There are a number of misconceptions surrounding the concept of marketing automation, but one of the most prevalent is this: that marketing automation is a complex tool that a smaller marketing team would struggle to set up and maintain.

In reality, marketing automation provides a number of benefits that are specifically geared towards helping marketers do more with less, making it the perfect solution for teams with limited time and resources, and easily justifying the investment in a new tool. Let’s take a look at how marketing automation can help smaller businesses grow their efforts — while simplifying life for the marketers who are making it all happen. And don’t forget to check out our latest ebook, Five Steps to Growing Your Business with Marketing Automation, for more information.

1. Do more, stress less

As a marketer, how often do you feel like you’ll never have enough time to accomplish all that you need to get done and try new things? Whether you’re just getting started or are a fast-growing, successful small business, time is the one resource that always seems hard to come by. But what if you could eliminate some of the more tedious tasks filling your schedule (qualifying and assigning leads, sending out endless emails, etc.)? What if you could scale your messaging efforts while still delivering personalized messages that speak to a buyer’s specific needs? Marketing automation essentially adds another member to your team by automating more mindless tasks and scaling personalization — freeing you up to focus on higher-level strategies.

2. Build a one-stop marketing shop

Having an array of marketing tools spread across multiple platforms doesn’t just waste a significant amount of time, it also prevents you from having a complete view of your customer. Marketing automation allows you to pull all of these disparate tools into one comprehensive platform, using the data collected from each to build a full picture of your customers’ interests and target your campaigns more effectively. For marketers, this means you can create, deploy, manage, and measure your assets all in one place.

3. Supercharge your sales cycle

Another common misconception: marketing automation will only benefit your marketing team. Not only does marketing automation put time back in your day, it also allows you to work smarter in ways that will benefit both your marketing and sales teams. By integrating marketing automation with your CRM system, you can give sales insight into their prospects’ interactions with your marketing materials, align your process for qualifying and distributing leads, and allow reps to identify the hottest leads at a glance.

4. See what’s working — and what’s not

Measuring and reassessing your processes to determine which are having the most significant impact on the growth of your business is a crucial element of modern marketing, so insight into the sales cycle is a marketer’s best friend. Reporting features of marketing automation can show you every interaction that a prospect had with your brand—from click to close—allowing you to identify snags and improve the efficiency of your funnel. And having access to numbers that prove marketing’s contribution to overall revenue doesn’t hurt either — particularly when it comes time to make budget requests.

Ready to get started? Grab your copy of Five Steps to Growing Your Business with Marketing Automation for a step-by-step guide to setting up your business for growth and success, and be sure to check out our upcoming webinar, Four Must-Have Marketing Strategies for Fast-Growth Companies, for more information.