Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Converged Marketing – Aligning to make 1+1 = 3

In my opinion converged marketing is about 2 things:

1 – Combining “inbound” and “outbound” tactics:
Traditionally many organizations are framed with fragmented and silo’d responsibilities across marketing teams by channels or messaging types. For example a quick job search will show many organizations with silos for inbound marketing, display marketing, demand generation, etc. Christopher S Penn has a great analogy for why outbound and inbound needs to blend here.

With Converged Marketing we need to make sure we blend all the ways a user can interact with our brand. Avinash Kaushik does a great job of setting the framework here for how a user might journey through the buy cycle.

Modern marketers have more channels than ever before to reach prospects (social, mobile, search, etc). Prospects expect to be able to consume any content piece, at any time, on any device (see more on this in the Forrester Mobile Mindshift report)  – Converged Marketing is about making sure we can fulfill this expectation. Beyond that we need to maximize mindshare throughout the research process.  If a user isn’t engaging with your brands content at a given moment, how do we make sure we stay top of mind?  A consideration for this particular problem would be branding products that follow the user as they search and explore other sites. Take every engagement you can, as every engagement is an opportunity to drive impact.

2 – User experiences:

The second key element of Converged Marketing is to make sure that the communication and user experience across these different tactics (in part 1) remains uniform. As displayed here in this McKinsey post users are going to expect seamless communication every step of the way as technology gets smarter.  Understanding our users and segmenting them so the communication and interactions are tailored specifically to their pain points will further enhance marketing efforts (IE applying Buyer Personas). Users don’t view brand engagements by “marketing buckets – (social, display, demand gen)” so we shouldn’t make the messaging and branding different by engagement channels.

Theory is good, but practice is better:

The theory of Converged Marketing is good, but if you need to see it in action there is an article of HP putting this into practice in the EMEA region located here. They call it “integrated marketing”, but it’s the same concept yielding a 16% increase in sales, as well as some other impressive engagement metrics.

Converged Marketing is about seamless user experiences and staying top of mind during the full research cycle. The result, Converged Marketing will significantly compound the effects of individual marketing efforts, making 1+1=3.  Leave a comment and tell me about your Converged Marketing experiences.

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