marketing vs. old school relationship selling. Must we choose?

Every business  – every business owner has a unique voice and mission to share. When faith is put into investing in new tech, systems, or programs over sharing an authentic message, then every marketing effort is doomed to fail. Understand the different types of marketing automation tools to use, and how to use them to build a valuable relationship with your audience.

Tech is a tool, nothing more

Anywhere you look online, someone is trying to sell “the perfect marketing system” to fit any business. Yet, anyone who has been through this ringer knows that the “perfect” system isn’t always a 3-page funnel to copy and paste. 

The world of sales continues to evolve. There’s so much advice out there about how to stay in front of an audience, or how to stay ahead of the social media algorithms, or how to compel followers to opt into your email list

If you’re a small and mid-sized business owner, it can be overwhelming to navigate it all.

Thus enters the expert. The guru. The person with ALL the answers to ALL the problems. They offer you the latest sales tactics automated with the flashiest marketing tools with the most effective Facebook ad template… all packaged up in a pretty $10,000 package for business owners to simply copy and paste.

Sometimes this insight is valuable. Other times, it can leave you feeling more confused than before. 

How marketing tools SHOULD be used

Marketing automation tools are great for your business and should be implemented. But if you are more focused on impressing website visitors with a slick funnel than serving your audience at the highest level, you’ll be on the struggle bus when it comes to hitting your sales goals. It’s easy to forget that every follower, subscriber, or viewer is a real person.

Someone who takes interest in what you have to offer and wants to learn more about your business. What do you think is more memorable?

A quick sales automation reminding them to purchase from you?

Or meaningful content and conversations that help them to get to know more about you, your business, your products, and who you serve?

Marketing tools to help you build trust with your audience

No matter what tool you choose to use, it’s important not to lose your unique selling point in it all; you. Let’s take a look at a few marketing automation tools to explore that will help you build strong relationships with your followers, prospects, and clients.


Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is a system to help you manage your relationships with your customers and prospects. It helps to keep track of all your business’s interactions with this contact from acquisition, to contact management, to invoices and payments, and more. 

There’s a ton of customizations in these powerful systems to help you make your communications with your contact look and feel like you. Branding is an excellent way to humanize the online experience for your contacts. Take advantage of it whenever you can.

Email Marketing Automations

These are awesome to set up and run with your email list! The way it works is when someone in your list meets a certain trigger, the campaign is automatically sent. 

Be mindful of the lists you send these campaigns to. Not everyone will meet the criteria for every campaign. The more you customize the message and experience for your subscribers, the more trust you’ll build with individuals.

Opt-In Forms

If you’ve ever subscribed to an email list, then you’re familiar with opt-in forms. The point of these is to offer a website visitor something in exchange for their contact information. By entering their information, they consent to being contacted by you again. Whether it’s a newsletter or email marketing campaign, they’ll be added to one of your lists so you can deliver the offer they wanted, and you can continue to provide value to them down the road.

Growing your email list should always be a top priority in your marketing strategy. A great way to do it is to offer web visitors a little something to join your list. Opt-in forms give you that chance to entice and grab new leads. Make sure to offer something of value, and always follow up. Who knows? They may end up being your best client yet!

Social Media Scheduling Tool

Let’s be honest for a moment; social media can be a time-suck if you let it! A social media scheduling tool will allow you to plan out and schedule your content well ahead of time so you can get back to doing what you do best. 

Social media delivers measurable results in sales, leads, and brand awareness, according to Dream Grow. It’s a great way to engage with people interested in your business, and build a community of brand loyalists. When you don’t have to think about posting content every day, you can simply focus on communicating with your audience in meaningful ways. 

Try to find a scheduling tool that helps you plan out posting times, has clear analytics, and helps you optimize your content month to month. When you have a social media content calendar that continues to grow your following and engage your audience, it will help you build trust with your people and make more sales.


You want to use catchy images, videos, gifs and graphics to help you catch the eye of your ideal audience. If you’re not a graphic designer, don’t fret! There are a ton of tools out there to help you create beautiful images quickly. 

Ideally, you want to stick to your brand images so you can create a familiar aesthetic throughout your social media, websites, emails and more. Don’t let graphics get you stuck. If you must, hire a graphic designer to help you. You don’t want to lose trust with your audience because your look and feel is inconsistent.

At the end of the day, it’s about building relationships

Somewhere along the line, building a business stopped being about building relationships. Yes, marketing automation tools are great to support every business, but there isn’t one right way to do it. Tech is a tool to help you spread your message far and wide to the people who need you the most.

Ultimately, good marketing comes down to this:

Talk like a human being. Keep true to your brand voice. Always deliver the right  message to the right person. Lead from a place of service. Have meaningful conversations with people. Know that every connection you make today could be beneficial to you tomorrow.

I’m a social media and digital marketing strategist who helps bootstrapped businesses to build custom, in-house marketing systems that you can own and operate to reach your goals month after month.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Jodie Noel

    May 21, 2021 at 3:54 pm

    I think the tips are incredible for relationship building.

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