David Panek, Senior Vice President of Marketing, Aprimo, discussed the "chaos" behind modern marketing and how today's marketers can overcome this chaos during his presentation to Argyle's CMO membership at the 2016 Chief Marketing Officer Leadership Forum: Spotlight on Financial Services in Boston on Sept. 15. In his presentation, "Clear the Chaos to Become a Modern Marketer," Panek explored how marketers can streamline and simplify modern marketing complexities to produce greater agility, bold marketing initiatives and unprecedented success.
According to Panek, the fundamentals of marketing have not changed over the years. Instead, today's marketers – like their predecessors – are still trying to engage with consumers.
However, today's marketers commonly need to engage with consumers across multiple channels. And as new channels have become available, customer behaviors have changed.
"People move in all kinds of different directions," Panek stated. "You are in control of your own behavior, and that's causing this chaos among marketers and what they're trying to do."
For marketers, it is essential to find the best ways to connect with consumers across multiple channels. Marketers also are forced to deal with "content overload," Panek said, along with siloed departments and limited resources.
"When you look at it from a marketer's perspective … we're all trying to do the same thing," Panek noted. "How do you provide a consistent and meaningful experience? How do you collaborate effectively internally? … You really need to [perform marketing campaigns] in a much more collaborative way and in real-time."
How marketers adapt to the current business landscape may dictate their short- and long-term success, Panek said.
"In modern marketing … it's about numerous small experiments. You can gauge a smaller audience to move them from one space to the next."
Marketers must remain agile to succeed in today's global marketplace. In order to maintain agility, marketers must be prepared to learn about customer behaviors and trends so they can better understand customer expectations.
"In a digital-mix marketing world, it really is driven by knowing the customer's expectations and anticipating where they're going to be," Panek pointed out. "You want to make sure you have the right content to move the customer along that conversion cycle."
Also, marketers must find the right balance between the number of channels they use, the amount of content they provide and the resources that are available to them. By doing so, marketers will be better equipped to optimize the return on investment (ROI) of their marketing spend as well as improve their chances of driving customer engagement over an extended period of time.
A marketer's success may depend on how quickly he or she embraces "modern marketing" principles, too.
"In modern marketing … you're responsive to the changing dynamics of your customers and individuals that you're marketing on," Panek said. "It's about rapid iteration and fast failing. You're trying new things and adjusting and evolving."
In addition, collecting and evaluating customer data can deliver substantial benefits for modern marketers.
"In a digital-mix marketing world, it really is driven by knowing the customer's expectations and anticipating where they're going to be."
There is a vast array of customer data available to marketers, and having the ability to obtain and understand this information empowers marketers with meaningful customer insights. With these insights at their disposal, marketers may be able to better understand a business' target audience, anticipate customers' needs and ensure a company is prepared to respond accordingly.
Although traditional marketing often emphasized setting large goals and working consistently to achieve them, Panek stated that modern marketing requires businesses to establish small goals and build slowly. By doing so, marketers are able to maintain their agility, understand how a small group of customers feels about a company at a given time and work toward maximizing the marketing resources that are available.
"In modern marketing … it's about numerous small experiments," Panek noted. "You can gauge a smaller audience to move them from one space to the next."
Modern marketers also must embrace a team-centric approach to ensure a business can drive ongoing interactions with customers.
In the past, marketers may have focused on specific groups of customers, which may have forced these marketers to alienate or dismiss some customers as well.
Now, marketers must prioritize collaboration with customers and with multiple departments within their respective organizations. This collaboration ensures marketers can retrieve customer engagement feedback from multiple sources, which may drive numerous business improvements simultaneously.
"Instead of having large segmentations, you're getting smaller and smaller and trying to drive that individualized conversation," Panek said. "It's all about choosing collaboration over hierarchy within your organization."
Marketers no longer can focus exclusively on one set of customers and use only a single channel to connect with them. Conversely, today's marketers must be flexible and willing to work with consumers across multiple channels at the same. This collaboration may drive significant results for a business, ensuring marketers are able to allocate their marketing spend properly and maximize the ROI of their marketing efforts.
David is SVP of Marketing for Aprimo where he leads global branding and go-to-market initiatives. Across his 25 years of experience in marketing technology, he has held leadership roles in marketing, product management, and consulting at both startups and companies including IBM, Oracle, SPSS, and Epiphany (now Infor). His domain expertise includes marketing operations, campaign management, real-time marketing, and digital marketing. David holds an MBA from Loyola University Chicago.