Awhile back I built up a complex email automation in my email marketing provider.
It included several paths for people to take with delays, multiple sub-campaigns, and whole bunch of automations.
It worked fine
...until it didn't.
When I switched vendors I did an audit of that automation and found that almost 20% of people inside of the automation were stuck.
They weren't progressing.
They weren't getting emails.
Basically, there were bugs in the system introduced after I created the automation.
Since the automation was so complex, it was impossible to see and understand the big-picture. This made auditing it to make sure it was working impossible.
My tip today isn't to avoid automation or to shame my old vendor.
Rather it's a warning about automation.
Automation is great and can be really powerful.
But it's leverage.
Just like how you can use a lever to do more work, sometimes that lever can slip and snap you in the face.
Use automation. But be judicious in where you use it and put just as much effort into monitoring it.
That's one reason why I haven't built customer-facing automation into Repeat Customer Insights yet.
The analysis is does is so powerful that it's safer for customers to review the analysis results themselves first, before plugging in automation.