Archive | March, 2012

Tell Us a Story: Coca-Cola’s Content Marketing

‘We must remember that storytelling is at the heart of all families, communities and cultures.’

Coca-Cola understands that marketing is not a one-way conversation anymore. Customer interaction and crowd-sourced ‘stories’ are the way to go for the next decade, according to the beverage giant. This video outlines their (social) content marketing strategy for 2020. The low-tech presentation in this video is rather at odds with the complicated and all-emcompassing approach it presents, but there is some interesting stuff in there. Basically, it all revolves around stories: stories told by the brand, by the consumers – backed up and enabled by technology, interacting through a myriad of media types. At the hub of all this sits the brand, initiating and steering conversations and creating a truely dynamic marketing experience.

The goal? ‘Through the stories we tell, we will provoke conversations and earn a disproportionate share of popular culture.’ Manipulative? Maybe. Ambitious? Certainly. But isn’t it also refreshing (pun semi-intended) to see a company explicitly say that they want to change the way people think about them?
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SAS Customer Intelligence: Find Growth

‘So what do your customers want? Simple. They want what they want, when they want it, and however is most convenient for them.’

That’s easier said than done. Understanding and analyzing customer behaviour requires some heavy-duty data analysis, according to this vendor video by SAS. The first of a series of three on their Customer Intelligence solution, this video focuses on growth opportunities through the analysis of marketing and customer data. Because: ’in an age of increased marketing accountablity, it is not only ciritical that you act with speed and precision, but forecast accurate profitable growth across everything you do.’

If you know what the customer does, you can more accurately predict what they want, and where to utilize your marketing assets. While it’s only part of Marketing Operations, it’s not a bad idea to take the customer’s behaviour and preferences as a starting point for your marketing activity and business growth.

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NEW: MRM Vendor List Updated

The MRM Vendor List has been updated again! There have been a lot of changes among the software vendors offering MRM solutions last year and it certainly has not been boring in MRM/MOM/EMM/IMM land. We took some time to sort everything out and can hereby present to you a brand new Who’s Who of marketing software vendors.

Also new is that we now mention the main focus of the vendor. Some vendors offer a fully-fledged MRM solution that supports the entire marketing process, from the cataloguing of images to planning to budgeting, while others focus on a specific area of the marketing process, such as Digital Asset Management, Customer Relations Management, or Print Solutions. Read More…

From Digital Asset Management to Digital Asset Production

Since their inception, digital asset management solutions have focused primarily on helping users catalog, store, find, and retrieve digital assets.  This focus is understandable since, without a DAM system, valuable digital assets can easily get lost in a labyrinth of file folders with no reliable way to identify or find them.

Traditional DAM systems provided few capabilities to manage the production of digital assets.  For example, they typically lacked robust functionality for supporting production workflows and managing the other activities that are required to create marketing assets. These kinds of capabilities are critical to maximizing marketing productivity, especially in large enterprises that produce assets on a daily basis.

If you’re looking for technology to manage digital asset production, you’ll need more than a traditional DAM solution. Fortunately, some DAM software providers now offer more robust support for digital asset production. When you’re evaluating DAM products, it’s important to have a clear picture of what production scenarios you need to support. That being said, there are two features that are essential for an effective digital asset production system. Read More…

Mixed Outlook for Global Marketing Budgets

Marketing budgets are rising in both the Americas and Asia, but conditions remain rather more challenging in Europe, according to Warc’s latest Global Marketing Index. In the monthly GMI survey for March 2012, overall expectations for marketing budgets stood at 51.5 points, on a scale where scores above 50 points suggest an expansion, and figures below this benchmark point to a decline.

This total had come in at 43.9 points in November 2011, before gradually improving every month since that date, reaching 49.3 points in February 2012. Read More…

Left and Right Brain Marketing Styles

Marketing Resource Management is the ideal combination of the left brain and the right brain functions, we tend to say. The left brain provides the structure and management required for the cool organizational aspects of Marketing Operations, while the right brain comes up with that killer punchline or guerilla campaign.

But if you take a look at this infographic by Marketo, you’ll see that marketing styles differ too. Left-brained marketing uses rational arguments in ads (great savings!), while right-brained marketing sells a story or a feeling. Similarly, left-brained marketers are more likely to track results and assess the effectiveness of their campaigns while right-brained marketers claim that ‘marketing is an art, not a science’.

Of course, the ideal marketer has a bit of both: creative ingenuity and strategic insight. Which one are you?

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Why the Marketing Supply Chain Deserves Your Attention

‘As marketers, we spend an enormous amount of time focusing on on demand creation, customer acquisition, and very little time is spent on optimizing the processes that exist within the marketing supply chain.’ Says Mike Perez, VP Marketing and Business Development at NVISION. And that’s a shame, because it’s exactly this area of Marketing that can make Marketing departments run smoothly if everything is arranged properly.

In this video, Perez addresses the necessity for getting control over the Marketing supply chain: ‘A poorly managed supply chain can have a negative impact on your brand, and your budget.’  But a Marketing Operations improvement project should not be conducted in isolation – it’s exactly its cross-business nature that makes that it deserves attention from beyond the marketing department. ‘A senior Marketing Executive or CMO must be involved in the process. They must reach cross-functionally within their organization and involve Operations to the CFO,’ according to Perez.

The results? Reduced operational costs by 20 to 30%, and a reduction of time-to-market by 35%. Worth taking a look at, then:
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Streamline the Marketing Supply Chain to Improve the Marketing-Sales Relationship

Improving the relationship between marketing and sales has become an important objective for many business-to-business enterprises. Changes in the way that business buyers access information and evaluate potential purchases make it essential that both work collaboratively to create and deliver compelling messages and materials.

Most of the efforts to improve this relationship have focused on the content of demand generation messages and materials and on the responsibilities of each in the lead generation/lead nurturing process. These are important issues that deserve the attention they’re receiving. But, there’s another component of the marketing-sales relationship that’s often overlooked—the reliability and responsiveness of the supply chain for marketing material (Sales collateral, promotional items, and point-of-sale materials). Read More…

Seven Key Steps for Creating a Performance-Driven Marketing Organization

Members of the leadership team expect marketing to generate value for their organization. Why? For many organizations, over 80% of their value is derived from intangibles. These intangibles, such as marketplace position and customer relationships, are often produced by marketing initiatives and result from marketing investments. Therefore, it’s no surprise that the leadership team’s expectations and pressure on Marketing will continue to rise. Generating value requires marketing to help the organization capture market share, increase customer lifetime value and grow customer equity. It is essential that Marketing maps out a clear direction and, as we say in Texas, ‘Get ’er done’. Read More…

Aligning Marketing and Sales Pays Off

Businesses with a high alignment between Marketing and Sales departments achieve higher revenue, are better able to keep existing clients satisfied and land more new clients. Organizations with a high level of alignment achieve a revenue growth of 100% four times more often than organizations with a lower level of alignment. Yet in over 75% of organizations Marketing and Sales have trouble cooperating, according to recent research by Andeta. The consulting firm conducted a survey of 160 businesses, on the effects of alignment on KPIs such as revenue growth, client retention and the deals-per-lead ratio.

Laura Nuhaan, parter at Andeta, says that the alignment of Marketing and Sales is a characteristic of companies where the Marketing and Sales departments have common goals, strategies and metrics for measuring success:

Only 25% of the companies we researched have ‘high’ alignment. Clearly, there is a lot of room for businesses to boost their results.

Read More…