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Marketing Programs Unaligned with IT strategies are Futile

By Raj Midha, VP, Merry Maids

Raj Midha, VP, Merry Maids

Customer Centric Approach

Start with your customers (what they want) and your core competencies (what your company is great at doing), then figure out the best way to communicate your competencies to your customers. If you start with tools or channels, it’s easy to get lost. When it comes to evaluating media investments or marketing tools, my advice is to follow the money–look at where you’re spending the most money and make sure the spend is generating the results you expect. Look at what’s working and see if there are opportunities to double down. Cohesive Team Work to Boost

Marketing Initiatives

A lot of times, we think of a business case as something we create to “sell” to the senior management on a particular program. While executive buy-in is important, I think it is more important that everyone on the team understands the business case and is committed to delivering the benefits, whether that’s more leads, better conversion or higher profit per customer.

Stress on Open-Minded Teams

Modern marketing is constantly changing– and changing quickly−I think it’s more important to have a team which is customer focused and is always open to learning new things. Rather than building expertise in any one aspect of modern marketing, my advice is, build a team with strong general marketing, project management and leadership skills – those competencies never go out of style; make sure each has a crisp understanding of the customer and the objectives of the business–otherwise they’ll be shooting in the dark; and find great internal and external partners who can help meet your business objectives andfill in any expertise gaps.

Science of Successful Advertising

Number one on my wish list is figuring out the effectiveness of advertising spend when you’re using multiple channels to reach the same customers. Sometimes you hear that referred to as—”multi-channel sales attribution.” I think this has the opportunity to turn some of the “art” of marketing into more “science.”

As campaigns become much more integrated and as more dollars are spent on channels like social media, marketing stakeholders are going to rightly expect to see us quantify the return on those investments.

Identifying Operational insights

While there are mountains of operational and customer data available to me, real insights about the business take a lot of time and effort. Often times, the best insights come from our teams in the field, but they don’t always get surfaced to the corporate office in a timely manner, so I’d like to see more solutions that allow me collect insights from the field, not just data.

"Rather than building expertise in any one aspect of modern marketing, build a team with strong general marketing, project management and leadership skills"

Avoid Big-Bang Approach

The less software companies charge us to start using their products, the easier it will be to adopt and increase their use over time. It will also allow marketers to start with the highest ROI solutions and build from there, as opposed to a “big bang” approach that has a high degree of business risk on the front end.

Simplify Mobile Applications

I think mobile is going to have a huge impact on marketing initiatives and business. We’ve already started to see its effect, with over 25 percent of our search impressions coming from mobile and tablets. But as consumers spend more time on mobile devices, we have to simplify doing business through mobile applications. In addition, our business partners and team members are becoming much more comfortable performing daily tasks through mobile devices. That’s just going to open up even more opportunities for innovation.

Synchronizing with Technology Leaders It’s always been important for marketing to coordinate well with operations to create best value for a company. It doesn’t do any good to drive a demand that operations aren’t equipped to handle, or to create marketing programs that aren’t aligned with IT strategies. We’re all becoming more dependent on technology and as a practical matter we need to be coordinated with the technology leaders in the business. Only then we can build and support the systems and processes needed to drive growth and improve the customer experience.