A critical constituent in defining any marketing strategy and program is understanding the Stakeholder Profile/persona, Customer Decision Journey and associated Behaviors to Change which are necessary to trigger in order to ensure the target commercial outcomes.
In Vertic's experience, most companies have done (numerous) projects to map and document the above, however a structured, continuous updating of personas and their journeys is generally inadequate and constitutes a pervasive root cause of failing marketing ROI.
Understanding the Marketing objectives, Stakeholder profiles and the competitor landscape means an insights based, channel agnostic Content Strategy can be defined. A content audit helps identify the gaps between the content requirements specified in the content strategy and the existing, available content. The outcome is understanding of what content should be re-purposed and which content needs to be created from scratch in order to drive the stakeholders through the different stage of the decision journey.
The next constituent is Content Creation. Historically, most content has been created for a single channel (e.g. print), often in the context of a campaign focused at the top funnel of the journey and without a central, global overview and storage. This leads to the reproduction and duplication of content and extends Time to Market inordinately. Rather content needs to be created in modules and matched against each stage of the customer decision journey with a view to supporting all available channels and formats as well as documented and stored centrally.
Dependent on similarities across countries as regards marketing objectives, competitor landscape and stakeholder decision journey, the process of localization is orchestrated. Vertic most often defines the journey and associated behaviors to journey based on global research across countries to define common global denominators against which global "Master content" is created. In our experience, approximately 80% similarity can be expected across major affiliates. By focusing on similarity Operational Efficiency is improved structurally, but it also practically improves Commercial Excellence as most affiliates will not have the bandwidth to drive more targeted marketing than what is offered through the deployment of the global master content locally.
As content is localized it needs to be published and promoted in the relevant channels and traffic drivers. The publication should be carefully organized in Customer Flows which drive the stakeholder across channels and the stakeholder decision journey. Needless to say, this requires an available, somewhat integrated multi channel technical infrastructure/engagement platform.
The Program Management constituent involves the constant review and analysis of the performance of content, channels, traffic drivers across the different customer flow spanning the different stages of the customer decision journey. Based on the conclusions, content, UX, customer flows and the prioritization of channels are adjusted.
... well not necessarily. Even if the resources, capabilities and technical infrastructure are available to run the above System of Excellence for Marketing, as mentioned earlier, the responsibilities invariably sit within many different functions in most organization. This has lead some MNCs to create an "internal agency" with a remit across the classic functions or others to the decision to work with external agencies on Marketing as a Service model, where the agency gets the mandate to orchestrate all functions in a Marketing as A Service model (MAAS) in a full partnership model. The jury is still out which is the best model and the conclusion will invariably differ from industry to industry and from company to company.
For more info on MAAS and the System of Excellence for Marketing, feel free to reach out.
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