Seven cyclical elements to a successful integrated marketing program are: mindset, measure, model, map, make, modify, and monetize.
Let’s take a look at each of the elements:
The mindset you hold while creating your campaigns drives the sense of brand that reaches your visitors. Use it to center your strategy. Most managers don’t think deliberately about the mindset they bring to their work, which leaves them trying isolated tactics at random, rather than creating a strategy and then tactics to suit.
This element starts with identifying goals and creating a baseline measurement. It continues with establishing an analytics structure that allows you to measure before, during, and after campaign development and modify results intelligently.
Modeling is about combining introspection with analytics data. You introspect to uncover who you are and what niche of clientele you really want to reach and you use the analytics data to discover whom you are really reaching. The model element uses these to predict, or forecast, how your market will respond to your campaign, offerings, and promotional efforts. At the campaign planning stage, it is the precursor to the creative brief – the actual data clarifies objectives, preferred channels, personas, etc. These, then, inform the direction of the creative.
Mapping is a systematic formulation of content, based on the model you constructed. Here the model begins to take shape on a high level through overall content strategy; more granularly through website or campaign content development, and social media communications.
This element fleshes out the map and includes the requisite prototypes, and finally an approved design and launch.
This element is the recognition that we will forever need to make adaptations and optimizations to our models, maps, and designs, based on the data we get from analytics and from customers themselves. This process is continuously adaptive and, along with the predictive model, leads to improvement much more accurately than guesswork methods.
Monetization is the goal – ensure you make money from your work, or all was for nothing. This element is included so that you keep clear why you are going through these paces, and do not get caught up in the beauty of your process.
Putting the Elements Into a Process
I’ve laid out the elements in an ordered sequence. However, the process is cyclical and you will continually move back and forth between elements. You need them all, and when you put them together, they fit in the following ways:
First, all marketers start with a particular mindset. Ideally, the marketing manager will set the proper mindset for the team, as this is the prelude to success in the other elements. This means beginning with self-awareness of company goals and objectives, and narrowing your market to the specific segment that is a perfect fit for your offerings.
After identifying your target customer, an empathetic mindset is the next stage of deliberately creating systems and tactics to help you deeply understand your customer’s inner life. This inside information allows you to target your marketing to meet their needs and preferences. You’ll need genuine empathy to keep your marketing from seeming creepy or invasive to your market.
A mindset of engagement allows you to put into practice your empathy for the customer. It informs how you integrate social media, email, and other “push” tactics into your overall strategy. Keep this vital step of mindset as the driving force of your marketing programs. Revisit it periodically throughout the process.
Next you’ll need to measure and set up to modify. You’re preparing yourself for the cycle by doing a baseline measurement and starting where you are, setting yourself up to do the modifications. You likely already have website and social analytics programs in place, but often this data is sent in a report to management, and subsequent tactical changes are not always tied to them. This process of measuring and automatically setting up to modify keeps you and management on track with campaign objectives and customer patterns.
The next elements, model-map-make, are a trio that tend to work more or less in sequential order. From developing high-level marketing objectives, to creating a website and formulating click paths, to designing your social media communications plan, this trio comprises the foundation of the system. Despite that, expect that as you refine from modeling to making, you will make discoveries that will cause you to revisit your model and your map.
Make-measure-modify are also a trio. When you design a campaign, you’ll think it’s wonderful. But this is the time to measure the customer’s response. Upon getting the feedback from your visitors, you’ll immediately see the need to make modifications. That will take you back to mapping and modeling. Model-map-make-measure-modify, over and over, with the proper mindset driving.
Finally,monetization. Convert your campaign energy to visitor actions: contact information and social engagement are part of the journey, but monetization is the end goal. Don’t get lost in the process along the way.
By implementing these seven elements into your integrated marketing program, you will have a system that includes goals and objectives, conversion-focused content and design, and a strategy for measuring success and modifying results.