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"Multi-channel" is going to revolutionise marketing and communications. Again.

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*** To download the full white paper, go to http://bit.ly/13YVy5g ***

This is part three of Incite's new briefing on the core issues for marketers and communicators in 2013.

In this section of the briefing, 300 corporate executives lend insight on how multi-channel and omni-channel strategies are going to impact on the marketing and communications functions in 2013.

We look at:

1) What is multi-channel?
2) Why should you care?
3) Challenges and Obstacles
4) Anticipated budgetary changes
5) Benchmarks on preparation across US companies

*** To download the entire briefing, go to http://bit.ly/13YVy5g ***

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"Multi-channel" is going to revolutionise marketing and communications. Again.

  1. 1. Join the conversation atfacebook.com/InciteMC@InciteMCwww.inciteMC.comIncIte’Multi-channel’is going torevolutionisemarketing andcommunications.Again.The Marketing ANDCommunications CommunityTough questions, insightful answers
  2. 2. Convergence between Marketing and Communications Functions3Join the conversation at facebook.com/InciteMC@InciteMCwww.inciteMC.comWhat is Multi-Channel Marketing?The last five years have seen a radical shifting of the marketing and communications landscape, and‘multi-channel’ as a concept.According to Wikipedia, it can be defined as:“marketing [and communications] using many different channels to reach a customer.[1] In this sense, a channelmight be a retail store, a web site, a mail order catalogue, or direct personal communications by letter, email ortext message. The objective of the companies doing the marketing is to make it easy for a consumer to buy fromthem in whatever way is most appropriate.[2] “While ‘multi-channel’ has been around as long as marketing and communications themselves, the world haschanged siginficantly in the recent past. That means that the role of the marketer/communicator has gotsignificantly more complicated, and the expectations from customers have evolved significantly. There’s not onlyan opportunity to engage across multiple channels, but an expectation - and a need.In a recent Incite Webinar (available to listen for free here) Linda Rutherford, Vice-President of Communicationsand Strategic Outreach at Southwest Airlines, said that“The way the world used to be, when you tuned into television news, 90% of the population saw it. That’s simplynot the world of today. There are so many different ways to reach people, to share with them, and to tell themabout your brand. In recognition of that fragmented world, it requires us to think about what a multi-channelapproach can look like. Our mantra is to ‘be where our customers are’”Jerome Hiquet, Vice-President of Marketing at Club Med North America, agreed with her in the same discussion:“Customers are multi-channel, they use lots of channels to reach us - but they want to speak to one brand. Somulti-channel strategies are going to force each brand to take a ‘step change’. To engage, we must be everywhere,and we must be involved in ‘participative marketing’ - so multichannel and multi-directional.”It seems that if you want to reach your customers as efficiently as previously, you can’t use the tried and testedmethods that worked previously.Why should you care?Alongside this increasing pressure and need to extend your multi-channel abilities, there are huge opportunitiesavailable Technological advances have led to not only meant that your customers and stakeholders are nowaccessible in ways not possible even five years ago.As a marketer or communicator, you can now get in touch with people when they want, in the way that they want- and when they are most likely to engage with you.You can identify consumers from their travel habits and remind them to pick up a coffee from your (convenientlylocated) coffee shop as they leave the subway.When they talk over social media about their need for a new work shirt, you can join the conversation and pointout your excellent bespoke service.
  3. 3. Convergence between Marketing and Communications Functions4Join the conversation at facebook.com/InciteMC@InciteMCwww.inciteMC.comAs they watch the Super Bowl, and get confused about the power outage and go to a social network to find outmore, you can quickly respond with a brand message taking a sideways look at the issue. Oreo did this, and drovemore awareness for their brand than any number of SuperBowl advertisements.These single channels all offer fantastic opportunities for the savvy brand to engage.And yet they are far more powerful together.When ensuring all channels - social, local, email, direct mail, broadcast, online ads, mobile and more - worktogether, you are able to create campaigns and messages more pervasive, personalised and engaging than onecould have dreamt of less than a decade ago.Challenges in multi-channelIt appears that there is little argument - cutting edge marcomms execs must deliver a multi-channel experience inthis new world of brand engagement.Yet that presents challenges to overcome. The first, and most obvious, is complexity. A fragmented marketing andcommunications landscape means you need to:• Understand which channel is appropriate for which message• How to drive people from one channel to another• Retain consistency over several channels• Track and understand which channels are working and which are notThis is evidently no easy feat. And corporate practitioners recognise this:Top 3 issuesfor youin 2013CUSTOMERCENTRICITY040%20%60%10%50%30%70%80%UNIQUECUSTOMEREXPERIENCESMULTI-CHANNELCOLLABORATIONMEASUREMENTSPEEDOFRESPONSEBIGDATAMARKETINGCOMMSOVERALLThe chart above shows which issues are identified as a ‘Top 3 Priority’ for the coming year
  4. 4. Convergence between Marketing and Communications Functions5Join the conversation at facebook.com/InciteMC@InciteMCwww.inciteMC.comAs you can see from the chart above, multi-channel marketing is a fundamental focus for both marketers andcommunicators in 2013.Overall, it comes second in the list of corporate priorities, behind being more customer-centric, and tied withbuilding unique customer experiences for customers/stakeholders.NB: Importantly, it is worth acknowledging that ‘building unique customer experiences’ and ‘multi-channel’ areinextricably linked. ‘Multi-channel’ is the fundamental tactic corporations are using to build these ‘unique customerexperiences’.There’s a differenceIt’s interesting to consider the differences in approach that this chart highlights between the marketing andcommunications functions in 2013.In research conducted by Incite over the last few months, as we discuss here, there is a notable synergy betweenmarketing and communications functions. The two departments have remarkably similar priorities, and indeed,there is an argument to be made that the dividing line between the two functions is blurring.This blurring has come about through the increasing need for companies to speak ‘with one voice’ to customers,as Hiquet highlights above, and equally to the drive to build more detailed pictures of consumers through betterinternal data sharing.Yet evidently there are still differences. The relative importance of establishing multi-channel campaigns is one. AsChart 1 shows, Multi-channel campaigns are named as a ‘Top 3 issue’ by over half of all marketers surveyed. Yetfor Communicators, this figure drops to just over 20%.That’s a remarkable difference in approach - indeed, it’s the most significant difference in approach across allissues in the chart. There is no greater gap between marketing/communications functions than when it comes tomulti-channel.Why is this? We don’t know. We would love you to let us know what you think.
  5. 5. Convergence between Marketing and Communications Functions6Join the conversation at facebook.com/InciteMC@InciteMCwww.inciteMC.comBut don’t be misled - this is critical for everyoneOverall:Importanceof Multi-Channel41% CRITICAL14% NEUTRAL45% IMPORTANTWhen asked in isolation about the importance of multi-channel in outreach campaigns, both marketing andcommunications functions were more forthright.Overall, 41% of respondents said it was ‘critical’ in 2013, with a further 45% classing it as important.Communicators:Importanceof Multi-Channel39% CRITICAL19% NEUTRAL42% IMPORTANTOf those respondents working in the Communications function, the numbers were slightly lower.Nearly a fifth of respondents said that Multi-channel was not important, or they were neutral about it. Yet well overa third still said that multi-channel communications was critical, and 42% said it was important.Marketers:Importanceof Multi-Channel42% CRITICAL9% NEUTRAL49% IMPORTANTMarketers, understandably considering chart 1, were more committed to multi-channel. A full 42% said it wascritical to their role in 2013, and 49% said it was important. That leaves only a rather small 9% of our entirerespondents who either class multi-channel as ‘unimportant’, or something they’re neutral about.
  6. 6. Convergence between Marketing and Communications Functions7Join the conversation at facebook.com/InciteMC@InciteMCwww.inciteMC.comPutting their money where their mouth is“I expect my company’sresource spend onmulti-channel willincrease over 2013”17% NEUTRAL9% DISAGREE74% AGREEAnd they put their money where their mouth is. An enormous 74% of people who attended our recent webinaron multi-channel marketing (recordings available for free, here) expect their company to increase resource spendon multi-channel over 2013.Both Hiquet and Rutherford were surprised by this finding.Along with many participants in the webinar, both Vice-Presidents suggested that rather than increasing resourcespend overall, they were instead looking at reallocation. Finding areas of inefficiency, and reallocating resourcefrom underperforming areas of marketing into multi-channel.Nevertheless, Hiquet still had advice for those looking to prise open the board’s purse strings. He went tomanagement with the message:“If we work better in multi-channel, we can expect an increase in terms of brand attachment, but also in repurchaserate. We tried to demonstrate that by increasing repeat business, we should use that to increase our resources.”So, are you prepared?“Our multi-channelstrategy is not asdeveloped asit should be”20% NEUTRAL4% DISAGREE76% AGREEYou feel prepared for this? If so, you’re in the minority.A full 76% of our respondents do not feel that their multi-channel strategy is ‘as developed as it should be’. Onlya tiny 4% were confident enough to say that they were where they needed to be.
  7. 7. Convergence between Marketing and Communications Functions8Join the conversation at facebook.com/InciteMC@InciteMCwww.inciteMC.comAccording to Hiquet and Rutherford, this isn’t surprising. Indeed, both expressed the view that a brand will neverbe ‘done’ when it comes to multi-channel marketing, with new channels and opportunities to connect arisingquickly and consistently.Hiquet said of the findings:“It’s a proof of humility, and with all these touchpoints to manage, to be consistent, to have the right content andtargets, it’s very tough. I do think that everything changes so quickly, and in terms of new trends, new actors in themarket, we need to be very humble in what we can do. I think people are saying they can improve, and they arefocusing on doing that.”Rutherford agrees with him:“I’m not surprised - I don’t know that we’ll ever be done in this new world we live in. When you say ‘multi-channel’,there are new ways to engage your audience with your brand that are popping up every day. In the last 6 months,we’ve spent time playing around with Vine and Viddy and other opportunities to engage.The speed, and thecreativity, with which things are moving these days means we are constantly going to be learning about these newopportunities to connect, I don’t think we’re ever going to be ‘done’”.ConclusionGetting better at multi-channel marcomms is evidently a significant challenge for your peers. It’s also undeniablya key focus for 2013 - whether one works in marketing and communications.There are huge advantages to a more multi-channel approach to your outreach program, not least the increasedpervasiveness, personalisation and engagement levels when one can orchestrate a truly multi-channel campaign.And yet the challenges - notably the huge upscale in complexity inherent in marketing and communicating acrosssuch a fragmented landscape - leave many feeling they simply are not prepared for this shift.That is why we’re running a large-scale business Summit discussing this very issue. We have Chief Marketing andCommunications Officers from Sony, L’Oreal, Aflac, Arby’s restaurants and more sharing their insights on this topic.If you want to find out more, you can download a ‘sneak peek’ for marketers here, and for communicators here.
  8. 8. Secure your place with our ultra-early bird passesand SAVE $895 on your ticket at www.incitemc.comThe Incite 2013 Summitincitemc.com #IMCSummitSeptember 18-19, New YorkYour sneak peek into how the Incite 2013 Summit is shaping up!Map the Future of Multi-channel,Customer-centric Marketingand Communicationsat a glance: Insight on some of the big issues…AGENDAThe Customer-Centric FutureChange yourcorporate culture tofocus better on thecustomerMoving Customer-Centric WithoutCausing ChaosGet a customer-centricinternal organisationthat’s simple, notcomplexHow To Listen,So You Can TalkBack BetterGet more usefulinsight about yourcustomers, anduse it to do betterCommunicationsBuild UniqueCustomer ExperiencesManage a complexCommunicationslandscape and integratemany channels to buildone effective stake-holder experienceLess Silos =More SuccessBreak down internalbarriers and geteveryone singing fromthe same hymn sheetwe have already confirmed to contributeSPEAKERSSony ElectronicsMike FasuloChief Marketing OfficerAflacMichael ZunaChief Marketing OfficerSearsJennifer DominiquiniChief Marketing Officer(Seasonal and OutdoorLiving)Restaurant.comChristopher KrohnChief Marketing OfficerArby’sRussell KleinChief Marketing OfficerBASFRobin RotenbergChief CommunicationsOfficerMetLifeClaire BurnsChief Customer OfficerChobaniNicki BriggsChief CommunicationsOfficerEricsson/CoinstarNora DenzelNon-Executive DirectorCitigroupBen EylerVice-President, Marketingand CommunicationsBarnes NobleSasha NorkinVice-President, Digitaland Channel MarketingHome DepotFred NeilVice-President,Marketing, CRM andCustomer InsightsDiageoMichelle KleinVice-President, GlobalMarketing (Smirnoff)Hewlett PackardRob WaitVice-President, MarketingWhole FoodsBill TolanyHead of IntegratedMarketingYum BrandsAmy SherwoodVice-President, PublicRelations and ConsumerAffairsSprintDoug DuvallVice-President,CorporateCommunicationsCardinal HealthcareJill LaNouetteVice-President,Public AffairsMcDonald’sHeather OldaniHead of USCommunicationsNestleDoug HawkinsVice-President,Public Affairs Policy (Nutrition)
  9. 9. Who are we?• A community of corporate marketing and communications professionals• A strident editor of debate• A tool for you to drive the future of marketing and communicationsWhat do we do?• We bring together senior marketing and communications executives -online and in person• We work with you to ask them the questions you need answering• We share those answers, and spark a debate• We help you do better marketing and communicationsWe incite challenging debate. We find the best corporateminds. You ask the questions.COLLABORATE NOWGet more at incitemc.comIncIteThe Marketing ANDCommunications CommunityTough questions, insightful answers