Since the dawn of the internet, marketers have regarded it as a vast laboratory , launching experiment after experiment to find ways to generate sales and customer loyalty. Customers on the other hand have adopted digital marketing in ways that suit them and in the process have changed the ways companies market their good and services.
Researchers at Mckinsey and Company has found that the most successful digital marketers focus on managing four core values as they increase the percentage of marketing and channel spending that is directed to digital activities.
The Digital- Marketing Difference
Even though marketers know that customers go through a multi-stage journey when making purchases, they have tended to concentrate on two, that is.. brand marketing and promotions.
Digital marketing is changing all that by making companies part of the conversation with their customers. Companies are moving away from one way conversations driven by sales mentality to two way relationships with consumers. According to Mckinsey and Company, companies should be more strategic in their digital marketing efforts.
Core value 1: Orchestrate an integrated consumer experience
Today’s customers are continuously interacting with brands on- line. In order not to miss the opportunity presented by on-line customers, brands need to unify their digital efforts across different channels . While it is not easy to coordinate content across the entire consumer experience, but the waste from failing to do so should be harder to face. Companies therefore need to use their IT departments to create customer applications that interface with on-line channels ,making it easier for customers to communicate with them. Marketers also need to create content that is accessed across mobile applications and the internet, creating seamless brand messages on and off line.
Core value 2: Inspire consumers to help you stretch your marketing budget
Traditional marketers tend to spend 60% of their budgets on “working media”, 20% on creating content and the balance on employees and agencies. Digital channels reverse this by focusing on a smaller core of engaged people who can spread positive word of mouth and share information with a broader audience. By making the right investment, digital marketers can spend significantly less on marketing as a percentage of sales. By creating content that consumers want to share, brands make it easy for customers to willingly share information about them, thus enabling you to get a bigger share of word of mouth on a smaller budget.
Core value 3: Adopt a publisher’s discipline to curb costs.
In order to support your consumers’ decision journey , you are required to have a vast and growing range of content , beyond advertising. As competition increases and companies chase customers, they are increasingly using difference types of online content from static to multimedia . On the other hand, customers are pulling content “on demand” such as Google alerts and they expect your content to be relevant and on time. Marketers who fail to adopt the discipline of a multimedia publisher don’t realising that deep within their operations, they are facing rapid escalating products costs, unnecessary duplication , inconsistent quality of content and second rate interaction with customers. There are few things worse that company websites that go for long periods un-updates and social network sites that have old and tired content.
Switching perspectives from a traditional advertiser to a disciplined personalized publisher helps you to cut costs by thousands if not millions of dollars.
Core value 4: Use intelligence wisely to drive performance
When on-line conversations start to trash your brand, no response can be fast enough and when you need to optimise your search and other media spending , there is no time to waste. Savvy marketers are mastering intelligence gathering tools and processes that analyse what customers are seeing. Clever marketers are analysing customers’ online behaviour , interpreting what they are saying and soliciting for feedback. Marketers need the ability to assess and utilize intelligence in real-time in order to drive performance. Brand should have clear processes to act upon insights , track results and follow up with action.
Companies should take a different view to developing new products launch plans, budget for content creation and decide how to balance traditional media and digital marketing. Technology and Marketing departments need to work together more closely to make relevant applications as well as analysis of data easier, and beneficial to the organisation.
Hitting the reset button on marketing begins by accepting a new perspective on what marketing needs to accomplish. It requires marketing executives to step up to a broader, cross-functional coordination role, armed with deep insights about the decision journey consumers are undertaking and the tools needed to guide it.
Reference: David C Edelman, “Four ways to get more value from digital marketing” Mckinsey Quarterly.
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