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.

Making Marketing Strategy Easier

4,622 views

Published on

As presented at Seattle Interactive Conference 2015.

Do you share the feeling that a 'marketing strategy' should be higher on your list of priorities, but there are too many more urgent day-to-day tactical activities for you to think about the higher level right now?

Marketers are faced with a greater selection of channels, websites & services than ever before, and this growth in opportunities has also increased the complexity of creating a successful marketing plan. The planning process is often time-consuming & expensive, and may still not guide any actual action for your team or business, even after months of work.

In contrast, Distilled's Rob Ousbey will share the frameworks & tools that will help you create a first version of your new marketing strategy in a matter of hours - and show you how to sell this to your boss or client.

Published in: Marketing

Making Marketing Strategy Easier

  1. 1. Rob Ousbey Making Marketing Strategy Easier #SIC2015
  2. 2. The Creative To begin, I want to share the story of a creative campaign we launched on behalf of a client. NB: I’ve added these grey boxes to the online version, to give some narrative to these slides!
  3. 3. The Coverage We earned coverage from practically every blog and news website we could have hoped for.
  4. 4. The Results 1,100 21,000 15,000 15,000 3,000 And the piece continues to earn links: an average of four new linking domains every day of the week. Linking Root Domains Facebook Likes Facebook Shares Twitter Tweets LinkedIn Shares
  5. 5. The Client’s Reaction Not long after, the client fired us. In the short time we’d worked together, we hadn’t moved the right needles for them, and we’d not show how our work was going to actually benefit the brand on the time scale that was in our heads.
  6. 6. The Only Ways We Fail We failed to do the things we set out to do. We achieved the things we wanted to, but they didn’t have the anticipated effect. As a consulting agency, we get to post-mortem, debug and try again. I’ve outlined two failures modes here: execution failures, and strategic failures – this presentation focuses on avoiding the second type.
  7. 7. What is ‘Strategy’? Objectives What do we want to achieve? Tactics The things we’ll do to get there. Strategy How can we achieve it? Specifically, we’re talking about the part of the process that turns ‘what we want to achieve’ into ‘what to do to get there’.
  8. 8. What is ‘Strategy’? Objectives What do we want to achieve? Tactics The things we’ll do to get there. Strategy How can we achieve it?
  9. 9. What is ‘Strategy’? Objectives What do we want to achieve? Tactics The things we’ll do to get there. Strategy How can we achieve it? If a strategy is set well, then it allows you to look at any part of your to-do list, and ask ‘why?’ all the back up to the top level goals.
  10. 10. Matryoshka Strategy The overall ‘business objective’ may generate tactics for individual teams (such as logistics, finance, sales, marketing, etc.) That then sets an objective for each team, who develop their own strategy and tactics. If the marketing strategy suggests investing in PPC, social and email marketing, then each of those departments will now have an objective, and can start their own process. This presentation focusses on the marketing portion – turning marketing objectives into tactics.
  11. 11. Why do we need another framework? Many other strategy frameworks exist, but there are always parts that I find lacking, particularly given the way the internet has changed the options available to us, and made new data available. But mostly I wanted a process that we could go through very quickly, and get an answer we were 90% confident about in 1/10th the time it could take us. This is incomplete, consider it a working draft. I've been field testing this with clients over the last few months, so now I get to share it with you.
  12. 12. Getting Things Done ‘Doing strategy’ often seems particularly time consuming, and it sometimes seems to be a wonderful way to ever get real work done. If you have people who can get on with executing; give them your best guess of things to do while you’re researching/planning - and treat it as a test to see what happens. I'm also OK with tactics influencing strategy. If you have a tactic that you’ve found is working well; then look for insights. That can contribute to the process.
  13. 13. Before we get started: if you find this framework useful, please click here to share with your friends and colleagues on Twitter. For more like this, follow me here: @RobOusbey
  14. 14. WHOare we trying to reach?
  15. 15. Be Selective You can’t be all things to all people. There’s a well understood process of ‘persona identification’
  16. 16. Prioritize Beyond identifying a number of persona, you should prioritize them – and understand which groups you’re not going to target.
  17. 17. Gender Education Location (geographic, rural/urban) Age Situational (marriage, kids, studying, working) Behavioural Their location & language Interests Values (internal beliefs that influence a purchase decision) External influences Also: Business or personal purchase? Many companies offer service to people who are buying B2B as well as B2C. Consider the audience for companies like Staples, Dropbox or Hilton. Factors we may want to describe in the persona: Things that change quite rarely Things that change more often
  18. 18. Guesswork & Gut is Rarely Enough It’s tempting to take a guess at the personas for your business, but we can do better that.
  19. 19. 51% of people believe it is important that brands ask about their needs. 10% of people said that their favorite brands do this well. You Have Permission to Ask Edelman surveyed 11,000 people across 212 brands in 12 market sectors. The results showed that people really don’t mind brands asking about their needs!
  20. 20. Survey Process We run surveys by emailing a segment of existing customers, with various questions to answer.
  21. 21. Beyond basic demographic data, you can find out a lot about the customers’ values and interests.
  22. 22. Interviews We then group the data by similar responses and pick representative people from each major group to speak to for longer. This gives us the chance to look for recurring themes, and even particular quotes that we can incorporate into a persona. Although it’s more geared toward product development, the ethos of the questions in Zac Cohn’s deck are well worth considering.
  23. 23. Scaling with Existing Data But it’s 2015! There’s enough data available to us that we should be able to generate some insights before we have to turn to surveying/interviewing people. The place to begin is any interesting data submitted by customers. For example: college recruitment marketers can review application essays (perhaps just for accepted students) to get insights.
  24. 24. Existing Data Sources: User Data bart@fullcontact.com The FullContact API will take an email and return age, gender, location and lots of other demographic stuff, all for around 1cent per result. It also gets: location, their employer, and tries to find their interests (based on an aggregation of lots of data) Consider running this over all your customer records (or just those in a certain segment, such as the top 20% of customers by revenue) to find out who they really are.
  25. 25. Existing Data Sources: User Data You don’t even need a developer – you can do all this at scale in a spreadsheet!
  26. 26. Existing Data Sources: User Data social media – digital marketing – digital media – creative director – real estate – graphic designer – pacific northwest – marketing manager – online marketing – media marketing – marketing agency – digital marketer – graphic design – husband father – dog lover – web developer – business development – pop culture –user experience – washington state – public relations – marketing professional – content marketing – world traveler – web design – music lover Followerwonk (a Moz tool) can parse all of your Twitter followers, and review their bios to find common themes.
  27. 27. Existing Data Sources: User Data Twitter Analytics can analyze your audience, and compare it to a benchmark population.
  28. 28. Existing Data Sources: User Data Google Analytics gives affinity/in-market data for your visitors. You could filter this data by converting users or basket sizes. It can also be used for creating custom reports which can be analyzed or used later for retargeting.
  29. 29. Overlooked Personae Don’t overlook a couple of interesting groups: people who already know & feel positively about your brand (but need activating), and previous customers that haven’t purchased in a while (and need reactivating.)
  30. 30. Third Party Data Surveys You can run brand awareness/affinity/association surveys using AYTM, Google Consumer Surveys or SurveyMonkey Audience.
  31. 31. Third Party Data Surveys For example: 70% of mothers with young children have heard of Zulily. This might suggest that they should focus on activation rather than awareness.
  32. 32. Validating the Personae Add a field in your CRM, and have sales reps select their best guess for each customer. Or maybe you can define actions that will let you tag people in GA.
  33. 33. Using a 2-d matrix You can also try plotting your personae on a matrix of two relevant dimensions. The example on the following slide shows ten ‘book buying’ personae, plotted on the dimensions of how many books they buy, and how tech-savvy they are. An ebook company might decide to target ‘intellectuals’ and ‘digital worms’ (to persuade them to switch to their service), techies (who they can persuade to read more) and book worms (who they can introduce to the benefits of ereading.)
  34. 34. High tech usage Low tech usage Adopters Passives Best Sellers 13% Techies 6% Casuals 15% Disengaged 7% Gifters 15% Digital Worms 5% Intellectuals 15% Book Worm 3% Happy at Home 9% Budgeters 12% High book engagement Readers eReaders Low book engagement
  35. 35. An example of a fully-fleshed persona. This was one of three, created for a consumer electronics company. Countless other example exist online!
  36. 36. WHO When running through the process quickly, you don’t need fancy stock photos. A quick sketch can remind you who is who.
  37. 37. WHEN during the customer journey do we want to reach them?
  38. 38. Traditional Customer Paths The traditional purchase funnel was developed in 1898. The modern reality is that it’s a lot harder to quantify where people are at; this model also doesn’t go back to when people didn’t even realize the problem they had, or the marketing they were in.
  39. 39. Customer Modalities Various modes exist. People are likely to have fairly unique experiences in getting from awareness to purchase.
  40. 40. A New Model of Customer Modes Blissful ignorance, no problems Determines they have an issue that needs solving Recurring issue ←→ once-in-a-lifetime question Maybe researches solutions Maybe gets influenced; maybe they’ve already been exposed Could be passively or actively searching Maybe they have a favorite brand Makes decisions about what brand & product to buy Decides where to buy it from Different triggers may help the customer determine they have a problem, such as intrinsic/situational (‘I deserve a holiday’), external (‘my coffee machine is broken’), or opportunistic (‘I didn’t realize I had a problem until I found this product that solves it!’). MarketingProfs.com has a model with eight different trigger types.
  41. 41. Variety of Paths The pattern of modes they pass through will be intertwined with their persona. Some folks want to do a lot more online research; others are happy to trust the instore salesman. In some industries, people add significantly more brands to consideration as they go through the process. Your website analytics can show if there are groups of people who purchase quickly, or who spend a long time researching, and their traffic source / landing page might give you a hint about what mode they’re in.
  42. 42. Example: Market Leaders with Predictable Paths We worked with a client who makes some of the hidden hardware behind ‘connected home’ technology. With an ~80% share, they benefit from just getting people into the market, rather then necessarily having to sell them on the brand itself.
  43. 43. Example: Market Leaders with Predictable Paths Which is quite reminiscent of De Beers in the 80s: they only had to persuade people to buy diamond engagement rings, and they would always benefit.
  44. 44. Example: Very Different Paths People can take extremely different paths within the same market, such as our divorce lawyer client. Some people spend a long time thinking about getting a divorce and researching lawyers. Other people have just had papers served, and have to choose a lawyer extremely quickly.
  45. 45. WHO - WHEN Problem Definition Awareness Research Conversion You can now decide when you are going to engage with each of those personae, ie: what mode will they be in when they first see your content/messaging?
  46. 46. message would you like those potential customers to hear? WHAT
  47. 47. Those People; Those Moments For those people, at that moment: what do you want them to hear? How do you want to change their mind? Maybe share a USP or value prop to support their research? Maybe a clear, commercial call to action? Maybe you just want to tell them you exist, or even just help them out with an issue they have right now – even if that doesn’t generate a sale for you.
  48. 48. The Message Must Match Their Familiarity One point to be aware of: how well will they know you at this point? Do they know the brand, or what your value prop is? Do they know you’re a potential solution to their problem?
  49. 49. Questions You’ll Have to Answer Eventually Remember: at some point. you’ll have to explain: your services, your location, your unique selling proposition, advantages, etc.
  50. 50. Understanding your Differentiation Relevance Low High Differentiation Low High Neutrals Must Haves Drivers Fools’ Gold For different product features, McKinsey’s model reminds us to ask how differentiated your product is – and how much the consumers care about that. In hindsight, I’ve had clients distracted by marketing a message that was “fools’ gold” – an feature where they were highly differentiated, but that the market wasn’t interested in. The ‘drivers’ are where you should be taking the opportunity to show off!
  51. 51. Understanding your Personality The message you want to share might be your brand’s personality. You can’t always just tell people this – they may have to be shown and infer it for themselves. This guest post on AVC is the jumping off point for thinking about personality in brand and marketing.
  52. 52. For example:: Johnnie Walker is a good time drink. It loves parties, it loves people. It hates things that are normal.
  53. 53. Glenfiddich loves the outdoors and solitude. It hates people and wants to be as far away from them as possible.
  54. 54. Social Proof Social proof is one example of message; the brand isn’t validating how good the product is: people just like you are.
  55. 55. Six Kinds of Message 1) Directional Messages 2) Messages of Possibility 3) Messages of Reality 4) Messages of Necessity 5) New Idea Messages 6) Reframing Messages This model is a framework that describes six different types of marketing message.
  56. 56. Six Kinds of Message 1) Directional Messages 2) Messages of Possibility 3) Messages of Reality 4) Messages of Necessity 5) New Idea Messages 6) Reframing Messages What You Should Do: “The best way to achieve [goal] is [approach] .”
  57. 57. Six Kinds of Message 1) Directional Messages 2) Messages of Possibility 3) Messages of Reality 4) Messages of Necessity 5) New Idea Messages 6) Reframing Messages “Something else is possible” [Example]
  58. 58. Six Kinds of Message 1) Directional Messages 2) Messages of Possibility 3) Messages of Reality 4) Messages of Necessity 5) New Idea Messages 6) Reframing Messages “Here’s how things really are” [Example]
  59. 59. Six Kinds of Message 1) Directional Messages 2) Messages of Possibility 3) Messages of Reality 4) Messages of Necessity 5) New Idea Messages 6) Reframing Messages “We need to [take action] .” [Example]
  60. 60. Six Kinds of Message 1) Directional Messages 2) Messages of Possibility 3) Messages of Reality 4) Messages of Necessity 5) New Idea Messages 6) Reframing Messages “Here’s something new!” [Example]
  61. 61. Six Kinds of Message 1) Directional Messages 2) Messages of Possibility 3) Messages of Reality 4) Messages of Necessity 5) New Idea Messages 6) Reframing Messages “Weakness is strength; ugly is beautiful; good is bad,” [Example]
  62. 62. Surveying & Testing Message Your surveys can also pick up on the importance of different things, and the messages that will resonate with those people at that moment; ConversionXL has some more good information about that, You can test messages through PPC (as Tim Feriss did for Four Hour Workweek), or see what generates engagement on your social channels.
  63. 63. Maintaining Scent Keep your messages ‘joined up’ as someone moves through different channels. In one of these examples the ad & the landing page are consistent, in the other the messages are mismatched. (Eg. 1, Eg. 2.)
  64. 64. WHO - WHEN - WHAT Problem Definition Awareness Research Conversion BRAND X IS AN OPTION I WISH I COULD _____ BRAND X IS A NOVEL SOLUTION BRAND X IS AVAILABLE AT MY STORE Now you can take you ‘who’ and ‘when’ and determine ‘what’ message you want them to take away from the engagement.
  65. 65. do we get that message to them? WHERE
  66. 66. paid search • organic search • local search • product search • display • retargeting • gmail ads • owned social • social coverage • bought social • social advertising • social retargeting • referral traffic • review sites • blog coverage • product placement • content amplification • news coverage • media buys • email • earned email • paid email • partners • affiliates • events Channels Pretty much every channel has earned, owned & paid components. When you SWOT individual channels, one ‘strength' might be your existing presence there
  67. 67. Channels paid search • organic search • local search • product search • display • retargeting • gmail ads • owned social • social coverage • bought social • social advertising • social retargeting • referral traffic • review sites • blog coverage • product placement • content amplification • news coverage • media buys • email • earned email • paid email • partners • affiliates • events I’ve been excited by the success we’re seeing with some more experimental channels recently.
  68. 68. Choosing Channels Content & channel are well linked. Use the content matrix to cross reference a point in the process and a message type , to choose a content type / channel.
  69. 69. Choosing Channels Google’s research can help in choosing channels.
  70. 70. Google Marketing Search engine optimization search engine Internet terminology Web search Learning Cognition Perception ... What Are Those People Into? Try taking your social followers, then find the last 20- 30 links they shared, and aggregate the domains to find out which sites they value the content from. Or pass all those links through the AlchemyAPI to find which topics are of interest to your audience.
  71. 71. New Channels of Influence Which intermediaries do these people use? Who are ‘celebrities’ to them? For any given channel, who are the major influencers for this persona?
  72. 72. Variety in Social Instagram Pinterest LinkedIn Social channels are all completely different. You’ll already be familiar with the differences, but use the data that is out there to help with selection.
  73. 73. Example: PR coverage + Amplification This article presumably converts really well – and the brand gets more eyeballs on it by using content amplification within BusinessInsider, via Taboola.
  74. 74. Picking Appropriate Channels McKinsey shared an example from a home appliance manufacturer, who spent most of their marketing dollars on content for their website – and had advertising spend across print, TV and display.
  75. 75. Picking Appropriate Channels Insight: Less than 9% of customers went to manufacturer website. Action: Brand reduced spend on their website & traditional advertising Increased spend on content for retailer websites Outcome: Lead to an immediate 21% uplift in ecommerce sales
  76. 76. Does your website need to be in the process? An IT consultant published this deck on Slideshare to target a specific error code. The phrase now gets 60,000 monthly searches and he ranks ~1-2. He’ll drive many thousands of people to his solutions this year, without the need for a strong website.
  77. 77. WHO - WHEN - WHAT - WHERE Problem Definition Awareness Research Conversion IN THE PRESS TWITTER REVIEW SITES BRAND-X.com Now decide where you’re going to get that message in front of the right people.
  78. 78. are you doing this? WHY
  79. 79. Moving the Needle The easiest way to win in the short term is to measure all the needles. That way, you always have something you can celebrate, because some metric has always improved over the last month/quarter. This is the measurement/analytics part. If you’re not measuring, you won’t know it’s working. You have to move the needle!
  80. 80. # of top of funnel content pages produced # of commercial landing pages optimized # of bloggers, influencers, journalists engaged with # of pages indexed by Google # of new linking root domains Domain Authority Ranking positions Organic traffic to TOF pages Organic traffic to product pages Organic traffic $$$ contribution to conversions Activities Leading Indicators Success Metrics Indicators & Metrics: Example for SEO Differentiate between the important indicators and the actual metrics of success.
  81. 81. WHO - WHEN - WHAT - WHERE - WHY Problem Definition Awareness Research Conversion SOCIAL INFLUENCE PRESS COVERAGE REFERAL TRAFFIC ON SITE ENGAGEMENT Define your leading indicators & success metrics for each channel.
  82. 82. will you engage there? HOW
  83. 83. Putting it into Action Now you have to take the WHO, WHEN, WHAT, WHERE, WHY and do something with it. Hopefully as you answer those questions, the ‘how’ itself becomes pretty emergent.
  84. 84. EXAMPLEA quick example, where we used this framework to very quickly get a marketing plan together for the client. It was based on some existing industry insights, and that took less than a couple of hours,
  85. 85. The Business The client supports people’s genealogy research. For example: if I wanted data from the records office in a small Polish city, or if I wanted to photograph the gravestone of an ancestor in Sweden, I’d have to get on a plane to visit, and probably hire a local translator. This client has a network of freelancers, providing genealogy services to people between different countries, and can service people everywhere. They’re also aware that as well as an older crowd, genealogy is finding a new surge in popularity with young folks.
  86. 86. Who Sylvia the Silver Surfer - Retirement has left her with plenty of time & money, but the arrival of another grandson is making her think about the legacy she’ll leave. Tech savvy & matriarch of the family records - she’s currently researching their European ancestors. Casey the Crafter - Just started senior year at high school. Loves crafting & is always on the lookout for her next project. She had her first taste of genealogy through a ‘family tree’ project at school.
  87. 87. When We want to reach her while she’s trying to uncover hard-to-access records in foreign countries. We want to reach her as she begins her genealogy journey - possibly many years before her first purchase.
  88. 88. What We have experts in the countries you need, who can retrieve records, take photos, compile information - they’ll work on as much or as little of the process as you’d like. Using our independent researchers is significantly cheaper than flying to Europe, especially if you’ll need to hire a translator. Genealogy can be loads of fun - and it’s good to have a friend to help you along the way. Our team have put together tons of free resources & genealogy information for you - including scrapbook & family tree templates, and we’ve reviewed all the best free research & design software. “ “
  89. 89. Where Search: commercial keyword terms; target with PPC immediately and a medium-term investment in SEO Social: through Facebook; earning coverage from the brands she follows, and through targeted ads. Social: mainly through Pinterest & Instagram, showing designs and templates Blogs: craft & design bloggers (guest posts & placements) Search: responding to ‘how-to’ and ‘resource queries’
  90. 90. How Examples of what visibility will look like on search and social
  91. 91. How Lots of resource content will be posted on our site, and we’ll push some to other sites as guest posts. On Pinterest we don’t own a popular channel yet, so we’ll earn coverage and pay our way in as well.
  92. 92. who • when • what • where • why RECAP
  93. 93. WHO Who are we trying to reach?
  94. 94. WHO - WHEN Problem Definition Awareness Research Conversion When during the customer journey do we want to reach them?
  95. 95. WHO - WHEN - WHAT Problem Definition Awareness Research Conversion BRAND X IS AN OPTION I WISH I COULD _____ BRAND X IS A NOVEL SOLUTION BRAND X IS AVAILABLE AT MY STORE What message would we like those potential customers to hear?
  96. 96. WHO - WHEN - WHAT - WHERE Problem Definition Awareness Research Conversion IN THE PRESS TWITTER REVIEW SITES BRAND-X.com Where do we get that message to them?
  97. 97. WHO - WHEN - WHAT - WHERE - WHY Problem Definition Awareness Research Conversion SOCIAL INFLUENCE PRESS COVERAGE REFERAL TRAFFIC ON SITE ENGAGEMENT Why are we doing this? Which metrics measure success?
  98. 98. Thanks! Send me your feedback via @RobOusbey or rob.ousbey@distilled.net Help others by sharing this deck on Twitter.
  99. 99. We’ve been in business for over 10 years and combine technical and marketing expertise to build digital strategies that drive real results. About Distilled
  100. 100. Brands We Have Worked With
  101. 101. DistilledU is an online search marketing course designed for search professionals: ● 24 interactive lessons covering SEO basics to advanced concepts ● Dozens of videos, with new content added regularly SearchLove brings together some of the world’s leading thinkers for two-day events in: ● San Diego ● Boston ● London We Love Sharing Knowledge
  102. 102. Creative Routines (Slide 3) Nesting Robots (Slide 11) Blueprints (Slide 12) Watch (Slide 13) Boho Chic Chair (Slide 16) Zoltar (Slide 19) Interviewing (Slide 22) Server Racks (Slide 23) Mall (Slide 29) Library Drawers (Slide 32) Motorized Blinds (Slide 44) Billboard (Slide 49) Checklist (Slide 51) Book Shelves (Slide 64) Content Matrix (Slide 70) Airplane Cockpit (Slide 81) Gravestone (Slide 87) Family Records (Slide 87) Record Drawers (Slide 87) Family Tree (Slide 87) ’Sylvia’ headshot (Slide 88) ‘Casey’ headshot (Slide 89) Image Credits

×