CMO’s and marketing professionals have a finite number of media channels to link to response channels, however mixing in one variable such as a unique offer or unique creative and the complexity amplifies exponentially. One way to simply the process is to use call centers and tag each variation of … offer, channel or creative with a unique 800 number (aka toll free number). However, this approach creates an entirely new set of problems. That being the management, tracking, and measuring of each response channel or unique 800 number … and … linking the response back to the media plan and budget. For the amateur it is an insurmountable challenge, and the experts want companies to pay hundreds of millions of dollars for phantom solutions.
Call this challenge whatever you like: Marketing ROI … linking marketing to financial consequences … return on marketing investment … contact center optimization … information silo-ing … channel centric silos … distributed marketing technologies … even managing multichannel marketing efforts!
I do not care what you call it, at the end of the day measuring multichannel campaign performance is it simple … it is easy … it is relatively inexpensive.
The first issue of multichannel optimization is corporate culture. It is an intangible that most organizations can never hurdle over. Internal politics, business unit fiefdoms all come into pay and prevent a business organization from being able to calibrate around one goal. The enemy within is always more difficult to conquer than external business battles. Nevertheless, if a company can break through the political minutia they will be able to capitalize on, every penny of, marketing spend.
The core issue is realizing that marketing permeates every group, business unit and each and every person inside the company. Vendors from the outside who feed off of the company play a critical role too (e.g. agencies), and vendors are more complicit than amiable. Aligning all hands to be focused in achieving a marketing measurement system is a very ambitious goal; however it can not be achieved without profound cooperation and collaboration from within the leadership ranks. In truth, I can stop the article right here; however I have to spend some time on the parasitic marketing technology companies that suck the life blood out of other companies’ successes.
Shockingly, and I am using the word “shockingly” with complete sarcasm, these marketing technology companies pay technology research companies a tidy sum of money to validate their existence. The technology research companies use executive interviews and statistics so the marketing technology companies can turn around and cobbled or boarder-line fabricated results back to the unsuspecting executives that were interviewed to demonstrate to the executives how much they need their marketing technology solutions.
Let me get back on point. Successful multichannel marketing is just being able to quickly, (on a daily basis) peer across, using a marketing dashboard, multiple yet separate marketing campaigns, delivered by different (multiple) media channels (e.g. TV, Radio, Alternative Media, Etc.) with this vista, a marketing professional can identify what is working, what is not working. There is no challenge of implementing such a system, which measures, and optimizes multichannel marketing. But having such a system in place is like taking a gun to a knife fight.
The intangible benefits are innumerable, but the direct benefits are astonishing:
— Profit can be throttled up or down at will
— Brand value can be measured and valuated
— Lifetime valuation of customers
— Purchase Pattern mapping can identification potential repeat purchases
— Sarbanes-Oxley can be complied with achieving Wall Street transparency
— Customer satisfaction criteria can be exploited
— A marketing dashboard can be developed monitoring critical metrics
Linking off-line to on-line, integrating the call center and retail outlets into a marketing performance measurement system is easy even if there are multiple order entry systems, CRM system, and telephone switches. Even with such a hotchpotch, the call centers and finance department maybe losing some efficiency, but that shouldn’t have any affect on a CMO’s marketing measurement system.
A CMO only needs four pieces of technology to track as many disparate data silos they need:
1) a data exchange engine (DxE) to process all the data feeds,
2) tracking tags software application to organize all the 800 numbers, promotional codes and landing pages, and
3) a dashboard delivery system, any web browser will do,
4) a repository to store all the historical data.