Marketing Automation: Why choose Marketing Automation in South Africa

Marketing Automation

Why choose Marketing Automation in South Africa

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By Luke Marthinusen March 22, 2019 • 4 minutes to read

The use of marketing automation is still in its infancy in South Africa, with only a few financial brands and forward-thinking businesses making it a core part of their marketing strategy.

Marketing Automation's enormous rate of growth

Internationally the industry is growing at a massive rate and is currently the biggest current trend in the digital marketing space. As with most trends, in South Africa, we lag a few years behind the USA, but we should expect the use of marketing automation in South Africa to trend upwards sharply in the coming years. 

marketing automation market in south africa


The US Marketing Automation industry was at $3.3B in 2017, and is growing 30%+ annually. SharpSpring “Investor Presentation Jan 2018”

The most important objectives of marketing automation in South Africa

According to our own customers that we surveyed in late 2018 about marketing automation in South Africa, they say the most important objectives of a marketing automation strategy are:

  • Acquiring more customers
  • Improved targeting of messages
  • Optimising productivity
  • Increasing marketing ROI
  • Improving campaign management
  • Improving database quality
  • Measuring performance
  • Aligning Marketing and Sales

The benefits of Marketing Automation

marketing automation benefits south africa


Getresponse noted the following trends in a 2018 survey of marketing automation users when it comes to the benefits of marketing automation. Business owners, executives and marketers identified the biggest marketing automation benefits as saving time (30%) then lead generation (22%), followed by increased in revenue (17%), customer retention (11%), accurate and measurable tracking and monitoring of marketing campaigns (8%), and a shortening the sales cycle (2%)

Marketing Automation Adoption

European firm CleverTouch released a report on the state of the marketing automation industry globally, surveying 200 Head Marketers and CMOs in the Europe, the USA, UK, Middle East, and Africa. The survey researched adoption rates, difficulties and in-house training for marketing automation software.

The survey revealed there is a gap in the perceived benefits of marketing automation and the realities of adoption. It recognised the most used features of marketing automation as lead generation, lead nurturing campaigns, and account-based marketing.

Marketing Automation skills in South Africa

Considering the CleverTouch report, although globally focused, we can confirm similar sentiments in the marketing automation space in South Africa.

33% of individuals surveyed looked to outside talent and consulting agencies to use their marketing automation solutions, compared to a tiny 13% of those that trained their in-house people to manage them. This may be indicative of the fact that automation, although often perceived as easy to manage, is particularly difficult to leverage at scale, and where experience makes the route to success with marketing automation easier and faster.

As a marketing automation consultancy, we are tasked to skill up and educate corporate marketing teams on marketing automation and rarely find staff that are skilled in marketing automation already in place. If we do find staff in place, our first few months of engagement are often dominated by fixing databased and integration errors, as well as staff training.

Keen for some interesting facts on marketing automation, download our latest infographic.

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