My marketing technology services are designed to create new marketing efficiencies and revenue opportunities for your company. My approach is a combination of consultation, education and humor … yes humor. I am very passionate about my work and feel that getting my hands dirty with strategy, design, user interface, code and data in order to improve your business is fun. I feel it is my job to make your job easier and less intimidating while facilitating a synergy between your departments and goals. Suffice it to say, if you and your team don’t know how to have fun, or are going to get upset if I describe something I see as FUBAR, then you can stop reading now. If you are still with me, then here are some of the ways in which I might be able to help.
- Social media produces nearly double the marketing leads of trade shows, telemarketing, direct mail or PPC.
- Social lead conversion rates are 13% higher than the average lead conversion rate.
As these 2013 statistics from Social Media Today demonstrate, social media is essential for marketing success in the current business world. Your company may not even be taken seriously without a presence on the appropriate social networks.
However, simply maintaining social media accounts for your business is not sufficient. Winning social media marketing requires commitment, strategy, deep industry insight, genuine engagement and clever content curation. Producing a great deal of original, highly shareable content, genuinely and consistently conversing with industry influencers and building a significant social following could garner you a reputation as a thought leader as well as amplify exposure and brand recognition for your company.
With the current marketing landscape, it is critical to invest the necessary time and resources for building and maintaining a top-notch social presence. Strategic social media marketing calls for serious dedication and organization. There are a wide variety of social resources which can streamline social content curation—social sharing—and the promotion of your original content on all your social networks. There are also a growing number of social media management tools that can save you time and significantly increase the ROI of your social media efforts.
The social media landscape is constantly evolving. Do you proceed by trial and error, or do you get trained on best practices, get a strategic perspective from a veteran and receive guidance on measurement strategies that will allow you to quickly and easily assess the results of your efforts?
Smart social strategy, the right training and the best tools can save your company from making costly social blunders, wasting time and more quickly achieving the results you desire. My services include:
- Social Media Training
- Social media strategy development
- Social media assessment
- Identify potential privacy and risk issues
- Develop key social messages for each audience
- Assess key influencers
- Develop a content creation strategy
- Assess Social CRM tools for relationship management
- Develop a measurement strategy
- LinkedIn Training
As the list of marketing channels and devices grows, marketing opportunities are becoming increasingly fragmented. Faced with the challenges this presents, your marketing team needs to get serious about its marketing processes. Because you are marketing in the most fluid, fast-changing environment in marketing history, it is imperative that your marketing be more transparent, more accountable, more productive and better able to adapt to chance. Towards these goals, it is important that your activities support:
- Speed – By shortening cycle times you can achieve faster results as well as make quicker adjustments if a marketing strategy is working very well or not as well as you had expected.
- Priorities – Your Marketing and IT teams are being asked to do more with less. A clear focus and solid understanding of not only the scope of work, but the time frame will ensure that the most important work gets done first.
- Alignment – There are two critical audiences in agile marketing; executives within your company, where marketing must be aligned with the overall business goals, and customers/prospects, where marketing must be engaged in a vibrant, two-way conversation. Agile marketing encourages alignment between business goals and customer/prospect needs to ensure that the planned activities are delivering on the organization’s goals.
- Relevancy – Because relevancy has a shorter and shorter window of opportunity, sticking to one very large marketing campaign diminishes your ability to seize real-time opportunities. By the time your campaign rolls out the door, the problem may no longer be relevant. With agile marketing, rather than being bogged down in the production of one campaign, your team is able to produce, deploy, and analyze many relevant campaigns across a diverse range of marketing channels.
While the conflict between sales and marketing is longstanding, adding IT into the mix has created another level of frustration within many organizations. Now the marketing department can’t just try to blame the sales team for poor results, but they can also point fingers at the IT department for poor execution on their marketing campaigns.
With Gartner’s predictions that by 2017 CMOs will have larger budgets than IT departments, the roles of the CMOs and CTOs are converging. Someone now needs to take ownership of the digital marketing goals and outcomes.
Does your company have the staff you need to become a digital marketing powerhouse? Are your marketing and IT teams in alignment on their objectives and priorities? As marketing becomes increasingly dependent on a continuously evolving stream of leading edge technologies, the winning companies are going to be those with aligned and agile marketing and IT teams.
With speed to market being a key ingredient for success in today’s constantly changing and highly social market, your company needs to be continually seeking opportunities to maximize efficiencies. The goal with marketing automation is to reduce marketing labor requirements while increasing revenue by moving prospects and leads more efficiently through your sales funnel.
According to Gartner, by 2020, customers will manage 85% of their relationships without talking to a human. A 2011 study identified that the combination of process with marketing automation yields a 417% increase in revenue. If you aren’t a leader in marketing automation, than you may be on your way to being a lagger in your market.
To quote marketing pioneer John Wannamaker, “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half.” Digital marketers have solved this problem with the use of a variety of marketing analytics tools that allow them to measure both online as well as offline marketing initiatives. For over 15 years I have been driving marketing initiatives with a business tagline that states, “What Gets Measured Gets Managed.” The only difference between 1997 and today is that the tools available to marketers have continued to improve and are easier to operate.
By developing your marketing strategies and campaigns with a goal of clearly defined measurable results (or as we like to say, Key Performance Indicators), it will cause you to think differently about not only your strategies, but your creative.
What kind of results do you think you could achieve with a print advertising campaign if you first had the opportunity to test the headline, copy, call to action and even the creative with your target audience? Multivariate or A/B Testing software will allow your marketing team to quickly deliver creative assets that are based on customer data, not on design style or opinion. Do you think this would have a positive impact on your bottom line?
By developing not just marketing strategies but measurable marketing strategies, your company is well positioned to make less mistakes and more profits.
According to a study from the McKinsey Global Institute, “big data” – as it is now universally known – will become a key basis of competition, underpinning new waves of productivity growth and innovation.” Examples in which organizations have put data insights to use include:
- A personal health products company leveraging knowledge to increase innovation and avoid commoditization of its products;
- A high-end electronics manufacturer leveraging product feedback within social communities;
- A global restaurant company fostering knowledge sharing across the world to innovate new products;
- A leading online retailer in the automotive parts industry leveraging web and customer data to develop customer focused marketing strategies that increased year over year revenue by 32%.
From the standpoint of competitiveness and the potential value, your company needs to take big data seriously. Not only do you need to be capturing the data, but you need to be structuring and analyzing it in a manner that converts it to actionable insights. Insights that can tell you in real time that your new widget is bombing , but when paired with a different widget and wrapped in a pretty blue bow is flying off the shelves in certain regions. Your data, if structured properly, will give provide you with valuable insights that can turn would-be failures into success.
With new technologies come new skills requirements. As the web has become more interactive and marketing strategies have evolved, so too have the skills required of your marketing teams. Your teams, like your technology, need to be multi-faceted.
It’s no longer sufficient for a web developer to simply know how to code. In order to be effective, a web developer must also have knowledge around SEO, user interface and web analytics. In addition to knowing about a company’s target audience and how to reach them, a marketing manager must now understand and be effective at driving social media marketing, content marketing and website optimization. A marketing manager should also be adept at analyzing web data in order to be able to identify the ROI of the organization’s marketing efforts.
In the new World of consumer driven marketing, it’s also important to assess the social media skills of your entire team. According to a study published on the American Express OPEN forum, 80% of companies plan to use social media for customer service by the end of 2012. But social media customer service isn’t a cute tool to be used by employees who see it as a megaphone. It is an essential method of communication that needs to become part of a firm’s defined organizational model and standards.
A marketing technology skills assessment is often a by-product of a marketing audit. By following the workflow from concept to consumer, the bottlenecks, workarounds and the ever present “sneaker net” will identify where the efficiency opportunities and skills deficiencies are hidden.
Marketing silos refers to the specific and separate marketing strategies used across multiple marketing channels. The term is also used in reference to the marketing of siloed brands or departments. In either instance, the common practice has been that employees are working to benefit their own marketing strategies or their own department as opposed to marketing for the benefit of the organization.
Silos are dangerous. They enable a culture where brand managers and product managers are handcuffed, with one department not knowing what the other is doing and each trying to increase sales and engage with the same customer. They also prevent the delivery of a consistent and seamless message across all marketing channels.
Silos are not effective for today’s customer-centric approach, which means that organizations need to take full account of customers shopping across current and emerging touchpoints.
The strategies for integrating marketing silos are contingent on a variety of criteria, not the least of which are the company, the industry, the product or services being marketed, the target audience, B2B v B2C, available tools, budgets and a host of other criteria.
Is your company operating with marketing silos? Let’s talk about what can be done to solve the problem.
The tagline from Forrester Consulting’s 2012 report on The Key to Successful Cross-Channel Marketing says it all, “Sophisticated Cross-Channel Marketers Show Us That Technology Matters Most.” The study identifies that the underlying factor behind the success of advanced marketer’s was their ability to use technology to aid program execution, data collection and process management across channel managers.
The study identifies the key recommendations as:
- Apply more interactive tools
- Take a gradual approach
- Consider outsourced support
Can I help?
Software has become how marketing sees and touches the world. Because software is now so easy to create and scale, there are new marketing technology solutions being launched literally every day. Some of these solutions will be game changing disruptive technologies; think iTunes and the music industry.
If you want to be a leader, then your company needs to be constantly exploring new marketing technologies and strategies. Maybe there is one solution that supports your marketing objectives. Maybe there are several that you need to integrate. Or, maybe you come up with a game changing idea and need to build the software … or have it built for you.
This is where you need the help of a CMTO, someone who understands your business, your marketing strategy and marketing technology.
In order for me to help you, I need to come up to speed on your business, current technologies, marketing strategies, marketing tactics, staff and resources in lightening speed. We will start with a phone conversation, after which I will send you a questionnaire tailored to your objectives. I will also ask for access to your web analytics. Upon receipt of the answers and my review of your analytics, we will schedule a follow-up call to discuss preliminary findings and next steps.