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Boost Your Results: Refresh your direct marketing strategy

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Refreshing your direct marketing strategy can give you insights that will boost your results significantly. Here’s how to dive in and target the areas that will give your brand the biggest bang for the buck. In this presentation, we lay out key points to consider for each step in the process. After each step, you’ll get advice on how and when to prioritize. And at the end, you’ll find a handy one-page reference guide to all the steps.

Published in: Marketing
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Boost Your Results: Refresh your direct marketing strategy

  1. 1. Gretchen Scheiman Boost Your Results: Refresh Your Direct Marketing Strategy
  2. 2. 2 The burden is on marketing, especially direct marketing, to bridge the communication gap and drive results By 2020, customers will manage 85%* of their relationship with the enterprise without talking to a human. *Gartner Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  3. 3. 3 “If the notion that all marketing is direct hasn't caught on yet—and it really should have by now— then the superlative efforts of these brands should help to drive the point home.” – DM News All Marketing is Direct Marketing Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  4. 4. 4 Just 61% of marketers believe their marketing strategy is effective. (HubSpot, 2016) If you suspect your direct marketing could use some tweaks, maybe it’s time to review your strategy. Is It Time to Tweak? Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  5. 5. 5 Give your results a boost: refresh your direct marketing strategy Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  6. 6. 6 Direct marketing strategies help brands transform data and content into relevant and helpful conversations with their customers where and when the customer wants in order to drive more revenue What is a Direct Marketing Strategy? It’s a revenue-driving conversation enabler Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  7. 7. 7 When you refresh your direct marketing strategy, you: Create a positive cycle of gathering and using customer data Lift marketing and sales performance Increase customer engagement and loyalty Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  8. 8. 8 Ready to boost your results? GOALS AUDIENCES DATA CHANNELS CADENCE CONTENT MEASUREMENT How do I get from HERE to THERE ? Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  9. 9. 9 How do I get from HERE to THERE ? Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  10. 10. 10 Many marketers skip this step, either substituting campaign objectives or dismissing the need entirely. Don’t make this mistake! Goals It is impossible to promote the importance of your results if you don’t have good goals to start with. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  11. 11. 11 5characteristics define good goals. ✓Aligned ✓Socialized ✓Actionable ✓Measurable ✓Impactful Goals Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  12. 12. 12 Aligned Direct marketing goals must be aligned with openly acknowledged brand goals and objectives. Not all goals need to be about sales or revenue. Consider what the brand needs to accomplish and how that aligns with what direct marketing can achieve. The intersection is where direct marketers will find goal material. Goals Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  13. 13. 13 Socialized It’s important to make sure senior management buys off on direct marketing goals. Without that support, even the best results are simply not valued. Organizations don’t allocate resources to groups that aren’t providing valued results. That’s why marketers need to define goals and socialize them within the organization early on. Set Goals Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  14. 14. 14 Actionable Avoid setting goals where direct marketing is unlikely to get more than a small piece of the credit. Instead, set a goal that is actionable by direct marketing, and which direct marketing is uniquely qualified to impact. Goals Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  15. 15. 15 Measurable Measuring goals can be tricky, especially when dealing with legacy systems or a simple lack of access to certain data. Set goals that can be measured with accuracy, and compared to prior results. Goals Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  16. 16. 16 Impactful Marketers should look for big goals that will impress senior management when the results come in. In other words, focus on goals that will help win bigger budgets and more staff. Goals Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  17. 17. 17 When to prioritize Setting Goals Goal-setting is critical to success, and this part of the process can’t be skipped or skimped. Fortunately, this step will make it easier to talk about your plans and successes as you move forward. Set clear goals before moving on to the next step. Goals Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  18. 18. Marketing to everyone is like boiling the ocean: it doesn’t work. Marketers need to answer the question, “Who should we talk to?” 3sources help identify the right target audiences: ❖Analytics ❖Research ❖Profiles 18 Identify Audiences Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  19. 19. 19 Identify Audiences Analytics Demographics, along with psychographics and other information about target audiences, are key to developing analytical tools that help identify audience members Look for help from analytics partners to develop propensity models, cluster analyses, and other tools. Don’t forget to refresh all analytical tools regularly, so they stay current Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  20. 20. 20 Identify Audiences Market Research Marketers need to invest in market research continuously in order to better understand audiences and their needs, especially in the context of competitors. Answer basic questions first, such as: What do my customers want or value or need from my brand communications? Who are my brand’s most loyal customers? There is always more to learn. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  21. 21. 21 Identify Audiences Customer Profiles Personas and customer journeys are smart investments that help optimize and focus marketing efforts across channels and beyond direct marketing. Build personas and journeys based on qualitative and quantitative research. Use Personas to better understand customers’ needs, experiences, and goals. Align relevant content and insights to each stage of the customer journey. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  22. 22. 22 Identify Audiences When to prioritize audience selection It is always important to know who the audience is, but audiences tend to change slowly. If this is an exercise that has been done within the last year, and if results suggest that the audience segmentation has been working, then marketers may find their time is better spent on other steps. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  23. 23. 23 Data Data is the lifeblood of direct marketing. Marketers need to pay special attention to quality, acquisition, and overall capabilities. Gathering data becomes a significant task when faced with legacy systems, artificial intelligence (AI) needs, proper hygiene, and legalities of collection. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  24. 24. 24 Data 3data considerations impact direct marketing strategy: ✓Data Quality ✓Data Acquisition ✓Data Capabilities Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  25. 25. 25 Data Data Quality The quality of available data impacts every aspect of direct marketing. In the case of poor data hygiene, certain segmentation may not be possible, measurement may be suspect, and the most powerful tools (such as AI) may be useless. Marketers must partner within their organizations to promote accessible high-quality data. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  26. 26. 26 Data Data Acquisition Acquisition comes in many flavors from 3rd party append to progressive profiling. Data acquired from customer actions is always preferred to self-reported data as it is more reliable. Carefully assess what kinds of data are critical to direct marketing needs, then identify a source for each data point. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  27. 27. 27 Data Data Capabilities Even in companies that collect the right data, it may not be stored in the right place. Also, highly regulated industries may discover that while the data exists, it can’t be used as desired. Marketers need to make sure that the data they need can be supported by infrastructure as well as compliance. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  28. 28. 28 Data When to prioritize data Data is always a priority, but that doesn’t make it an especially active one for marketers. Make sure the team has a strong understanding of what is available, how good the quality is, and how it can legally (and in good conscience) be used. Develop a strong relationship with the team responsible for maintaining data so that as needs change, there is an open dialogue available to discuss the news. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  29. 29. 29 Channels Budget often has the biggest impact on which direct marketing channels are available to marketers. However, there are other considerations that should guide a thoughtful consideration of the right channel palette for a brand’s target audience. 4factors influence channel selection:  Customer preference  Product type  Partner capabilities  Competition Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  30. 30. 30 Channels Customer Preference Some people prefer email, some prefer phone, and so on. These preferences can make the difference between engagement, conversion, and disinterest. Identify channel preferences through customer profiles and engagement data. Weave channel preference indicators into segments. Budget permitting, prioritize channels that brand audiences prefer for engagement. Remember, engagement goes beyond conversion. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  31. 31. 31 Channels Product Type There are nuances to achieving conversions for physical products via digital channels, and vice versa. Most products or services have a preferred channel for distribution, even in the Internet of Things. Make sure conversion is measurable either directly or indirectly through each channel being considered. Consider that brand goals combined with customer types may require a specific set of channels that otherwise might seem unlikely. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  32. 32. 32 Channels Partner Capabilities Every brand has owned channels (e.g. the brand’s house list) and partner channels (e.g. behaviorally targeted display advertising). Marketers should still strive for relevance through segmentation and targeting, so partners who do not have these capabilities may not be a good fit for direct marketing efforts. Good or bad, partners’ reputations will impact the brand. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  33. 33. 33 Channels Competition Every channel has many competitors speaking to a brand’s customers. Marketers need to pay attention to the competition in order to stand out. Keep an eye on competitors’ channel mix, as this can provide clues to areas of opportunity. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  34. 34. 34 Channels When to prioritize channel selection Regardless of budget, channel selection needs to consistently be a priority for marketers. This is a rapidly changing area of the marketing landscape, and audience preferences, competitor moves, and partner capabilities are constantly shifting as a result. Test new capabilities as they become available. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  35. 35. 35 Cadence ❖Expectations ❖Tolerance ❖Integration Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  36. 36. 36 Cadence Expectations The first question marketers should address is, what happens next? Consider the most appropriate response to a customers action, or indirect action, or inaction. What is the expectation for communications, and what are the perils to avoid? Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  37. 37. 37 Cadence Tolerance Every direct marketing channel has a limited “tolerance” for messaging. Marketers need to understand how to map tolerance and response together to identify the appropriate channel from the channel palette. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  38. 38. 38 Cadence Integration Cadence relies heavily on the entire channel palette, not just one channel alone. Integrating cadence across channels is a delicate balancing act. Too many limitations, and customers miss your messages. Not enough care, and customers feel overwhelmed. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  39. 39. 39 Cadence When to prioritize cadence Cadence is an important consideration when adding new programs to a direct marketing strategy. Similarly, if the direct marketing strategy has grown recently it may be time to audit the cadence across all programs to ensure the brand’s audience isn’t being inundated with communications. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  40. 40. 40 Content Content and cadence often go hand-in-hand. Remember to be customer focused, not brand focused. Marketers need to ask: “What do our customers want to hear?” Guide content from 3perspectives: • Relevant • Available • Unique Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  41. 41. 41 Content Relevant Content should certainly be relevant and useful to the customer, otherwise why would they consume it? Apply the brand’s definition of relevance rigorously to content choices Be diligent about removing content that does not meet brand standards for relevance. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  42. 42. 42 Content Available Available means many things: is it in the CMS? Can an expert or an AI write it? Can it be bought? Are there competitors who already own it? Clearly define budget and resources to determine what content exists, what content can be created, and how easily the content can be used across channels. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  43. 43. 43 Content Unique Customers look at marketing communications to tell them something new or different. How does your brand make its content unique? Brands need to make sure they have a unique voice, perspective, or piece of information to offer. Focus on hitting at least one of these three with every marketing communication piece. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  44. 44. 44 Content When to prioritize content Content is constantly in need of a refresh, and a strong strategy will include content that looks and feels new to the audience. Partner with peers responsible for content across the brand so that direct marketing needs are considered as new content is curated. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  45. 45. 45 Measurement ✓ Measure ✓ Test ✓ Socialize Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  46. 46. 46 Measurement Measure Marketers who set solid goals up front are well situated to measure results against those goals along the way. There’s nothing worse than getting results and realizing they are not statistically significant, so plan ahead to avoid or manage this potential issue. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  47. 47. 47 Measurement Test The marketers’ mantra is “test, test, test”. There should always be tests planned. Testing deserves its own strategy, but should be integrated with all direct marketing strategies as well. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  48. 48. 48 Measurement Socialize Socialize results in the context of the brand’s organizational structure. Plan when to release results: newly released good results may have a positive influence during budget time, when older results have been forgotten. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  49. 49. 49 Measurement When to prioritize measurement Just as with goals, measurement is an important tool for evaluating results and communicating successes across the brand organization. Smart marketers spend extra effort on measurement plans so their successes are recognized. Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  50. 50. Guide to a Comprehensive Direct Marketing Strategy Gretchen Scheiman | 551-655-6459 | gretchens@gmail.com
  51. 51. For help refreshing your direct marketing strategy, contact: Gretchen Scheiman 551-655-6459 gretchens@gmail.com Thank You

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