Got Customer Experience Strategy? ….Got Right Team?

The Who, What, Where, And Why Of Marketing Technology Groups

Posted by Anjali Yakkundi on May 30, 2013
This post originally appeared on destinationCRM.

We’ve heard a lot in the past year about the future role of marketing technologists as solvers of the “IT/marketing clash of the titans” (as one Forrester client put it to me recently). These technologists are more than just your basic webmasters. Instead, they are professionals with deep knowledge of how technology can deliver on marketing strategies in order to bring about better digital customer experiences. At Forrester, we’ve started to see an emerging trend of shared services groups whose goal is to bridge the marketing technology divide. Our latest research found that organizations have turned to this model — which we call the marketing technology group — to foster tighter integration between IT and marketing and between strategy/design professionals and technologists. Defining characteristics include:

Who? These groups tend to be made up of a diverse lot of professionals, but in general are staffed by a combination of marketing strategists, creative design professionals, and technologists with design and business savvy. We found some of the most sought-after technologists were mobile- and data-literate developers and higher-ranking IT leaders, like enterprise architects, who can coordinate an ever-growing number of digital experience technologies (e.g. CRM, Web content management, commerce platforms, analytics, etc.). The key is to give these groups direct tie-in to C-level executives. As a vice president of strategy at a digital agency told us, “The problem with shared services is that too often it’s staffed by only powerless workers.”
What? A digital experience leader at a multinational organization using this model described it as a “digital innovation team.” Others we interviewed described these shared services groups as “internal digital agencies.” Much like an agency, these groups are responsible for providing various business units with a host of services to improve marketing and digital customer experience initiatives. This includes (among other things) strategic support, design and creative services, and technology support.
Where? These groups are still emerging, and most organizations we speak to prefer to play it safe with a central or decentralized IT approach. We’ve seen the most innovation coming from retail and consumer packaged goods organizations, but that doesn’t mean we haven’t seen it from others as well. We interviewed a few key decision makers from financial services and healthcare organizations who are looking to move to this shared services approach.
Why? This approach has many benefits, including the tight integration between creative professionals and technologists, allowing the gap to close between design and the delivery of that design. Firms also achieve agile processes more easily with marketing and IT professionals working under one umbrella. The downside? This approach can be slow. A vice president of digital marketing at a financial services organization said: “In my shared service model, someone ends up waiting.” Organizations with multiple brands also worry that a shared service approach limits the brand differences and makes each one look too similar; better governance and brand guidelines can mitigate this risk.

So what’s the future of marketing technology groups? We expect that this trend will continue to grow as more organizations see the appeal of the “internal digital agency.” This doesn’t mean it will take over central IT groups; instead, we expect many organizations to use shared services groups to supplement existing IT groups.

Our recent reports dive into roles and organizational structures, as well as data around this emerging group. Do you have a shared marketing technology group or have you begun to move to this model? Tell us about your case studies in the comments area below.

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‘Digital marketing is dead’ proclaims Procter & Gamble’s global brand building officer Marc Pritchard

 18 September 2013 – 6:38pm Updated
Originally posted by Stephen Lepitak
Pricepoints! concurs without reservation.

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Pricepoints! CMO’s know that the key success factors begin and end with customers (behavior, attitudes, etc etc). The velocity of digital technology innovation (growth of devices, explosion of touch points, and engagements) has added complex layers of new customer data (opportunities). The key success factor for brands is in the knowledge of their customer, it all starts and ends strategic insights.

Customer experience management begins with the customer experinece (CX) journey map. Many brands have already begun this process in order to gain competitive advantage (i.e. “first to learn, first to earn”). These “walk a mile in your customers shoes as customers” SWOT audits that define the CX key drivers are priceless.6072ce77-590a-4df5-b3d9-3f3c167bd5ae

Ok, back to the quote. It certainly gets your attention and makes you step back and get grounded in the customer insights that drive the marketing mix strategies first. I will step back and let the thought leader speak for himself.
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Speaking at Dmexco, the chief marketer from the world’s largest advertiser, asked; “Try and resist thinking about digital in terms of the tools, the platforms, the QR Codes and all of the technology coming next. We [Procter & Gamble] try and see it for what it is, which is a tool for engaging people with fresh, creative campaigns…the era of digital marketing is over. It’s almost dead. It’s now just brand building. It’s what we do.”

He made this statement after running a video advertisement for a Braun electric shaver that initially ran online only, ignoring all traditional marketing, driving sales before running through traditional media.

“It wasn’t the digital component. It was the campaign,” he declared, explaining that it prove to the company what could be achieved in the digital world.

“This is a mindset that we are trying to infuse in our company and it’s creating a tremendous shift [within P&G.] It’s freeing up our minds on building creative ideas that come to life through the mediums that we engage with every single day – search, social, mobile, PR, and yes, even TV.”

He continued to describe the strategy as ‘Digital Back’, explaining; “start in the digital world and build your way back to the rest of the marketing mix. Our best agencies do that right now…it’s an approach that is building our brand equities, our sales and our profits.”

He said that digital technology was a “means to reach people” through brands and capture consumer imaginations in a way that had been impossible before.

“But we can only do that if we have this one component that has been a constant since the beginning of brand building – an idea. Fresh creative ideas that are powered by insights, that are powered by the way people think and feel and are inspired by creativity, always have and always will create great campaigns. Digital tools just give us a new way to spread those ideas in ways that we’ve never imagined before…great ideas matter more now than they ever have before, because with these digital tools at our disposal we have the chance to be successful widely beyond whatever we had imagined.”

Pritchard continued to explore some of his company’s brands and how they had utilised new technology, powered by ideas to be a global success, including Old Spice, Vella Koleston and Oral B work.

Discussing the ‘The Man Your Man Could Smell Like’ Old Spice online campaign led to Pritchard offering the insight that “brand insight shouldn’t be something you change with every new campaign.”

He continued: “You should find that insight and invest in it to the best if your brand’s ability,” before running several stages of the campaign to explore its evolution.

Pritchard concluded the talk by imploring the room to “build brands with campaigns that matter, make people think and feel and laugh. We have the chance to do all of those things now in a way that is so much more exciting than we did before. So let’s celebrate the end, the death of digital marketing and let’s focus on celebrating the great idea of these brands and let’s leverage the platforms and technologies that allow us to engage with people like we never have before. I’m certain that our brand building teams, our agencies and the people who see our stuff all around the world will thank us for it.”

Pritchard’s views on the importance of the need for creativity echoed those of Keith Weed, CMO for Unilever earlier in the day, who spoke about the need to use mobile, social and data to help develop more engaging campaigns.

Read more at http://www.thedrum.com/news/2013/09/18/dmexco-digital-marketing-dead-proclaims-procter-gambles-global-brand-building#wgy49OMQM7IF8jd0.99