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The Ultimate Guide to Marketing Automation for Online Business Coaches and Consultants

Updated: Mar 18

What is marketing automation?

Marketing automation is when a business leverages technology to manage marketing campaigns and processes across multiple channels automatically. Marketing automation works best for tasks that are recurring, monotonous, and/or time-consuming. 


Most business owners kick the can down the road when it comes to implementing marketing automation in their business because they don’t know where to start, feel overwhelmed, or don’t understand the value. But that won’t be you– by the end of this blog post, you’ll feel equipped to set up your first automation and you’ll be ready to look for even more ways to improve the automations in your business so you can free up your time and reduce overwhelm. 


Let’s talk about why marketing automation is important for online business coaches and consultants.

Marketing automation is important for online business coaches and consultants because it allows them to run their business at high performance without maxing out their capacity, requiring large and expensive teams, or missing out on opportunities to connect and convert their audience. 


When executed properly, good marketing automations will help you identify quality leads, capture their information, and send segmented, targeted information to the right person at the right time. Marketing automations also help online business coaches and consultants improve key marketing indicators like your average cart value, and the lifetime value of your customers, and even shorten your product purchase cycle. 


By leveraging technology in your marketing strategy you’re able to leverage amazing features like dynamic content for example to send customized messages to your website visitors, email subscribers, or applicants no matter where they are in their customer journey.  


What types of marketing automations can online business coaches and consultants implement? 

There are a number of different marketing automations that online business coaches and consultants can implement. When you’re creating automations for your business, it’s important to know what the goal of the automation is. I’ve found that for more business owners, automations are put into place to either increase efficiency, increase sales, or grow your audience. Let’s break down the kind of automations you might use in each of these examples. 

Marketing automations to increase efficiency: 

Marketing automations to increase efficiency are typically put in place to eliminate daily or monotonous tasks like onboarding clients, offboarding clients, capturing testimonials, or sending out meeting notes and agenda documents. In my Fractional CMO service, I use Slack automations to follow-up with my clients once a week, checking in on their sales, goals, and any big problems I need to be aware of for the week. This allows me to keep a pulse on their business without having to constantly remember to manually check-in. This is very important to me because it upholds my core value which is for my clients to feel seen, served, and safe.  

Marketing automations to increase sales: 

Marketing automations to increase sales are put into place to increase your average cart value, upsell clients in the checkout process, or downsell clients who’ve decided not to invest in your signature offer. One marketing automation that I have in place to increase sales is on the checkout page of my book. When students come to purchase the book, they are offered the opportunity to secure the Launch Made Simple template for only $17. This template is regularly priced at $97 in my shop. 


By having this automation in place, I’m able to consistently increase my average order value from $27 to $44. Simple automations like this require no additional time from me, but they help to ensure that I provide more value to my students and make more money in the long run. 

This same theory applies to downsell automations to increase sales. What this means is that in an instance where a student would decide that a four-figure offer is out of reach for them and ultimately just not purchase anything, I’m able to retarget them to a lower-priced offer that offers a similar solution, at a discounted price and it feels like a no-brainer offer to them. So, instead of making $0, I’m able to make $250. 


Lastly, having marketing automations in place to retarget students who abandon their cart helps to recoup lost sales and make more money. I remind them that they left something in their cart and if they haven’t secured that item within 36 hours the automation automatically offers a limited time offer discount or bonus. 


These automations save me massive amounts of time in my business while continuously driving sales to my business without me having to be the person to consistently send a manual email or know exactly where each and every one of my students are in their purchasing journey. As your business grows and you attract more students, increase the traffic to your website it becomes increasingly more difficult to provide this customized and personal touch without marketing automations and you can miss out thousands, if not multiple thousands, in sales. 


Marketing automations to grow your audience: 

Marketing automations to grow your audience are put into place to automatically and consistently convert website or social media traffic into newsletter subscribers. These automations allow online business coaches and consultants to more their audience base from platforms they don’t own to communities of loyal followers and fans. If any of the social media channels decided to close down today, the business owners who were diligent about establishing and growing these personal channels will still have an audience of buyers and the business who did not invest in growing their personal channels will struggle. 


One key marketing automation to grow your audience is to have a pop-up on your website that captures visitors names and emails upon landing. You’d connect this popup to a welcome sequence that will welcome them to your community, introduce yourself and your business, and begin to nurture them to your offers. Many business owners forget this step, but it’s vital because it allows you to stay connected and top of mind with the people who are already interested in your business, even if they’re not yet at the point where they are ready to purchase. 


Watch my FREE training How to Build a Simple, Automated Sales & Marketing Machine Without Overworking, Overthinking, or Posting Multiple Times a Day!



Marketing automation workflow examples. 

Below you will find examples of marketing automations that you execute in your business right now to immediately begin increasing efficiency, increase sales, and/or growing your audience. 


Deliver a Lead Magnet to a New Website Visitor. 



In this automation the student is visiting the homepage of my website, once they land on that page a box will pop-up asking for them to enter their name and email address in exchange for a free resource of some kind, often called a Lead Magnet. If they bite and enter their name and email address they will get tagged in my email marketing as “New Subscriber - NAME OF LEAD MAGNET”, they will be redirected to download their lead magnet and they they will simultaneously be entered into a three-series email sequence where I will welcome them to my community, introduce myself, and introduce a new offer. For me, this offer will be low-ticket – my book if they aren’t already tagged as having purchased it and Profitable People if they have already purchased my book. 


Follow-Up With a Previous Client, Ask for Feedback, & Upsell to Offer 



In this automation, once a student completes the onboarding process for a signature offer, I will wait three days and then send them an email asking for their feedback on the offer. As soon as they complete the form they will be redirected to a Limited Time Offer and if they purchase, my learning management system (LMS) will deliver the offer. If they don’t complete the form after three days, my email marketing system will send them another email requesting their feedback. Again, as soon as they complete the form they will be redirected to a Limited Time Offer and if they purchase, my learning management system (LMS) will deliver the offer, but if they don’t complete the form after 7 days the automation will end. 


This automation allows me to receive a continuous stream of testimonials for my offers and allows me increase the Lifetime Value of my students by potentially upselling them into another, valuable offer along their customer journey. 


Marketing automation platforms for online business coaches and consultants. 

As an online business owner, corporate Digital Director, wife, and mom, it’s imperative that I leverage marketing automation platforms in my business. Below you’ll find a few of the tools that I use daily to automate my business and communication with clients. 


ThriveCart  - ThriveCart is a page creation platform designed to help create cart pages and funnels for businesses. In my business, I use ThriveCart to capture payment for my signature offers. By using ThriveCart, I’m able to automatically capture payment on a recurring basis, send follow-up emails for missed payments, and send client information to my email marketing software so that I can continue to deliver valuable content, and sell other, related offers. 


ConvertKit  - ConvertKit is the go-to marketing hub for creators that helps you grow and monetize your audience with ease. ConvertKit is the email marketing platform that I use to deliver MUVA Mail and send out promotional emails to subscribers. Thanks to ConvertKits features I’m also able to move subscribers through segmented funnels based on previous purchases and actions, delivering custom marketing messages. These automations really help me in sending the right message, to the right person, at the right time which is essential to effective email marketing. I’m also able to keep my segmentation updated thanks to their rules feature which allows me to add and remove tags to subscribers as they purchase and move further into my funnel. 


Airtable - Airtable is a spreadsheet-database hybrid, with the features of a database but applied to a spreadsheet. I keep track of all of my launch data, sales, and client information in Airtable. Every time someone purchases from my website they are zapped into an airtable base where I can monitor data points like their total spend with my business, what products they’ve purchased, and the dates that they’ve purchased from me which helps to map out their customer journey. This information allows me to see the average number of days it takes for someone to enroll in the Clarity to Coins course after they’ve purchased a book, or upgrade to 1:1 coaching after they’ve completed Clarity to Coins. 


I also used Airtable to build my revolutionary Launch Made Simple template. 


ManyChat - ManyChat is a messaging bot for Facebook that is well-known for helping companies improve their customer service and support. I’ve used ManyChat to automate the sales process in my business from social media traffic. Most recently I used it to a reel on Instagram to promote my book, It Ain’t Rocket Science, Friend! How to Position Your Expertise, Build an Authentic Personal Brand, and Plan a Profitable Launch in 90 Days. I told my audience to dm “ROCKET” or the rocket emoji. When they did, ManyChat would recognize “ROCKET” as a keyword and automatically send them the link to purchase the book. 


But that’s not even the best part, if they didn’t purchase the book within two hours, ManyChat’s automation would follow-up to see if they had any questions about the book. It was a super simple automation to set up and it saved me so much time! 


Zapier - Zapier provides workflows to automate the use of web applications together. Of all the tools online to automate your business workflows, Zapier is one of my favorites because it allows business owners to connect apps that typically would not be able to work together to complete an automation. Zapier is very user-friendly and simple to use (even for beginners). In my business we use Zapier workflows to onboard and offboard clients, create meeting records in Airtable, send product purchases to Shopify, and so much more! 


Marketing automation tips. 

After reading this blog post thus far, you’re probably feeling excited and energized to use marketing automations. I get it, but before you go jumping off the deep ends, getting overwhelmed, and then feeling like “marketing automations don’t work for me” I want to share a few simple tips that can make your transition easier and more effective. 


  1. Hire an experienced marketing automations strategist to help you identify the gaps between your marketing strategy and systems, strategize automations, tools, or systems that can help fill those gaps, and hold you accountable to getting it done in 90 days or less. This is exactly what I do in my Marketing Systems Intensive. Learn more and book your call today.  

  2. Be specific about what you want the automation to accomplish. Every automation you add to your business should have a goal of either saving you time and resources or helping you make more money.

  3. Identify if there will be any points of segmentation with the audience where the messaging will differ based on a previous action that was taken. 

  4. Use a mind mapping tool like LucidChart or Miro to map out the exact steps that you want to happen in the automation you’re building.

  5. Test the automation before you GO LIVE with it. Once it’s live, have a close friend or previous client go through the automation to be sure it works how you envisioned it. There is nothing more frustrating than launching an automation, having a paying client go through it and then finding out in the end that it’s broken or doesn’t work how you need it to. Trust me. 


Meet your Marketing Automations Strategist. 

Hey Friend! I’m Brianca Johnson Kirkman, a marketing automations strategist and the author of It Ain't Rocket Science, Friend! How to Position Your Expertise, Build an Authentic Personal Brand, and Plan a Profitable Launch in 90 Days. I specialize in helping online business coaches and consultants like you package their expertise into profitable e-learning and consulting businesses that run on autopilot. Over the last decade I have assisted my clients in generating over $500,000 in first time launches and I’ve coached over 600 women between three core programs since July 2020. 

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