This CMA webinar looked into the heart of the problem to find the Soul of the Solution.
On Tuesday, January 26, we spent valuable time with two of the Marketing Community’s game changers, Susan Groeneveld, Chief Intelligence Officer and Maz Tannir, the Media Director of WS. WS is an integrated communications agency that works closely with clients to put their customer and audience in the heart of every marketing strategy rather than focusing solely on the product. In other words, WS is in for the long game called Outcome Marketing.
This conversational style webinar was filled with lots of great information about the importance of Outcome Marketing and how to incorporate it into your marketing plan. Susan and Maz discussed the value of bringing Marketing back to the C Suite, making Marketing more relevant than ever. In fact, found that 83% of global CEO’s say that marketing can be a driver of growth. With this, attention to ROI is being heightened which is why they know that this is the future of Marketing.
Now, here are some of our biggest takeaways from Susan and Maz:
1. The Shift from Traditional Marketing to Outcome Marketing
As marketers, we can see that there is a shift from traditional marketing to outcome marketing. As seen below, we are moving away from company-centric to customer-centric. According to Maz, this is where everything changes and is becoming the DNA on how WS is working around this industry pivot.
2. Utilize a Systems Approach
So, how do you put this into action? Well Susan and Maz shared their ‘Secret Sauce’ – a Systems Approach. It is no longer a linear model, but rather we are now spending time in the front end, the engineering end, and ultimately trying to show how everything works in relationships.
Want to start using this approach? Follow these steps:
1. Start with the front-end planning: Here you evaluate opportunity, determine capabilities, strategic fit, and analyze the benefits and risk. From this, you should gain a mutual understanding of the important aspects of the outcome you want to achieve and prepare for planning.
2. Engineering: At this phase, you start developing solutions, designing plans, working and modifying your desired outcomes. You develop the solution design and create a detailed plan to achieve the outcome. If anything changes throughout any part of the process, such as the products or services, come back to this stage and re-evaluate the plan that has been put together.
3. Execute: Here you execute the plan, through coordination of people and other resources to achieve the outcome objectives. Ask yourself: What tools do I need to prepare to go to market?
4. Launch: You launch and deploy all the channels.
5. Optimize: This is real-time monitoring and optimizing of communications to reach and exceed the desired outcome. Looking at data and seeing if you are trending towards the outcome. If you aren’t, which tends to happen, then move back to the engineering phase to see if it was engineered correctly.
6. Validate: You want to ensure the accuracy and relevancy of the outcome. Ask yourself: Was it accurate? Was it relevant? Do we need to go back to engineering to start all over again?
To succeed with this type of approach, ensure you have assurance check points throughout the entire system. Start having conversations with clients early on in the process. By having open and honest partner conversations with your clients, you can voice what is working and what isn’t before they tell you.
WS has shifted their thinking from focusing on gaining the most impressions possible and seeing if it’s working, to sending the right message at the right time. Moving away from impression counting and CPM conversations, WS is working with publishers on a partnership level where they know the desired outcomes. The pivot from measuring just click through rates, to measuring the conversion rate associated with the click through rate is essential to businesses moving forward as there is data behind each decision that is now made.
3. Which sales approach wins in today’s information era? Align Marketing with Business Objectives
This is where business acumen comes into play when getting Marketing into C Suite. It’s beyond the return on advertising spend only, now you can look at the data coming from your clients and match it with the KPI’s that have been set.
With collaboration between Marketers and C Suite, seeing the ROI conversion will become a lot clearer. By aligning marketing with business objectives, Susan and Maz explained how this will help grow marketing budgets and ultimately get marketing back into C suite.
4. WS Persona 2.0
The persona 2.0 that WS currently uses is all about understanding the customer journey and every touch point the customer has had with a brand. By collecting this data, you can then place ads within the journey of the customer; It applies to both B2B and B2C (with B2C, you just need more of them).
By mapping out the customer journey, you are de-risking the marketing, making it more cost effective. Instead of ten different emails and tactics, it is now about diving into how many you actually need for each particular type of person and seeing how they engage with the brand. Then, you can see how many other customers fit into this persona, and expand from there.
When working with companies who are bringing new products to market, Outcome Marketing helps validate the product market fit. Although it is up the chain from marketing, we are starting to see how marketing can help inform the product market fit so that you can pivot to the greatest value for what you are trying to achieve with your company.
And those are our biggest takeaways from Tuesday’s webinar! So if you are ready for a change, then it’s time to start playing the long game: Outcome Marketing.
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About the Author
Kyla Mackie is a recent graduate from Mount Royal University, where she obtained a Bachelor of Business Administration, with a major in Marketing and minor in International Business and Economics. During her time at University, she was the Co-President of Enactus, a non-profit organization that helps create positive sustainable change through economic, social, and environmental projects. Now, she is currently working at the Calgary Marketing Association as the Communications Coordinator.