Digital access to information, and our socially connected world, has given buyers enormous control over the sales relationship. They do not hesitate to exercise their strength, or use social tools to get brands to pay attention. In this new reality, marketers are pressured to create more, more rapidly, with more data. Content is the currency of marketing today, and the universal need is to:
- Create more content that is relevant throughout the research, consideration and sales cycles.
- Produce content faster. Then repurpose and republish the content across several or dozens of digital channels.
- Understand the value of the content, and course correct quickly.
- Use data to identify not just who the customer is, but what she is thinking at that moment, and try to engage her with specific content to appeal to that moment.
- Stay on brand and stay within data governance and compliance rules.
- Maintain a solid analytical view into all content consumption.
With so much potential knowledge sitting in the data across various marketing technology solutions- from email delivery vendor to campaign management to budgeting to programmatic media buying- there is new attention on the Marketing Operations role. Previously focused on the tasks of budgeting master, reporting metrics and data-driven traffic cop, it was a role that Craig Moore of Sirius Decisions once described as “the island of misfit toys.” Today, the Marketing Operations team has stepped up in many organizations to help make sense of the buyer behavior analytics, and guide the creative, media, digital and campaign teams toward a more effective, efficient and collaborative effort.
Technology has changed the role for the better. All marketing is now done with sets of sophisticated technology – sometimes integrated, sometimes not – making the marketing operations role much more about the alignment of technology with data-driven insights than it is about tracking metrics.
Since all this is in service to the customer – and the need to get marketing content closer to the right lifecycle moment – the Marketing Operations team is getting new attention and creating more value in the organization. In a new eBook from ProofHQ, maker of an online proofing technology, the authors talk about the important and expanding role of marketing Operations, and suggest four core technologies essential to the role:
- Communication tools for maintaining strong working relationships at all levels of an organization while improving productivity;
- Project Management tools for keeping projects delivered on time, within budget and with exceptional quality;
- Digital Asset Management tools for organizing approved marketing files into a centralized location, making it easier for anyone within a team to find and access;
- Online Proofing tools for streamlining the review and approval process of creative content from initial brief to campaign execution.
TopRight often finds that one or two of these functions is working well, but without marketing operations or marketing resource management technology, rarely are all four. Several of our partners have comprehensive tools for tackling all aspects of marketing operations – specifically Teradata Applications for the enterprise and BrandSystems for mid-tier companies. If you are still using spreadsheets to manage marketing calendars and budgets, then it’s time to look at the benefits of technology solutions.
One way to get started is to take the TopRight Integrated Marketing Report Card to benchmark your efforts and identify areas of opportunity. Marketing efficiency and the ability to bring analytics insights to the forefront of marketing campaigns is an important aspect to bring your marketing organization and your business to the #TopRight corner of the market.