Digital Journeys 2016: Spearheading Marketing Transformation, Lessons Learned

Blog | 05 Oct, 2016

Marketing leads with experience of multiple change in brand-side marketing management, kindly joined our afternoon panel. 

Hosted by our very own Head of Data, James Parker, the panellists shared their past and current experiences, taking CMO strategy back to basics. 

We were joined by:
Gareth Case, Marketing Director, UK & Ireland from CSC
Joel Windels, VP Marketing from Wandera
Simon Kingsnorth, Global Head of Digital Marketing from Citi Private Bank
The panel warmed up by sharing their experiences of how any traditional marketing teams now need an injection of digital skills in house. One of the reasons being there are many tools now in use, yet often a lack of skills locally to fully utilise them. They shared a tip with the audience that if you want to make a fortune get trained in the likes of Marketo and Eloqua!

Another key trend is the increasing need for marketing operations and knowing different kinds of measurement and KPIs based on business objectives. 

The panel then went on to discuss what they recommend marketers focus on during their first six months as a marketing lead...

First six months as CMO, strategy creation in just four steps

Step 1    Go in and get as much data as possible, where are you now?

Step 2    Understand the customers / clients, what do they really want?

Step 3    Execute competitor positioning.

Step 4    Then consider, how do you get to where you want to be?

They then pondered different methods of building an effective marketing team.

Three considerations for building the ultimate marketing team

Consideration 1    You’ve either got generalists or specialists in teams it’s useful to have a mix

For example having PR, digital, social, ops, events and analytics experts working for and with generalist marketing managers and directors.

There are benefits to them using that resource like an internal agency – it enables agility – and the ability to execute campaigns in days rather than weeks.

Consideration 2    Where are the gaps?

Asking people what they are good at to see where there are skills gaps in order to know how to build the team, not just around each other but around you.

Where are your weaknesses? Try to find people that complement you. 

Consideration 3    Where do you want to go?

Who you bring in should shape where you want to go. Is your long term strategy to provide a social service, for example? If so you may want to hire a social media brand evangelist in-house, as opposed to using an agency. 

Focus areas for effective stakeholder management 

Focus 1               Getting some initial quick wins.

This might investing up front in a qualified lead pipeline, for example, whilst setting the rest of the function up.

Focus 2               Remember your new best friend.

The CIO and / or IT leads are key stakeholders now for marketers. You'll need them to help you integrate your tools - this is important. 

Focus 3               Ask them what THEY each REALLY want.

Then prioritise based on the CEO's objectives for example. 

Solving one or more stakeholders’ objectives or challenges early on integrates the marketing function into the business.

Gareth shared an example that he established the HR Director wanted to reduce recruitment costs, so he hired his whole team through social media saving the business £131,000. 

Focus 4               Regular communication and getting a bit political. 

One to ones and group meetings means you really get to know people. That's a start, then regular ongoing communications of what marketing is achieving ensures ongoing awareness and support.

Panellist Joel wisely chimed in sharing advice to find some allies and evangelise together so they can help you drive and manage the change the business needs.

Make their lives easy, he suggested, by saying 'I’ll do 90% please can you do this little bit' - and in no time at all, transformation will be afoot. 

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