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Let's look at the integration of traditional communications. Think about an example when you've seen a television advert by an organization which then doesn't have a consistent message across the various other channels in which it operates. It can lead to confusion amongst the customers.
When integrating a number of channels – whether they be traditional or digital – it's important to maintain a consistent brand message. Essentially, the brand and company need to sing off the same hymn sheet.
This also extends much further than just the communication realm but also into perhaps a customer experience or customer service aspect too. A good example of this is that when you call up a call center, for example, and not only do you hear consistent music that you would also hear in the advertising but also the agents speak in a similar tone of voice as you would expect the brand to be. That creates this entire brand consistency. Remember, the agent who's sitting in front of you or over the phone is effectively the brand to your customer. So it's important that they too portray a consistent message.
You can now track the effectiveness of traditional communications. There's a host of tools and techniques and statistical techniques that are being used to track the impact of offline campaigns. Classic examples are AB testing, for example, or a variety of statistical techniques as well out there to be able to track the impact of your offline campaigns. And it's important that you do so in an integrated way because ultimately you need to be able to dissect and disseminate the impact a specific channel is having to your bottom line.
Within an integrated campaign, there might be a multitude of different channels that are at play at one time. You'll need to determine exactly which one is having more impact than the other. There are a couple of tools and techniques you can use to do this. (We'll discuss these later.)
You should think about capitalizing on real-life interactions. Despite the advent of technology and more people and more customers preferring digital, you need to think about how you can still implement and integrate real-time, humanistic interactions either into the digital experience or even into the offline traditional experiences as well. Think about your in-store experience as a way to integrate some real-life interactions with your customers. Gain those insights, track those insights, and effectively digitize those insights as a way to then gain more of an understanding about what your customers are looking for. And more and more people are looking to use digital techniques for real-life interactions.
Web chat is a great example of that, where effectively you've got humanistic interactions that are taking place in digital platform. Think about social media customer services as another great way in which to actually create real-life interactions in a digital-based environment.
You need to consider some of the key aspects around education when it comes to digital marketing.
This is very important, particularly because it's a relatively new area in the marketing spectrum. And often, people can become quite skeptical or cynical of something new. So think about how you educate your marketing teams, and beyond it, into the entire organization, about the effect and impact that digital marketing can have when it co-exists with traditional marketing techniques.
What is exactly a single customer view? Think about the traditional ways that organizations have operated. They would've had a multitude of systems to deal with – for example, a branch-based customer versus a call center customer and perhaps now an online-based customer. There may have been a variety of different products that are being recorded on different systems as well.
Take a banking product as a good example where you may have a personal customer where there's a profile that's saved on a system somewhere. But then suppose that same personal customer is also a business customer. Unfortunately, the two personal business systems hadn't been integrated with one another, and you'd see that single customer as two customers. The problem with that is that if you're reaching out to them, you won't understand what the holistic relationship is worth to the organization. So one of the key tools and techniques that digital allows you to do is to create that single customer view. You're bringing together a multitude of different customer data sets to truly understand who that customer is, what's the value they bring to your organization, and potentially what other products and services could they want from your organization.
In turn, this helps you to determine exactly what type of products and services you should be offering them in the future. The benefit to that is the customer then feels that the organization truly understands them better. And the organization will gain a higher degree of loyalty within their customers.
You should think about upskilling employees across a multitude of different disciplines. No longer is there going to be one job for life or an employee who simply has to do a narrow set of duties or tasks. In fact, there's a much greater need to integrate the organization, and employees have a multitude of different skills. Those skills are becoming more digitally orientated.
Think about the classic social media context where, for example, traditionally call center agents may take customer services calls. Now, the majority of customer services in some organizations are done through social media. There's a much wider need for a call center agent not only to be able to answer calls and speak to customers, but also be able to communicate through digital-orientated platforms as well. So employees need to gain a much more holistic skill set to be able to be effective in today's digital-oriented organizations.
Consider the linear approach need to move into a digital-oriented organizational sort of atmosphere.
Small acorns grow into great oak trees. And this applies to digital campaigns too!
Create small digital campaigns which have a small level of upfront digital commitment or financial commitment. We're trying to create an environment where we're proving the case to have more digital communications. Once we do that, we can then start to prove to the organization the value of moving from traditional comms into more digitally-orientated communications as a way to both help the customer to be more effective and efficient in their interaction with the organization, but also for the organization to be more cost-effective and to have an increased commercial gain. You can do more with less.
Next, think about how to iterate and grow those incremental small campaigns to build on traditional communications. The organization might start to dabble in more digitally-orientated communications through blending traditional comms with digital comms, for example. Or maybe, at the end of a TV campaign, you may direct people to a website as opposed to directing people to a call center or a branch. And that way, you can then start to understand some of the impact that digital could have on your organization.
Your aim is to create highly effective campaigns that complement both traditional and digital communications. Great examples of these include O2, which are one of the largest telecom companies in the UK. They have created great TV advertising which is supported by digital assets in a compelling way. They did this during the World Cup Rugby. Look up O2 World Cup Rugby and look out for how those adverts integrated various campaigns.
Another good example is Chipotle. They live and breathe some of the vision that they have in their stores around their ethical stance on their food. Think about how they created games as well as digital communications and TV advertising to bring everything together. And getting their employees behind it was critically important, which their CEO did effectively by communicating their overarching vision to everyone.Back to Top
Ritchie Mehta has had an eight-year corporate career with a number of leading organizations such as HSBC, RBS, and Direct Line Group. He then went on setting up a number of businesses.
Data protection regulations affect almost all aspects of digital marketing. Therefore, DMI has produced a short course on GDPR for all of our students. If you wish to learn more about GDPR, you can do so here:
You will not be assessed on this content in your final exam.
ABOUT THIS DIGITAL MARKETING MODULE
This module introduces the key concepts underlying the Digital Marketing Institute’s 3i Framework for selecting and implementing the best digital strategy for your organization. It provides an overview of the key components in an effective digital strategy, which are expanded upon in much greater detail in subsequent modules. It also covers different types of business strategies, the difference between a business value proposition and a digital value proposition, and the importance of robust strategic management to maintain a long-term strategy.