Target Marketing January 2013
We are in the midst of a true paradigm shift. Consumer behavior suggests consumers want to be more in control of their interaction with the marketing that brands are pushing out. As marketers collect more data and gain access to more powerful analytic technologies, there also is a new dimension we need to access to understand consumer behavior.
I caught three good keynotes in late 2012: Chris Harris, editor-in-chief of Wired, at DMA2012; Frank Cooper, CMO global consumer engagement of PepsiCo, at ad:tech New York; and Brian Solis, principal analyst of Altimeter Group, at NCDM. Each spoke about a new way of approaching business and marketing that is more collaborative with the target market. The reason they are all on this same wavelength is digital media has allowed niche consumers to band together in ways not possible before.
CliftonLarsonAllen accountants have quite a reputation for their social skills. Really. Gone are the days of the laconic desk jockeys who could ply their trade behind closed doors. CPAs at his Minneapolis- and Milwaukee-based accounting company are firmly seated as social media influencers, says Patrick M. Byer, Sr., CliftonLarsonAllen's managing partner of federal government services and partner in charge of the Washington D.C. region.
Every marketing program needs to be measured to uncover whether it's resonating with the right audience. From direct mail and direct response television (DRTV), to online display advertising and social media, it's become commonplace to say, "If you can't measure it, you shouldn't do it." The same holds true in content marketing.
I watched Charles Osgood interview Welsh author Ken Follett on PBS the other day. A world-renowned writer once asked Follett if he thought about the reader when he was writing. Follett said he thought about the reader all the time. Constantly. In response, the famous author said, "I never think of the reader. I always write for myself." "That's why you are a very great author," Follett said. "And why I'm a very rich author."
"It was 24 months ago that Facebook was the social darling and Google was search marketing, right? Google was the quintessential paid media and Facebook was the quintessential earned media," says Shawn Burns, worldwide head of digital marketing for SAP. "Now, Facebook's all paid and Google's social. How do you make media investment decisions in that environment if you're not doing high-end analytics to contribute to attribution modeling?"
Remember the first year mobile marketing was supposed to take hold? No? Well, get out the calendars. This is the year cloud computing is supposed to become mainstream and unite with mobile, according to Forrester's James Staten.
With the vast array of analytical information available in the email channel, the measure of success sometimes gets a little muddied—especially when there are multiple stakeholders claiming ownership of overall success. But then again, what is overall success? For most marketers, it's revenue; in particular, increasing revenue by improving your program. For others, it may be subscriptions or other desired actions or conversions. What's important is there's an overall goal measured—not campaign by campaign, but as an overarching result over time that can be compared against the same period in the previous year or to the previous period.
All the buzz today is about social media, but keep in mind email is a productive channel that provides a high ROI. Let's start with research from the DMA in late 2011: Email is the channel that produces the highest ROI. For every dollar a marketer invests in this highly profitable channel, the ROI in 2012 is $39.40. It makes sense to leverage email and social initiatives to drive business for your company. Let's address some ways you can do this.
There are some who say direct mail marketing is dead. Their reasoning takes many tracks and varies depending on where you sit in the marketing universe. For some, the talk track goes like this: The move into online marketing using Web banners and email has been swift and widely accepted by the brands and consumers; we no longer need to go through the pain of developing creative and tolerating the costs associated with printing and mailing direct mail marketing.
Recently, I experienced an identity crisis. While I've built my career as a copywriter, I now had a client asking me if I also was a content developer. Hmmm. I hadn't thought about it. And frankly, I didn't know. What I did know was that on any given day, you'd find me writing emails, direct mail, space ads, whitepapers, e-newsletters, landing pages, website pages and ads, blog posts, package inserts, and a whole lot more.
Check out the marketing titles publishing in January, February and March from Sybex, Kogan Page and John Wiley & Sons.