Looking through recent articles, I’m always amazed how much emphasis is put on “the role of digital” in Marketing, So many arguments are rehearsed about SEO SEA CPC and CPA ; the value of a fan on facebook or of a pinterest page, and how to measure response on Social Media. Every company seems to jump on the latest “viral” bandwagon, like the recent spate of “Harlem Shakes” virals, and I have heard numerous “digital managers” admit, “we just try lots of different things and see what works”. (- dancing puppies apparently). In January 2013 there were 775,000 Apps in the i-store. Research by Analytical firm Avenden shows that 60% of these are never downloaded… not even once! Senior Business Directors bring in recent graduates who may be great at the technogeekery, but without clear direction, it’s like trying to herd cats.
So … I have five simple questions for any managers out there commissioning and or reviewing new digital activations…
1. Who is my target audience (and which segment of that audience will drive the most profit now and in the future)?
2. Is this activation truly relevant and engaging to that target audience segment?
– (clue: if your target audience is young mums, then your new “star-trek-with-my-product-in-it” app may possibly be less engaging to your audience than to the digital team creating it)
3. Does this activation give the same key message(s) as all of my other brand advertising and activations?
4. What do I want the user to do once they have engaged with this activation and how will I measure this?
5. How will I measure return on investment compared to other activations (- or compared to doing nothing at all)?
Now which bit of that isn’t “Marketing”?
Years ago I remember advocates of “direct marketing”, particularly list-brokers and the IDM claiming that “Marketing is dead, It’s all about DM now”, soon followed by the CRM brigade, and more recently the social media acolytes, “performance marketing” prophets and “big data” disciples . Of course, these are all merely tools within the great marketing toolkit, – all useful but none of them capable of doing the whole job on their own.
If you want someone to work on your new house, you wouldn’t employ a man with just two tools, – a hammer and a screwdriver, – He’ll tell you everything can be done with those two tools. Everyone needs a hammer and a screwdriver sometimes, but they won’t be much good if it’s your gas that needs fixing or a wall that needs painting. Better to get in an expert project manager who will bring in the right specialists, when and where they’re needed, and deliver a complete and professional job that’s right for you.
A good place to start? – Chris Collis is a CIM Chartered Marketer and Director of Marketing Walk Ltd.