When it comes to marketing, there is no one formula for success. What can work now may be obsolete in the future, which makes the industry so exciting and interesting. The “lather, rinse, repeat” process, where companies execute tried-and-tested business strategies, is just not working as well as it used to. The industry has seen many transformations in the past years, with trends being determined by the customer instead of the brands.
In the past, businesses were able to dictate and set the tone for buyers on what they should and shouldn’t buy – it was a more sales-centric time back then. Now, the dynamic has shifted: simply availing the product isn’t enough because customers are looking for a more connected and transparent experience with brands. Brand loyalty, community engagement, and peer reviews are considered as important as sales, making the customer experience more holistic and informed.
In the same manner, companies must internally restructure the way they operate. Companies who have their departments plan independently simply won’t work anymore – just as the customer wants a holistic experience with the brand, the company must then learn to operate internally as a whole, with all functions and roles aligned and working towards one goal.
Marketing Transformation: More than a trend
With recent advances in technology that resulted in new concepts and theories being introduced, the industry is going through significant changes. Social media, something that was initially used for people to connect, is now one of the world’s biggest marketing tools – it would’ve been considered almost impossible to think about ten years ago. Forrest VP and principal analyst James McQuivey said in the Forrester 2018 Consumer Marketing Forum held on April of last year that the next trend for marketers by 2025 is conversational commerce. Its main foundation is personalization, and throughout 2018, it has integrated itself into the many social media pages of businesses. Conversational commerce has taken on the form of chatbots and is frequently used, especially by retailers, to directly connect with customers, pushing different types of content like images and questions to help the buyer make the right choice.
This is just one example of how quickly the market is changing. For a business to be successful, one must learn how to be flexible and adapt to the ever-changing market. With more developments and trends coming, businesses must find a way to utilize newer and more scientific processes to address customer needs and take on growing competition.
One of the effective ways that marketers can do this is to eliminate friction among their different departments. While it’s good to have all functions performing well in their individual roles, having them work together to contribute to the long-term growth of the company will yield to better and more profitable results.
The Importance of a Marketing Framework
For a business to be adaptable to frequent change, all its shareholders down to its employees must have a full understanding of its marketing framework. Establishing this allows a business to determine its core policies and its execution for its marketing activities. Insights derived from customers, channels, brands,
and processes can help a company define their own marketing framework. Having a solid framework can help a business adjust to change as needed without losing its identity and core values.
Factors for a Successful Marketing Organization Establishing a good marketing organization can be divided into two goals: creating a marketing framework based on core policies and efficiently and effectively executing the marketing process. It sounds simple enough - but don’t forget that all the hard work is in the details.
Creating a marketing framework based on core policies
Rule number one of having a successful marketing organization is to implement a customer value-based strategy. Not all customers who avail of your products or services bring value to your business – what's important to understand here is that quality is always better than quantity. It’s better to have a small yet solid customer base that avails of your services instead of a large customer base that barely purchases anything from your company.
Start with distinguishing the high-value customers between the low-value ones and divide them into their own base. It’s best to segment them according to their value and the actions that they take that give them this value. With these values, consider the lifetime customer value as this can help you determine future profitability on your current customers. A low-value customer may become a high-value one in the future.
The best part about technological advancements in the marketing industry is that it gives business an in-depth look on how their company is doing. Analytics systems like Google Analytics and Facebook Insights can give you insights on how your customers are reacting to your marketing efforts. Being data-driven is the core of being customer-centric as it allows you to fully understand your customer’s purchasing behavior.
Managing brands effectively gives you an upper hand on your competition when it comes to brand recall. Your brand positioning and its perceived value can help you communicate effectively with your customers when it’s clear, concise, and relatable. Taking a portfolio approach allows you to see which brand answers the needs of one customer segment and see how it contributes to profitability.
Developing integrated campaigns gives you the opportunity to touch all points of communications. Marketing is no longer limited to traditional outbound channels as you can now include brand messaging in your end products or service. Driving product innovation and managing your brand assets, as well, makes you one step closer to increasing your brand value – analyzing insights that can help you develop new products and having a clear messaging can inspire brand loyalty among your customers.
Another thing to consider for your company’s marketing framework is optimizing the channel mix. Using customer data, determine which channels your customers prefer to interact with your products. Develop a multichannel strategy that fits your budget accordingly so you can touch the channels that your customers prefer.
Executing the marketing process
The most important part of establishing a value-based customer strategy is to leverage customer insights across the organization. Collecting data, not just from customers, but from front-liners in your organization can give you richer insights into what the customer needs, what they complain about, and what their financial situation is, among other things.
Proper consolidation and dissemination of your data drives better decision making and execution. It’s important to take a holistic approach in this stage of data collection so you have an organized, in-depth look at your customers and their behavior. Giving the data to the right people to analyze and collect will result in a more accurate and meaningful decision-making process.
As a company, it’s important to always step back and constantly improve your process and resource efficiency. Oftentimes, most companies miss to review their current processes because of the “don’t fix it if it ain’t broke” mindset, which can sometimes prove to be detrimental to their growth. Integrating software in your marketing process can ease any friction that your team is experiencing – things like a market management software or a lead automation software can help you track and organize data better.
Increasing your market accountability is the last step you need to take to establish a good marketing organization. Make sure that you make sound measurements when it comes to your ROI and that you ensure organizational alignment, as stated from the beginning – everyone from the upper management down to the employees must be working towards the same goal.
Looking to make this work for your own company? Check out this on-demand webinar to get a deeper look on how you can establish a good marketing organization.
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