Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.
with contributions from Aha Media, LLC Global Marketing OperationsLocallyOptimized.GloballyConsistent.A Publication of Lio...
2Share this eBookglobalmarketingops.comBuilding a Marketing Operations ProgramIntroductionConclusionOverviewAbout the Auth...
Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com3The demands on a marketing organizationare r...
Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com4Operational Model OverviewAt a high level, a...
Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com5Governance – Know the LimitWhen building the...
Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com6Strategy – Set your SitesA content marketing...
Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com7THECONTENTLIFECYCLEThe Content LifecycleCons...
Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com8PlanThe plan phase is when you decide what e...
Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com9THECONTENTLIFECYCLEPlanNew content initiativ...
Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com10THECONTENTLIFECYCLECreateOut of this proces...
Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com11THECONTENTLIFECYCLEPublish and PromoteUp un...
Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com12On- and off-site promotion. This includes c...
Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com13Callout: Who is InvolvedTo execute the Publ...
Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com14THECONTENTLIFECYCLEAnalyzeThroughout the pu...
Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com15While having a good marketing strategy isim...
Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com16Seth Gottlieb has 15 years of experience us...
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in …5
×

Building a Marketing Operations Program

1,156 views

Published on

The demands on a marketing organization
are rapidly changing.
The digital marketing era of today is complex and dynamic. There are
many channels that require investment and continuous attention. With
frictionless communication, trends happen faster and are shorter lived.
Without continuous attention, your digital presence decays rapidly.
Browsing through corporate websites, it is clear few companies have
adapted to effectively manage their digital marketing operations. Branding
and messaging are inconsistent, mobile device support is non-existent,
and aborted initiatives, such as corporate blogs and social pages, linger
as embarrassing reminders of poor follow-through. The problem is that
most organizations still see digital marketing as a series of projects: a web
redesign, setting up a blog, publishing a whitepaper. They can mobilize
resources to complete these projects, but cannot sustain the level of
effort necessary to keep a program going. And without that effort, these
marketing assets become liabilities.
If you want success in digital marketing, your
organization needs to operate like a publisher
by identifying high value audiences and
operationalizing processes to serve them.
This means delivering the right content in the right format and getting
irrelevant/outdated content out of the way. Known as marketing
operations, there is a field whose purpose is to keep content initiatives
performing after launch. Marketing operations encompasses a wide
array of skills and activities that stand in between the development of a
content asset and its consumption by an audience. This includes postproduction
for target channels, tagging for targeting, search engine
optimization, localization, instrumentation for analytics and performance
measurement.
Our previous whitepaper, Three First Steps for Operationalizing your
Content Marketing Strategy, introduced the concept of marketing
operations and recommended some preparatory steps to building a team.
This whitepaper will outline the details of how a marketing operations
group works.

Published in: Business, News & Politics
  • Be the first to comment

Building a Marketing Operations Program

  1. 1. with contributions from Aha Media, LLC Global Marketing OperationsLocallyOptimized.GloballyConsistent.A Publication of LionbridgeMarketingOperationsprogramBUILDING A
  2. 2. 2Share this eBookglobalmarketingops.comBuilding a Marketing Operations ProgramIntroductionConclusionOverviewAbout the AuthorsGovernanceStrategyCreateAnalyzePlanThe Content LifecyclePublish and Promote
  3. 3. Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com3The demands on a marketing organizationare rapidly changing.The digital marketing era of today is complex and dynamic. There aremany channels that require investment and continuous attention. Withfrictionless communication, trends happen faster and are shorter lived.Without continuous attention, your digital presence decays rapidly.Browsing through corporate websites, it is clear few companies haveadaptedtoeffectivelymanagetheirdigitalmarketingoperations.Brandingand messaging are inconsistent, mobile device support is non-existent,and aborted initiatives, such as corporate blogs and social pages, lingeras embarrassing reminders of poor follow-through. The problem is thatmost organizations still see digital marketing as a series of projects: a webredesign, setting up a blog, publishing a whitepaper. They can mobilizeresources to complete these projects, but cannot sustain the level ofeffort necessary to keep a program going. And without that effort, thesemarketing assets become liabilities.If you want success in digital marketing, yourorganization needs to operate like a publisherby identifying high value audiences andoperationalizing processes to serve them.This means delivering the right content in the right format and gettingirrelevant/outdated content out of the way. Known as marketingoperations, there is a field whose purpose is to keep content initiativesperforming after launch. Marketing operations encompasses a widearray of skills and activities that stand in between the development of acontent asset and its consumption by an audience. This includes post-production for target channels, tagging for targeting, search engineoptimization, localization, instrumentation for analytics and performancemeasurement.Our previous whitepaper, Three First Steps for Operationalizing yourContent Marketing Strategy, introduced the concept of marketingoperations and recommended some preparatory steps to building a team.This whitepaper will outline the details of how a marketing operationsgroup works.INTRODUCTION
  4. 4. Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com4Operational Model OverviewAt a high level, a marketing operations team is organized around a contentlifecycle; it is guided by strategy and governed for consistency andcompliance. You can think of marketing operations as the coordinationof purpose, velocity and control. If marketing operations were a roadtrip, strategy would be the itinerary, governance would be the driver andthe content lifecycle would be the car.OVERVIEW
  5. 5. Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com5Governance – Know the LimitWhen building the operational capacity of your marketing organization,the first things to consider are standards and constraints. Inconsistenciesand poor quality control are more visible when your output increases.Potentialforwastegrowsifprioritiesaren’tproperlyset.Mostorganizationshave guidelines and other constraints to ensure consistency, quality andregulatory compliance – few fully operationalize them. Examples ofconstraints include:Style GuidesStyle guides help to ensure a cohesive user experience across channelsand provide direction on language and branding imagery use, aswell as voice and tone. Complying with a style guide strengthens therelationship between the message and brand.BudgetOrganizations with limited budgets need to have realistic expectationsand accept the challenge of maximizing cost-effectiveness.Prioritization will ensure that important initiatives are supported beforenew ideas are considered.Regulatory ComplianceCompanies in highly regulated industries need to accommodateincreased scrutiny for compliance. Everything published may requirelegal review and could be obligated to support several officiallanguages. If that is the case, plan for the additional cost of translationwhen publishing.Internal PoliciesSocial media policies may restrict what can be done on these networks.Maintaining a Facebook page could be difficult if access is prohibited,unless exceptions are made on your network.Collectively, adhering to these rules is called “governance” and should bea pervasive element in all phases of an operational model. Companieswith solid governance look more professional and consistent and providea consistent user experience across all channels.GOVERNANCE
  6. 6. Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com6Strategy – Set your SitesA content marketing strategy addresses fundamental questions aboutwho you are trying to reach and how you will connect with them. Thishelps you decide what kind of content to produce, the languages requiredand the distribution channels and formats.Your content marketing strategy must support your organizational goals,such as building brand awareness, facilitating the sales process withproduct information, building customer loyalty, or reducing supportcosts. All of these goals can be achieved with effective use of content.Once your goals are in place, the next step is to figure out what audienceswill help you achieve them.STRATEGYIdentify your AudiencesYour audience is the reason businessescreate content. Content serves, informsand influences people important to yourbusiness; and is capable of educating andmotivating them to take action. The moreyour company understands its audience,the better the content will be.While a firm can’t personally meet everysingle member of its audience, it canbuild models of important segments.These models, called “personas,” arefictitious characters that represent aparticular audience member a companyaims to target. It’s unnecessary to writea biography for each persona, but it’shelpful to empathize with them andlook at your content through their eyes.This includes understanding how theymake decisions, the information they arelooking for and what formats are mostaccessible for them. Would they findan email newsletter useful, or do theyalready see their inbox as overwhelming?Hit your TargetsOnce you understand your audience,the next step is to develop a strategy forreaching them. This should be organizedalong three dimensions: the targetaudience segments (as illustrated by yourpersonas), the topic (what your businesswants to say), and the format (blog posts,microsites, marketing emails, videos,webinars). An effective content marketingstrategy will support audience segmentsin all phases of the buying and customerlifecycle. Managing Content Marketingby Robert Rose and Joe Pulizzi outlinesa great approach to targeting personaswith content.This can feel intimidating whenconsidering the devices and networkstoday’s consumer is accustomed to. Basepriorities on your understanding of theaudience and the contexts they are likelytofavor.Byclearlydefiningandprioritizingyour personas and understanding howthey access and consume content, youhave won half the battle.Callout: Who is InvolvedWhen developing a content marketing strategy, you should involve twotypes of stakeholders: business owners who can represent the businessstrategy and “customer advocates” who have the closest connection withthe various audiences. Customer advocates are usually people who workin various sales and support groups and regularly interface with customers.
  7. 7. Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com7THECONTENTLIFECYCLEThe Content LifecycleConstraints and strategy set the context, but execution is the engine.Many companies have a brilliant content marketing strategy languishingin PowerPoint or staining whiteboards, but few are executing well.Execution is a process that requires sustained commitment andcontinual learning.The process involves four phases: plan, create, publish and promote,and analyze. It is iterative. Some organizations use the word “campaign”for an iteration, others borrow the agile software development term“sprint.” The advantage of working this way is that you focus on a setof net term objectives and are more conscious of their results. At theconclusion of each cycle, the learning is applied to the next iteration.
  8. 8. Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com8PlanThe plan phase is when you decide what elements of your contentmarketing strategy to work on next and sort out the executiondetail. Planning encompasses all the groundwork for decidingwhat types of content to produce in the current publishing cycle,who will create them and when. The planning process typicallyhas four inputs: Your overall content marketing strategy, includingyour target audience segments and how you intendto serve them. Business intelligence gained from earlier iterationsthrough the execution lifecycle. Hypotheses that you want to test to further refineyour strategy. Your constraints such as budget, regulatorycompliance, and internal policies.Out of this process should come an editorial calendar of contentprojects. Some of these projects may be assigned to internalresources and others may be outsourced to design agencies. Theplan should align with events in the business calendar (productlaunches, external events, etc.), and every project has a committedowner who has the time, resources and skills to complete it.THECONTENTLIFECYCLE1234continued »
  9. 9. Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com9THECONTENTLIFECYCLEPlanNew content initiatives, such as like a new blog or a Facebookpage, should consider the viability of a long term commitment,how to measure the results of the initiative, the limit of effort youwill put into promoting the initiative and how to adjust or windit down if the base assumptions were flawed. For example, ifyou are creating a CEO blog, you might consider a contingencyof turning posts into other types of assets if the blog doesn’twork out. It’s good to experiment, just have a plan to adaptexperiments into programs that can be maintained or discretelyeliminated.Callout: Who is InvolvedYour planning process should include business owners who canrepresent strategic priorities and deadlines and leads for thecreate, publish and promote, and analyze phases described below.
  10. 10. Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com10THECONTENTLIFECYCLECreateOut of this process should come an editorial calendar of contentprojects. Some of these projects may be assigned to internalresources and others may be outsourced to design agencies. Theplan should align with events in the business calendar (productlaunches, external events, etc.), and every project has a committedowner who has the time, resources and skills to complete it.New content initiatives, such as like a new blog or a Facebookpage, should consider the viability of a long term commitment,how to measure the results of the initiative, the limit of effort youwill put into promoting the initiative and how to adjust or windit down if the base assumptions were flawed. For example, ifyou are creating a CEO blog, you might consider a contingencyof turning posts into other types of assets if the blog doesn’twork out. It’s good to experiment, just have a plan to adaptexperiments into programs that can be maintained or discretelyeliminated.Callout: Who is InvolvedYour planning process should include business ownerswho can represent strategic priorities and deadlines andleads for the create, publish and promote, and analyzephases described below.
  11. 11. Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com11THECONTENTLIFECYCLEPublish and PromoteUp until publication, your brilliant content has the impact of a treefalling in an empty forest: It is silent. Effective publishing is morethan making content available, it is getting the content in front ofaudiences where it can make a difference. We bundle publish andpromote together because they happen concurrently and are sointerrelated. Unlike the old days of broadcast publishing, contentis now a medium of a bi-directional conversation. To keep theconversation going, you need to respond to your audience andencourage a healthy dialogue.Publishing is more than data entry into social networks and contentmanagement, email and advertising systems (although that alonecan be challenging). Effective publishing maximizes the reach ofyour content by improving search engine result placement andincreasing the likelihood of sharing.There are five areas to consider when you publish and promoteyour content:Metadata and keyword optimization to ensure content is rich withterms a customer uses to search. If you are publishing in multiple markets,you need to optimize differently: thismeans localizing text and adjustingfor the search engines most popular in that area. Personalization logicalso relies on metadata. If you get your metadata right, your sophisticatedpublishing system will be able to achieve its desired effect of getting the rightcontent to the right customers.Adapting and testing on your target platforms (different browsers yousupport, mobile vs. tablet vs. full experience). You should have a list ofplatforms that you want to actively support. For each of these platforms,make sure that your content is compelling and useful and all of theinteractive functionality is operational.continued »
  12. 12. Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com12On- and off-site promotion. This includes cross-linking and featuringcontent on landing pages. If your publishing platform supports it, promotioncan involve configuring personalization or multivariate testing functionality.Gain the biggest impact from offsite promotion on Twitter, Facebook,YouTube, Storify, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Google+ and any other sites that youraudience segments use. Pay special attention to niche networks like forumsdedicated to your industry.Shareability. Make sure your content can be easily shared and looks goodwhen people do so. This includes having content that is directly accessiblethrough a URL and making it accessible to anonymous users (at least ateaser page if you want to collect leads). Also be aware that sharing sites likeFacebook and Google+ can grab an image and description when peopleshare a link. Program the link so the image and description that appear helpimprove click through rates.Instrumentation. Tag your content and create links to track contentconsumption and behavior. For every piece of content, revisit the goals andwhat outcome you desire. Then apply the appropriate analytics codes andconfigure your analytics package to measure the results.While these activities are not as glamorous as the creative process,they are arguably just as important. Your content could be brilliantand compelling but it will have no impact until it is in front of yourtarget audiences.After the content is live, the conversation starts. There is no “set itand forget it” when it comes to content. If you want your audienceto engage with your content, you need to stay engaged as well. Ifyou see audiences embracing your content, encourage them byrecommending related content. If you see signs of rejection, youneed to adjust. Look for signs that the content is driving desiredbehaviors like conversion to higher levels of engagement.Publish and PromoteTHECONTENTLIFECYCLEcontinued »
  13. 13. Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com13Callout: Who is InvolvedTo execute the Publish and Promote phase, you need people whoare power users on your publishing systems (your web contentmanagement system, your email management system, etc.). Mostcompanies are woefully understaffed in this area. No matter how“user-friendly” these systems are, occasional users will not reliablydo a thorough job with metadata entry and multiple platformtesting. They will also not effectively use advanced features thatyour platforms support. Publishing often requires some graphicsskills for post-production work like turning Photoshop mockupsinto search engine friendly HTML that fits in your CMS templatesor scaling and cropping images.Publish and PromoteTHECONTENTLIFECYCLE
  14. 14. Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com14THECONTENTLIFECYCLEAnalyzeThroughout the publish and promote phase, you should havebeen collecting data. You might have made some intermediateobservations and reacted accordingly, but the analysis phaseis when you really make sense of the data you collected. Mostcompanies do not go beyond the superficial level of watchingtrend lines of page views and unique visitors. The companieswho go deeper have a tremendous advantage of knowing what isworking and why. Raw traffic doesn’t tell you much because thereis a huge difference between converting a qualified customer anda general page impression generated by a curiosity visit.Advanced features like traffic sources and entry pages will tell youhow visitors found you. Configuring funnels and goals will tell youhow effective individual pieces of content are. Armed with thisinformation, you can learn what attributes make content assetscompelling to your audience. These attributes could be anythingfrom the topic of the content, to the wording, to the use of imageryand layout, to your channels. Most importantly, this informationwill help you increase the accuracy of your personas and help yourefine your content marketing strategy.Callout: Who is InvolvedYou don’t have to be a quantitative analyst to get more out of youranalytics package, but it is worth your while to get training andread up on its advanced features. Consider bringing in an analyticsexpert that can help you set up your system and develop a programthat you can follow.
  15. 15. Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com15While having a good marketing strategy isimportant, you will not get the results youseek without strong execution.Having the right content will not achieve your overall business goalswithout publishing and promotion to put it in front of the right audience.Developing good content requires knowing the audience on individual(anecdotal) and quantitative (statistical) levels. Publishing and analysis ishard work requiring a committed team and effort.Successful marketing organizations have operational capabilities that arestrategy driven and well governed. They are realistic about constraints,know what programs are working and stick with them. They have aniterative publishing cycle that is tuned to continuous improvement.Through sustained effort, these high performing marketing teams have aclear understanding of how to engage their target audience.Get in touchTo learn how Lionbridge can help optimize your content and marketingoperations, visit us online atwww.globalmarketingops.comor, contact us.CONCLUSION
  16. 16. Share this eBookBuilding a Marketing Operations Programglobalmarketingops.com16Seth Gottlieb has 15 years of experience using, implementing, andreviewing content technologies. As an integrator and consultant,he has helped businesses large and small improve the efficiencyand effectiveness of their content management and publishing.As an industry analyst, Seth has earned a reputation for integrity,technical knowledge, and writing ability for his reports on contenttechnologies.Seth manages solutions for Global Marketing Operations atLionbridge Technologies. Lionbridge supports customers atevery stage of the Global Customer Lifecycle, helping them raisetheir online search profile, engage their global customers withlocally-relevant content, and translate and test their products andapplications.Ahava R. Leibtag has more than 15 years of experience in writing,messaging and marketing. Her unique specialty is creatingmarketing campaigns designed to reach your end-user, no matterhow intricate your subject matter.Ahava is the Principal and owner of Aha Media Group, LLC, a fullservice Web consulting firm that has been in operation sinceOctober 2005. Clients include Johns Hopkins Medicine, WakeForest University Baptist Medical Center, Washington CancerInstitute, Georgetown University Hospital, Franklin Square HospitalCenter and Montgomery General Hospital.ABOUTTHEAUTHORS

×