Omni-Channel Marketing Takes an Omni-Disciplined Team
Every day, ever-expanding technology helps streamline our lives to make everything easier and more efficient. Think about the invention of a phone book. It may not be impressive now (in fact, it’s virtually obsolete), but it certainly was to folks 75 years ago who could start dialing direct instead of waiting for assistance from a live operator. And wireless phones? The first versions freed us from being tangled in that 25-foot cord – but still held us captive within a 25-foot radius of the base. Eventually, the phone book migrated to our computers, and the computers migrated back into our phones. Today, mobile technology allows us to migrate out of the house, across the country, around the globe – and still reach anyone, any time.
With most of us now living in a digital world of life-hacking, instantly-gratifying, multi-channel media consumption, shouldn’t our marketing programs echo those same advancements? Your consumer is now a moving target, so you need a team that’s equally nimble.
In the film Antitrust, Gary Winston (played by Tim Robbins) remarks that “This business is binary, you‘re a one or a zero. Alive or dead.” If you saw the movie, you know Gary turns out to be a pretty nasty guy. But his point is still valid and an accurate way to look at modern marketing. AdTech innovation is on a constant upswing – each breakthrough pushes the arch a little higher, and that binary gap even wider.
Not long ago, advertising agencies and corporate marketing departments were viewed as little more than a necessary evil and a pesky operating expense if you wanted to “get your name out there” or maintain market share. Today, the consumer data, programmatic platforms and market analytics that drive digital marketing are not only the lifeblood of most sales initiatives, but the foundation of organizational planning.
You’re digital or you’re dead.
Most of those in the corporate board room understand the need for marketing, but still aren’t always happy to hand over the budget. The reality is that effective, efficient, measurable marketing still takes a fair amount of time and money. Leveraging all the resources available for developing smart data insights, cross-device targeting, media measurement and strategic content could easily require an entire floor of marketers to pull off. But utilizing the right team of omni-channel experts could not only increase overall efficiencies but actually reduce marketing costs.
If you’re in the marketing business today, you’ve already heard the term “omni-channel” and understand the importance of creating campaigns that address a world of constantly variable content consumption. As recently as just a decade ago, advertising programs were still dominated largely by television, radio, out-of-home, and print media – with a little digital and social thrown in as a “test” or “experiment.”
But today’s best omni-channel marketing turns the tables by tying the core strategy of a campaign to specific target audiences wherever and whenever they’re consuming content – mostly online or via their mobile devices. In other words, the consumer is the channel, so each message requires personalization based on how that audience is behaving, responding and purchasing.
Of course, achieving such an objective isn’t as easy as just saying “Ok, let’s advertise to Target Audience X via Channel Y using Creative execution Z.” On the contrary, it requires an intelligent, interactive plan devised by all teams in the mix – including brand, market, media, content and creative experts – to establish specific KPIs and the strategies to meet (or exceed) them.
Collaborative, constructive dialogue must take place early on to work through any obstacles the campaign could face in any given channel and identify potential solutions.
Working together from the start as a true omni-channel team, saves your company both time and money by delivering a concise, workable plan most likely to succeed. You wouldn’t send a team of Navy Seals on a mission without each of them having 100% clarity on their objectives and roles long before the night of that mission. Although the risks in your marketing mission are certainly much different, we should still be aiming for the same caliber of flawless execution.
In the end, successful omni-channel marketing teams (like Modern Impact) work seamlessly within a proactive environment of true partnership that allows them to craft sophisticated campaigns focused on the target audience’s journey through any of today’s media channels. That should be the true measure of any marketing team and the true definition of “omni-channel marketing.”