Flock Associates chief executive Simon Francis offers a checklist for advertisers aiming to create a simplified marketing operation.
Integrated marketing works better than fragmented and uncoordinated efforts: ‘true fact’ not ‘fake news’.
We are often asked, “What are the most important marketing topics to fix?” or, “Where do we start?”
Whilst each client starts from a different place, there is very often a common destination that we propose. What we have learned is that clients who have embraced the ‘Power of One’ build the best campaigns, get the best results, and do so most efficiently.
What is the ‘Power of One’ and how do you get it?
The ‘Power of One’ is the simplification of marketing operations to a set of common processes, KPIs, technologies and so on. Read the list of items below and, for fun, keep a note of how your company or your clients (if you are in an agency) perform.
One set of objectives
The most successful marketers analyse their business and devise a simple set of common objectives for their marketing. This brings clarity and focus. Multiple objectives, different objectives by department, or by discipline creates a fractured effort. Are you clear on your objectives?
One set of KPIs
There is access to data everywhere, and there are thousands of KPI’s a marketer could study. The best of our clients match their KPIs to the objectives and set targets across the customer experience map. Do you have one set of KPIs across disciplines and departments?
One marketing process
We see huge wastes of effort and confused planning because of the lack of one integrated marketing process. It’s relatively simple to create, but time and time again we see terrible process that is a barrier to integration. We see departments and disciplines ‘doing their own thing’ and separate agencies trying to apply their own ‘proprietary’ processes.
This is the most common marketing ‘fault’. What are your processes like?
“Each agency said their results were amazing; the truth was somewhat different”
One integrated and aligned strategy
Motivated by one set of objectives and KPIs, and harnessing one common process, there needs to be just one clear and aligned fully integrated marketing strategy. Ideally we’d suggest that there is just one single document that all teams feed into. This stops various ‘versions of the truth’.
We managed one such document for a leading global drinks company which took input from nine brands, 16 agencies and 50 markets. The seamless integration and dramatic improvements in efficiency are worth the effort of alignment. Do you have one strategy or several?
One integrated production and content distribution system
Even with a well aligned strategy should execution be uncontrolled then campaigns can quickly unravel as each market, or discipline executes differently. We recommend gathering one full list of marketing assets required and only then deciding who should execute and produce. The efficiency can be re-invested back into the quality.
In addition, the use of one suite of technology to manage the content into the marketing ecosystem brings benefits of control and efficiency. Digital Asset Management and Content Management Systems that can link to Media Delivery Systems are simply a must. We saved one client over £1m by consolidating video production and running a proper Digital Asset Management system.
One tech stack
We’ve mentioned technology above. Increasingly systems that can’t ‘talk to one another’, or report similar numbers, or are different across departments and agencies, are destroying the benefits of integration. Only by thinking and planning ahead can one keep on top of the changes in technology.
One set of learning
Armed with a consistent set of KPIs and data, a detailed integrated measurement and evaluation report can be written. It’s important the author is independent of each of the markets, departments, or agencies. We helped coordinate and edit such a report for a large drinks client. Each agency said their results were amazing; the truth was somewhat different. If you can’t learn, you can’t improve. Who manages learning for you?
So, that’s the ‘Power of One’. Did you keep score of how your company or your client performs? How did they do? If they did great then please send us the campaigns, as we bet they’ll be great.