Guest Post: SAP CMO Jonathan Becher - On Turbocharging Business Results Through Marketing Insights

Jonathan_becher2Jonathan Becher is one of the most tech savvy corporate CMOs today; one listen to my first conversation with him, and that much will be crystal clear.

And like me, he's a firm believer that distinction between B2B and B2C marketing are now non-existent – and that now more than ever, B2B marketers had better wake up that fact and start marketing to business audiences the way, say, Coca-Cola and others market to consumers.

In this GEN WOW guest post, Becher explores the power of marketing intel in achieving blockbuster business results.

Turbocharting Business Results through Marketing Insights

When apparel retailer Gap releases a new clothing design, marketing analysts look to a key customer segment as an early indicator of the product’s popularity: the people who work in its stores. “Our employees are also our target audience, so we know quickly by those first-day employee purchases if we have a hit on our hands,” said Seth Farbman, Gap’s global CMO. Based on those early results, marketing can rapidly adjust promotional campaigns or merchandising can change the mix of inventory in stores to accommodate anticipated demand. “The data is irrefutable because it’s real,” says Farbman.

The constant flow of information across a business has created an opportunity to increase the pace of decision making, to observe and react in the moment – just like humans do. Marketers are looking beyond examining historical data to predict the future. Instead, they are turbocharging the analysis of real-time data from a variety of sources, including social media and website activity, to deliver personalized in-the-moment engagement, promotions, and, ultimately, sales.

Capitalizing on insights is one of five key responsibilities that marketers must embrace to transform the marketing function into a strategic business driver. Here are four key foundational elements you will need to put in place to capture – and act on – insights in real time:

Plan for spontaneity. The foundation for Oreo’s seemingly spontaneous ‘Dunk in the Dark’ tweet during the blackout at this year’s Super Bowl was laid well in advance. Parent company Mondelez created 78 dashboards to capture social media conversations about the Super Bowl and the Mondelez brands that were advertising on the broadcast. Shortly after the power went out at the Superdome, analysts noticed the chatter on Twitter and Facebook had shifted to the blackout. Within minutes, Oreo’s digital agency had created a snappy post, which generated 15,000 retweets on Twitter and 5,500 shares on Facebook.

Accelerate your analytics. Real-time marketing requires real-time decision making, not just big data. Businesses are looking for ways to reduce the time between collecting the data and acting upon it. Procter & Gamble, for example, has invested in a “visually immersive” data environment, called Business Sphere, which delivers constant streams of business intelligence to employees around the globe. Ask yourself whether you’re focusing on warehousing your data or capitalizing on the insights it contains.

Curate content, not just collateral. Research from technology publisher IDG found that IT professionals typically consume five pieces of content, created by or on behalf of the vendor, before they speak with a sales representative. But those pieces of content can’t be the same; they must match the buyers’ needs at a given moment. For example, someone who posts a query on a community site about cloud technology will likely balk at an immediate sales pitch – but appreciate a link to a blog post that talks about overall trends and best practices. Early-stage content builds credibility – and possibly an opportunity to engage more directly down the road.

Know your customer before they are your customer. Customers have more choice than ever before, are better informed than ever before, and their opinions count more than ever before. Customers spend 50% of their time researching online and 70% of their decision making is complete before they speak to a sales person. If you are waiting for them to walk in your store or meet with a sales rep, you are too late. To make matters worse, 80% of customers have reversed a purchase decision based on a negative review. Imagine the impact a company can make on its bottom line if it understands the customer and start creating an experience for them earlier in the cycle.

Are you still marketing based on last month’s reports or are you ready for real-time? I look forward to your comments. 

Join Jonathan and other senior agency- and client-side marketers to talk about this topic and more at our new GEN WOW LINKEDIN GROUP.

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Digital & The New Consumer (Infographic)

HWW Digital and the New Consumer_InfographicThis is an interesting new infographic from Havas Worldwide; which kind of digital shopper are you? What about your customers?

 

 

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Digital Marketing: 5 Top New Year's Resolutions

 

It's 2013: Do you know what your digital marketing's up to?

Here are five quick resolutions for the new year. Like lots of behaviors, these are practices we know we should keep - like eat less, move more - but rarely do. All of us are guilty of bypassing these common sense rules from time to time.

So if we do just five things this year, let's resolve to:

5. Not Ask How - Ask Why

I said this in a recent post on social media trends for 2013. But it's really true of anything we do. If you've heard it once, you've heard it a million times at agencies and client-side brands throughout the land: Let's do "X" - insert your digital buzz word du jour here - not because "X" is central to a brand's objectives, but because it's considered cool. But saying "we need a mobile/social/viral strategy is akin to saying "we need a brochure strategy," or a radio strategy, or a signage strategy. These are channels & platforms, not strategies. First figure out what you have to accomplish, then decide which approaches and channels will get you there. It's so simple, yet we all get caught up in coolness from time to time.

4. Know thy customer - and thy channels

On that note, as I write in my book THE ON-DEMAND BRAND, insight comes before inspiration. Today's most successful digital marekting initiatives typically don't come from a great idea for some hip new experience, or a me-too approach to major trends. Instead, they start with consumer insights culled from painstaking research into who your customers are, what they're all about, how they interact with consumer technologies, and what they want from the brands they know and trust. Just look at the work Unilever's done over the last few years with the Dove brand's "Campaign for Real Beauty" and all its crazy ass work for Axe - including everything from QR code peep holes in bathroom bars to faux "Shower Together" PSAs. These marketers have a firm read on their customers and the channels with which to reach them. In 2013, look for social + mobile + local to be a key to accomplishing this.

3. Always commit multi-plat-fornication

Innovate through as many channels and platforms that make sense for your strategies and audience. It's what MTV calls "multi-plat-fornication." As I show in the book, MINI USA has made an art form of this, using insights on its "fun-tech" loving audience and how they congregate online to use numerous approaches - branded games, especially, but also things like RFID-based key fobs that enable roadside billboards to call out to passing drivers by name - to actually enlist customers to market the cars for them. And Coca-Cola has raised the bar over the last year, with everything from branded iPhone apps to the Polar Bears' social stunt at the Super Bowl to its Kinect-Powered Vending Machine, to a magazine-ad-turned-mobile-stereo-speakers and much, much more. Small wonder the brand has been named "Creative Marketer of the Year" for the 2013 Cannes International Advertising Festival. 

2. Honor traditional as the sizzle to digital's steak

It's heresy these days to point out the obvious. In a fragmented media universe, the channels that still attract any semblance of "mass" are more powerful than ever - with TV being exhibit A. For all our gadgets, we're watching more TV, not less. And whether it's "Walking Dead" or "Dancing with The Stars," TV has communal power like nothing else. As a result, many of today's most innovative integrated campaigns use traditional advertising - old school TV, print, radio, etc - to build awareness and then point consumers to deeper, richer, more meaningful experiences online, or via mobile and other digital platforms. Again, Coca-Cola's Polar Bear stunt at the Super Bowl immediately comes to mind, attracting over 9 million consumers who spent an average of 28 minutes with the brand. And Doritos has effectively done all this in reverse every year, with its Crash The Super Bowl user-generated ad contest - with the chance to work with director Michael Bay at this year's bowl.

1. Never put "buzz" before "business"

Obviously digital marketing is about endless and innovative experimentation. If it were as easy as creating any old viral video, branded game, or mobile app to generate enough buzz to bring in business for our brands, we'd all be rich. For many lifestyle brands, this kind of experimentation is enough - especially in categories where an aura of hipness is a prerequisite for sales success. But while there is obviously a lot of fun and games in all this fun and games, it's important - critical - that we approach digital initiatives with specific objectives in mind (see resolution #5).

As Harley-Davidson's global CMO Mark-Hans Richer puts it to Ad Age, "This is a new gold age for marketers. The shackles are off, and the possibilities are nearly endless. If we aren't conducting radical experiments, trying new ways to engage our targets and adding value to them, then we're not doing our jobs."

But, he adds, "It's not about chasing the buzz; it's about chasing the biz." Marketers who get this formula right - by fueling innovation through substantive consumer insights - weill thrive in the on-demand era.

Those who don't will have to settle for some fun - but ultimately fruitless - experiments.

Here's to a blockbuster 2013 for us all.


Q&A: Jeff Hasen, Author of 'Mobilized Marketing' (Pt 2)

Jeff HasenIn part two of my interview with Jeff Hasen, author of the new book MOBILIZED MARKETING: Driving Sales, Engagement, and Loyalty Through Mobile Devices, we dive into the latest trends and statistics in mobile marketing.

Along the way, Hasen will start helping us cut through the hype and misconceptions that are holding many marketers back from taking full advantage of the mobile revolution.

Listen to what he has to say here, and then check out the book here.

Hasen-Cover

Q&A: JEFF HASEN, AUTHOR OF MOBILIZED MARKETING (PT 2): MOBILE MARKETING TRENDS THAT MATTER RIGHT NOW


(3 min, 12 sec)

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 OD_cover "... EXCELLENT ..."

 

“Through persuasive arguments and Q&A's with the major players in advertising, Mathieson makes an excellent case for greater creativity and outside-the-box thinking backed up with solid ideas."

Publisher's Weekly

 

>>> IN STORES NOW: ORDER YOUR COPY HERE <<<

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Author Rick Mathieson Takes on Top Digital Trends At Visual Media 2012 in SF

VisualmedI'm looking forward to my talk at Visual Media 2012 next week in San Francisco.

It looks like a fantastic agenda, and I'm amped about being invited to speak

Read more here.

 

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 OD_cover "... EXCELLENT ..."

 

“Through persuasive arguments and Q&A's with the major players in advertising, Mathieson makes an excellent case for greater creativity and outside-the-box thinking backed up with solid ideas."

Publisher's Weekly

 

>>> IN STORES NOW: ORDER YOUR COPY HERE <<<

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Author Rick Mathieson to Talk Digital Marketing at Marketing Edge 2012, Feb 14

Marketing edge 2012 copyCan't wait for next week's big Marketing Edge 2012 in Houston, where I'll be talking trends in social media, mobile marketing, branded games, augmented reality & more!

If you're in the area, this is one event you won't want to miss - not just because of me. Take a look at the great line up here, and get your tickets today.


State of Social Media 2011 (Video Infographic)

 

I like this video infographic for the state of social medias in 2011.

Admittedly, however, like a lot of these video infographs, its style suggests more than it actually signifies.

For instance, does it really mean much that there are more Facebook users than there our cars? I assume they mean cars in US. And either way, does that mean anything, since the barrier or entry is a click versus tens of thousands of dollars.

And LinkedIn having more users than the population of NYC is cool, but likely includes duplicate and unclosed accounts against a global user base. Likewise, having an account and really using it in a meaningful way are two very different things. That's true of all social media platforms.

And some data points are simply dubious. "More video is uploaded to YouTube in 60 days than the 3 major US networks created in 60 years." What is the definition of "more"? Minutes of content? I'm doubtful even that's true - "created" is different than "broadcast" - and even then, if there are billions of minutes of video that nobody's seen on YouTube, does that mean anything compared to TV content seen and enjoyed by billions and billions of people?

Still there are some fun insights. I am always amused by the lack of adoption for LinkedIn among people over 55. People in that age group are the fastest growing segment of social media users, and yet LinkedIn simply has no appeal to them. Ask anyone that age and they simply do not understand why LinkedIn would be of value, unless they're looking for a job. Just an interesting dynamic for a demographic that's as all-in - maybe more so - than even 18- to 24-year-olds.

Anyway: Some really good stuff, though some of it - like a lot of hype around social media - needs to be taken with a grain of salt.

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 OD_cover "... EXCELLENT ..."

 

“Through persuasive arguments and Q&A's with the major players in advertising, Mathieson makes an excellent case for greater creativity and outside-the-box thinking backed up with solid ideas."

Publisher's Weekly

 

>>> IN STORES NOW: ORDER YOUR COPY HERE <<<

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Q&A: Jordan Atlas, VP/Group CD Ignited: Konomi 'Pro Evolution Soccer' & Putting Innovation Into Play

Jordan_photoB Jordan Atlas first hit my radar in a memorable way.

The then-VP and Group CD of Digitas New York, where he co-ran the American Express OPEN and Comcast accounts, Atlas sent me the photo shown below and the following note, just days after the launch of my new book, THE ON-DEMAND BRAND:

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Rick,

My name is Jordan Atlas and I am a group creative director at Digitas/NY.

I just finished The On-Demand Brand, it was incredibly inspiring and eye-opening.

I just sent out an email to my 23 member creative team saying "anyone interested in not sucking at their job should go out and buy this book!"

Thanks for writing it.  I've attached a photo of what my copy looks like now. I think I may have stuck a post-it note on every page.

Thanks again,
Jordan

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  Jordan_book_b


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I didn't know Atlas, and his feedback was exactly the kind any marketing book author dreams of receiving. It was incredibly cool of him to send it to me, a complete stranger.

He has since moved on to become VP/Group CD at Los Angeles-based Ignited, a highly innovative transmedia shop founded about a decade ago by Eric Johnson.

Atlas and I have stayed in touch, and I recently invited him to take part in the Fall 2011 GEN WOW Mobile Marketing Roundtable, but a new business pitch kept him away.

We finally had the chance to connect this week, and I got the lowdown on a new launch for Konomi Pro Evolution Soccer 2012, which features some hilarious spots featuring fictional soccer ref Robert Roberto Roberto.

 

Over the next few days, Atlas - whose past includes seven years at Y&R working on Diet Dr. Pepper, Sony and Pepperidge Farm, and countless accolades from the New York Times, Cannes, The Effies and the USA Today Super Bowl Ad Meter - will provide some powerful insights into how he and Ignited are staying ahead of the change curve.

Among the agency's methods: It's own technology incubator, which funds startups in developing next-generation digital businesses, grown internally and externally, in areas such as social media, location-based services, neuromarketing, video, mobile/tablet computing and more.

It makes for some interesting listening for the digital age.

Q&A: JORDAN ATLAS, VP/GROUP CD IGNITED (PT 1): PUTTING INNOVATION IN PLAY

(Appx 7:43)

Use Player or Click Here to Download GEN WOW: Jordan Atlas Pt 1

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 OD_cover "... EXCELLENT ..."

 

“Through persuasive arguments and Q&A's with the major players in advertising, Mathieson makes an excellent case for greater creativity and outside-the-box thinking backed up with solid ideas."

Publisher's Weekly

 

>>> IN STORES NOW: ORDER YOUR COPY HERE <<<

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Q&A: Visible World CEO Seth Haberman (Pt 2): Targeting TV Spots, Zip Code to Household

Seth headshot In part two of my conversation with Visible World CEO Seth Haberman, we hear about how companies like his are targeting TV spots down to not just the zip code level, but to the individual household.

It's the latest in "addressable advertising," and it's starting to bring Internet-style ad targeting into the living room like never before possible.

Q&A: SETH HABERMAN, CEO VISIBLE WORLD (PT 2): TARGETING TV SPOTS FROM ZIP CODE TO HOUSEHOLD

(Approx 3:50)

Audio Link:

Download GEN WOW: Visible World CEO Seth Haberman Pt 2

And don't miss Part 1, here.

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 OD_cover "... EXCELLENT ..."

 

“Through persuasive arguments and Q&A's with the major players in advertising, Mathieson makes an excellent case for greater creativity and outside-the-box thinking backed up with solid ideas."

Publisher's Weekly

 

>>> IN STORES NOW: ORDER YOUR COPY HERE <<<

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