The Search Engine Journal's Twitter audience poll found that 71 percent of participants plan to spend more on digital marketing this year compared to 2016. Maybe you’re not surprised that digital marketing will continue its growth, but these additional realities about your own business could surprise you: More initiatives mean a greater burden on your marketing and analytics processes, and how you respond could be the difference between sluggish results and surging growth.
A growing budget contributes to more moving parts. It is vital to ensure the right data is collected and organized in order to maintain, and even improve, efficiency.
So as you grow your budgets, also grow your efforts to streamline in order to take full advantage of the new efforts. Here are five ways.
"Smart KPI goals stretch the team to encourage continuous improvement and growth."
Key performance indicators (KPIs) ensure you're pushing yourself and measuring results. And remember: KPIs must be formulated to give you information that you can act on. Smart KPI goals stretch the team to encourage continuous improvement and growth.
New technology is always entering the consumer market – devices like smartwatches, virtual-reality viewers and the constant innovations in smartphones (and in the apps they power) introduce new marketing opportunities. As tech changes, new KPIs may be needed and existing ones modified to ensure you’re getting omni-channel brand continuity, efficiently.
Dive deeper than basics like click-through rates (CTR), conversion rates and opportunities generated. Look into social media KPIs (shares, engagement, likes, clicks). Examine which email campaigns produced the best results and identify factors that contributed to the success and replicate them. KPIs help with all of this.
Consider account-based and customer-based marketing and KPIs. With the advancement of tracking technologies and data collection, the ability to target specific groups and individuals is becoming more prevalent. But it’s still an underutilized strategy that can produce huge results.
Start with the fact that it costs more to acquire new customers than to retain the ones you already have. Consider as well a Bain & Company survey that showed that up to 80 percent of customers who describe themselves as satisfied don’t do repeat business with that company. The problem is “disconnection.”
"Data is your driver and your actions should be based on it."
Convey messages that speak specifically to your accounts’ individual or organizational needs and strive to decrease that aforementioned 80 percent stat. Then track the performance of discrete email campaigns. Go even one step further, by using the data from these efforts to direct future initiatives and setting KPIs to motivate and measure.
Data is your driver and your actions should be based on it.
Connect your content management system (CMS) and your digital asset management system (DAM) to streamline the web-publishing process. You can also share content to social media from your DAM. Strong DAMs can post directly for you. This saves steps, time and cuts down on the chance for accidental or erroneous posts. It also allows a single location for metrics to be collected and stored for analysis.
Built in metrics help with analysis. A strong DAM has built in metrics that captures and graphs data of events occurring within the system. Your team can see how often an asset is downloaded and what is being searched for.
By analyzing found/not found rates, you can fine-tune metadata to ensure the right content is being found. Now tie in your other systems to your DAM via APIs: their metrics can be associated to the pertinent assets and analyzed. A powerful DAM can thus meet many analytical needs across your organization.
"Growing technology channels offer new ways to reach your customers but also presents a new challenge in maintaining brand consistency."
Utilizing APIs, assets can automatically be tagged via intelligent artificial-intelligence (AI) analysis.
Here’s how: When assets are added to the system, they typically need to be tagged with relevant keywords in order to be found in searches. There are solutions that make this happen via an automated intelligent machine (not one of your employees!) that identifies parts of the asset and tags it with the relevant keywords automatically. This is a huge time saver and the technology will only improve in accuracy and adoption as time goes on.
"Automation should be your best friend."
Automate workflow processes. Automation should be your best friend. Have you looked into cloud-based services like IFTTT or Buffer or Feedly into your efforts? Each of these can automate certain crucial functions of your marketing effort. Check out this great collection of marketing automation ideas to dive deeper.
Take a quick survey of your marketing, design and IT departments to reveal areas where they are slowed or stalled by the decentralization of data and assets spread around the company and housed who-knows-where.
"A true vendor should be a partner."
Be vigilant about searching for tools that can help your current systems (DAM, CMS, etc.) do what you need in order to meet your KPI goals for efficiency and sales.
Push your vendors to collaborate with you on how to maximize the functionality of your systems. A true vendor should be a partner. Centralization makes your brand assets easier to access, prevents the use of unauthorized assets through rights restrictions and the need to recreate assets. It encourages self-service among your staff and it directly impacts brand consistency in the marketplace.
When you’re consistently doing items 1 through 4, you can start to embrace big data. As your systems and data are more integrated, more accessible, more analyzable, you can leverage them in bigger and more powerful ways. In this way, the benefits of your automation efforts can be far greater than the sum of the individual parts.
The secret to managing a growing marketing budget isn’t classified business insight. It’s ensuring strong organization among your information and assets, making sure the right measurements are in place and you take advantage of automation and connected systems as much as possible.
If you’d like to learn more about streamlining you marketing efforts with digital asset management we’re here to help.