This is a followup from Part I of this series of posts entitled: Moving From A Network of Silos to Data-Driven Collaboration
Organizations that consistently win in marketing are able to collaborate, adapt, and now – able to execute in near real-time. By leveraging the power of their internal and external networks effectively they tap into key knowledge, learnings and data to deliver favorable business outcomes. This post will will help outline some key tips to make this happen at your organization and some learnings I’ve experienced myself along the way.
Below are some tips to help go from a silo’d approach, to a more connected and efficient marketing and agency ecosystem.
If you work in marketing, you may have spent a good portion of your life in meetings and status phone calls for the projects you are working on. And I am not talking about your internal team meetings to keep your own piece progressing forward (you spend plenty of time doing that also), but the coordination check points that are set to help herds of different companies working on the project to progress in unison for the common goal.
The stakeholders involved may include multiple technology vendors, creative agencies, media planners, brand managers, program managers, legal, PR, exec sponsor, and the list goes on depending on the project. A key reason for this, is these calls often serve as one a few chances to attempt to cram learnings, confidence and collaboration quickly against the non-moving deadline for all involved. Looking past the veil of collaboration, sometimes its mainly to ensure all hit their target deliverables and dates (and sound/look good doing it).
On separate ends of the spectrum, we are seeing a specialization of agencies booming for particular market needs (social, mobile, local, social-mobile-local) along with the continued growth of integrated agencies (who most often, acqui-hire from those niche agencies during their growth mode) and technology providers that provide a particular integration required (wearables, live streaming, tv, social dev). That being said, don’t expect the number of parties on the project check-in conference calls to drop in volume anytime in the near future.
While we all have the chance to build extremely rewarding and successful engagements working in this manner, it can be a lot of brain-busting work for all involved when each new project comes through. A key problem is many brands, and marketing campaigns, are organized as silos within many companies with a rotation of partners and resources that may engage on a given project. At the same time, the industry is moving towards a real-time, collaborative, data-driven marketing environment. Which means things have to move faster, be more agile, work smarter and across a plethora of devices.
Q: What’s the most valuable asset for your brand on social platforms?
A: Consumer driven conversations reinforcing your brand.
Over the past few years, we have had the opportunity to shape hundreds of consumer engagement marketing programs together with our clients in this evolving space of social marketing. We’ve created some big wins and also learned together along the way. The services delivered started with strategy, page and community building, and the development of consumer-centric experiences, apps, and campaigns, which were all measured and iterated on. These are all things brands will need to continue to embrace; however, it’s time to evolve and recognize how all of these help drive one key thing – stories in the social ecosystem.
People rely on their friends to make decisions. You already know that and the numbers show it. A Like, Tweet, +1, Share, and Comment all generate a rich library of social distribution about your brand, known as earned media. Social experiences and apps that are designed around a brand’s products and services give consumers the opportunity to share these valuable stories with their friends and give the brand more control over the messaging and distribution of the earned media.
So how do social apps, websites, mobile and .com approaches evolve to take advantage of this opportunity? Continue reading »
Behind every amazing athlete is an even more amazing mom. This is the clear message that is, and will continue to be, presented by Procter & Gamble during the course of this year’s London 2012 Olympic Games.
The problem faced by the largest global marketers in the social space is how to effectively leverage their global footprint, consisting of tens or hundreds of millions of consumers across markets and platforms, to successfully roll out an impactful and measurable campaign at scale. Smart marketers are addressing this problem head on by blending three separate disciplines – Social Program Design, Social Story and UX Architecture, and Social Technology Delivery – into one unified approach, by working with only with best-of-breed partners that can deliver end-to-end solutions at scale.
To get into the spirit of this year’s program, take two minutes and watch this amazing video, which touches on Procter & Gamble’s theme of calling the world to take the simple action of saying “Thank you, Mom.”
For those of you who watched the video – take a few moments to dry your eyes. You need those Puff’s tissues because of this emotional connection that is innate in most of us based on the role parents, specifically mothers, play in the development of us as human beings. The spirit of this video is what is being translated into Procter & Gamble’s social initiatives; to let individuals be the ones creating their stories of thanks for their mothers, and for mothers as a whole around the world.
One of the solutions for this year’s “Thank you, Mom” initiative involved providing each Procter & Gamble local market around the world the opportunity to engage their consumers in a lightweight manner through social channels. The ask on the consumer is easy – simply open your heart, provide a message thanking your mother and share this message across your network. It’s these opportunities for lightweight interactions that will create countless conversations in social to get the big marketing message across for Procter & Gamble this year. The “big idea” is now deeply rooted in sustained, simple interactions around stories. To deliver optimal results, social programs and experiences can no longer be designed without marketers having an intricate understanding of how to leverage social technologies and the art & science of storytelling through the Open Graph. The social experiences that deliver business results are those that are framed so that the interactions that happen within the experience result in lightweight stories that propagate widely and deeply throughout the social graph. Never before was this possible at such a massive scale, but Facebook, through its brilliant marriage of owned, earned, and paid media, now enables us to deliver engagement at scale in a measurable manner.
Stuzo | Dachis Group was there from day one, working hand-in-hand with Proctor & Gamble, Facebook and a variety of leading agency partners to bring the program to life. A set of managed services from codified UX guidance, to Open Graph Object and Story architecture, to the development of a scale-advantaged technology solution, with real-time optimizations and ongoing measurement dashboard build and analysis were provided by our dedicated team to deliver optimal business outcomes. The result was an experience that lived on Facebook, with data integrated on a social microsite, and connected with various YouTube channels. The experience enabled consumers to engage with the program across social channels so that they could include their very own ‘thank you’ to the important mothers in their lives. Consumers can create their ‘thank you’ using text, photo, video, or their computer’s webcam, and then post it simultaneously to mom’s Timeline and into a public gallery to be shared with the world.
Organic “thank you” stories flowing throughout the social graph, resulting in earned media turning to paid media and vice-versa, generating outsized amplification and business results for Procter & Gamble. Localized versions of the Thank You, Mom experience were deployed to dozens of individual markets’ Facebook pages, from the US to the UK, from Russia to India, to Japan and Latin America , and virtually everywhere in between – delivering a heartwarming scale-advantaged, global social activation for the largest global marketer during the worlds biggest sporting event. This is Engagement @ Scale.
This post was originally published for the Dachis Group Collaboratory.
HubSpot and Who’s Blogging What recently worked with 26 marketers in the field to discuss social media, mobile and upcoming trends in the marketing space. Through our contributions of time (and text) to this, Doctor’s Without Borders received a $1,000 donation from HubSpot. A very great cause and happy to have been a part of it. Download the PDF to check it out.
I often get asked “What are some good examples or case studies when it comes to social in the B2B space?”
It’s easy to rattle of the great examples and social engagements in the B2C space. B2B marketing in social requires a slightly different lens on Social Business to engage your prospects and retain (and grow) your existing customer base. It carries over many of the same tenets and methods of engagement as seen in B2C social web marketing, but with an extremely strong focus on first understanding who your prospects are, identifying the target audience and analyzing how they are leveraging social at their organization (both as an individual and an employee).
Implementing also requires training and in some cases retraining of existing internal sales staff to shift they way in which they create a sale over time. Sales organizations need to use social to capture long tail opportunities – enabling their employees to become marketers, listen (facilitated with the use of the right tools), and implement strategies in which they engage their prospects. Today, it is easier than ever to find a lead as many prospective customers have begun signaling their social accounts for business purposes and using platforms and the web to help make purchase decisions. An implementation could be as simple as a sales organization listening in and engaging on LinkedIn Answers. It can also be as a comprehensive integration including staff training, toolkit roll out and a shift in overall sales strategy identified from an internal social media center of excellence.
Below is a list of some quick hits worth checking out to see how different organizations are working within this space.
This post was published by me originally on the Dachis Group Collaboratory.
Social Design is a product strategy model that places users at the core of an experience. It allows products and brands to scale by incorporating a user’s trusted communities, driving conversation and creates a strong sense of identity through the experience. This is a model that Facebook has popularized in the development of their own platform by thinking from the inside out.
So, how do we leverage similar modeling and incorporate it for brand marketing initiatives? In this post we are going to explore the strategic approach and thinking which takes place to make proper Social Design decisions for a social branded experience.
Marketers now have a tremendous and evolving opportunity to leverage communities such as Facebook, Twitter and other social platforms from the outside in. By developing experiences with this strategy users are still at the epicenter, however, marketers can now tap into the existing community users have already built to provide experiences on these platforms which nurtures the users identities even further through a social experience. When executed appropriately, this approach provides a valuable experience to the user, brands they engage with and the related social platforms.
Have you used Spotify, Nike+, Flipboard or TripAdvisor? If so, you have engaged with a product leveraging this model. Here’s a quick reason why:
Spotify is connecting friends around music. But why is it so successful? One of the key tenets to their product model is allowing users to feel more open to share and provide the tools to do so by connecting the experience directly to a user’s Facebook network. Immediately upon registration, as a user, you are surrounded by your friends and can engage immediately around your common musical interests. This all happens instantly based on the user’s existing social identity. Connections with the Facebook real-time ticker affords the application the opportunity to share users’ musical interests in a frictionless manner and further curate their identity and connections.
Nike+ has likely popped up in your news feed as you see a friend complete a staggering 7-mile run before (some of us) have even had our first coffee. In Nike’s product strategy there is a focus on providing users the opportunity to easily tell their story, aggregate and share experiences over time. Through charting, mapping and connecting users around their shared interest of exercise, it allows the user to continue to build their identity, share, and engage around a common activity.
At Stuzo | Dachis Group, when we engage on branded social experiences, we identify which projects will benefit from this outside in approach. Be sure to check out our post on Program Identify Design for more behind the scenes information on how we make some of these key decisions along the way.
Let’s take a look at a recent launch for the upcoming People’s Choice Awards where we can see in action the Program Identity Design framework. This will provide a tangible demonstration on how we executed on a Social Design plan. For this program, we engaged early on during the show’s planning to concept, design, develop and manage the social experience.
The Program Identity Design process began on day one during the discovery phase of this program. The ultimate goal was to provide an authentic user experience which would generate conversation, brand amplification and personalized engagements by incorporating key elements of social platforms. This frame and the strategic thinking helped us ensure we were meeting business metrics, one of them being driving total votes and engagements via social.
I recently had the opportunity to speak and moderate a panel on Marking Social Tangible for the Philadelphia Interactive Marketing Association.
The evening’s panel was called “Making Social Tangible,” with the goal to provide the audience and organization members with key tangible guidance, demonstrations of work, and feedback on how they can take action on scaling social at their organization.
The panelists brought their A-game as we made a key piece of the evening case studies and demonstrations of work relevant to audience questions. Day to day I often work in the Fortune 500 space, where we are working on strategies and engagement models to scale social at the enterprise level. Evenings like this always provide great value to me personally, as a diverse audience of 200 people, enable us to discuss first hand the challenges and opportunities for businesses at multiple stages in their social business efforts. Representatives from Fortune 500, Pharma, Financial Services, all the way to marketers focusing on small retail business – enabled us to quickly realize the state we are at in social today. There are early market movers and adopters who are working on integrating social fully into the marketing mix, and still some businesses trying to figure out social. Due to the gap in integration of social across such a large audience, there could have been 15 follow up panels, discussing the different lenses and approaches required due to the diverse business sets. A key takeaway when you have such a broad spectrum of social business participants, is that there is not a one model fits all solution for social media integration.
Recently I had the opportunity to collaborate and provide insights for Clickable’s The Insider’s Guide to Facebook Pages. It provides industry analyst coverage to identify winning strategies for Facebook to work effectively for businesses.
A Facebook Page gives a voice to any public figure or organization to join the conversation with Facebook users, according to Facebook. With nearly a billion Facebook users, maintaining an effective Facebook Page is a critical consideration for all businesses and agencies.
This Clickable white paper examines winning strategies to make Facebook Pages work for business. It includes expert interviews and profiles of leading Pages management vendors. Key focus areas include:
- The Role of a Facebook Page in the Digital Marketing Ecosystem.
- How to develop a complete approach to Facebook Pages, from privacy and permissioning to content calendars and response strategies.
- Budgeting and allocating resources for Facebook Pages.
- Measuring the success of your Facebook Page.
- Partnering with a third-party vendor to develop custom Facebook Pages, Tabs and Apps.
This post originally appeared on the Stuzo | Dachis Group site.
A well planned meeting at the onset of any project with an energized and inspiring project leader establishes confidence in your company’s ability to deliver. It also inspires the surrounding stakeholders as they engage in the project going forward. What starts as an initial perception and team confidence booster, drives through into the rest of the life-cycle of the project.
I wanted to start this post with those thoughts as they directly relate to the mindset you need to deliver an engaging client kickoff meeting. To put some context around the client kickoff meeting in regards to a digital project, this is most often the stage after a statement of work has been executed, project scope is finalized (depending on the project and type of company), team leaders have been designated, internal briefings and initial project plannings have been made at the organizational level.
This is sometimes the first impression and integration of the cross-company stakeholders as they proceed into the digital project (i.e. Brand -> Agency or Agency -> Vendor). This is your Project Team’s (led by the Project Manager) opportunity to present your project plan to the stakeholders outside of your organization. Client-facing, this usually marks the transition where day-to-day project items going forward transition from your company’s account manager or business development team member into the Project Manager’s hands. You have this opportunity to continue the process of building comradrie with your partner, set and manage expectations, risks, mutual responsibilities and follow ups that will lead to a successful project delivery. Use this time to show your clients how proper planning and internal preparation, along with your leadership abilities, allow everyone to leave this meeting empowered and with a clear vision to move forward together.
Depending on the type of project, there are different levels of scope or services that may be provided. For example, an iterative software development project may not have the project plan fully defined at the kickoff, whereas a planned social application for a particular campaign may have detailed scopes, wireframes, and a project plan readily available in a quicker turnaround time. That being said, there are multiple routes a kickoff meeting could go based on the stage of the scope, detailed project plan and production approach. However, there are many best practices you should pay attention to regardless of the type of project.
1. Prepare internally at your organization before meeting with the client.
This sounds like an obvious head-nodder and something that is always assumed. However, I point this out as tip #1 as the beginning of any successful requirement requires team buy-in (and time), corporate alignment, and dedication to deliver the end product. The client kickoff call is one of the first times this uniform front will be able to be presented . That being said, note that proper preparation and documentation for this meeting takes time, and while agency project initiation may be quick moving, do not rush to the client kickoff without following the internal alignment steps you set at your organization. This may include first an internal project briefing – where the final statement of work, project goals, account background, etc is presented to the entire project team, discussed, prioritized, and sets the wheels in motion for internal responsibilities and project planning. Do not let the client kickoff occur without aligning internally as a team. Sometimes business development, account, and project team members have very hectic daily duties, however, never let this be an excuse for the team members to skip internal project transition steps. It will show to the clients if you do.
2. Have a documented agenda and be prepared to lead.
Client’s join this call because they very much have an interest in the project (obviously). Without an agenda and project manager prepared to navigate the meeting, there will be good periods of crickets and a meeting which leads to uncertainty on the client-side. I advise building a templated meeting agenda based on the types of projects your company takes on. With this approach, through your internal project initiation phases, you can leverage the team’s collective knowledge and have a defined process to prepare the required items needed to lead an effective client kickoff meeting. This should be led by the project manager, however, still requires dedicated team support in the early stages as the project is in transition. Items on the agenda should include: welcome and introductions, project definition and assignment review, scope review, timeline and responsibility confirmation, assumptions and unknowns, answering open items and setting clear next steps.
- Is Digital Marketing Dead?
- Can you spot the difference between a Native and a Mobile Web App?
- The Importance of Contextual Awareness to Deliver Relevant Messaging in Mobile Marketing
- Be Discovered through mobile search. Engage with an optimized mobile strategy. Close with the help of educated staff.
- The Convergence of the Mobile Web and Native Apps